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Via Ghent to Yorkshire, the worst hotel boss ever

Home -> Europe -> Scotland -> Travelogue Scotland -> 10 to 13 June 2014

Tuesday 10 June, via Ghent to Yorkshire, the worst hotel boss ever

This will be a somewhat strange travel report because we have lost a lot of pictures and also our notes when and where we have exactly been. It has to do with our cameras that were dragged into the sea in Greece by a mini-tsunami: one occasionally functions but in the end we can not read the memory card anymore. And that is a shame because it means we not only miss a lot of photos, but also the GPS-coordinates where they were made. That is why we have this travel report on only 4 pages with a limited number of photos that we have made with a rather simple camera. Of the last 10 days we do not even have 1 picture!
The Korenmarkt in Ghent The Belfry of GhentWe are only 2 weeks back from Greece when we go to Scotland again. We leave 10 June and stay overnight in Ghent, a beautiful city where the next morning we have plenty of time to walk around. The boat from Dunkirk leaves only at 2 o'clock and from here it is only a little more than an hour's drive. We park near the historic center at the Korenmarkt. First we drink a cup of coffee in this square and then we walk around a bit.
In the Middle Ages, Ghent was one of the largest trading cities in Europe that thanked its wealth to the flax, linen and wool industry. The city center is dominated by three tall towers, the Sint Niklaas church, the 95 meter high Belfry tower from the 13th century and the Sint Baafskathedraal.
The Belfry of Ghent Sint-Niklaas church, GhentAfter the Middle Ages, the city gradually declined, but in the 18th century it became the first industrialized city in Europe and again in textile. From England a spinning machine was smuggled to Belgium (which was still part of the Netherlands) and the city grew again.
We are here only a few hours so we can not see much but we put the city on our list to visit another time for somewhat longer. We always find it very pleasant to walk through such towns where history is still tangible. The large buildings are impressive but we often find the narrow alleys and old shops and houses even more fun.
After crossing the Northsea we drive to York in England. We want to pay a surprise visit to our friends Rachel and John who live in Yorkshire tomorrow and in York we foudn a hotel that was not too expensive, £ 65 for 1 night. In retrospect, we had to read the reviews a bit better: we were received rather surly and were dragged from room to room, but there was something wrong with all the rooms. Meanwhile we got to hear a list of all the things that are not allowed. When Teije asks if there is a place to smoke outside, the man explodes and we get a tirade to hear how his customers want to destroy him: whether they cause fires by smoking or they are standing outside so the neighbors complain and want the hotel closed because of the trouble the guests cause.
What an unpleasant man and he keeps on going without listening to us. Our room is also not very clean, so we are happy that we will leave tomorrow. Actually, we are about to leave now but it is already late and then we have to search for another hotel.
The next morning we are suddenly woken up around 5 o'clock by the whining and penetrating smoke alarm. Sscreaming, the hotel boss runs through the corridors to drive everyone out and blames all sorts of people among them: that young couple will have smoked or maybe you have... But in the courtyard we see that there is smoke coming from the kitchen, the old boss just caused it himself. And we would not be surprised if he had done it on purpose. What a terrible place. We skip breakfast and quickly leave the hotel.
To warn everyone: this is the Clifton Bridge guest house at Water End, York and the owner is Ferraioli. First read the reviews carefully, maybe there is a new owner and it is now all better.
We drive around in the area and it is still early when we call Rachel who does not expect us. There we are warmly welcomed and even get a breakfast and we talk all morning because we have not seen each other for more than a year.
At the end of the afternoon we drive to Peebles in The Borders province in the south of Scotland where we booked a room for 2 nights at the Castle Venlaw hotel. It is a real castle and we have a beautiful four-poster bed. Whether the castle hotel is still open, we do not know because the site does not seem to exist anymore.
Gatekeeper's house at Glen Estate in the Borders Glen House in the BordersSlightly south of Peebles is The Glen, also called Glen House, an estate with a 13th century castle. The castle was once burned down and restored again but personally I find the little gatekeeper's house much more fun, I want to live there. On the estate there are several walks that you can make.
Single track road in the Borders Entrance to Castlelaw HillfortWe drive a lot these days and the laminated map from Teije is the guide. On that map he draws which roads we have already driven and so we keep looking for new roads, there are still enough. In this way we always encounter new things such as Castlelaw Hillfort, south of Edinburgh. During the Iron Age, a small community lived here for centuries and you can visit an underground space that is 20 meters long but whose function is not clear.
The sheep must pass by Sheep herd on the roadWe will probably have seen other interesting things but well, we do not have pictures of that. We have some of the sheep herd that we encounter when we have to drive back on a dead-end road. The farmers are not really happy with us and push the sheep forward with their quads. In agricultural areas we see these fourwheel quads more and more and they are probably very handy on the narrow roads but also for off-road driving.


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