Aberlady Beach, East Lothian.
This stretch of the Forth estuary has a string of expansive beaches. This midsummer sunset catches the sense of space, looking across the water to the Lomond Hills in Fife.
Achiltibuie Boatman's Bothy
Achiltibuie Boatman’s Bothy, Wester Ross. In an area where many of necessity have more than one job, fishing comes well up the list. Local hotels and restaurants are among the fishermen’s customers. Have a look at http://coigach.com/ and check out this great self-catering cottage.
Boat and Forth Rail Bridge
Boat and Forth Rail Bridge, South Queensferry Harbour.
A fine evening in the spring saw mist obscuring part of this always impressive structure. The proximity of the yacht on the quay suggests the bridge is farther away than it really is.
Evening at Tarbert
Evening at Tarbert, Argyll.
The green of the hillside opposite is reflected here in the sea at the harbour entrance. It is so nearly calm that smoke from two chimneys a short distance apart is blowing in opposite directions.
West Coast Poppies
West Coast Poppies Gairloch, Wester Ross. The west coast of Scotland is often grey, but that can add to the atmosphere and moodiness. These early July poppies looked out over the sea to Skye in the background. For accommodation at Gairloch the Old Inn really works. Their website even has the sound of the sea breaking on the shore.
Embleton Beach, Northumberland. The coast between Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Berwick-upon-Tweed boasts a string of lovely beaches, some with castles close by. Here the ruins of Dunstandburgh Castle can be seen in the distance. We had a great few days on an autumn deal at the Dunstanburgh Castle Hotel, within easy walking distance of the beach. They do winter deals, too.
Achnahaird Beach, Wester Ross. Any tour of the North-west Highlands should include a visit to this idyllic beach, about three miles before Achiltibuie. It’s usually all but deserted, and is protected from the Atlantic swell by a point a little to the north.
Forth Road Bridge at Dusk
Forth Road Bridge at Dusk. This famous structure, which when it opened in 1964 was the longest suspension bridge outside the USA, is silhouetted by the brightness of the western sky shortly after sunset. The trees beside the road down into North Queensferry provide an arch of branches above.
Tobermory, Isle of Mull. Well known as 'Balamory' in the BBC children's series, Tobermory Bay is reputedly the location of a sunken Spanish galleon, complete with millions of gold coins, but this is yet to be found. What you will find, though, is excellent fish and chips at the mobile van to the left of the picture.
Puffin Resting, Treshnish Isles, Argyll. If you happen to be anywhere near Oban during the puffin nesting season, do try to go and see these puffins. This was our best day out ever! No competition! We went with Staffa Tours, booking the trip as a package at the West Coast Tours office by Oban Harbour. You go across to Mull on the regular ferry, then by bus to Tobermory, then with Staffa Tours to Fingal's Cave (which was also great) and the Treshnish Isles. There’s another version of this tour which visits Iona but not Tobermory.
Harbour on the Antrim Coast
Harbour on the Antrim Coast. The Antrim coast road is rightly regarded as a very pretty drive, and Cushendun harbour is well worth a stop. There is a good beach, too. There's an excellent self-catering apartment bang on the sea front at Cushendun's larger sister village Cushendall.
Mist at Forth Road Bridge
Mist at Forth Road Bridge. The east coast of Scotland is well known for its sea mist, known locally as haar, and it is not unusual for it to affect the Forth estuary, especially in the spring. The Forth bridges are always impressive, but the haar, when it is not too extensive, definitely adds something.
Tug and Forth Rail Bridge
Tug and Forth Rail Bridge. This world-famous structure never fails to impress, day or night. It’s enormous and the more impressive when one considers that it was built during the reign of Queen Victoria.
Puffin on Cliff
Treshnish Isles, Argyll. I find it amazing that these really quite small birds spend most of their lives at sea, only coming ashore to breed in the spring and early summer. Most of the puffins we saw were digging their nesting burrows on fairly level ground, so whether this chap was trying to burrow into the cliff I'm not sure. Check out ‘Puffin Resting’ for details of our amazing day out to see the puffins.
Listen to Me!
Listen to Me! Treshnish Isles, Argyll. The puffins lived up to their reputation as characterful and this one was no exception. It was remarkable how close they would let one come. About 5 feet/1.5m was ok, then they would back away. The colours of their beaks were great; they would have so much less visual impact without this! Check out ‘Puffin Resting’ for details of our amazing day out to see the puffins.
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