May 1, 2011

Scotland for Easter

While England was experiencing record high temps for Easter weekend,
Scotland was cold, rainy, and foggy for most of our stay.
But we had an amazing time despite the weather.
We stayed in Edinburgh and took a few day trips to surrounding towns.
 We rented a flat at #1 Grassmarket.
I loved the big double green doors.
The view was pretty nice as well. See our green doors on the left?
 The day we picked to tour the Edinburgh Castle was probably not the best for a view.
 It was really foggy and we couldn't see down the hill.
But the fog cleared up and we enjoyed the sights of Edinburgh...

And the sounds...
We would hear bagpipes in the distance almost all the time.
It's really quite enchanting to hear.
We even caught the cherry blossoms at their peak.

I'm so tired of my green coat in every picture...
A warm vacation must be needed!
We hopped on a train to St. Andrews for the day.
 The fields of rapeseed (aka the plant that produces canola oil) were stunning.
These are blurry pictures from the train, but you would see
bright yellow fields every once in a while.
And they are beautiful from the plane as well.

 Next stop the ruins of the Cathedral of St. Andrews
 I think we were lucky it was raining on this day because there didn't seem to be many tourists at all.
The grounds of the ruins were picturesque
In fact we hiked up to St. Rules Tower (the thin one you see to the right) and had the top to ourselves.
 A charming view of the seaside town, fit for a prince and princess you might say?
 That's right, Kate and Wills met at the University here.
 The locals told us the camera crews and all the recent press was getting out of control.
"It never used to be this way when they were even living here"
But anything for a few shots for the Royal Wedding coverage.
 Anyway, we made our way down to the St. Andrews castle
And of course our trip would not have been complete without a walk around the golf courses.
We wanted to play 9 holes (of putting), but it started raining on us so we headed back to Edinburgh.
Then we took another day trip to Stirling for some hiking.


A highland cow, and calf.
While there, we also hiked up the William Wallace monument.
I actually feel like we did a like of hiking (up) while in Scotland.
We got some really good exercise...

We were just on that other hill in the distance
Then we went back to Edinburgh for one last day.
We went to the Queen's Palace of Holyrood - which was lovely.
It was where Mary, Queen of Scots lived for quite some time.
No pictures allowed inside but here are some of the gardens and the ruins of the Cathedral.

And we had a great trip.
Edinburgh is a lovely place. I highly recommend a visit.

And of course the blue skies came out as we left for the airport.
But what a great trip!

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