Good day everyone, It is cold and wet here in South Africa this morning. Last year this time I was busy packing the last of my things and weighing our suitcases for our holiday in Scotland.
I can’t believe that the time went by so fast. The worst of it all is, I am not even halfway through editing all my photos. I better get working on that. I will still be posting about our first trip to Scotland for a long time. I am enjoying editing, posting photos, and stories of that day. It’s like I am back in Scotland.
Today I am going to share the rest of my photos of St Andrews.
The blue door of the Lions House caught my attention when I got closer to take a photo I saw the lions and the name of the house it is very appropriate.
My next stop was the Holy Trinity Church. Another beautiful church with lots of detail. It’s a shame I did not have enough time to capture every little detail as I would like too.
I love to capture the old buildings with their unique characteristics, for example, this corner bookstore.
Here are just a few more buildings that caught my eye on my way back to the car.
Our next stop the Blackfriars Chapel.
Thank you for joining me on my walk through St Andrews. Our next stop was St Andrew’s Cathedral. But that is a post all on its own.
Hope you are all still healthy. This week was very busy with my studies and finishing up editing work for clients.
For the next few days, I can concentrate on editing our Scotland vacation. Let’s continue our Grand Tour of Scotland. Today I am sharing with you the photos I took while exploring St Andrews.
Dad was still not feeling up to walking, and he stayed in the car while I explored and took some photos of the surroundings.
My first stop was St Leonard’s Parish Church. On my next visit to Scotland, I am definitely going to make a point of it to go inside the churches to capture the interiors as well.
While I was exploring, I noticed the different types of stone and brick walls. It really stood out to me.
Up next are some random photos of the buildings and houses.
My next stop was the Victory Memorial Hall. The blue door and entry of the hall caught my eye immediately. I searched online for more information about the Victory Memorial Hall, but shockingly, I could not find any.
St Andrews has so many beautiful churches, and I only walked down one street.
The Hope Park and Martyrs Parish Church have a spectacular exterior, I can just imagine how the interior must be. The beautiful flower baskets in front of the windows really caught my eye.
Thank you for exploring St Andrews with me. In my next post we will continue exploring.
I am feeling much better today. I hope you are all still healthy and enjoying life to the fullest.
WOW day two on the road, but first a little of our stay and warm reception at Knockhill Farm just outside St Andrews.
Linda Wood, the owner of Knockhill Farm B&B, made us feel right at home with her friendly reception. We ran late, and she was worried that something happened to us on the way there. She even went as far and contacted Nordic Visitor, our tour agent, to find out if they had heard something.
Linda showed us to our accommodation for the evening, and we talked a bit about our day. She then told us that breakfast will be served at 8:00 AM and showed us where we must go.
Our accommodation had a spacious lounge, with 2 comfortable couches, a television, and enough reading material to keep us busy for the night. In the kitchen area, we had a variety of coffee and teas to choose from.
The bathroom was also very spacious and had a beautiful big walk-in shower. There were fresh bath sheets, face towels, shampoo, shower gel, and cream.
The spacious bedroom had two twin beds, cupboards and, a dressing table.
After a long warm shower, I put on my PJ’s and made myself and dad a nice cup of coffee. We sat down in the lounge, dad grabbed a book and started reading and I started writing a quick blog with photos I took on the road with my phone. When I first anticipated writing a blog every evening, I did not factor in how tired I would be after a long day on the road.
We went to bed around 10:30 PM for a well-deserved rest.
At around 5:00 AM, I woke up refreshed. I got out of bed, got dressed, and gathered all my things. I grabbed my camera and headed outside to take some photos of the farm and its surroundings. I made dad and myself a cup of coffee then I woke him up just after 6:30 AM, giving him ample time to get ready.
Dad finished with time to spare, and we decided to take a walk down the road.
Thank you for joining us at Knockhill Farm B&B. Hope you enjoyed your stay just as much as we did. Our next stop St Andrews.
Oh my word this morning I am freezing. Hope you are all still healthy and staying safe.
Okay let’s continue our Grand Tour of Scotland.
Our next stop was Letham Glen. It was not even on my places of interest. In 2010 dad had his colon removed due to cancer. So if dad has to go there are not much time you must get him to a bathroom as soon as possible. This was also a reason why all our stops are so close together just in case.
I wondered around and took a few photo’s while waiting for dad.
