Around Edinburgh – Bonnie, Bonnie Shores

(No relation to Dinah Shore)

 

Off on a bus tour to see some sights around Scotland.  First we took a quick ride through Glasgow, which appeared to be a quite beautiful city if we had stopped anywhere.  But time was of the essence and we moved on to our first stop:

 

 

Loch Lomond

 

Loch Lomond (pronounced “Law-mond”).  The largest lake in all of Scotland and England, we took a nice cruise around the shores.

 

Loch Lomond House

 

The lake houses around Loch Lomond are quite a sight.  They essentially all look like castles:

 

Loch Lomond House

 

Loch Lomond Castle

 

That last one actually is a castle.

 

Loch Lomond Sailboat

 

Loch Lomond Jetski

 

They still have to deal with jet skis though.

 

Aberfoyle

 

Next stop: the village of Aberfoyle.  The town is known as the gateway to the Highlands.  We stopped here for lunch and then took a little jaunt through the Trossachs, the name for this section of mountains.

 

Peregrine Falcon

 

Me holding a peregrine falcon.  Why?  Because before this there has been exactly one picture of me on this website.

 

Trossachs Scottish Highlands

 

Some Highlands scenery.  I could have spent a lot of time just exploring the mountains of northern Scotland.  This region was home to both William Wallace (played by Mel Gibson) and Rob Roy (played by Liam Neesen).

 

Hamish the Coo

 

Hamish the cow.  Hamish is a Highland cow or hairy coo.  He lives at tourist trap on the side of the road.  People buy vegetables at the store there and then feed them to him.  He has an easy life even for cow standards.

 

Castle Doune

 

In the distance there is Castle Doune, taken from inside the bus. Castle Doune is famous for being briefly occupied by the French during the filming of Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

 

Stirling Castle

 

The entrance to Stirling Castle.  In the town of Stirling, this was one of the favorite castles I’ve visited.  One interesting thing about is that it’s seen lots of actual fighting.  The walls are full of canon scars and bullet marks.  Lots of statues inside are missing arms and heads.

 

Stirling Castle

 

Part of the royal quarters in the castle.

 

View from Stirling Castle

 

The castle is high on a bluff with a commanding view of the surrounding land.  I wasn’t able to get a picture of the outside but here’s a nice one.

 

View from Stirling Castle

 

The remnants of the gardens at Stirling Castle.

 

William Wallace Monument

 

The monument to William Wallace.

 

William Wallace Monument

 

“Where you can get smart and stupid in the same place.”

 

Stirling Castle Wall

 

Part of the wall of the castle.

 

Stirling Castle Statue

 

A statue outside of Stirling Castle.  To me it really looks like he’s rockin’ out on a guitar.

 

Thus concludes my Scotland adventure.  Beautiful scenery and fun places.  But apparently traveling there takes quite a lot of patience.  On my way back, all of easyJet’s computers at Edinburgh Airport went down, causing my flight to be delayed about an hour and a half.  Which, in turn, caused me to miss the last train back to Guildford from Gatwick Airport.  And being Saturday night, the only hotel room left anywhere near the airport cost 190 pounds ($375).  Contemplating this I went and laid down in the airport and wondered if I could stand another night there.  But in the end I shelled out 60 pounds ($100) and took a taxi back to my room.  Oh, the joys of travel.