Scotland Day 3 – Glasgow to the Isle of Skye

Inside St. Mungo’s Cathedral, Glasgow

Having breakfast at 08:00 we had plenty of time to get ready for going around Glasgow cathedral. We probably needn’t have rushed too much though – it opened a couple of minutes before 09:30 so we’d been hanging around for about 30 minutes waiting for it to open. In that time a few other people had joined in on the wait.

Blacader’s Aisle, Glasgow Cathedral

Due to the delay in the Cathedral opening we rushed around it as quickly as we could manage so that we were back on the road  and heading North by 10:00. On the way we stopped off at a retail park to visit a “Go Outdoors”, but unfortunately they didn’t have what we were after so was more wasted time.

The road out of Glasgow heading North took us up to Fort William – the one place I’d been to Scotland previously to visit when I went up Ben Nevis as part of “The Three Peaks” back in 2010. This was a long drive and we did have a few stops along the way to take photographs of the Highlands. At one point it was slow progress due to traffic caused by a large number of cyclists taking the same path and there being no space for overtaking.

The Highlands of Scotland

We then stopped again in Fort William to get some sandwiches to eat later once we’d finished our journey to Glenfinnan viaduct. We were on a tight time schedule as we knew the steam train would only cross the viaduct twice a day and had to be there in time for it’s second pass.

Glenfinnan Viaduct

We arrived at the viaduct just before 14:30 and spent 3-4 minutes getting to a viewpoint. Whilst there we set up cameras and took a few test shots before settling in to eat the food we’d bought in Fort William earlier. Although in it’s own right the Glenfinnan Viaduct is well worth the visit for it’s picturesque scene, there was added importance for us as it was used in a number of the Harry Potter films as part of the journey from London to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Once such memorable scene was in the second film when they are chasing the train in the flying car.

Glenfinnan Viaduct

The train was a few minutes late, and disappointingly was going backwards. After these shots we back tracked to Fort William and spent the next few hours heading to the Isle of Skye. It was a little trick as the sat nav didn’t know about the bridge so insisted on taking the ferry. We had to get the satnav to take us as close to where we thought the bridge was as possible and then once we’d found the bridge set the destination to be the guest house we’d be staying at.

Isle of Skye

We also stopped at Eilean Donan castle for a few exterior photos along the way – although we’d be passing back this way the following day we didn’t know what the weather would be like or if we’d have time to try again. Once over the bridge we continued along the A87 for quite some time until we reached the guest house in Portree.

We did make some stops along the way for photographs for they had to be quick ones due to the number of midges that were in the air and biting – particularly at one stop where we tried to photograph a waterfall.

The room in the guest house was very small – so small you couldn’t open the door fully due to the bed closest to the door not leaving enough space for it. Having dropped off the majority of our stuff there we headed back into the town to look for somewhere to have an evening meal. It was probably a 10-15 minute drive through the countryside to get back there.

Once back in Portree it took quite some time to decide where to eat and eventually we settled on a small cafe like place that served some reasonable food. By the time we were done it was a night drive back to the guest house.

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