We have been to Scotland in 2014 and it was amazing! When we even still had British soil (yes it was and is still british) underneath our feet we decided to go to Ireland. 3 years later we are finally about to go!
But first let’s talk a little about the past:
How was Scotland?
I honestly do not know why we wanted to go to Scotland in the first place. It could be because we like Whisky or we already knew the language (kind of). Maybe we just wanted to start somewhere, but in any case, we instantly fell in love with the people and the country. We went to Edinburgh in May and stayed there for 3 days, just to get to know the city a little bit. On our second day it even was my husband’s and my fifth anniversary and thinking back I still believe it was the best anniversary we ever had! We still know people we met only this one night! Living in a small city in Germany with a rich history going back to a Roman settlement, we also fell in love with the structure, history and especially size of the city. When we came back after our roadtrip a week later it already was like coming home.
The first day took us to Stirling and to Loch Lomond across the Trossachs National Park to Oban where we waited for the next day to get a ferry to the Isle of Mull. Guys, if anyone ever has to choose Isle of Skye or Isle of Mull, then please choose the Isle of Mull. It was not only stunningly beautiful, but also very quiet and the people took us in like old friends and not at all like tourists. We stayed as only guests in a Hostel/Town Hall/School gym in Dervaig and spent nearly all evening at the beach in Calgary. If you go there, don’t ever forget to bring your sunglases, because the sand is so white, you might start crying because it is so bright.
After that we went to Fort William. We could have had a better time there, if we would have known better. Years later I now have a far better knowledge about the Scotish history and therefore the importance of Fort William. On the other hand we could have just taken a trip with the Jacobite Train. Instead, we chose our Hostel inside a train! True, it wasn’t the most comfortable bed we slept in during the 2 weeks in Scotland, but it wasn’t the worst and it definitely was the most exciting!
Going on to the Isle of Skye: Don’t get me wrong, after my laudatory speech about the Isle of Mull, the Isle of Skye is also absolutely breathtaking. But this is not a secret. You can spend days here walking to the Fairy Pools, standing at Kilt Rock, hiking across the mountains and visiting the Old Man of Storr. There is so much to see and it is absoltely worth it. We stayed at the Old Inn in Carbost, which is the oldest Pub in Skye and has the most amazing view across Loch Harport in the morning!
Of course we tried to find the Loch Ness Monster, but without success. And being honest, we weren’t impressed, neither from the Lake, nor the city Inverness. We just stayed there over night and went straight on to our planned Distillery Tour (Cardow, Speyside, Macallan, Balvenie, Glenrothes, Strathisla and Glenfiddich). In case you plan to do something similar, I’ll advice to check which weekday you are about to pass by. We actually lost track of time and stood in front of every single Visitor’s Center closed on Sunday, exept one: Glenfiddich! Thanks for that again!
The rest of the route back to Edinburgh was quite quick, we stopped by in Aberdeen for a coffee and Dundee. When I would go back for holiday some time soon, I would definitely plan some more time in Dundee, because it is an amazing city with a lot of opportunities to shoot pictures of abandoned or decayed buildings and factories and a harbour. Endless possibilities!
So this was our trip to Scotland. We had a rough plan for what we would like to visit and dropped about half of it when we were on the road. But it was ok. This way we could choose what kind of mood we were in today and just went for it. We didn’t book any hostels or B&B in advance. We just started looking for a hostel every day around 4 pm and it worked! It was exciting and we were free to go with our own speed.
What would I do differently?
Nature and Silence:
Our trip to Scotland was a roadtrip. Going to Ireland now, I tried to include a little more hiking and walking. I wanted to enjoy nature and silence, spending time to get the settings right for the pictures, maybe even waiting for the sun to shine a little brighter and maybe even just sit and listen to the wind and smell the earth.
On our last day we were sitting in a Pub and rated the places, hostels and restaurants we were in by writing them down on a paper napkin. First it was very hard to get it all together after 14 days of amazing experiences and amazing food and second I put the napkin into my backpocket, which I reallized after doing the laundry. So, this time in Ireland I am trying to put things in writing as soon as possible, not only for me but also for all of you!
So please, read along and enjoy us planning our trip to Ireland and also being in Ireland!