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Traveling to Scotland

Home -> Europe -> Scotland -> Travelogue Scotland -> 11 to 13 May 2013

Saturday 11 May, traveling to Scotland

Last year we did not go to Scotland so we are looking forward to visiting our favorite holiday destination again. In fact, we have spent a lot of time with our granddaughter on holiday in recent years, very nice, but it's also nice to be on holiday with only the two of us.
Boat at Dover Sailboat at DoverAs often, we first drive to Dunkirk to take the boat to Dover. It is about 5 hours drive from Groningen when there are no traffic jams and this time we are on the early side but we can take an earlier ferry. For us this is the best way to go to Scotland, with our own car and not too long on a boat. Sometimes we go via IJmuiden to Newcastle with an overnight stay on the boat, but we do not really like that.
Rough sea at Dover Near DoverActually only the departure and entering of a port is fun for us but the arrival at Dover is certainly more beautiful than the departure from Dunkirk. There is a lot of wind today and we respect the sailors and boats that dare to sail this sea, we wouldn't like to be on such a small boat in such a sea.
Port of Dover Port and castle of DoverAs soon as we enter the harbor the water becomes calmer and we have a beautiful view over the chalk cliffs of Dover and the imposing castle that lies on top of the rocks. It was largely built in the 12th century during the reign of Henry the Second, but of course there were already older settlements before because it was an extremely strategic place. Dover is closest to mainland Europe and was therefore the perfect place to invade England. Just as Dover is still an important gateway to the United Kingdom.
Collapsed chalk cliffs, DoverIn recent years we have read about the collapse of cliffs at Dover and now we see it with our own eyes. The rocks here consist mainly of chalk rocks so they are also shiny white. It is a soft rock and there is continuous erosion, normally about one centimeter per year, but in recent years there have been large parts breaking down and sometimes whole slopes collapsed.
From Dover we drive quickly to the north, we have a Travelodge in Kendal, about 6 hours to the north near the Lake District. There are a number of hotel chains in Great Britain that are not too expensive and ideal for overnight stays along the way, often close to the motorway and near restaurants, although that is usually fast food.
Near Lockerbie Landscape at LockerbieThe next day we soon arrive in Scotland and not long after that we leave the highway to drive unknown roads. That is my big project, having one day driven all roads in Scotland by car. I have a plasticized card where I mark the roads we have driven at Lockerbie we still have a lot of unmarked roads.
Sheep at LockerbieThe map looks pretty well filled but there are still tens of thousands of kilometers to go and if I have a chance of filling in some of the missing pieces I take it.
The beauty of driving on all those little roads that you would otherwise quickly skip, is that you can see all kinds of unexpected things. Today we see mostly green rolling landscapes with sheep but sometimes we unexpectedly come across beautiful castles or other surprises.
At the end of the afternoon we arrive in Beauly, near Inverness, where we spend the night in the hotel of our friends Iain and Cathy.


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