The Sunken Garden at Letham Glen was the towns former swimmingpool in the 1930’s. They have turned it into a beautiful garden. I was impressed.
Our next stop was the standing stones of Lundin. But oh my hat did we struggle to get to it. First of all the GPS says your destination is on your left side, you have reached your destination. When we look around all we see is houses on the left and a golf club on the right hand side.
We drove past our destination at least 4 times when I told my dad that’s it I am not going to search anymore… Then I spotted it through one of the houses gates opening up on the golf course. Okay now we know where it is. Now how to get to it. So we followed a dirt road and there it was. But I had to go through someones backyard to get to the golf course. The groundskeeper told me the man get’s very difficult when he spots tourists in his backyard. But that’s the only way to get there….
I did not come this far just to give up. So dad waited in the car while I invaded the poor man’s privacy. Luckily he was not there so I climbed over the wall onto the golf course, took a few photo’s and climbed back again.
I got to the car and just as I pulled away the owner arrived…. That’s what I call timing…..
“On the second hole of the Lundin Links Ladies Golf Course (which incidentally is the oldest women’s golf course in the world), stands a trio of prehistoric stones, looking wonderfully out of place against the manicured landscape.
The huge megaliths stand between 14 to 17 feet tall. Crookedly shaped and made of sandstone, the pillars are believed to date back to the Bronze age, around the 2nd millennium BCE. Legend holds that the site was used by the Druids for ancient rituals.
Druidic rituals or not, it is likely that the three standing stones are the remains of an ancient stone circle. There used to be at least four pillars, but one stone went missing in the 18th century.”
My fiancée’s daughter is visiting, and instead of planning and writing my blog, I spend my time playing teacher… I normally post on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but I have time, so here I am.
It started raining when we left Aberdour, and we skipped a few of the items on our list, and when we got to Kirkcaldy, it was coming down really hard.
I struggled to get to the park, and when I finally got a spot and got out of the car, it came down extra hard. I jumped back into the car, and we sat and waited. Dad still asked me what I was going to do. I told him Well, if I have to, I’ll take some photos through the window, but we can’t keep skipping places just because it is raining. We will have to skip more than 50% of our tour at that rate.
I spent many hours planning our vacation and researching the places we would like to visit and the places I would like to photograph.
The rain stopped for a while, and I exited the car and took photos of St. Bryce Kirk.
As you can see, I just loved the church tower. I also took photos of the houses in the street we parked in.
We then headed to Ravenscraig Castle, but I only took photos from the parking lot. Time was running away with us, and due to the rain, it was really wet.
Well, that is all for now. Thank you for stopping by.
Our next stop was a beautiful little town called Aberdour. Just as we entered the town I was taken with all the flowers and beautiful houses and their hanging basket gardens…. The streets are not really wide and the houses are on the street only a narrow sidewalk that separate them from the street. I saw only a few houses with nice front yards and the most beautiful gardens.
We stopped at a parking area near a garden and I took my camera and walked up the road to where we entered Aberdour.
I just love Hydrangea’s and the colors are to die for. I grew up with light pink and blue/purple Hydrangea’s. I just could not get enough of these pretty plants.
As you know by now I loved capturing Churches and Cathedrals even if they are closed. The architecture is just amazing. I love the colorful doors and the beautiful windows. I just wish we had enough time to go into every single one we visited. Also I know I missed a few too.
Here are some photos taken on my walk back to the car.
Thank you for joining us on this short visit at Aberdour. Next up Aberdour Castle and Gardens.
At long last, we can start the next phase of our Grand Tour of Scotland. We will drive to St Andrew’s along the coast and spend the night at Knockhill Farm. I must admit I was very nervous on that Cloudy Tuesday morning. This would be my first time driving in Scotland, and I did not know what to expect. The only comfort for me was that I was used to driving on the left side of the road.
The driver that picked us up at the airport on Sunday gave me a few tips and told me to avoid the bus lanes and never to park in parking places for taxis. He also explained to me how the passing place works.
The people at Arnold Clark were very friendly, and before I knew it, we were on our way to Inverkeithing, our first stop.
