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Scotland in 7 nights... a quickly-planned trip!

Scotland in 7 nights... a quickly-planned trip!

Old Nov 8th, 2010, 06:59 PM
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Scotland in 7 nights... a quickly-planned trip!

My husband & I decided on whim to visit Scotland. We had roughly about a week to plan the whole thing (7nts in Scotland then 5 more in London). I should note that I'm 5+mos pregnant so I guess this is what many call a "babymoon." I didn't think it would affect our travels much but I am proven very wrong. I'll add my experiences along the way.

I'm actually writing this from our b&b in Stirling because there's free wi-fi and we already had dinner and we're in for the night (pooped).

I've found this forum to be full of helpful bits so I hope this will help a future traveler
DAY 1 - Edinburgh (Old Town)
Long flight SFO - EDI via Lufthansa. We used United miles for a free econ tickets...booked 6 days out. Ugh, we are def. not fans of Lufthansa. We didn't think very much of their business class when we flew them a few years ago and their economy class proved to be a pretty miserable experience for us. We plan to avoid them in the future.

We booked 2 nights at Fraser Suites. The location was fantastic (right across from St. Giles church and down the Royal Mile from Edinburgh castle). We booked the cheapest room and got it. If you want more than a bed -- I suggest booking a higher grade. Small but perfectly fine. This hotel seriously has the fastest closing elevator doors anywhere! You don't even have time to push the "door close" button as it will sharply announce "Doors closing!" and shut! Not sure I'd recommend it for the price...

Btw, we used Airlink bus transport from the airport but didn't realize it was quite a trek from the stop to the hotel. It didn't look that bad on google maps but if you're staying here-- I'd recommend catching a taxi instead. The airlink cost us 12pounds for 2 adults, round-trip.

Since we arrived late in the day, we just walked along the Royal Mile and popped into a cute cafe closer to the Holyrood Palace end for tea & scones. So cute & quaint. Many places along the walk offered a tea/scone deal for 3-3.5pounds pp. Perfect for a cold, windy day!
After 16+hours of traveling, we were too tired for anything else. We crashed by 8:30pm without even getting dinner.

DAY 2- Edinburgh (Old Town)
Got an early start and walked just a few minutes down to a restaurant called Always Sunday. Very cute with great atmosphere. Had a lovely breakfast here. I would highly recommend but get there early as they were running out of things even by 9:30!
Afterwards, we walked back up and toured around St Giles. Def worthwhile if you're in the area. It is free and takes donations. We did have to pay 2 pounds to be able to take photos inside. It's pretty amazing that the 4 columns in the middle have been there since the 1100's!
Then we headed up to Edinburgh castle. What a highlight. Even though it was cold and a bit rainy, we really enjoyed seeing this historical site. When buying tickets, the woman asked us if we wanted to buy an Explorer Pass which would let you into various sites across the country for one flat fee. Since the castle alone would have cost 12, paying 17.60 for a 3 day pass seemed very reasonable. The pass actually gives you 5 days but you can only choose 3 of those days to see attractions for free. She explained it as -- if you're planning to visit Edinburgh Castle + Stirling Castle -- the pass pays for itself.
We started on the free guided tour but much of it is outside and as it started uphill, I guess my pregnancy tiredness caught up with me. I opted to enjoy some tea in the very nice Red Coat cafeteria while my husband finished the tour.
The cafeteria was full of reasonably priced food and the view is breath-taking. We opted for lunch here and both enjoyed trying a piping hot Venison pie with some sides. I would highly recommend eating here.
Our timing worked out perfectly that we were able to see the 1pm canon firing over the city. Very fun and unique. The castle also houses crown jewels... read in Rick Steves guidebook that these jewels are even older than Englands!
For dinner we tried Deacon Brodie's Tavern just a few steps away from our hotel (and right across the street from St. Giles). It was fine...nothing super memorable but not horrible either. As I understand it, the person named for it was the inspiration for Jekyll/Hyde. Service was less than stellar. We read good things about a place called Wedgewood but just didn't want to walk down there.
I should note, this time of year, the sun pretty much disappears around 4 - 4:30pm. So it always felt much later than it was.
*Money-saving tip* The Royal Bank of Scotland near the hotel does not charge a fee for atm withdrawals. We ended up using this atm after getting a horrible exchange at the airport. In our travel experience, using the airport exchange has never amounted to much of a difference except in Edinburgh. For $100USD we received 54 pounds after the higher rate + 3 pound fee. At the atm, we received the going exchange rate... roughly about 61.5pounds per $100USD.

