23 June, 2014

Oban, Day 1

Well, as you might have guessed from the post title, it was time to leave Edinburgh.  I love that city.  It's so beautiful.  But, time to move on.  We got up this morning ready for breakfast and to hit the road.  We had one amusing moment when R discovered a man passed out on the stairs to the toilet in our hotel dining room.  And by passed out, I mean out cold.  We both had to use the facilities at one point and climbed down the stairs around him.  After that taste of the true Edinburgh, we got our rental car and set out.  Yes, we're driving on the wrong side of the road.  Heaven help the other drivers.  Our first stop was Perth.  Well I can't really say it was a stop.  I wanted to drive through it as our Moncrief ancestors supposedly immigrated from here.  (after our lands were stolen of course)  So a quick spin through the town was enough and we headed for Crieff.  Such a lovely little town.  We stopped and had lunch and walked around.

A lucky wrong turn lead us to the Tourist Information office instead of the Visitor Center.  A very sweet woman there gave us some ideas of things to see.  Namely, the Famous Grouse distillery.   As R and I are in the business of drinking whisky on this trip, we decided to check it out.  Great decision.  Apparently this is the oldest distillery in Scotland. 

We took the tour and sampled a few different types they had to offer.  I must admit, I left with two bottles.  It's good stuff!  We also discovered they hold the Guinness Book of World Records title for two things.  An excellent mouser named Towser and the largest bottle of whisky.

 We hit the road again after some shopping and it was R's turn to drive.  This kept me free to take some amazing photos of the countryside. 

We stopped for two different lochs.  First is Loch Lomand and then Loch Awe.  There was a lovely hotel on the edge of  Loch Awe that looked like it might be a beautiful place to stay for a few days.

Along the drive, R noticed a little church on the side of the road that said it was open to visitors.  And then we discovered St. Conan's Kirk.  It sits there, on the edge of a small loch, waiting for someone to visit.  It's a simple church, but quite pretty.

And inside we discovered something else interesting.  Apparently this church holds a piece of the body of Robert the Bruce.  If you're up on your movies and have seen Braveheart, you'll know who he is.  Otherwise, just know he was a king of Scotland who fought to unite the clans and drive the English out of Scotland. 

At last it was on to our last stop for today, Oban.  We're here for two nights, so I'll post photos of the room tomorrow.  The town is just perfectly picturesque.  The hotel is exactly what you would want in this area.  Charming and quite proper.  We had a fantastic dinner and then walked around the bay.  Tomorrow will see more exploration and I'm sure, some more whisky. 

Until then, goodnight all!

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