Monday, 24 August 2015

Day5 - Newburgh to Auldearn (near Nairn)

Date: Wednesday 19th August 2015
Route: Newburgh to Auldearn (Nairn) - (via Cruden Bay, Peterhead, Fraserburgh, Pennan, Banff,  Fochabers, Elgin, Kinloss and Findhorn)
Our Listening Pleasure:  Marmalade
Miles today: 135
Total Mileage: 753

The Beeb and Uncle Alex - ready for the beach!
Seals in the mist

Before we continued our tour today, we took the opportunity to take a short drive to the beach at Newburgh to see some seals. 

The day started grey, damp and misty and the seals were really only dark silhouettes on the far bank of the river. 
A solitary seal in the clearing mist
The stroll across the beach, in the drizzle was quite exhilarating. The beach itself was lined with dead crabs and jellyfish, and loads of shells and as we started to wander back, the rain started to ease off, the mist started to lift a little, which made it possible to get some photos. 
Jellyfish on the beach

The Beeb and Alex set the world to rights during that stroll!

The World's problems are being solved!
Rain droplets on Bluebells at Newburgh Beach
Some ten miles from Newburgh is a town called Peterhead and as we drove around the coastal route, we stopped off briefly in Cruden Bay where the bridge to the beach was for ladies. 
Ladies bridge - The Beeb no go area
This bay has lovely yellow sand and had we more time and had the weather been a little dryer, we would have stopped for longer.
The Beeb gets to play

In Peterhead, we had hoped to meet up with the Rev. Jim, a friend of the The Beeb from way back when. Unfortunately he had to lead the service for a funeral so we did not get the chance to meet. We did wander through Peterhead and there, we found a music shop/tobacconist (!) that also sold handbags! 

Handbags and gladrags
Minty came away with a rather nice black and white dotted number and The Beeb added a Ukelele chord book to his library! A quick bite to eat in a local café, and we were on our way again.

Continuing up the coastal trail, we reached Fraserburgh, at the very North East tip of Scotland. Here you will find the Museum of Scottish Lighthouses. 
What it says around the arch!
Time constraints meant we didn’t go into the lighthouse museum, but we did purchase some mementos in the gift shop, and we have to say the lady who was running the shop was really delightful. She could not help us enough and gave us loads of pamphlets and information on where to go and what to see along the north coast drive. 

The Beeb on the Coastal Path
We took a stroll along the coastal path, where the Kinnaird Head Lighthouse is (just behind the museum), and had some terrific views of the rocky coastline. The colours were terrific. The flying ants though, were not!

Kinnaird Head lighthouse info

Coastal Waves

Colours of Kinnaird

Parked at the phone box........
Pennan was our next stop. Turning off the main road we headed down a very steep gradient slope into the sleepy seaside village, that consists of just one road! 

The phone box used in the movie “Local Hero” is still there – hard to believe that this phone box helped to keep the communication flow going with the US of A in the film back in the days before mobile phones.

THE telephone box!
The hills around Pennan are red rock and the area is quite stunning.
Us at Pennan

A little further around the coast, we reached Banff. We have been very impressed with the quality of the roads in the Highlands - no potholes, nice and smooth. The coast line in Banff had some lovely small waves lashing against the shore and some nice bridge structures.

Coastline at Banff

Bridges at Banff
Next up was was Fochabers, and the land of Baxters Soup. We were too late to get into into the tour, but hoped we would see the Highland Coo... no luck. 

 Elgin, another town with a dilapidated abbey! Henry the VIII has a lot to answer to.  Actually, this one is a cathedral and was quite stunning. We did not go into the site as it was closing up and as we wandered around the perimeter to get some photos, we noticed a foreign couple had been locked in the grounds!
Elgin Cathedral

Elgin Cathedral
Time was of the essence now, and we continued around the coastal trail, driving past the RAF Kinloss barracks where Minty’s Dad was based back in 1968 when she was born, and onto Findhorn. 
Stay away!

The Beeb had wanted to stoat around Findhorn, with it being a bit of an old hippy place, but it was early evening by now and the place was all shut down.

We arrived in Auldearn, and our hotel for the night, The Covenanters. The European Champions League match, Celtic V Malmo was due to kick off at 7.45 and the first thing the receptionist asked us was if we wanted to watch the match! The Chef was a big Celtic fan and wanted everyone to have dinner before kick off!!!! 

The night was spent in the bar, watching Celtic win and The Beeb winding up (subtly, so it never registered...or he couldn't answer) a Deidco fan!!!

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