Mafia connections, the Emerald Isle and a Highland Fling travel blog

Star Hotel at Moffat - the narrowest hotel in the world

Dunnottar Castle near Stonehaven

Another great view of Dunnottar Casle

View of Cullen

A summer's day at Cullen Beach

Bow Fiddle Rock at Portknockie

The tide is well and truly out

Meat lovers breakfast

Our first night in Scotland was at the old wool trade and spa town of Moffat. There is a statue of a sheep in the centre of town, a bit like our own in Goulburn. Grae couldn't wait to have haggis, neaps and tatties for dinner, I had salmon fish cakes but the highlight was the live music which was a jam session of local musicians playing popular songs from the 60s through to some current hits. They even snuck in The Proclaimers song "I would walk 500 miles".

Moffat is also famous for the Star Hotel, the narrowest hotel in the world at only 6 metres wide.

We visited Dunnottar Castle near Stonehaven, a dramatic and evocative ruined cliff top medieval fortress built in 1392 on the northeastern coast of Scotland. It is best known as the place where the Honours of Scotland, the Scottish crown jewels, were hidden from Oliver Cromwell's invading army in the 17th century.

We headed up to Turriff to visit friends for the weekend with our first meal together being a curry at the local Indian. Not cheap by Australian standards but delicious. Later on lots of beer and whiskey was consumed by the light of peat scented candles. It actually doesn't get totally dark here at the moment - very long twilights.

As the weather looked less gloomy on Saturday we decided to go for a drive to the nearby coastal town of Cullen (home of the Cullen Skink soup) for a five mile walk along the beach and over the old railway viaduct... and amazingly the sun managed to pop out for a bit so it was bright and breezy. There were some interesting rock formations along the walk including Bow Fiddle Rock and the Whale's Mouth!

Some children braved the water and went in for a paddle but most people were rugged up. The countryside is very green and the sky very grey - how many shades of grey are there?

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