Scotland – Beauty of Skye Island
Early in the morning we set out to explore the beautiful Scotish island of Skye. Today, we are about to expect the rain whole day. We are disappointed by that because the place is beautiful. However, as rains are quite common around here it is nothing easy to plan your trip accordingly.
Fairy Pools would be our first stop today. We go along a rocky road along the Brittle river towards our destination. We pass by herds of sheep jumping on rocks around the river. Mountainous landscape is beautiful. This all belongs to Glen Brittle gorge. Many rivulets stream down from the mountains and flow into the river. Soon we reach Fairy Pools. These are known for their tale color. Many small and large waterfalls feed them with water which adorn the pools with various shade of blue. Cuillin, the highest mountain of Skye is close from here. We take the same road to get back to the parking lot. The walk takes maximum an hour. It is easy and gives you plentiful things to look at.
Being the most popular place on Skye, Old Man of Storr is another site we visit. Alegedly, the place is crowded in good weather. This doesn't apply to the day of our visit. The trail runs slightly uphill. Close to the parking lot, there is Old Man of Storr rising 49 meters above the ground. It is sitauted below the mountain of the same name. However, we recohnize only some shadows in the haze. Crossing stones, mud, and water streams we finally reach the peak and the pointy rock unravels before our eyes. This place must really be beautiful in good weather. At least we experience true Scotish climate. Moreover, we don't need to necessarily to follow the same route. We may join the road in other direction and make a small scenic tour.
We sit inside the car and hit the road northbound to see Mealt Waterfall. This 91 waterfalls is made of basalt cliffs dubbed Kilt Rock. The name is after the the shape of the cliff resembling a kilt – traditional Scotish piece of clothing. The waterfalls feeds with water Mealt Loch lake.
We return along the same road back to Kyleakin. However, we make a break middle to our journey. Unfortunately, it still rains. We are in the port town of Portree, the largest town on Skye. What lured us in was the amazing vista over colorful houses lining the coast bringing life to this grim, rainy day.
Despite bad weather, Skye island was the most beauitful place we visited in Scotland. If you plan to visit Scotland put Skye into your itinearyr.
GPS: 57°24'44.8"N 6°11'46.3"W
Text and photos: Veronika Schubertová
Our Slovenian adventure full of knowledge continues. After visiting the Kranjska Gora, which is surrounded by breathtaking mountain scenery, we move on to another natural gem - the Vintgar Gorge (Blejski Vintgar, Vintgar Sotesque).
It is time to leave the landscape of lakes, mountains, and long valleys in the center of Scotland and head through the inhospitable wasteland to the north to Thurso in sight of the Orkney islands. Instead of the highway A9, leading along the coast, I also chose deserted roads through endless moors and wetlands.
After a whole day in the wetlands in the north of Scotland, I headed west along the coast to get back to the mountains. They are much lower than those in the center of the country, but it does not detract from their beauty. Because of the harsh climates, heather and grass are often not kept on them, often leaving only majestic gray rocks.
The mountains in the north-west of Scotland rarely exceed 800 meters and roads usually run along rivers or coasts. Therefore, I would not expect here to be as beautiful and high as Applecross pass. Let's go to there!
If I could only return to Scotland in one place, it would be either a remote and deserted mountainous island of Harriss, or justified by Skye. And the more I think about it, the more Skye wins.
My visit to Scotland was coming to an end, but I still had about 2,000 kilometers to go home. But Scotland is beautiful, so why hurry? So I stopped at several places on the Isle of Skye and gradually reached the highest mountain of Ben Nevis.
The Hogwarts School of Magic is located somewhere in the Highlands, so it's no wonder the landscape is literally interwoven with references to Harry Potter books. J. K. Rowling, who wrote the books, was inspired mainly in the streets of Edinburgh, where she lived at that time. On every corner you can find some unobtrusive reminder from the books, be it street names that look strangely reminiscent of the names of the key characters, or the places where the books themselves were written.