DAY 3: Driving from Edinburgh to Aberdeen
We rented a car through Europcar at Waverly Station. Fraser hotel had shuttles during morning and late afternoon times that will drop you off pretty much anywhere.

Before we left, we picked up a continental breakfast at Starbucks just down the way from Always Sunday. We only chose it because there's free wi-fi and we wanted to check a few things online before heading out. But I had the best caramel macchiato here. I know, it's like eating at a McD abroad but they offered plenty of spacious seating upstairs and free wi-fi. We were waiting for a place around the corner called Chocolate Soup to open but the girl went in for her shift at the time the place was supposed to open. So after waiting 10mins or so, we just decided to opt for the familiar. It did not disappoint.

After getting our car, we headed out to Aberdeen via St. Andrews. Even though St. Andrews is only 30miles away, it took us roughly 2 hours to get there. Why? It's been a couple of years since my husband drove "on the wrong side" so there was some getting used to again. Also, getting out of Edinburgh city is very confusing. I think I'm an excellent co-pilot but it was still confusing. All those factors plus rain made it for slow travels by car. We had gotten some change from the bank for the toll roads (bridges that connect a straight path) but found they did not charge a toll. Not sure if it was the time of day or just going North.
By the time we got to St. Andrews it was pouring. My husband wanted to see the Old Course... where they hold the British Open every 5 years. For those who might not know, St. Andrews is believed to be the birthplace of golf. We accidentally ended up at the Old Course hotel (neither of us are avid golfers so didn't know it was here). It turned out to be a great thing. There is a bar/restaurant on the 4th floor of the hotel with excellent large-window views of the 17th hole. And there were plenty of golfers despite the pouring rain. We had lunch and tea here and it was a great experience. I would highly recommend it. Lunch was very reasonable in terms of prices and yummy sandwiches. Tea was a bit steep at 4pounds but still enjoyable. We're finding that the Scots serve their hot food/drinks piping hot, just the way I like it. But at this hotel, the tea was not as hot as we found it everywhere else...but still good.
It was amusing watching the golfers. Clearly, they must become lax about their rules of qualification for players to even be on the course because one guy we saw kicked his ball! He was a complete hack. So if you're not a good golfer yet feel the need to play here, I guess there's a good chance you'll be allowed esp. during off season
Our pass would have let us in some of the St. Andrews places but since it was raining so hard, we skipped the town and sights and made our way to Aberdeen.
The drive took longer than we anticipated. We booked at the Skene Whitehall. Again, I booked the cheapest room and got it: the studio. It was perfectly adequate since we were only here 1 night. The location is out of the way from the city centre so if you don't have a car, not sure you'd want to walk this when it gets dark out so quickly.
We loved that all the hotels & b&bs provide tea making facilities. The Skene Whitehall provided plenty of tea/coffee/hot choc in our room as well as a small (unopened) container of milk in the fridge.
The bathroom had a fantastic towel warmer. The shower was very strong. Overall, great value but I'm not sure I would choose to stay here for more than 1 night because of the location.
As we were checking in, we were told there were going to be fireworks down by the beach that night to celebrate "Guy Fawkes Day." I guess he was a man who tried to blow up parliment hundreds of years ago. It occurs Nov 5 annually.
We drove down near the beach, found a small pay parking lot and walked the rest of the way with thousands of other people.
Fireworks was fun! 20mins and tons of families around you with their bright sparklers. We're actually from the Los Angeles area so the crowd was not overwhelming. Lots of people but you weren't "squished" together.
There's an amusement park right there so we popped in to check it out. I had my first British candy floss (cotton candy).
We ended up driving to Union Square for dinner. Had hot noodles at a chain called Wagamamas. We ate at one of these in Dublin a few years back and this one proved to be just as good. We picked up dessert from downstairs from a market that had lots of choices. We learned that foods have 2 prices: take-away or eat-in. For example, my custard only cost 65 pence for take-away... vs 1.6 pounds for eat-in. We found this interesting.
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Old Nov 8th, 2010, 07:44 PM
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DAY 4 - driving from Aberdeen to Inverness via Balmoral Castle

We had a great continental breakfast which was included at the Skene Whitehall. Plenty of fresh fruit, cereal & pastries.

