Sunday, October 18, 2015

Aberdeen & the Grampian Highlands

On August 19th we took a scenic drive along the whisky trail through the Cairngorms Mountains.

Yes, we drove in a big circle, rather, two big circles

We didn't stop at all the distilleries and even at the ones we did stop at, we didn't do any tastings. Paul was driving so it didn't seem fair. And, based on the crazy driving, we both needed to keep our heads straight!

Most importantly, we had to find some breakfast.

Starting the day off with a traditional Scottish breakfast - yes, that's haggis next to black pudding!

We set off for the day...

We got really lucky with the weather!

A church in Inverness

Through Nairn

Along the way - passing through Grantown-on-Spey

We stopped on the side of the road to take in the view of the fields filled with heather

Paul is presenting the view to me

And getting some stretches in

Another shot of the beautiful view

So green and pretty! Still part of Ballindalloch/Tomintoul

This is a two way road!

This way to whisky

Another shot through the car window

Birthplace of Duff Beer? 

The Glenfiddich distillery was really pretty

Established in 1887, Glenfiddich means "Valley of the Deer" in Gaelic by William Grant.
It is still entirely family owned.

No rain at all on this day!

We headed back and drove through Elgin

And through Forres

And made our way back to Aviemore. It was very pretty but it was a long day of driving. We were ready for some whisky.

And a cigar...

While Paul enjoyed his cigar, I was obsessed with this bumble bee.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

St. Andrews, Pitlochry and Aviemore

On August 18th we picked up our rental car. First stop was St. Andrews as we made our way to the Highlands and our ultimate destination, Aviemore. Aviemore is a small town within the Cairngorms National Park, which is within driving distance to the whiskey trail.

We drove through some other cute small towns along the way. It rained but that didn't stop us from walking around and seeing the sights of St. Andrews.

Driving through towns

St. Andrews is known as the "home of golf" and was where the 2015 Open was played. St. Andrews also has a university - the oldest in Scotland.

Starting our walk through St. Andrews

Small streets

More doors

Blue door

Love this arch

The front of St. Andrews cathedral - it was the largest building in the country in 1318 

Wet selfie

The wall is still in tact

Most of the cathedral is in ruins

King Robert the Bruce was said to have been present when the cathedral was consecrated in 1318

Entering the cemetery

Paul noticed that this wall also had the occasional piece of petrified driftwood

Peeking through

View of the cathedral from the cemetery

"It's a trap!" I liked the colors of these lobster traps.

Looking out towards the North Sea

What remains of the St. Andrews castle

Another view of St. Andrews castle

Walking to the golf course

Golfing at St. Andrews

Beach shot 

We stopped for chicken pot pie for lunch

Streets of St. Andrews

We stopped in Pitlochry for some tea and scones

Driving towards Aviemore

Glamorous Camping

Actually quite comfortable despite the size

Except the bathroom was not - especially with very limited hot water

The church in Aviemore