After 2 days in Ireland (though it felt much longer – in a good way), we were off to Scotland.
Now, I can’t remember why we decided to go to Glasgow. I think our search on Sky Scanner was just any airport in Scotland and Glasgow was cheapest. But I do know we wanted to see the first UK Tim Horton’s opening up (fun fact: I was going to link to the Tim Horton’s page and just found out there are like 14 Tim Horton’s locations in the UK. How the eff did that happen? What’s going on? I have so many questions). It was supposed to be open by the time we were there, but it wasn’t. Super disappointing (my friend went to Glasgow later on and brought back some Timmies to Derby though).
We weren’t quite sure what to do to kill time (we’d be going to Inverness later on) so we took a city bus tour. There is some really nice architecture and some really nice monuments around Glasgow, so it was nice to see. I hear Edinburgh is the place to go in terms of major Scottish cities, but I still have never been, and Glasgow is a nice place as well. To the future!
We eventually made our way back to Glasgow’s bus station for our bus. I can’t remember how long the bus ride was, but it was something like another 2-3 hours. But, like, really pretty especially when you’re going through the highlands. Also, the bus was hella fancy (like refreshments included and everything). And cold. And we had to face this older couple. It was weird. Luckily the views allowed us to avoid eye contact at all costs.
When we arrived in Inverness, it took only 10 minutes to walk to our hotel (this made my mom very happy). We stayed at The Kings Highway (name bonus for reminding me of Game of Thrones). It was quite warm in the room (couldn’t figure out how to open the stupid window) and it was small, but very nice and cozy. It was clean and updated, which was a nice change of pace.
We ate at the restaurant downstairs. I don’t remember what I got, but it did the trick. There was some really good entertainment. This Scottish guy was talking to some North American girls, who were totally there for him. Except their voices were both like Sugar’s from The Zone on YTV in Canada (they must’ve been sisters). Okay, but pause: link bonus because that video (linked) begins with the end credits for Digimon, which I’m currently super nostalgic about what with discovering they made a new series with the original Season 1 and 2 characters (minus new season 2 characters? Will they ever be mentioned beyond Ken? What’s even happening?). Guess how I spent my weekend?
Apologies for being really off topic with this post. I actually wrote this a while ago and now I’m editing as I add links, but seem to also have an uncontrollable urge to add filler information.
Anyway, we ended up spending the night in (you can tell that we’re big partiers. Actually, another off-topic comment: I had my sister and mom take that Myers-Briggs personality quiz because I wanted to read all about their super unique personalities and it turned out that we are all ‘The Mediator’ personality type (INFP) except my mom is INFP-A(ssertive) and my sisters and I are all INFP-T(urbulent), which makes a lot of sense seeing as I’m sure we annoy our mother with our indecisiveness and aversion to “adulting”. So, the lack of partying makes sense if you look at that…). We watched TV, cleaned up and went to sleep.
In the morning, we went walking along the River Ness and explored the city a bit before we’d have to check out. We went for breakfast at this café called The Rendezvous Café. It has a bunch of old Hollywood pictures and has a diner feel to it. Apparently The Beatles performed at the location (before it was the café) when they were first starting out, which is amazing. It’s a nice place and I’d definitely recommend it for a nice meal.
After checkout, we went to the Inverness Bus Station where we were able to check our bags for the day and we took a bus down to Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness. This wasn’t a tour; you buy the bus ticket and make sure to get off and on at the right place.
This was one of the few adventures we had where the weather was not cooperative. It was very picturesque though with the mist rolling in on the lake. Really cool, but very windy as well.
The castle was beautiful and there are little placards all over the place so that you can learn about the history of the place as well as the layout of castles like it. Also a wonderful place for photo ops.
In the gift shop, I lost my mom. It was VERY crowded and the line to get in was quite long as well (though we got there at a point where it wasn’t too bad). After some low key panic, we found each other at the bus stop and didn’t have to leave either one of us behind.
Back at the bus station, we got some food while waiting for our bus to return us to Glasgow.
Inverness is beautiful as are the highlands in general. I’m absolutely going to go back and do some more exploring. There is WAY too much to see in just two days (or less in our case).
If you’re keeping track, that will have been a total of four days spent in Ireland and Scotland. It felt like we had seen so much already. It was also my first time out of England since moving to the UK nearly a year prior. Getting paid by the day really limits what you can do.
On the bus ride back into Glasgow, it was sunny the whole way. We had to switch buses at some point (was it in Perth?) but an incident happened on our connecting bus, so it was late. When it got back on its way, it had mechanical troubles, so it wouldn’t come at all. We had to wait for a replacement bus. I don’t remember how long it took, but there was a girl from North America who was living in Glasgow and was close to tears because she just wanted to go home (I feel you, girl). It was a long while to wait at a bus stop. I explored a little but kept myself in check otherwise I’d be stranded (there was a dirt path leading into some trees and it was calling me!).
When the bus finally came, all of the windows were open and the bathroom was locked. I suspected some sort of incident occurred because it was freezing with the windows opened and had a slight odour…
In Glasgow, we made our way to our overnight accommodation. I remember it being mostly uphill because of my mom’s complaints (love you ☺). We stayed at a place called The Victorian House. It was a nice little Victorian townhouse with a decent room. I really loved the character of the place, though the bathroom smelled like musty mint. Also, we were a couple of flights up and there was no elevator (again, remembered thanks to mom 😉).
We ordered Thai/Chinese through Just Eat (I legit use this all the time here) and stayed in relaxing and watching TV.
Early in the morning, we checked out and ventured to a bus stop where a bus would take us to the airport. Here we would catch a plane back to the East Midlands airport and Derby.