We stopped in the first parking lot we could find, and from there we walked and explored for a while. While touring through Scotland, I fell in love with the buildings, the decor and details on the buildings, the shapes and sizes of the windows, the colorful and detailed doors, and lastly, the bright colors used to paint the houses and shops. I we could, I think we would have stayed much longer in the different towns, and I would have taken building by building, street by street, to make sure I captured every little detail… But we had to cover around 100 to 180 miles per day depending on our route, and we had to be at our final destination for the day at a certain time… This was one of the reasons we decided that our next tour of Scotland we will do in a campervan and we will stay in Scotland for about 76 days.
It took me a while to get used to driving 20 miles per hour. But I made sure that I kept below the speed limit just to make sure I did not get a ticket. Now let me explain why the speed difference was so difficult. Here in South Africa, the speed limit in our towns is 60 Kilometers per hour which equals around 37 miles per hour. The most confusing part while driving is you get a sign that says 40 Miles per hour, then about 2 meters after that, it is either 30 or 20 miles per hour. For someone who is driving in Scotland for the first time, it is very nerve-wracking, but by the end of the day, I figured out the pattern…
In our rental car, we had a Tom Tom, and oh my word, did it frustrate the living daylights out of me. First, when I typed in a castle name or Church name, it kept saying not found. Before we came to Scotland, I mapped out our tour in Google Maps and saved it to my phone. All the places on our list were on google maps, but for some reason, I could not find it on the Tom Tom, not even when I typed in Street addresses. So, when I saw that some streets have more than one name, it started to make sense. I switched to google maps on my phone and only used the Tom Tom as a guide to the flow of the road ahead.
After exploring, we remembered the sign at the church that offered Tea, coffee, and home baking. Dad and I decided we still had time for a nice cup of tea before leaving for our next stop.
We were welcomed with open arms and felt right at home. We sat down at a table, and it was not even a few seconds when the first man came to greet us. He and Dad hit it off and talked about Scotland and South Africa. He was a retired doctor and came to visit a few times here in South Africa around 15 years back. Dad explained to him how everything has changed and that nowadays, one can’t just go out at night and walk as one pleases; it is too dangerous.
While Dad and the retired doctor talked, I excused myself and took photos of the church’s beautiful windows.
Thank you for reading my post, and I truly hope you enjoyed the photos. Our next stop is Dalgety Bay.
Hope everyone had a good nights rest and ready for the day. I did not really sleep much. My brain is working overtime. I worry about COVID 19 interfering with our plans to visit Scotland again form May 2021 till August 2021. If we are not allowed to travel in 2021 then I must postpone it to April 2022 till July 2022. We have to travel in spring and summer because the main purpose of this trip is so that I can capture Puffins. We also would like to see the rest of Scotland that we missed….
Either way if I continue to post only now and then I will never finish in time before our next trip to Scotland even if we leave in 2022. I also still have some places I visited here in South Africa that I need to edit. But I work from first captured to last….
Here I am back again hoping to finish our walk back to our Guest house today. I still need to post about The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo also before we can hit the road and continue with the rest of our Grand Tour of Scotland.
My first thought when I saw the Omni Centre and The Glasshouse was “WOW that’s a lot of Windows to keep clean…. How on earth do they do it? The Glasshouse is a beautiful building…
Just look at how busy the streets of Edinburgh is. We don’t even talk about parking that is one big headache… The best mode of transport might just be to Cycle from point A to B. I prefer to rather walk… I love cycling but my balance is not that great and when I see a robot, stop street or even a car I start to panic…. That is why I put my bicycle in my car and drive to a quiet road or a farm stall park there and cycle from there…
The Theater Royal Bar is situated next to the famous Playhouse Theater on Leith Walk. I just love the decor of this building…. The hanging flower baskets just makes one feel so happy.
Well just around the corner is Ben Cruachan Guest House on MacDonnald Street….
We had about two hours before we had to get ready for our walk back to Edinburgh Castle where The Edinburgh Royal Military tattoo was held…. I went outside and took a few photo’s of the garden before I made us a nice cup of coffee and we talked about the day and how excited we were to go see the Tattoo….
Thank you for joining us on this last stretch back to our Guesthouse. In my next post I will be sharing some photo’s taken on route to the Tattoo and of the Tattoo itself.
Good Morning friends and followers. I hope that your lockdown is also very productive. I must say mine has been so far. I ticked off a few task on my to do list so far.
I am busy reorganizing my kitchen one cupboard at a time. Still a few to go…
Since this weekend I have been organizing my photos of our Grand Tour of Scotland. Putting the photos into folders. This makes it easier for me to do my research on all the places we have visited and also to see 1400 photos in 1 folder for 1 day gets a bit overwhelming, but 150 photo’s is much better… I would like to finish editing before we go on our next Scotland Tour….
