The West coast of Scotland is impressive. As an East coaster its somewhere I rarely visit but always mean to see more of. It is full of windy roads which isn’t great for a lover of motorways (me). But these windy roads lead to fantastic views of the sea, to gorgeous beaches, to the blossom covered lanes and to a few (possibly more than a few) bottles of bubbly with good friends.
Like most badly prepared travellers I rely on few details, the weather app and map on my mobile, to inform me of what to expect. So on Friday afternoon the postcode supplied was typed into the phone and off I went. By the time I got off the motorway (was in Glasgow when I left) I was pretty relaxed and happy to take my time on the roads; not even fussed when the tractors appeared to slow me down even more so than my consistent ‘granny’ speed.
Scotland’s West coast: Dumfries and Galloway
It is quite near to England. Carlisle is only a stones throw away but it definitely looks like Scotland. Not the stunning hills and lochs of the highlands but it is warmer as the weather benefits from the Gulf Stream on that side of the country. So on a sunny Friday evening driving past Dumfries and Castle Douglas I definitely felt like it was a holiday weekend. The place – not too far from Kirckcubright. The directions – well I didn’t get lost. The arrival – to a glass of bubbly on a patio overlooking green fields, woodland and a few cows meandering to their way with their calfs to some water. The evening – full of laughter, catching up and a little too much bubbly. The night – noises of the country. I don’t often hear a bull and cows mooing in Edinburgh. It was ok though…this meant I didn’t hear anyone snoring.
On Saturday we headed out for a walk and then to a local cafe for brunch which thankfully perked everyone up and then we headed out to a local beach. It is great place for meandering with inland walks and beaches that are hidden and pretty untouched. Beaches and the sea that have inspired artists and writers in the past and present. Robert Burns spent a lot of time in this part of the country (settling in Dumfries) and there are lots more examples. There are lots of quirky historical tales about smugglers, violence (the murder at the lighthouse) and troublesome antics of the locals. I had a look online when I got back home and found a couple of books which would be worth a read (Tales of Galloway; and Dumfries & Galloway Folk Tales) on the Kindle.
There are lots of walkers and cyclists and I can see why. The area has lots to see. The holiday lets overlooking the sea look fantastic but I am lucky enough to have a good friend in the area so I’m sure I will be back soon. It was a very relaxed break from the city with friends.