31st August 2019 - 9th September 2019
Packing this time was a disaster. I would have thought after taking a full suitcase home we would have had more room in the car not so, possessions expand to take up the space available. We eventually got it all in and off we went to Balmoral.
On the way we decided to spend a night at Holy Island and the town of Lindisfarne, we did not know the music festival was on until we drove past. I must have been looking at the festival because I missed the tide warning signs, I did see the do not cross the causeway if it is wet, it was not wet but slightly damp. We got to the carpark on the Island and noticed that slightly was now quite damp! The tide signs said not to cross between 13:30 and 19:45 due to high tide cutting off the island a quick time check it was 14:15 we were lucky not to get swept away!! Off we went to find somewhere to stay. No room at the pub, check the B and B. The man was very kind but told us the island was all booked out due to it being in season and also the festival!! I was not looking forward to driving back across the causeway at night and then having to find somewhere to stay. A drink at the Ship Inn famous for making their own gin (when they have time). We happened to ask if they had a room. The publican looked at us as if we were mad and said, “Yes I have just had 4 people cancel!!” He was happy and I was very relieved. The island is desolate and windy, but very lovely. There is a castle stuck right out on the edge by the sea (closed until late the next day) and an Abbey which is being dug up by archaeologists from the USA. I can see why the place is booked out it has beach walks and is cut off and quiet for half the day perfect.
The Holy Island of Lindisfarne, commonly known as either Holy Island or Lindisfarne, is a tidal island off the northeast coast of England, which constitutes the civil parish of Holy Island in Northumberland. Holy Island has a recorded history from the 6th century AD; it was an important centre of Celtic Christianity under Saints Aidan of Lindisfarne, Cuthbert, Eadfrith of Lindisfarne and Eadberht of Lindisfarne. After the Viking invasions and the Norman conquest of England, a priory was reestablished. A small castle was built on the island in 1550. Wikipediae
Onward the next day, after checking tides, we drove through the Cairngorms National Park absolutely magnificent scenery. The Queen is at Balmoral so we cannot go into the castle or grounds. I wish she would stop coming when I am here. Pat and Norman invited us to Aberdeen for lunch, they own the cottage in Balmoral, Pat is Monica’s sister. We had a nice trip around Aberdeen checking out where Stephen and Monica had been to University. Then a great lunch, Pat and Norman’s townhouse looks out on to an estuary which was packed with Terns and a few seals frolicked.
During our stay at Balmoral Ross and I took a walk to Abergeldie Castle when we got there, we found it was private property and we had trespassed, so we beat a fast retreat after taking a couple of photo’s.
A visit to Bremer was fun too, I walked the ruins of Kindroicht Castle between rain showers. We have been to Balmoral before on this trip so did not do as much this time. the weather was also pretty wet. Not unusual for Scotland. We had a lunch of Scottish classics at The Fife
The local town of Ballater was the town where Queen Victoria arrived by train when she came to Balmoral. The station has been renovated and is gorgeous. The souvenir shop was a great place for Christmas presents
Another highlight was dinner at the Rothsay Rooms, Prince Charlie’s restaurant we were quite impressed it was not super expensive, the tables were huge we almost had to shout to be heard across the table and there was heaps of space between each table, also very tasty food.
A fond farewell to Balmoral and back done south, on the way we stopped at the lovely town of Appleby. In the pub Ross made friends with the Great (a few times) Grandson of the man who started Wisemans Ferry in NSW Australia. It turns out that the original Wiseman was framed for a crime he did not commit and sent to the colonies. They wanted his expertise as a ferryman, to take people across the harbour. After he had done his time they gave him land around where Wiseman's Ferry is, and he set it up as a business, not wanting to ferry people from one side of Sydney to the other anymore. We sometime take tourist to Wisemans ferry it is very pretty and a fun trip on the ferry.