Today’s post is not going to be that long. We did not spend a lot of time at our next stop Lower Largo on our Grand Tour of Scotland. I would have liked to explore this little coastal town a bit more but time was not on our side.
While driving along the coastal road we spotted this beautiful sculpture. At first I thought it was the Robinson Crusoe Statue but while I was doing my research for today’s blog post I found out that it is actually The Malagan Sculpture. Well now I know…. I just love the detail on the Sculpture and the entrance gate. I am a law abiding person but it took all my strength not to enter and take up close photos of the statue.
The views from here was also beautiful.
Across the road I spotted a house with the most beautiful gate. It looked like a scene out of a storybook.
Once again I just can’t pass the opportunity to capture the house with the blue door and flower baskets on the windowsills.
I had to look twice before I realized that it was a toy skeleton of a prehistoric animal.
Thank you joining us on our short visit to Lower Largo. Hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.
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 fiancee’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 I here I am.
It started raining when we left Aberdour and we skipped a few of our items on our list and when we got to Kirkcaldy it was coming down real hard.
I struggled to get parking 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 wait. Dad still asked me what am I going to do. I told him well if I have to I’ll take some photo’s through the window, but we can’t keep skipping places just because it is raining. At that rate we will have to skip more than 50% of our tour.
I put in 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 little while and I got out of the car and took some photos of St Bryce Kirk.
As you can see I just loved the church tower. I also took some photos of the houses in the street we parked in.
We then headed to Ravenscraig Castle, but I only took photo’s 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.
Hope you are all still safe and healthy. Here in Capetown we are freezing our buds off. My hands feel like two ice cubes.
Our next stop was Aberdour Castle and Gardens. It was spectacular and this was the first castle we visited on our Grand Tour of Scotland. Nordic Visitor arranged for explorer passes with Historic Scotland. This enables us to visit a wide range of places without standing in queue’s at ticket counters.
After getting our pass activated we could go and explore. The only thing dad wanted to explore was the shop and restaurant…. But I got him to walk with me through the garden and grounds.
We had to walk through the Walled Garden to get to St. Fillans Church. It took me a while to get to St Fillans Church there was just too many beautiful flowers to capture…
“St Fillan’s Church is one of the finest examples of simple Norman architecture in Scotland. To the south it overlooks Aberdour Harbour, north and west it is sheltered by the high wall of Aberdour Castle garden and to the east what was the Castle kitchen garden. As early as 1390 St Fillan is mentioned as the patron saint of the church.
Entrance to the church and its old cemetery is from Hawkcraig Road along Kirk Wynd. At the top of the Wynd, on the right is a door to the Castle grounds, above which the monogram of William, Earl of Morton and his wife Lady Anne, dated 1632. Further down the Wynd, on the left, is a collection of badly weathered old gravestones, some dating from the seventeenth century.
Initially St Fillan’s consisted simply of a nave and the chancel, lit by deep splayed windows and remains much as it was in the 12th century. Sockets for the rood screen can still be seen.
The dedication to St Fillan probably came about through the influence of Robert I (the Bruce), who gave Aberdour to his close friend and supporter Thomas Randolph Earl of Moray. St Fillan was the king’s favourite saint and is credited with helping the Scots win the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314.
In the 15th century, the church was enlarged by the addition of the south aisle. This involved an arcade supported by the three pseudo-Norman pillars and lowering the floor to its present level.
St. Fillan’s Church will celebrate its 900th Anniversary in 2023.”
Without further delay let’s continue our road trip to St Andrews and Knockhill Farm where we will be spending the night.
Our next stop was Dalgety Bay. The 8th largest town in Fife. We did not spend a lot of time exploring Dalgety Bay due to a very long list of places still to see. Also at this stage I was struggling with the Tom Tom trying to get to the places of interest on our list…. We were trying to find Donibristle Stable Block but ended up with a view of the Fourth Road Railway Bridge instead. Not that I am complaining. The views and flowers were stunning.
Our next stop on our list was Cornerstone Full Gospel Church. I got the names on my Google Maps when I planned our trip. What I did came to realize on our Grand Tour of Scotland was that the names on Google Maps and the names on the signboards are not always the same….
Dad and I saw the church on our way to Dalgety Bay and on our way back we took the turnoff to the church. Next to the church I found this beautiful cottage with fields and sheep.
I walked up to the gate to see if I could enter and it was open so I walked inside and took a few photo’s. Now this is what I call a peaceful place. Normally I don’t like walking in graveyards, but one thing that stood out for me was how peaceful it was here. Maybe it is the surrounding pastures with sheep and horses grazing. One don’t even hear the cars passing on the road to and from Dalgety Bay.
Thank you for visiting Dalgety Bay with us. Our next stop is Aberdour and I am looking forward to sharing some of the photo’s taken in this beautiful town.
At long last we can start our next phase of our Grand Tour of Scotland. We will be driving along the coast to St Andrews where we will 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 am use to driving on the left side of the road.
