Dunnottar Castle

Welcome back, everyone.  Hope you’re having a lovely week.

If you like castles, then you’ll want to stick around for today’s post.  It’s a biggie!

Castles are amazing, don’t you think?  It doesn’t matter to me if it has been renovated and now serves as a five-star luxury hotel, if it’s a well-preserved ruin, or if all that remains is a crumbling mess, a mere shadow of what once had been.  Every castle has a tale to tell and I love them all.

Today I would like to take you to Dunnottar Castle which sits on the North Sea, about two miles from the town of Stonehaven, Scotland.  I can still remember my reaction the firstfullsizeoutput_296 time I rounded the path and Dunnottar came into full view.  Hmmm, how do I describe it?   Okay, got it.  Do you remember the romcom “Notting Hill” starring Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts?  (Where have all the romantic comedies gone, by the way?)  Do you remember the scene where William (Grant) takes the famous actress Anna Scott (Roberts) as his date to his sister Honey’s birthday party?  And do you remember Honey’s reaction at meeting Anna for the first time?  Hahaha!  Yeah.  That pretty much sums it up.

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Perched atop a massive flat rock with sheer cliffs on three sides and connected to the mainland by only a narrow stretch of earth, Dunnottar Castle and its surrounding landscape is an extraordinary sight to behold.  Truly, photos cannot do justice to the magnitude of the rock upon which the castle resides.

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Why Scotland?

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Dunnottar Castle, Aberdeenshire

There are 196 countries in this great big world.  So, ‘why Scotland?’ you might ask.  Well, it all began with a thumbnail.  Not mine.  I’m talking about an itty bitty image that appeared on my computer screen the night I was searching for vacation rentals.  My husband and I had been exploring various destinations for a milestone wedding anniversary and for months we had tossed around all the usual suspects…Hawaii, Alaska, a cruise of some sort, the islands, etc.  Having never traveled anywhere more exciting than the white sandy beaches of the Florida Panhandle (ok, we DID go to Winnipeg a couple times but I’m not sure that counts), we weren’t sure where we should go.  But then one dark winter evening as I sat absent-mindedly perusing VRBO (my favorite place to go when we need a rental-seriously, if you haven’t used it, do), a tiny image of a lovely stone manor house-a tower house actually- caught my attention.  I clicked on that picture and was presented with an image of the Pilrig House in Edinburgh, Scotland.  Huh, I wasn’t even looking at listings for Scotland.  Strange.  My interest was certainly piqued so I took a closer look at it, wandered over to their beautiful web site, and as the woman said in When Harry Met Sally, “At that moment I knew.  I knew the way you know about a good melon.”  I sent my husband a text, told him where I knew we were going, and that was all she wrote!

Except that wasn’t all she wrote.  For I had no idea at the time what kind of impression Scotland was to make on me.  It was my first trip to Europe and maybe that had something to do with it. Or maybe my soul just finally found its way home.  Either way, I fell head-over-heels for this beautiful country.  It’s fair to say that I am mildly-well maybe moderately obsessed.  And so that is where this blog comes in.  And you, my new readers!  You get to be a part of something that is very personal to me.  I look forward to growing this blog and sharing with you some of my best experiences, photos, travel tips, and favorite places and sites.  We’ll talk food and whisky (oh yeah!) and literature and music and history and anything else Scottish related that comes to mind.  I’m glad you’re here and if you love Scotland as much as I do, then Fàilte!

Cheers!

∼Wendy