We were on the road by 9am on our way to visit Balmoral Castle. They offer tours only on Saturdays this time of year and our itinerary worked out perfectly that we happen to be there on a Sat.

Balmoral Castle is unique to all the other castles because the Queen and the royal family continue to use it as a summer place. It is very well hidden even from the road above. The grounds are 50,000+ acres. It holds interesting memorabilia such as the Queen's christmas card pictures dating to the 50's I believe. Most of the tour is outside but it's such a beautiful surrounding that it's well worth a visit. We learned from our guide that this is where the Queen brought Princes Harry and William after their mother died. Even though it's a large estate, it is situated so privately that you can understand why. After our guided tour, they pretty much let you walk around the grounds by yourself. We took in the view by the river and took some pictures but I decided to go back to the little center for tea and browsing the gift shops while my husband went on his photo safari. Scotland has been perfect for us in this regard. Where ever we go, I can sit and have tea and cookies somewhere while my husband wanders to take pictures. As I mentioned before, my pregnancy has really been slowing me down. Normally I have no problems keeping up but I find myself getting winded after climbing a set of stairs... so a nice tea break was always welcomed!

We made it to our first b&b. We chose the Avalon house based on tripadvisor reviews. It's actually more like an inn with 6 rooms. All were booked except for the small non-ensuite one. Since we didn't have much research time, we figured we'd live for one night. The hosts were very warm and great but I had never stayed where there wasn't a bathroom in our room so this took a little getting used to. I should note, we had a private bathroom just a few steps outside our door. Overall, we had a pleasant experience although we were not there long enough to understand why this particular b&b ranks as #1 on TA. It was good but we saw so many on that street. Maybe it's the friendly people running it that gets such high praise.

We tried to have dinner at several places in Inverness. The Mustard Seed/The Kitchen (sister restaurants that came recommended by our host and Rick Steves). They were fully booked until 9pm and since we were looking to eat sooner than later, we tried a new Italian chain called Zizzi's. That too was full until 9pm. We finally ended up across the way from Zizzi's at an Italian place called Bella Italia. It was homey and the food was good. If you eat here, come hungry. We split a big appetizer platter that had chicken wings, ribs, garlic bread sticks, chicken skewers, cucumber sticks and I think one more item. I'm not sure how Italian it was but it was all very tasty! For dinner, we split their family portion lasagna. OMG, it was in one huge baking dish. Although it wasn't as deep as lasagna found in US restaurants, it was big. I would say it was big enough for 3 people to share.

DAY 5: off to see Eilean Donan Castle via Loch Ness
Breakfast at the b&b was good. You can see how fresh the eggs are compared to the grocery store versions we get at home. The yolk was very dark and big. I also tried Scottish black pudding. I found it tastier than Irish black pudding.

We were again on the road by 9am. We drove along Loch Ness and the entire drive (including out of Inverness) was gorgeous. We spent hours in the car daily but really, it was a great way to enjoy seeing much of the country in the warm comfort of our car. We didn't get road fatigue because it's so different from going from point A to point B in the US.

My husband read about the Loch Ness center (there are 2 but the one in the stone mansion is the one recommended in the Rick Steves book) so we stopped there. The center was very cheesy but full of interesting information. You basically go in from room to room watching a quick video presentation in each room. I found it to be a bit creepy and scary so I think young kids might be scared.

