English PlugItalics are Dot's comments Note: If you click on the first picture within the blog, you can scroll through all the pictures and skip the blog. 😊 Isle of Sky Poem (and the theme song from Outlander) Sing me a song of a lad that is gone, Say, could that lad be I? Merry of soul he sailed on a day, Over the sea to Skye.
These goofy English plugs. You have to remember to turn the switch on or your stuff won't charge. Of course I can never remember if red is on or off. It is on.
Instead of sailing, we are driving to Skye today. From Inverness to the Isle of Skye.
It is a very scenic drive and luckily, pretty easy 2 lane road driving. We had several stops planned along the way. The beginning of the drive was along Loch Ness, so of course we had to stop at the cheesy Loch Ness visitor center. It was surprisingly interesting and worth the stop.
Then on to Urquhart Castle which is a castle ruins you can climb all over, but it is beautifully situated on Loch Ness. The idiot owners blew it up themselves because it was too much trouble to defend and they didn't want the Jacobites to get it. They stacked up barrels of gunpowder and blew the crap
out of it.
Those sites were fairly close to Inverness. I hated to leave our little B&B in Inverness. It was really nice and comfortable. But, we need to move on. We are headed for Isle of Skye. All two lane roads, more sheep. Stopped for gas for the first time. I couldn't get the gas cap off, but Dot managed. I included a picture of the gas pump. Hadn't seen one of those in a while. Couldn't pay at the pump at all. It wasn't a digital screen, but had the old click click turn thing. 37 pounds for half a tank of gas. Only one pump. The old man inside the station was very nice, and even took Apple Pay. The Loo was just so so on the cleanliness rating.
We drove along Loch Ness for a long time, and passed some backpackers hiking along the Caledonian Canal. Apparently that's a thing here, like hiking the Appalachian Trail. Beautiful scenery, a lot of green rolling hills and mountains, a few with some snow patches near the top. We didn't see any wildlife other than sheep and waterbirds, plus a couple vultures snacking on roadkill. But we
did see a road sign warning us of "Feral Goats". Was going too fast to get a picture, and didn't want to stop and turn around in case the Feral Goats might eat us.
We eventually made it to Eileen Donan Castle which is about an hour before Skye. There has been a Castle on this site forever, but it was totally rebuilt in the early 1900s, so it was more Downton Abbey like on the inside. It is owned by Clan MacCrae. It is a beautiful setting right on the Loch (lake) with a mossy bog on the other side. There are lots of photos in the blog because it was so cool. Couldn't take any photos inside, but we took a lot outside.The whole time we were in the castle we could hear a bagpipe playing. I thought it was mood music piped in, but when we left, we saw a young girl in full kilt playing the bagpipes outside. I could swear I heard her playing the theme song from Game of Thrones. Everyone over here is into it. Photo here in the blog and video on Facebook.
We had lunch at the Castle, but
it was pretty mediocre. The old lady cashier took forever and some guy in front of me ordered some coffee that took a really long time to make.
'Didn't eat much of it and didn't bother with pictures. Instead, we filled up on shortbread and chocolate chip cookies. Why not? We're on Holiday. By the way, the same cookies were half the price at the weird little gas station so we stocked up. Car food is the best.
On to the Isle of Skye. We did not take the car ferry. Maybe when we leave the island. We took a really cool bridge though. Two lane roads the entire way. They have many "pull-outs" where you can pull over to the let cars that are tailgating you pass. Very convenient. Gary would love it. There are also sections where the 2 lane road goes to 1 lane to cross a small bridge. Time to take turns, or hurry to beat the other car across.
We are staying at a B&B in Portree, which is the main (only) town on the Isle of Skye. Population is around 3,000, so no more iced tea from Starbucks or fountain soda from
McDonalds. All local restaurants.
Found our B&B and checked in. It is also very nice. Will take a picture tomorrow because we already trashed the room with all of our stuff. We might have to some laundry since we are here for 3 nights. We walked into town this evening and checked out the laundromat, or launderette as it is called here. It's a little scary. Very small and behind the hostel so all the backpackers are hogging the 3 machines that are not "out of order". Maybe tomorrow, we'll see. Plus you have to have exact change and there are no change machines. 4.50 for a load in the washer.
We meandered around town checking things out, starting to look for a place for dinner, since I was living on cookies today. It was only 5pm so a lot of places weren't open yet. We found one we weren't excited about, but it was open so we went in....and it was amazing. It was in Rick Steve's book, The Isles Inn. Casual bar/restaurant/Inn. Finally some salmon on menu. Dot tried the burger. Sorry we didn't take pictures but I dug right in before I remembered. Fresh salmon,
grilled, lightly seasoned ....so good! And Dot's burger was surprisingly good. 100% Scottish Beef with some kind of English Cheddar on a Brioche Bun. We thought burgers wouldn't be good over here but it was great. The table next to us was eating the Scottish meat pie - looked like a pot pie full of tender marinated beef. They said it was really good. So now, the big debate. Do we go back there tomorrow because it was so good and there are other things on the menu we want to try? Or...do we go to the fancy, possibly Michelin Star restaurant we are considering for triple the price with a menu that I don't recognize anything on it? If someone can tell me if there is anything on the menu that I would like, maybe we will go. Mary? Harley? Where are my foodies? Here is a link to the restaurant:
ScorryBreac, Chef Calum Munro
Short Rib, Truffle, Toast
Monkfish, Beetroot, Orange, Creme Fraiche
Celery, Strathdon Blue, Hazelnuts
Lamb Rump, Jerusalem Artichoke, Wild Garlic
Hake, Crab, Cabbage, Vanilla
Carrot, Crowdie, Buckwheat
Dark Chocolate, Caramel, Lavender
Rhubarb, Meringue, Almond
Selection of Scottish Cheese I had to go to a pharmacy in Inverness to get some Advil & extra strength Tylenol and it was hilarious. Thank God I googled all the medical terms and typed them in my phone. The girl in the pharmacy had no clue what I was trying to buy so she just asked me for my phone and took it and went to fill my order. We both laughed about it. Then my Apple pay wouldn't work because my phone and fingers were wet from walking in the drizzle. Had to use my card. But drugs over there are SUPER CHEAP! Also we noted on the walk that every time we passed a particular statue there was this pigeon on the statue's head. Guess it was his home.
Tomorrow we will be exploring the Isle of Skye and probably doing a lot of hiking, rain or shine....likely rain.
Scroll down to the bottom for more photos.
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