And a plan was formed:
Couchsurfing across Europe.
Just need a passport.
Currently in a service station on the southbound m1 just outside Sheffield. All going well, should be home in an hour our so.
We stopped off at the Angel of the North just outside Gateshead. It’s a creepy thing.
We took a detour across the north York moors, and stopped off at York, but the rush hour traffic wasn’t kind, so we decided to just hit the m1 home.
It’s been fun.
With over a thousand miles notched up and precious little time left, we got an early start.
After breakfast we climbed Arthur’s Seat, an extinct volcano in Edinburgh’s city limits. It was a fun climb and very windy, but the weather was nice.
Splendid views of the Lothian countryside too.
We hit the road and headed south, and as we were passing over the English border the weather started turning nasty, so there wasn’t much opportunity to admire the view:
We’re currently in Otterburn, the site of a battle which took place in August 1388. A memorial to the battle still stands, although the writing on it is all but illegible, having weathered away over time:
So it’s back to the road and it looks like the weather it’s clearing up enough to give us some good views of the Northumberland national park…
With the rain lashing down, we decided to walk into Edinburgh city centre. It’s a beautiful place, easily ranking alongside Dublin in my “top capital cities” gauge.
We decided to take shelter in the Scottish national gallery (which is home to some truly spectacular pieces, and as luck would have it, is open late on Thursday nights).
While there we discovered that renowned harpist Alina Bzhezhinska would be playing a short concert. We sat and admired the art while listening to the beautiful sounds of the harp, both classical and contemporary. A truly magical performance.
On the way back to the b&b we stopped for some Italian cuisine (I felt it fit with the cosmopolitan theme of our evening), after which the rain had practically stopped too.
All in all, a truly remarkable visit to a truly remarkable city.
We’ve checked into a little bed and breakfast in Edinburgh and were about to go exploring in the city. We’re here for a night before completing our journey home.
The car’s clocked up about a thousand miles so far in this trip which has taken us to lake Windermere in the lake district, all the way up to the Cairngorms, to Loch Ness, and even to Wester Ross. A picture speaks a thousand words, so I’ll let them do the talking:
Scotland has been one of the most beautiful countries I’ve ever visited. And my journey isn’t over yet.
Well after a full day’s hiking in the Cairngorms yesterday, I Merced something a little more relaxing today.
And so here I am at Loch Ness, ready to embark on a little monster hunting. This is a truly beautiful place, and the weather is holding out wonderfully today.
If I see the monster, you will be the first to know.
Here’s some photos from yesterday’s hike:
And some photos of the loch:
Well, 560 actually. 15 hours on the road and we’ve arrived at our destination. Tomintoul, the highest village in the Scottish highlands. The room is nice and cosy, and I look forward to taking in the view tomorrow.
I packed more clothes than last time I went adventuring, so I should be a little more comfortable after a few days here…