Scotland IV Recap, Part 2 - The Highlands & Islands
Hi again, friends, fancy seeing you here!
As promised, it’s time for Part 2 of my Scotland recap! It’s a good one, who’s excited?
When I left off in Part 1, Ethan and I were on our way back to Edinburgh. As I said before, I’m saving the wonders of Edinburgh and the the East for post 3 because I have a desire to save the best (and longest) for last. You can thank me later. 😘
So fast forward to Day 6 of our big adventure across the pond. We headed up north to stay in the beautiful Highland city of Inverness for the night. We had tickets for a boat ride on Loch Ness for that afternoon, but despite our schedule, we still took a little extra time on our drive north to stop and smell the roses (or shop at The House Of Bruar - a fabulously up-scale shopping center complete with fly fishing shop, which was right up Ethan’s alley).
While on our journey north, we made yet another pitstop to a small town in Perthshire to stop at a bakery. But not just ANY bakery… see, we’re both big fans of The Great British Bake Off. For those of you who have seen it, remember Flora - the lovely and adorable Scottish girl with a flare for pretty bakes? Since finishing the show, she has a bakery now - Aran Bakery - where we stopped for a snack. Sadly, Flora was otherwise engaged, but we did meet her mom! Hands down a dream come true to visit… and the baked goods were delicious, too!
Much driving later and we finally made it to Loch Ness. Unfortunately, we did end up missing our boat trip by only a few minutes, but hope was not lost. We grabbed some refreshments and then caught the very next boat out and ended up moving our visit to Urquhart Castle to the next day - no harm done.
Loch Ness has always been one of my favorite places. It’s just the most perfect combination of dark and creepy and stunningly beautiful. And after out little boat ride from one side to the other, I’m more convinced THAN EVER that Nessie lived in its depths! I mean, look at this water and tell me something magical and mysterious doesn’t hide just below the surface.
Needless to say, Loch Ness stole both of our hearts that day. It was a almost as if Nessie herself sent the rainbow to welcome us. And the next day when we came back to visit the castle, she sent another.
By the way, Urquhart Castle is nothing more than a ruin today, but it’s billed as one of the most haunted castles in the land, thanks to all the tragedy its seen, and trust me, even with a missing roof, the air in this castle is as heavy as the low-lying rainclouds that always seem to linger over it.
And a little creepy it might be, but my goodness was it beautiful.
We spent a night in inverness and went out on the town for some more to-die-for Scottish cuisine and a drink or two… or five. And then headed to bed, eager for our castle-visit and travel day to come.
After we finished wandering the ruins and searching for our beloved sea monster, we headed back West to arguably one of the most incredible and anticipated locations of our entire trip - The Isle of Skye. I’ve been to Skye before and those of you who haven’t read my first blog post about it - you might not understand why I was so hesitant to return to that place when Ethan first brought it up. But in an essence, I wasn’t too fired up about it, honestly. He was, though. So nevertheless, we visited.
Can you see the hesitation in my face?
And the excitement in his? Damn he’s cute - that face could convince me to visit just about any where.
In all honesty, The Isle of Skye was so much more breathtakingly beautiful than I ever dreamed it would be. You just can’t find landscape like that anywhere else.
Our hotel was pretty unforgettable, too. And that isn’t just because they upgraded our room to Kanye’s room from when he visited the island a few years back. Yep, you read that right. We got the royal treatment at the Skeabost Hotel (or should I say, Presidential? #KanyeForPresident #Kanye2020 JKLOL).
We drove around the island for hours, just staring out the windows and stopping every few miles to take pictures, simply in awe of the sights around us. Skye is truly indescribable. If you ever plan a trip to Scotland, I couldn’t recommend it more - and coming from me, considering my past on the island, that really is saying something. I couldn’t be more glad that Ethan convinced me to give it another chance. One of the many reasons I love that boy. ♥️
After one of the best night’s sleep either of us had ever gotten (in our canopy bed), we rounded out our island getaway with a stop to the Fairy Pools. Words CANNOT describe how stunning those little pools of water were and the pictures I took cannot really even do them justice either, but they can try. Behold my UNEDITED shots -
Just like how I said earlier that I TOTALLY believe Nessie is real, I also completely buy into the idea that mythical little fairies live in these waters. I mean, looking at the color alone, don’t you?
When it was all said and done, we were BOTH so sad to leave Skye and head back on the mainland. The only thing that cheered either of us up were the familiar, and uncharacteristically snowy highlands to show us comfort. After a quick stop to Ben Nevis - the highest point in the country - we headed back down to the central belt for the final leg of our Scottish adventure.