Unfortunately, it must've been Nessie's day off... so off we headed to Urquhart Castle. This is one of the places covered by our pass bought at Edinburgh so we didn't have to pay to get in.
TIP: be dressed for outside weather when you go in to buy your tickets-- as that's the entrance to the site. It was extremely cold so tough to enjoy it too much. Again, I opted for some tea in their cafeteria while my husband braved the weather to take some great pictures overlooking the lake.
Again, another great cafeteria... with fantastic views! I would highly recommend it for lunch. We chose to pick up sandwiches for our drive to the Eilean Donan Castle.
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Old Nov 8th, 2010, 08:26 PM
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We made it to the Eilean Donan castle by 3pm. The castle is privately owned. It claims to be the most photographed castle in Scotland. It's actually the castle surrounded by water that you see in many guidebooks. We read on the website it was closed to tourists this time of year but when we got there, we were told they've opened it up for tours a few days of the week and we could take part in the last tour that day. We didn't know much about it other than my husband wanted to see it so we took the tour and it was all inside the castle. Not only was the tour full of interesting history but the castle is furnished so it was interesting to walk through. If you make it this far, pay the 5.5 pounds and see the inside!
The guide said the family lived there until the mid-80's. Now it's just a tourist attraction but the family has a place nearby and come often.

We then checked into our b&b. We were a little nervous about this one because we randomly found it online. No TA reviews and it doesn't even come up in google maps. But we figured it was only one night... but boy what a pleasant surprise! The Moyvegan house turned out to be a highlight thus far on our trip! They only have 2 rooms it's right next door to the Kintail Lodge. I can't recommend this place enough! It was well furnished, clean (immaculate) and had a great tub in the bathroom. And the views from the room are spectacular as it sits on the edge of Loch Duich. The host was very pleasant. We wish we could've stayed here for a few nights.

Since it was right next door to the Kintail lodge, that's where we opted for dinner. I had a very fancy steak pie with flaky pastry on top. It was really good. Only the bar was open but it was very bright, clean with a good atmosphere for dinner. We thoroughly enjoyed it.

I forgot to mention, we saw our very first Hairy Coo on our drive from Loch Ness. This is what makes driving so great... we were able to pull off to the side of the road and go right up to him. One little guy actually came right up to me! I'm not sure if he thought I had food but it was kind of scary as I didn't know if cattle had teeth or not! I know, I'm a city girl. But he was so gentle and kept moving his head to look at me with his left eye (not thoroughly covered by hair). He was so cute.
Overall, our drive through the Highlands was breathtaking. There are so many sceneries, so many differences to see. One minute you're driving by loch after loch... then the next, you're driving through snow!! Also, all the trees were changing color so it was very picturesque and rivals some of the great leaf watching in New England. I would highly recommend doing the drive if you have the time.

DAY 6: Loch Duich to Stirling
The breakfast at Moyvegan was outstanding. Again, fresh organic eggs but their black pudding was noticeably tastier even to this non-connoisseur. It tasted very similar to Korean Soondae. The host said it came from a nearby island at Stornoway. I would def. recommend having this here.

It's amazing how the scenery can change overnight. While we drove through some falling snow (not enough to stick) -- on our drive the next day, the hills/mountains were completely covered in snow! We drove through one route where the snow actually stuck on the roadway. The scenery was breathtaking passing lots of lakes and cute, tiny towns.

We stopped at Kilmahog, home of Hamish the hairy coo. I guess it's a tourist stop but it's worth a 10minute stop. The store offered plenty of tourist goods. You can also see how they weave wool. And of course, visit Hamish and a partner hairy coo. Both animals were huge and fun to see. We bought some sweaters and a few souvenirs here.

We got to Stirling castle by 3pm after making numerous pit-stops. Because of my pregnancy, I basically needed to stop for restroom breaks every hour or two. Most stops were fine but be prepared with few pound coins in your pocket as they only allow customers to use the bathrooms. One lady was very aggressive and told me it's for customers only and that I must buy something. Seriously, there's only so many bottles of water or candy bars I could buy in one day. I'm not sure if I thought a pregnant woman would get some sympathy but I guess not. I learned to take some coins in with me after that.

