Sunday, July 24, 2016

Sunshine and ancient history on Scotland's West Coast

Our short break on the West Coast of Scotland continues. Because Thursday was such a glorious day we headed to Tayvallich for lunch as it's a really pretty spot. We had a fabulous lunch at the Tayvallich Coffee Shop which is behind the little local shop - scrummy vegetarian haggis and great view looking out over the boats.

Whilst we were there Bramble was making friends with a sailor dog - note his yellow life jacket with a handle on the back for when he goes overboard. The couple that he was with said they'd had to use the handle that morning. The other good thing about the cafe is that they have showers available to use so is great for boaters and walkers.

Inside the cafe they had these very funky animal heads for sale.

Another toilet shot. This vase is covered with rolled up magazine pages - a great example of recycling.

Me and Bramble enjoying the sun. Ken had a nice chat to an older couple who were sat having a drink further along - lucky them actually own the part of the beach they were sitting on and the woods behind.

On our way back from Tayvallich we stopped at Bellanoch church which is on the hill directly behind Ken's old family home. It's a beautiful little church and Ken's mum used to clean the church so it was fitting that both his parents had their funeral services here.

This black and white picture was hanging in the church and as you can see the walls used to be raw stone - I'm not sure when they were painted white.

Here's Bramble playing in the long grass around the church - she loves it.

Below is a very interesting building at Crinan Ferry. It is an icehouse dated from the 1830's that has been converted into a modern home. It was even featured on the George Clarke series Restoration Man in 2010 - I'd love to have a look inside as the outside is fabulous.

An old winch used for pulling in the boats that's now abandoned beside the water.

The hill you see in the middle of the below picture is Dunadd. This was the site of a very important hill fort between 500 AD and 900 AD where the kings of Scotland were crowned. There's a great page about it on the Undiscovered Scotland website - click HERE to read.

This is a replica of a boar carving that used to be on the summit of Dunadd but unfortunately has now worn away.

The track through the rocks as you climb the hill. Since we last climbed Dunadd, 18 years ago, they've put in information boards and direction signs so it's much better for the visitor now. Lots of interesting history to read about.

This is a well that is quite high up on the hill - it is said that the water level went in and out with the local tides.

Ken and Bramble enjoying the view.

At the summit there are a few things carved into rock including a bowl and a foot - it is thought that the kings would place their foot into the carved shape as part of their crowning ceremony. My foot fitted perfectly so I think I must have royal blood in me.

The view towards Bellanoch and Crinan from Dunadd.

I crown thee King Kenneth of Bellanoch.

Looking down from the fort top to the carpark - if you have good eyesight you might just make out our car Pablo.

Friendly black faced sheep beside the road - I love their sticky out ears, very cute.

Just a warning, that's the end of the sunshine for our break - jokingly I sent a text to Jean saying that we'd managed to arrive for the one day of summer and truer words were never spoken. I'll explain more in the next post.

Until then, be good, stay safe, and do something this week that will help our beautiful world.

Pamela & Ken

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