Road Trip Through the Scottish Highlands-Part 1
The drive from Glasgow to the lsle of Skye was long, but so incredibly beautiful. There is something special about a road trip in a new country. Its like you’re hyperaware. Firstly, because, in Scotland, you’re driving on the wrong side of the road, but also because you are trying to frantically follow maps and roads that are completely new to you. This tends to make you take in more around you.
Lochs and mountains dot the Scottish Highlands. The narrow, single-lane roads dart back and forth as they wander between the lochs and mountains. At some points the trees are so thick, it seems like the might swallow you.
My heart was calm, it was happy.
I felt like I found my long lost country; a place I should be calling home.
Our end destination on this road trip was the Isle of Skye, but of course I wanted to see as much as I could on the drive up. I know they appreciate it now, but my brother and husband did not seem amused as I asked to stop to see the 8th loch in a row. In my defense the name of this loch is Loch Lochy and that made me giggle.
Clearly someone was drunk when they named it.
Next we stopped to search for the monster in Loch Ness, sadly with no avail. However it was a beautiful loch and Fort Augustus is a lovely town. In Fort Augustus there is a five-lock staircase for ships between the Caledonian Canal and Loch Ness. We stood there waiting for a boat to come through. It was interesting to watch the water drain out of each lock and refill as the ship passed through.
After eating lunch, we were back on the road. Much to my brother and husband’s delight, I was over the whole loch-hopping thing.
However, just before getting on the bridge to the Isle of Skye, I saw a sign that said, “Plockton”. I quickly asked my husband to turn off toward this town.
This is what I love about a road trip. Randomly finding new adventures.
Plockton is an unassuming town located about 12 miles north of the bridge over to the Isle of Skye. Instantly we fell in love with this cozy village. I would argue that it is the most charming village in Scotland.
We parked the car and walked along the shore lined with quaint stone or white painted houses. The water in dotted with sail boats and it looks as if the lake is held together by mountains.
As we walked along Harbour Street, I noticed a sort of palm tree that seemed strangely out of place, but it gave the town a slight small town California feel.
With every bend of the road and every stop we made, I feel more in love with this country.
From Plockton it was another hour and a half to our Airbnb in Kilmuir on the Isle of Skye.
I have experienced a stillness so quiet that it’s difficult to describe.
The drive up the Isle of Skye is incredible. The landscape is dramatic with rugged mountains and cliffs. We stopped several times just to take in the breathtaking scene.
When we arrived at our Airbnb, Chris and AJ wanted to walk to the cliff that was about a kilometer west. I stayed behind.
I sat on the front porch of our Airbnb looking out upon the be beautiful vast, green space that was dotted with white houses and sheep. I took a breath of the salty air and thought, “this is my paradise.”
There was not another soul for miles.
Sitting on the front porch, I tried to listen for anything. Any slight sound of people or life.
There was nothing. Not a sound.
It was, in a way, therapeutic for my introverted soul.
In a place where there was no wifi and no cell phone service; no sound and no movement, I could decompress. I could be truly alone.
That was everything to me.
Stay tuned next week for part 2!
xo, Erin Kay