Stirling castle was also on the list of attractions covered by our pass. But the women at the ticket center didn't even stamp them -- just let us through. The castle closes at 5 and by 3, it was starting to get darker. That and the rain made it a pretty miserable visit. After walking around and seeing some of the exhibits, I opted to sit down for tea while my husband went off to take pictures. I don't recommend this cafeteria. The food looked the same as the others but the places to sit was awful. No windows, no views, just block rooms lined with tables and chairs.

We made it to our b&b literally 1 minute away by 5pm. The mother/daughter team who run Castlecroft are very pleasant. She welcomed us with a pot of tea and some cookies after giving us a quick tour. They also keep a binder full of menus so it was extremely handy to find a dinner option.

We tried the River House restaurant just a couple minutes drive away. I would not recommend walking here but the drive was short. We sat down to dinner by 6:15 so we were able to try their 'set' menu. For 13 pounds, we each got to choose a starter, main course and a drink. The food was pretty good. I enjoyed my fish duet (halibut and sea bass) with some veggies on the side.
I saw the funniest thing here. I went to use the restroom (surprise, surprise) and asked my husband to ask for a dessert menu. When I came back to the table, there was a giant chalkboard with the day's specials right next to our table. I've never seen that before and it made me laugh. I guess that's how they show the specials b/c we saw it at other tables. One couple had the entree special board at their table. After we ordered dessert, our waitress took the board to another nearby table.
We shared something called a sticky toffee pudding. We saw this on the dessert menu the night before but were too stuffed to try it. It was very good... like a soaked cake with caramel sauce. Mmmm.

DAY 7: Stirling to Edinburgh via Rosslyn Chapel
We'll be heading back to Edinburgh for one more night before flying to London. I'll update when I can.
junkgalore is offline  
Old Nov 9th, 2010, 07:12 AM
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Sounds like you had a great time, thanks for the report! Glad you liked the fireworks down by the beach, my husband's friends in Aberdeen said it was pants. They must just be picky!

I've been wanting to try Wagamama's, and was just looking it up this week, how funny.

Thanks for the report!
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Old Nov 9th, 2010, 08:48 AM
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I must say that I enjoyed this trip report. Scotland is one of the places that my husband would like to visit and now I think I am ready! Thank youf for this report.
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Old Nov 9th, 2010, 02:11 PM
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Sure! Amelie, we enjoyed the fireworks because it was so unexpected and we were lost in a sea of locals so it was a very unique experience for us. We enjoyed wagamama's. I would highly recommend the Wagamama ramen!

DAY 7:

We had a great hearty breakfast at the Castlecroft b&b. I got my first taste of haggis. Our hostess said it's locally made and supplied to high-end restaurants. It was very good and I thought very similar to black pudding... except fattier.

The William Wallace monument in Stirling did not open until 10:30 because of winter hours. We were one of the first ones there. The walk from the ticket office/parking to the monument is about 10mins, according to the woman who sold us the ticket. Since it was uphill, we opted to take the shuttle up.
It's 276 steps, I believe, according to the t-shirts in the souvenir shops. It was broken up by 3 exhibits. The first one was interesting with much information about Wallace. It also included a display of his sword (presumably from late 1200's or early 1300's). The second exhibit had maybe a dozen busts of important Scots in history. The third was pretty interesting about the history of the monument and how the monument ended up being built in Stirling. The only reason I read the complete summary is because my husband was up at the top taking pictures but it was so windy and freezing that I waited in the top exhibit. Also, going up the round staircase was pretty cold because of all those little lookout holes. The wind really howled up there. At the very top, there are 2 levels. One where you are pretty protected and then the very top where it's exposed. But the view was spectacular, since we got lucky with a clear day.

We then headed back toward Edinburgh but wanted to stop and see the Rosslyn chapel just a few miles south of the city. Wow, I really didn't know what to expect other than the fact that it was prominent in Dan Brown's Da vinci Code. The docent named Roger was incredibly knowledgeable and gave a fantastic talk for about 20mins inside the chapel. He's a great story-teller and really helped us understand the chapel's history. Overall, I would highly recommend seeing it if you are a Dan Brown fan since the chapel is full of symbols.

