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Touring along the Tay river and to St. Andrews


Home -> Europe -> Scotland -> Travelogue Scotland -> 18 & 19 May 2017

Thursday 18 May, touring along the Tay river and to St. Andrews

I have never had an ear infection before and I did not know it was so painful. Fortunately, the fever has subsided, but I feel very tired, so we do and see less than normally. And I continue to swallow dirty drinks, Lemsip max from the Tesco seems to be the only thing that helps a bit. But it must be strong because we can only buy 2 boxes per customer. We just go several times through different cash registers to buy some more.
Remains of Balvaird castle Balvaird castle near Newton or BalcanquhalNear our hotel is Balvaird castle, a tower house from the 16th century. You can walk for free on the terrain that is located on a hill. The residential tower is reasonably well preserved but you can also see the layout of the whole quite well, although the outbuildings that stood around the courtyard are now ruins. There are also remains of a large walled garden. According to the information boards, the house was very comfortable, warm and with lots of light. That is not the case with all castles.
Castle ruins along the Tay river Boat building along the TayThen we drive along the coast of the Tay, the longest river of Scotland with 193 kilometers that flows into the Firth of Tay. From a distance we see a few castle ruins and shipyards with ships under construction. As soon as you get closer to the sea in Scotland, you also see more industry and activity.
It is an area that we find less beautiful but here are also a lot of roads that we have not driven before.
Earlshall castle at Leuchars Hotel at the golf course of St. AndrewsBut that's how we get to see everything including some nice houses and castles. At St. Andrews we arrive in golf country. St. Andrews calls itself 'the home of golf' and in 1552 archbishop Hamilton recognized with a charter that the people from St. Andrews had the right to play golf. The Romans and Chinese already played a similar game in ancient times, but contemporary golf has its roots in Scotland. In 1457 King James II forbade the game for some time because it would distract too much from military training.
Gatelodge outside St. Andrews Country house at the Duke's St. Andrews golf courseThere are many golf courses in this area and golf is a national sport in Scotland, much less elitist than in the Netherlands, for example. At the Duke's St. Andrews, on the outskirts of the city, we park the car and walk around. It is located on a hill and you can look out on the city and the sea. We know nothing about golf (except that you have to hit a ball in a hole and have a handicap), but it is nice to walk around here.
The Duke's St. Andrews golf course The Duke's St. Andrews golf courseThe golf courses in Scotland are often located in beautiful areas, partly due to the often hilly landscape and the nature around it. For us it is the first time we literally walk on a golf course and we can imagine that when you do this for fun, it is a relaxing sport where you can walk a lot in the open air. Although, most of the players seem to use one of those golf carts.
Old signpost along the B9131 at DuninoWith the car we wander a lot more through the area but do not see many special things. At a t-junction on the B9131, near Stravithie castle, we see a very nice old-fashioned traffic indicator where really even the smallest hamlets in the neighborhood are listed. We have not seen such indicators that often.
Usually we are not too late in the afternoon back at the hotel where we sometimes can sit in the sun before our room that is located near a busy road. The hotel also has a restaurant where you can eat well although my appetite is not that big yet.

 


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