Wed 30 May, we had an easy drive from Ardersier through Inverness north to Dornoch. We stopped at Tain to stretch our legs. We walked down to the Tain Golf Club where Bill met up with Old Tom Morris (well, his statue at least). After a coffee at the Sunflower Cafe cheerily decorated with (you guessed it) sunflowers, we drove ten minutes down the highway to the Glen Morangie Whisky Distillery. Only a brief stop and then in to Dornoch. Checked into the grand looking Dornoch Hotel. Wandered across the road to check out Royal Dornoch Golf Club. We had a booking for Friday but had miscalculated our timing. Thursday would be so much better for us. The Pro very kindly found us a spot for 11am Thurs. Perfect!! We filled in the afternoon exploring the town and the woods. Finished off listening to a bit of a sing song after a light tea at the Hotel.
Thurs we joined the MacGregor brothers, Stevie and Ruaridh, on the tee. The haar was in. It almost lifted and actually got quite warm for most of the game but cooled down again for the last two holes. What a magnificent golf course
Royal Dornoch is!! It definitely lived up to our expectations. Some very unique holes particularly on the back nine. I managed to lose no balls. Bill only lost one. Can’t say the same for the Macgregors. There was more than one ball hooked into the gorse. We had dinner that night at the Carnegie Courthouse. Interesting venue. It has a massive mural depicting personalities with a Dornoch connection. In the dock is Janet Horn, the last witch burned in Scotland 1727. Funnily enough, Madonna and Guy Richie are there having married at nearby Skibo Castle in Dec 2000.
Fri 1 Jun, we drove north to John o’ Groats. Quite a few tourists around who seemed to be looking for more than there was. Bill spotted nearby Duncansby Head. The lighthouse there is built on the most north easterly point of the British mainland. More impressive was a seabird colony on the walls of a deep 55m gorge leading into the sea. The bird life was incredible. Absolutely fascinating!!
We checked into The Antlers B&B Occumster Lybster later in the afternoon. After yet another disagreement with the GPS (it wanted us to check into the Lybster Primariy School lol),
we found The Antlers about 5 miles away. Sandra and Trevor are locals with an extensive knowledge of the Caithness. They made us feel very welcome. Trevor was very keen to give us an idea about the area. Really lovely person. On Sandra’s recommendation, we had dinner at the Bay Owl Restaurant. Tasty meal. Friendly proprietors. And stunning views of Dunbeath Bay.
Tomorrow Sat, we head west for the Isle of Skye.
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