In connection with Scotland, everyone will surely recall the fierce people fighting for independence throughout the history of this wild country, be it the Norman and Viking raiders, or the English and Irish usurpers. For the first time, however, the Romans attempted to penetrate the area at that time inhabited by the wild tribes of the Picts and the quieter Britons under the command of Agricola. However, they soon found that the land was not profitable enough for the long-term stay of the soldiers, so they decided to leave the north of Great Britain again and leave the newly built roads, fortresses and ramparts lying fallow.
Edinburgh is a Scottish city with a radiant atmosphere from Harry Potter movies. Scotch whiskey and history must not be missed here. If you are already in Edinburgh, be sure not to miss a visit to the famous Royal Yacht Britannia. It is interesting to see how not only the royal family lived on the ship. Admission £ 17 per person is worth every penny, plus the audio guide's interpretation is in Czech.
In the long valley between Fort William and Pitlochry in the middle of Scotland lies a large heath and in the middle of it one of the most deserted train stations. Surrounded only by lakes and heathland, you can still have tea inside it.
Near the famous Lake Ness, there lies at the mouth of the river of the same name into the sea and the ancient city of Inverness. Today it serves as a natural center for the entire Highlands of Scotland. But the city itself is worth a stop and a little exploration.
When I first went out into the world at 18, it was Scotland. I still remember the moon in it, when I almost traced it all to this day. For 7 years I wanted to go back and finally it was time. I got on a motorbike in Prague and set off for about 2000 kilometers long way to the northwest.
We leave the Aviemore summer resort and travel down to the south to Perth. There we intend to spend our last night in Scotland. We are about to travel for hour two hours by car.
Upon our walk around Loch an Eilein lake, we return to have quick lunch in Aviemore village. Then we set out back to snow covered Scotish nature. This time we walk through a 5 kilometer trail in Ellan Wood, close to Carrbridge village which itself is situated about 20 minutes of car ride from Aviemore.
After we leaved the beautiful island of Skye we go back onto the land. We travel over 100 miles to the east to Aviemore summer resort where we would spend two nights.
In the morning, we set out to beautiful Highlands situated in the northwest. On our way, we pass snow-caped mountains veiled in morning mist. This tempts us to stop and take a beautiful picture. This time we are heading to a place to what we are looking forward the most to – Skye island. A road bloc complicates our travels. It absolutely confuses our GPS which frighten us a bit. We are running of fuel while gaining kilometers and there are not many gas stations around. Eventually, everything works out well and we continue in our journey.
Autumn is an unusual time of the year to travel. For a long time, we were thinking if to even set out despite less dayilight time, winter, often rains yet Scotland captured us with its beauty and we would eventually buy our flight tickets. There is a regular connection between Prague and Edinburgh. Glasgow is about an hour of car ride from Edinburgh. Yet first we would travel bit further to the west and make a trek in the Clyde Muirshiel Regional Park.
On this day we set off to central Scotland, to Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park. Loch Lomond is the largest Scotish lake with the area of 71 square kilometers, the maximal depth of the lake is192 meters. There are over 30 small islands and we strive for visiting one of them.
The Scottish referendum is popular topic in world media. Even if the Scots decided not to get out of three hundred year long relationship with England. It is almost certain that London would loosen its tight to Scotland. It is a question how would Scotland do as an independent country and how its would fare on international level.
Already in the summer of 2011, I was in Scotland for a few days visit. But this time it was different. And maybe even a little crazy. At this time I was a fresh adult student, only with a flight ticket to home, about three hundred pounds in his pocket and an overnight stay for the first night.
After a half-an-hour ride I get off in Aberdour, a fishermen town in the Forth Bay. I have no idea where to go so I just follow arrows of the Fife Coastal Path. The reason is perhaps that it goes along the railway (and thus along the coastline as well).
Cold and raindrops hitting a side of my tent wake me up. It would be better if there was no thermometer for knowing that it is just 1 degree above zero is not very encouraging. Fortunately, the wind got better. I quickly pack my tent hoping that my hands will not freeze.
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