Colorful Tobermory, Scotland was a fun spot to explore after our failed bird watching expedition to the countryside. The photo above captures about one-third of the town. The arrival of our ship doubled the population of this quaint town for the day. We went into the Mishnish Hotel, the yellow building above, and had some local beverages and a half dozen oysters as part of our shore excursion. Then we ventured a few doors down for some Indian cuisine.
Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland. How fitting that we happened to be there, just a couple blocks from their parliament, for the historic vote on independence from England. I attended two “Yes” rallies and spoke to those in favor of independence from England. It would have been better for me to tell these young protestors I was Canadian, as the USA was not at all popular here….
Our most northern stop in the UK was Inverness, Scotland. There was nothing specific from a photographic or tourism viewpoint that brought us here. We used Inverness as a base to drive even further north into the Highlands and dine in the town of Tongue. Of course we also wanted to explore Loch Ness as another one of those tourist ‘must-see’ places. The above photo was taken from a lunch spot we discovered on the much less touristy east side of Loch Ness. On the west side, restaurants seem to be around every curve in the road, but on this side, we were just about to give up on finding any restaurant when we found a real gem with the view above.
For some unknown reason we only scheduled four days in the beautiful Isle of Skye, yet an entire week was spent in Edinburgh and a week in York. This planning was a bit backwards in hindsight. Much more time could have been spent in this stunning island countryside. The one day available to hike to the beautiful and unique Old Man of Storr provided only very dumpy light (photography speak), so I turned around and explored other parts of the island rather than devote an entire day to a single spot. The Old Man of Storr is the monolith in the distant background of the lead photo above.
Continuing our practice of alternating between large cities and small towns on our European tour, from Glasgow we next headed for the small town of Oban, Scotland. While some scotch drinkers will recognize this a a brand name, most have likely never heard of this fishing village/tourist town on the west coast of Scotland. The scotch distillery is right in the middle of town. Along with my goal of tasting the local cuisine of where we visit, I went for my first scotch tasting here. I am no expert and that may be a good thing, both physically and financially.
When traveling we try to alternate between visiting a rural location and a big city, so Glasgow followed our stay in Ballintoy, Northern Ireland. Our condo was right downtown near then main shopping and business areas. Not much in the way of great photography, but of course Doug, the visiting photographer, got me out to make the most of it. The photo above shows a typical color of the buildings in Glasgow, contrasted with some very bright red flowers.
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