Mull, Starting the Journey
After a rough journey we reached Newcastle.
The check-in and the start from Amsterdam/Ijmuiden went fine like every year.
This always is an exciting moment.....
... a few minutes before embarkation starts...
Here we go. The forecast announced rough sea.
We gladly reach Newcastle after a stormy night.
Scotland, here we go!
We do not tarry and across the Scottish Border...
...a short stop - like always...
... we continue our way to Perth...
... down the Trossachs.
In June the mountaintops are actually still covered with snow.
Like last time in Oban, we stop at the Failte-B&B.
Dunollie Castle – closed since 4.00 p.m., what a pity.
Beside the grand view we enjoy an excellent breakfast at the Failte.
Now the time has come – we’re going to Mull to face the puffins!
We haven’t the least idea that very soon and much too early we shall be back here.
Passing the lighthouse of Lismore...
.. we come to Craignure.
less than 100 people do live here,you find a grocery, a camp site and many fishing boats.
The holy Island of Iona is not far....
There are clean beaches next to the harbour....
...and some traffic every now and then...
From Fionnphort the ships to Iona, Staffa and Lunga depart.
This ship goes to Iona.
Sorting the catch of the day.
Not far from Tobermory you find a wee paradise.
First however the road gets narrower and narrower. Cycle Trail is written here...
Passing Bloody Bay, we are travelling a heavenly landscape until we reach a park.
Scotland-buffaloes bar the path, then we are there.
Glengorm Castle, beautifully situated at the Sound of Mull. Ardnamurchan in the background, the most western point of the Scottish mainland.
A park and a small coffee shop - time for a rest...
...enjoying tea, coffee, and cakes.
A stately castle, offering B&B at hefty prices.
On we go, passing the castle. We the reach a scenery....
...right away like paradise.
A trail takes out towards our destination and never the saying has been as true as here:
Here really the journey is its own reward. Including 'Charly', the young bull...
... or a sheep, apparently feeling right swell.
Highland Cattle taking a nap in the sun. In the background the Sound of Mull.
Here we are:
The Standing Stones of Glengorm.
3 well preserved rocks of about 2 meters height.
Everybody who is anybody peacefully resting and grazing.
Visitors are a rarety. The animals are most trusting.
Nevertheless: Better keep a distance from the chief bull.
A cute hair cut...
Finally we leave the wee paradise.
'O no, not another castle’, I thought when we approached the Isle of Mull. A short way after the lighthouse of Lismore Duart Castle could just not be overlooked at the northern tip of the island. It wasn’t for my wife anyhow and so she dragged me there.
Let’s say right from the start that this time it was fully worthwhile.
The Maclean Clan owns Duart Castle.
The successors of the clan take good care of it.
You notice that at once. It is far better kept than many a castle...
... in the custody of the state.
Everything looks like someone having lived in here up to yesterday...
... and down we go.
This prisoner was a shipwrecked Spaniard of the 16th century.
By the way: This is a loo.
In the middle of the 17th century the castle was deserted...
... and happily went derelict until the early 20th century.
Then the Macleans bought back the castle and had it restaurated.
Anthony Hopkins, Sean Connery, and Catherine Zeta-Jones shot movies here.
Over a circular staircase we reach the so called Battlement.
View without limit… and not often does it happen that you can look from one castle...
... across Duart Bay at another castle.
Somehow the lighthouse of Lismore is omnipotent.
The Trossachs, snow is lying on the peaks, further left the Ben Nevis.
The stairs are turning to the right, making it difficult for attackers to draw their weapons.
Duart Castle looks bulky but isn’t after all.
Here you can make out on what kind of rock massive the castle is built.
The neighbouring restaurant/coffee shops leaves nothing to desire.
A plain churchyard...
… and steep cliffs.
And back we go...
Now, what was it...
Right, a long time ago when we were on Ardnamurchan with the kids. We had taken the ferry and spent a day in pouring rain in Tobermory.
This time the day starts rather misty...
.. but the sun will be there soon – hopefully.
The ambiance of the scenery is splendid.
We drive along the coastal road via Salen and Craignure.
And we have no idea that soon we shall be back to these places.
Some time we leave the ‘main road’...
.. and follow a side road.
Driving slowly makes you enjoy the landscape all the more.
We are going right through the clouds...
Sometimes a sheep lazes around on the street...
... or we pass waterfalls...
.. and more than one narrow bridge.
Only when approaching Tobermory the view gets better.
At many a place we sincerely hope that there is no oncoming traffic.
Arriving at Tobermory.
The whisky distillery of course is not lacking...
Admirably colourful houses and small shops all over the place.
Here you will find handmade chocolates.
Tobermory has a population of about 750.
This boat has seen better days...
Glancing at the so called upper town.
In 1905 some bishop had this clock erected.
From 'Cafe Fish' you have a fine view on Ardnamurchan.
Here the ferry to Kilchoan/Ardnamurchan leaves.
Any number of cute shops in Main Street.
We take a look at some of the shops, then drive back to the south end of the island.
Dream Coast with Weaving Mill
By and by our time here comes to an end, thoughts wandering to the northern coast – our next stop.
However, we learned about a weaving mill and consequently set out to Ardalanish.
Sheep are our guides...
Quite a distance to the letter box...
No doubt – this is the way to the weaving mill.
First of all however down to the beach – another of these dream beaches.
Looks more dangerous than it is...
The whole beach to ourselves.
It’s rather warm and we are glad to get into the cool building.
Machines all over the place...
Interesting to see how tweed is produced.
I’d like to have taken along a sheep skin for a friend but the wool...
…comes off the Hebrides as the young woman explains to us.
She shows us all the machines which as matter of fact are still in use.
Martina listens to any number of explanations while I am paying a visit to the tea room.
At last: the coffee is ready!
There’s also a small shop – and quantities of cloth.
Then we set out to return home.
Beaches and Landscape
There are so many beautiful and interesting things to see on Isle of Mull.
However, here are a few stunning and interesting places.
Somewhere after Loch Assapol we leave the car and walk down a rocky road to Scoor Beach.
Lonelyness, mobiles do not work here, no net.
A dream beach, clean sand, clean water - no one in sight.
- more to follow -