Our last night is at the George Hotel in the New Town section of Edinburgh. We checked in then went to return our car. The rental system at Europcar at Waverly is very customer un-friendly. Their kiosk is inside the station but you have to park/fetch the car on the next street over. Also, it was a first for us where you just drop off the keys without anyone inspecting the car to make sure you filled it up with gas and you didn't damage it. I guess we'll see when we get home if there are extra charges.

We found dinner on Hanover St at a place called Grand Cru. It was a bar/bistro type place. They offered a 3 course dinner for 11pounds, which is a great value. I enjoyed everything I had but I think my husband was less than thrilled with his food. It seemed like we were really the only tourists. Most everyone else seemed to be local. For my 3 courses, I had mussels in a white wine sauce, then pork medallions with mash potatoes and ratatouille, finishing off with a creme brulee.

Tomorrow we head to London! Overall, we had a great time in Scotland. Here are a few things that I noticed...

*Restrooms don't have seat covers (ever) and rarely have paper towels. Expect mostly hand driers. I was thankful I carried my little travel washcloth.
*Tea is everywhere. Each place we stayed in offered a hot water kettle, tea (or coffee/hot choc) with sugar & milk. All also had a little biscuit/cookie with it. You'll be able to find tea anywhere you stop for about 1.5-2 pounds.
*Scotland is very expensive. Your dollar doesn't go far so as soon as you can wrap your head around the fact that a simple pub meal of fish and chips for two can cost you $50USD, you'll be fine. (I'm talking a full lunch or dinner including drinks and tip)
*Tipping can be confusing because if you pay with a cc... there is no tip line like in the U.S. Instead, we always made sure to carry quid coins. (quid, sterling, pound are all the same) We usually tipped around 10+% and felt comfortable doing so after seeing many people either not tip or tip one or two pounds even for parties of 6 or 8.
*Visiting after the time change will really leave you with shortened days in terms of daylight. At 6 or 7...it always felt very late. It was pretty much dark by 4pm.
*Cloudless days are colder. So if you see blue skies, bundle up!
*The first week of Nov was very cold for us. Not sure how much of it was our SoCal wimpiness but even with thermal underwear, hat, gloves and scarf, I was cold. Freezing.
*Heated towel racks were in most of the places we stayed. Nice treat.
*Scottish people: I wouldn't describe the people we encountered as super friendly nor super reserved. It may be a small culture shock for many Americans.
*black pudding and haggis: try both if you're open to foods. I really liked the black pudding as it was very similar to Korean blood sausages.
*All of our b&bs provided free wi-fi. At hotels, we had to pay.
*Water pressure: they must not have low-flow showers because the water came out hard everywhere. In comparison, their toilets for the most part were all too low-flow. Most require you to hold down the handle just to flush fully.

We really enjoyed our time here. The Highlands were a highlight and something we'll never forget. I'm just sorry we didn't have time to include the Isle of Skye and Glasgow. I guess next time...
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Old Nov 24th, 2010, 01:39 PM
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Sounds like you had a good trip. I just wanted to point out that the 'hairy coo' - actually highland cow or in Scots - heilin' coo - can be temperamental and have been known to kill people. Not common and usually involves them being scared by a dog, etc., but they are not the cute cuddly animals that they appear to be.

Always be prepared for cold and wet. I wore a fleece throughout most of the past summer.

On future trips you might like to check out Argyll and the islands. Kilmartin is fascinating if you like ancient sites.
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Old Nov 24th, 2010, 02:44 PM
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I'm just sorry we didn't have time to include the Isle of Skye and Glasgow. I guess next time...

When you get to Glasgow, you'll get friendly...possibly even 'super friendly' (and maybe more friendly than you'd like on occasion...)
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Old Nov 24th, 2010, 02:56 PM
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I find the friendliest people in Scotland are outside the cities, in villages and small towns. Never found Glasgow itself super friendly in general, although there are exceptions.
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Old Nov 24th, 2010, 03:05 PM
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I've enjoyed your trip report junkgalore.

