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Crossing the Channel to Scotland

Home -> Europe -> Scotland -> Travelogue Scotland -> 14 & 15 June 2009

Sunday 14 June, crossing the Channel to Scotland

Leaving France behind A loaden ferrySunday morning at 8 o'clock we leave Groningen to visit our favorite holiday destination. After the rainy holiday last year we now hope for better weather and we drive away with a warm sun but from Utrecht to the French border it rains anyway and it gets cold.
It is quiet on the road and a little after noon we are in Dunkirk where we make the crossing to Dover. This is always a rather boring part of the journey, all the highways through the Netherlands, Belgium and a little piece through France. The weather is clear and the sun is shining when we go on the boat.
Cliffs at Dover Harbour of DoverOccasionally a boat trip is fun but we are not such enthousiastic boat people. After a while it starts to bore us and the fact that you can not just get away (well, jumping into the sea is not really an option) means that after an hour we are tired and ready to walk around. It is always strange to see how full a boat can be packed with so many cars and heavy trucks and that we are still floating on the water.
Cliffs at DoverWhen we are near the harbour of Dover after more than an hour and a half, we go outside again. It is sunny and 26 degrees, great. Now we are going to travel north for the first part of the trip, but it takes a little longer before we get off the boat and we drive into England only at 4 o'clock. It is still more than 1,000 kilometers to our destination, but we only need to be there tomorrow. There are a lot of roadworks on the ring road of London so in the beginning we don't make much progress. It is also a pity that our Garmin regularly stops and keeps coming back to life every time a bit slower.
Taking a break in England Northern EnglandToday we do half of it, we have booked in advance a Travelodge near Blackburn. But from the moment we arrive at the boat we really start to enjoy the holiday. Here we do not mind having to make such a long trip on the highway because soon we see the landscape becoming un-Dutch and we feel completely like being on holiday. And Teije is fond of friving on the left, according to him, that is more natural than the other way around.
At 7 o'clock we stop to refuel and eat something and we can pose in front of the camera in a t-shirt, it is still so nice outside.
The next morning we take a simple breakfast in the neighborhood. Travelodges and hotels of similar chains are almost always close to a gas station and various eateries, mostly of the fast-food type. This time we can order our favorite Great Britain breakfast, fried egg with bacon for me and Teije scrambled eggs.
It is 21 degrees outside and we are ready for another day of traveling.
Back at BeaulyAfter an hour it starts to rain and that keeps going on a long time afte we arrive in Scotland. As soon as we cross the Scottish border, Teije can not resist pulling out his big map to find some roads we have never driven before. He marks every road we have been to with a permanent marker on the map and his dream is to completely fill the map one day.
After driving through Scotland, we arrive at Beauly at 3 o'clock where our friends Iain and Cathy, who are the owners of the Caledonian Hotel, are waiting for us. It is always a nice reunion and every year we have a lot to discuss which we also do today until late in the evening. And in between we get a delicious hot meal ahead because they are also great cooks! A wonderful start to this holiday.


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