Our driver that picked us up at the airport on Sunday gave me a few tips and told me to avoid the bus lanes and that I should never park in parking places for taxi’s. He also explained to me how the passing place work.
The people at Arnold Clark was 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 here 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 capture every little detail….. But we have 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 use to driving 20 miles per hour. But I made sure that I kept below the speed limits just to make sure I do 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 Kilometre per hour that equals around 37 miles per hour. The most confusing part while driving was 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 wrecking, 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 type in a castle name or Church name it kept saying not found. Now 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 was 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 my google maps on my phone and only used the Tom Tom as 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 that we still have time for a nice cup of tea before we leave 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. Dad and he hit it off and talked about Scotland and South Africa. He was a retired doctor and he came to visit a few times here in South Africa around 15 years back. Dad explained to him how everything has changed and that now a days one can’t just go out at night and walk as you please it is to dangerous.
While Dad and the retired doctor talked I excused myself and went and took some photos of the beautiful windows of the church.
Thank you for reading my post and I truly hope you enjoyed the photos. Our next stop is Dalgety Bay.
At long last I can post about our night at The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo…
Dad loves bagpipes since I can remember he played a 7 single with bagpipe music on it. He always said that before he closes his eyes permanently he want’s to go to the Edinburgh Military Tattoo…
Then in March 2018 he got very sick and was diagnosed with Myasthenia Gravis. One day out of the blue he asked me if I could choose any place overseas to visit where would I like to go… “I have a list as long as the National road” I told him…
Then I remembered his words and said Scotland. Dad asked me to see when the Military Tattoo is his only demand for our holiday was that it includes the Military Tattoo…. After doing some research I contact Nordic Visitor for a quote and put the plans in motion. Sarah told me that I better book our tickets for tattoo early because it sells out very fast. 24 January 2019 I booked our tickets for The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo in August 2019.
Dad was super excited and I could see in the way he walked that he could not get there fast enough… I did take some random photos while walking…
Dad was so excited that not even the stairs was to much for him. The closer we got the less dad talked… He was getting a bit emotional…
The views behind the stands was so beautiful I could not just pass. So while dad was visiting the bathroom before heading to our seats I took the opportunity to capture it.
Thank you for joining us on our way to the Military tattoo. I won’t be saying much in my next post. Will mostly be photos of the Tattoo.
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.
While walking down Candlemaker Row towards George IV Bridge we were searching for the Greyfriars Bobby Statue. I have no idea why I was looking for a big statue and walked passed it the first time. My GPS kept saying I must turn around and when I did I saw the statue…. It looked much bigger in the photos I saw on Instagram and the internet.
The story Of Bobby the Skye Terrier who Guarded the grave of his owner John Gray until his own death on 14 January 1872 is heartwarming and even if it is fabricated of a publicity stunt I still believe that mans best friend is loyal to a fault….
Here is some information on The Ross Fountain I got from Wikipedea and articles from the Ross Fountain Archives of The Ross Development Trust.
The Ross Fountain was produced at the iron Foundry of Antoine Durenne in Sommevoire, France. It was an exhibit at the Great Exhibition of 1862.
A gunmaker Daniel Ross bought it in 1862 for £2,000 and subsequently gifted to the city of Edinburgh. It was transported to Leith in 1869 in 122 pieces. It was only installed in its current position in 1872. . The Ross Fountain had some major restoration work done and was only completed in 2001.
Its sculptures include mermaids with four female figures depicting science, the arts, poetry and industry. A further large female figure stands at the center of the fountain.
During 2018 another major renovation project was launched and after a lot of research they decided on a turquoise, gold and brown pallet for the fountain.
I must say it looks beautiful and according to them this paint will last at least for 20 years….
I hope you enjoyed this post on the Ross Fountain. Please go visit Ross Fountain Archives for more details on the restoration.
As promised I am trying to make up for being so busy over the past few weeks. Let’s continue our walk along Princess Street and crossing the road to Princess Gardens…
I have to say the grass is always greener on the other side…. I took some photo’s of the Princess Gardens over the fence. In our original planning we would only visit the gardens when we came back to Edinburgh after our tour. But plans changed and I am glad I have a few photos of the gardens and the statues. But Edinburgh is definitely on our itinerary for our next visit but this time we are staying a week at least….
I just loved the Sir James Young Simpson Monument sitting in the shade of the trees…
I had to go to visit the ladies room and saw the sign for it, but I took the wrong set of stairs and ended up in the graveyard of the St Cuthbert’s Church. Normally I so not like to take photo’s of graves, but these were so beautiful that I just had to capture them.
St Cuthbert’s are situated at the western foot of Castle Rock and at the west end of Princess Street. You have a beautiful framed view between the trees of the Castle from here…
You also have a very nice view of St Cuthbert’s from Princess Gardens side.
The view of Castle Rock from inside Princess Gardens is spectacular….
Thank you for this short walk through St Cuthbert’s next post will be mostly about Ross Fountain…