Another random post from our trip to the United Kingdom in May. This is Lindisfarne… on the Holy Island.
Invergarry Castle, Scottish Highlands, on the shores of Loch Oich.
Our last stop before actually getting into Scotland last Wednesday was Lindisfarne Castle and the Holy Island. This place is cool. You can actually see it from Bamburgh and Bamburgh from Lindisfarne. The Holy Island is actually an island, sort of. It sticks out into the sea. You can’t access it at high tide as the causeway connecting it to the mainland is under water during that time. Luckily for us Martin had it all worked out, being the fine navigator he is, so we were able to get out there, see it, and get off the island without incident.
The island was originally, indicated by it’s name, inhabited by monks and held a monastary and priory. The priory site on the island dates back 1300 years. Pretty awesome.
The weather that day, as we traveled north, was so typical of what we experienced during our time in the North and Scotland. Nice one minute, raining the next. We never did end up with terrible weather though. The clouds always seemed to part when it was time to get out of the car. Mary, the driving rock star that she is, had to drive in some nasty weather during certain periods, but when it was time to walk, it was good. Beautiful in fact when we were on the holy island.
The sheep… they are everywhere in England, and Scotland actually.
Our next stop last Wednesday, further up the east coast, and still in England, was Bamburgh Castle (and here begins the lesson on pronunciation… Bamburgh is pronouced Bambroo – as Martin says, like book without the k. The broo part of it is not what you emphasize. That part sort of just falls away. There will be more of this later when we get to Edinburgh). Bamburgh is on the Northumberland Coast. This place, though not nearly as famous as Alnwick, was, to me anyway, much cooler. The setting, right there on the water, beach on one side, overlooking the sea. Just fantastic. Very impressive structure on a very impressive site.
We, as with Alnwick, didn’t pay to go in. We just parked the car and headed down to the beach. We took a stroll and took photos of both the castle, from various angles, and the dogs running and playing on the beach. An excellent time was had by all.
We set off on our journey to Scotland last Wednesday… first stop, Alnwick (pronounced Annick) Castle on the North East Coast of England. This is the castle Hogwarts is based on in the Harry Potter films. They filmed parts of the place and CGI’d the rest. Kind of cool in person. The castle and grounds are a major tourist stop and were fairly packed. There was also a fee just to walk on the grounds, not to mention the other fee to go inside the castle. We decided to try and get to a spot where we could take photos without actually paying to go onto the grounds. We weren’t staying long anyway, so paying the fee seemed kind of ridiculous, especially given that it was kind of steep.
We paid to park, decided to have a little picnic there in a very nice area where the dogs could be with us. Another rub of entering the grounds at Alnwick is that dogs were strictly not allowed. In fact, the guy at the pay booth for the parking specifically told us no dogs allowed. Bummer. After our nice picnic lunch Martin and I set off in search of the perfect spot for photos. We actually ended up going around toward where the pay booths were, but then veered off onto what, to us, looked like any other path. We followed this path and ended up on the grounds, near the castle. Who knew. I think it was a gardener’s path and we weren’t supposed to use it or be there, but what the heck. We both felt like someone was going to stop us at any moment and tell us to go, but we ventured forth anyway, just so I could get some shots. Which I did. This is one of them. You can actually recognize, from the films, the center part of the castle. It looked familiar to me.