>When you get to Glasgow, you'll get friendly...possibly even 'super friendly' (and maybe more friendly than you'd like on occasion...)<

So true Ali. I travelled into the city centre today. Journey time was 35 minutes. A wee wummin chatted non-stop to me all the way there. Arrived Central Station. I struggle a wee bit these days with the walking but I had no sooner got to the ticket centre than I had someone take my arm and help me, wait for me and then walk me to the little tea place as I'd 20 minutes to spare before my train to Lochwinnoch. This despite all my protests!

The best thing though was waiting in the queue for some of that tea. A well-off sounding lady was explaining how she liked her tea, to the wee girl serving her. Not too much milk, not too little. Without a change of expression (dour!) the same lassie asked her if she'd like a Dulux colour chart. It could only happen in Glasgow.

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Old Nov 25th, 2010, 05:04 AM
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LOL. That's precious, Bill! I so love the Scottish sense of humour. Except when I'm the victim, of course.
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Old Nov 25th, 2010, 05:15 AM
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Bill I have had/heard several conversations and experiences in Glasgow that would happen nowhere else in the world; sometimes it's quite surreal! People will always chat here....
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Old Nov 25th, 2010, 05:38 AM
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"Without a change of expression (dour!) the same lassie asked her if she'd like a Dulux colour chart. It could only happen in Glasgow.


Classic. If you don't mind I think I'll send that to the Herald's diary section.
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Old Nov 25th, 2010, 07:19 AM
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I don't spend a lot of time in Glasgow and have always attributed it to the 'big city thing', but in the village I live in and the closest town it's a totally different thing. Anybody and everybody will talk to people they don't know, on the street, in the shops, in the restaurants.

To be fair to Glasgow though, it's much friendlier than Edinburgh or London.
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Old Nov 25th, 2010, 07:21 AM
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"Anybody and everybody will talk to people they don't know, on the street, in the shops, in the restaurants. "

sounds like Glasgow to me.....
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Old Nov 25th, 2010, 04:07 PM
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junkgalore, wonderful report. Hope we'll hear the rest and also the London section. Hope your hubby will share some of his pictures with us. thanks!
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Old Nov 25th, 2010, 05:14 PM
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The city is a joy to live in. I came to Glasgow more than 50 years ago from a very small village in Argyll. I was immediately 'adopted' out of pity I think, because I was a boy from the countryside.

I well remember once asking if anyone wanted anything when I went out to buy some sandwiches at lunchtime. One lad asked me to get him a bottle of ginger. I spent too much time walking around trying to find a bottle of ginger beer but was in luck when eventually I found one in Liptons. When I returned, the same lad looked at me wide-eyed and with contempt. I was warned (and this is the polite version) that ‘naebody drinks that stuff unless it’s New Year’. Nobody thought of telling me that in Glasgow ‘ginger’ means a soft drink, any soft drink but definitely NOT ginger beer.

It was a while before I was trusted enough to be sent out for anything at lunchtime!
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Old Nov 26th, 2010, 05:14 AM
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My daughter and I were on the train to Glesge when she was a student in Edinburgh almost 20 years ago. After the tea trolley came around, an elderly man asked me what the tea boy had said.

I told him I wasn't quite sure because the boy had such a strong Glaswegian accent.

"Glaswegian," he said. "I thought he was a blooody Rooshan!"

But the people of Glasgow are lovely people, but on my visits I have never found it necessary to ask what they thought about something!
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Old Nov 27th, 2010, 03:24 AM
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I'm glad you had good time, junkgalore. I think you did not see my last posts on your planning thread but I suggested the fireworks in Aberdeen,so I'm glad you got there

You might like to know that the Scottish Crown jewels are known as the "Honours" of Scotland.

Balmoral Estate is, in fact almost 90,000 acres.And the Crown Estates own another 100,000 elsewhere.

If you want a notion of what happened when Diana died, watch the movie, "the Queen"- which, whilst fiction, is eminently believable.

Hope all goes well with the baby
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Old Jul 9th, 2011, 03:47 PM
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bookmarking. thanks for the useful trip report
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