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Published: February 9th 2021
So lets go to Scotland for a Month, well that was the plan but a great celebration stopped us heading north until party date of the 27th of May. So we filled in our time with family and friends and had a great week visiting Fi and Doug in Northampton, Dawn in Leicester and then to Grafham Water to meet cousin Richard for three nights. It was then party time back in Hertfordshire to celebrate Don's 70th Birthday and a great weekend was had by all. So then it was time to turn north again and made it to Clumber Park right in the heart of the Forest and a firm favourite of Mum and Dads caravanning days, a great stop for Poppy too with a lot of forest and water! Heading further north we managed to find a great site near Hadrian's Wall a 'bucket list' item of mine! The weather had continue to warm up, and as we needed an early start the next day to get to Edinburgh we headed off on the circular walk from the campsite late afternoon. Around 6 miles and very warm but close to a great section of the wall with some great views. We arrived in Edinburgh two weeks after leaving home and were hosted to a fantastic weekend with Neil, Ellen and May, taking a great walk in the Pentland Hills. Leaving Edinburgh we made our way to our evening sailing from Oban to Mull arriving around 7pm. The campsite close to the harbour was our stop for the night and we were treated to a fantastic sunset. We headed north to Tobemory just missing an Otter sighting (now on the must see!) a lovely little town and made famous by a certain children's tv programme. The weather was by now crazy temperatures over and above what Scotland would normally see, and so not what we had packed for! A known wild camp of Calgary Bay was our next stop where we were treated to a great beach, soft sand and the most glorious bay, a perfect wild camp, midges aside, but this is Scotland!!
Another two fantastic days and wild camps at Killiechronan campsite and Lochbuie the walking on the Island (we did not have a walk book) was not as easy as we had anticipated with few marked footpaths, luckily as it was an Island the coast had paths and so we spent our time walking them. Driving to the next location or just sitting and admiring the views and wildlife Golden and Sea Eagles (second largest in the world!) even catching one in trouble in the water after a dive from a cormorant! Luckily all good as she had two chicks on a nest no far from our Campsite. It was soon time to head back to Craignure for our sailing back to Oban, but just enough time to pick up a 2kg bag of very fresh mussels (£2) for tea Yum Yum. After an overnight at Oban, Islay was our second Island and could not have been more different where Mull was quite mountainous Islay was flatter and more of a beach destination. having got to love the ruggedness of Mull, Isay was at first a slight disappointment. Our first night at the head of the Loch was fairly un spectacular but after a revaluation Islay grew on us, beautiful Bays lovely small harbour towns and a great North coast at the Oa with dramatic sea cliffs all with the great opportunity to try and purchase the local water, Malt Whiskey.
Arran was our last stop of the trip and after 3 weeks of great sunshine it had to end and did with the arrival of storm Hector, we luckily managed to get the Ferry to Arran before they closed them down and headed for a protected campsite and sat tight for 24hrs while it blew all around us.Day two allowed a window of opportunity to walk (our first!) up hill to Loch Urie which gave us great views, but not time at the top as still very blowy!! The next day took us to the campsite at Kildonan but a drive past took us to a great wild camp with a fantastic view out to perfect Otter territory. this being the other reason for us to come here was to see a large family of seals and they did not disappoint very inquisitive and enjoying some time out of the water warming up. Making our way back to the van eyes turned to the Bay to spot an Otter and we were not disappointed. If it hadn't been for the midges I would have stayed out watching them longer, I suffered for my sighting. This trip highlight ended a great visit to these Islands and gave us some of what the other Islands will offer, diversity, individuality and a lot more to offer than on the surface they seem to have in the first place.
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