I have finished planning our route just need to fine tune it and do some more research on traveling in campervan and Wild Camping in Scotland. Any suggestions will be much appreciated.
Okay enough of that let’s get back to our walk back to Ben Cruachan Guesthouse…
The Balmoral Hotel is such a beautiful building. I wonder how it looks inside? In my imagination it would be fit for a King and Queen…. Next time I will arrange to have a peek inside….
“The statue of the Duke of Wellington outside Register House was unveiled in a highly patriotic ceremony on 18 June 1852, the thirty-seventh anniversary of his greatest victory at Waterloo. Wellington’s defeat of Napoleon was regarded as ensuring the freedom not only of Britain but of Europe in general. “
Dad and I encountered multiple meetings with one of Rabbies Tours tour busses while exploring Scotland and some of the islands. Only while editing I realized that I captured one of the buildings they occupied.
Walking down Leith Street was an experience. They were working on buildings and also the road. The beautiful hanging flower baskets caught my eye…. I just loved it…. But more next time….
Good day everybody. Hope you are all well and are staying safe. Let’s continue our walk…
We crossed the street and walked towards Waverley Station. I turned around just for a quick photo of Cockburn Street. Turning back I captured Scott Monument from a far… The road was very busy and my arms and back were beginning to ache. Carrying your camera in your hand the whole day is starting taking it’s toll….
Still walking towards Princess Street I kept taking photo’s of the buildings far away…. Scott Monument really stood out for me…
It does not matter from what side you capture this monument the craftsmanship and detail are extraordinary. I am looking forward to our next visit…. We reached Princess Street not that far from our Guesthouse now….
Thank you for wandering the streets of Edinburgh with us…
Good day to all my followers and internet friends. I hope that you are all well and staying safe…. Well let’s continue our walk back to our guesthouse…
Dad and I got thirsty and was looking for a place to sit and relax for a few minutes. All the places on the Royal mile was packed and we came across Kirks a very cozy bar/restaurant next to the stairs of the The News steps. We each had a glass of Coke and a well deserved rest.
The views outside was spectacular. You can see Carlton Hill from here.
We then tackled the The News Steps. It took dad a while till he reached the bottom. He joked about it and said he took it step by step…
We then reached Cockburn Street. I have seen so many photo’s on Instagram of this street that I put it on my list of places of interest…. Looking forward to exploring it some more on our next visit to Edinburgh.
Some of the views of Carton Hill and Beautiful buildings before crossing the street…. The Edinburgh Dungeon is also on our places of interest list for our 2021 Tour of Scotland.
That is all for now. Thank you very much for taking the time to join us and wander the streets of Edinburgh…
On our way back to our Guesthouse we passed the Elephant House. According to our planning we were supposed to have a cup of tea here, but there were not space for a mouse inside…. So instead I took a photo and said to myself next time….
As you can see it was difficult taking photo’s here in Old Town in Edinburgh. August is definitely an ideal time to visit Edinburgh to capture buildings. Don’t get me wrong I enjoyed my stay so much that we are planning to visit Edinburgh again in 2021, but this time in May and not for 1 day but at least 3 to 5 days… It all depends how my planning for the rest of our 76 days in Scotland goes… But I would really like to spend more time in this beautiful city…
Above is some photo’s I took of St Giles Cathedral. Would have loved to go inside, but the crowds was just to much and I am not really a fan of crowds of people. So till next time.
Thank you for joining us again wandering through the busy streets of Edinburgh….
Thank you for wandering through the streets of Edinburgh with us. By now I could see that dad were getting very tired and due to the fact that the streets were so busy with thousands of festival goers we decided to rather move the walk up the Royal mile to the day we get back from our Grand Tour of Scotland…
The one thing that really upset me is the fact that the beautiful Cathedrals and Churches are turned into pubs….. I would rather use these beautiful buildings for something positive… Like shelters for abused woman and children, Coffee shops and a place for local artist to sell their goods or even as a workshop where artist mentor other people and share the secrets of their trade…. But a pub that is just not why these buildings was built. Wasn’t it built to be a safe place for people….
I did however chose a route back to our guesthouse where would still tick the boxes of some of the places to see on our list.