The first thing I have to state is that Glencoe doesn't belong to Fort William. The people here really are peculiar and the area where you pass into the Highlands... strange. The stunning valley of Glencoe (Scottish Glen means valley) owes its formation, among many other phenomena in the formation of glaciers, many years ago. Glencoe is a valley, a mountain range, a town, a river, a lake, a historical ... It's a real beauty, and I admit that it is fortunate to live more than an hour of which is undoubtedly one of the most charming landscapes. On my last visit I was lucky to find a piper there, which gave the green scene, even a touch more Scottish. To check the contrast I've attached pictures from late winter and early spring.
Scotland is a country steeped in history with its castles, kings, heroes ... The surprises continue when you travel north. From Glencoe, you can begin to see huge and beautiful mountains, surrounded by vegetation. The ground is flat but full of small lakes. You can almost always see snow on the mountains and the sky is so blue. I recommend you take a road trip, always towards north, stop and enjoy whenever you want ... If not possible, there are many tours that depart from Edinburgh or Glasgow bound for the "Highlands". Please travel to Loch Ness and stop for a while to see if "Nessie" appears. The Urquart castle ruins are a must :)
This is the old church of Oradour sur Glane. Now they are building another church, more modern and with a nice little design, on the opposite hill, where the modern town of Oradour is located. But this old church will never be destroyed to commemorate the tragedy of Oradour. On June 1944. At noon, the German army arrived in the village, and forced the entire village into the church. No one knows why that day, they wanted revenge, but the 642 people who were not currently working in the field were burned alive in the church. It's a place the stays with you, very shocking. It has no roof, the walls are all burned. Upon entering, visitors immediately go in silence. A poem on the wall invites you to reflect on atrocious acts that occurred in Oradour. Admission is free, and if you want to know more about what happened, there is a museum at the exit.
Jedburgh is one of the so-called "Real Villages of Borders" (Roxburghshire) and is 10 miles from the English border along the river Jed, a tributary of the River Teviot. It was founded by the Augustinian monks from Lindisfarne (Holy Island) and previously, France. Currently, it has about 4,000 inhabitants and is visited mainly for the ruins of its famous abbey. It's almost been reduced to a residential town, but its inhabitants are very proud of their historical past and to be part of the Scottish Border. It also has a market of medieval origins. The locals always emphasize in conversations that the town has one of the oldest Rugby teams in the UK and that Mary Queen of Scots once passed through the village, with a museum that commemorates her. It's very quiet, but has a certain charm. It's ideal for spending the day with really friendly people.
Luss isn't exactly a part of Glasgow. It's actually a part of the natural park of Loch Lomond and of Argyll and Bute, which is why it's almost double. It's considered one of the most typical and colourful villages in the UK, from a traditional perspective. Likewise, it has one of the smallest beaches, but more local visitors than that in Loch Lommond. Excluding the lake, Luss has a beautiful river scenery and a typical church that's a place of pilgrimage. We went up the west side of Loch Lomond to go to Inveraray.
This town is yet another with Scottish charm, at least for those who are not used to such green landscapes. Many of its stone grey houses add joy to the eye through colours and ornamental motifs. It exudes tranquility and also offers several hiking and biking routes to do some exercise and discover places like Lake Tay. The tourist office provides information, and is easily found, in an old building in the center of town, called 'The Square'. It also has a whiskey distillery that you can visit.
This is a town where time seems to stand still. The narrow and steep streets are covered in cobblestone and the facades on the houses are all very colorful. You'll feel like you're in a fairy tale. Moreover, at the entry to Culross, there are ruins of the abbey, a lonely place where there wasn't another soul during our hour and a half impromptu picnic. What struck me was the silence, loneliness, and the feeling of timelessness in which you were involved.
Mull Island is a magical Scottish Island. It's probably the least-visited island that can only be reached if you take a ferry, but if you venture to go you can meet the wonderful people of Tobermory. Typical fishing village but with that magic as if time had stopped. It should be a must stop his distillery!
The town of Whitby is rather famous, mostly because of its abbey, and of course because of Bram Stoker's "Dracula," although the historical character had no connection whatsoever with this area of the English coast. Apart from that, travelers will discover a charming fishing village in its ports and beaches, where they can taste excellent seafood and stroll through its streets, many of them uphill or downhill, depending on the direction of the walker at any given time. There are typical pubs here, accompanied by the sound of the waves mingled with the cawing of seagulls. It's total tranquility, as long as the tourists don't disturb you. I'm a Yorkshire lover, both rural and coastal aspects, although I always try to maintain objectivity. I don't always succeed.
We took the steam engine that passes through the Somerset coast to Minehead to visit the historic village of Dunster. Dunster is not far from the sea, but it's still not a coastal town. It has a beach that's a 10 minute walk from the train station, and the town is 10 minutes in the other direction. Some buses go to Minehead, and though the train is by no means the quickest form of travel, it is the nicest because the trains are all so old. The village of Dunster is full of pubs, tea rooms, and it also has a beautiful castle, (you get a discount on your entrance fee if you show your train ticket). The city has a few old houses, and a tourist office displaying what the houses were like before they were restored. It's a pretty touristy town, in the sense that it lives off tourism, but it's not crowded. The local specialty is toffee, a candy with multiple flavours of coffee and chocolate, and is sold by weight.
Arrochar is in Argyll and Bute, which is located at the end of Loch Long, Loch of ships in Gaelic. It is north of Glasgow, an hour or so by car, on a road that runs alongside Loch Lomond. Arrochar is a small town, but as the lake is a very popular tourist destination, there are some hotels and apartments. They are called "self catered accomodation", meaning that you prepare food yourself. But do not worry, there are also restaurants and pubs in the village. The village is next to a mountain, proudly called the Alps of Arrochar. The Cobbler is the highest mountain. You can go out hiking and camp anywhere and do fire eating in Scotland which is completely legal. You have to go clean. For five centuries, Arrochar was the cradle of Clan MacFarlane, the Dukes of Arrochar. It was a Celtic family, who settled in the 12th century. It was attacked several times by the Vikings, but the people developed quietly afterwards. You can still see the building that was used to test torpedoes in the lake during WW2.
Lynton was a beautiful stop on one of our longer journeys. It’s full of amazing shops that cater to every need. It has places that make the most amazing fudge right down to places that sell clothes and shells and other beach produce. Whilst unfortunately I didn’t have time to go on the rail car I know from other travellers that it is highly recommended. When the tide is out you can also explore the harbour for shells and crabs in the little pools. If you don’t have any luck then the shop opposite the beach sells locally sourced shells that are gorgeously intact.
This village on the edge of Exmoor National Park is very quiet and dreamy. It's a shock to hear in the distance a train is approaching at full steam. The real machine rhythmically Victorian approaches bombing clouds and relive the sounds of the great industrialization model of England. Suddenly my stay in Watchet becomes an epiphany. The train stops, you hear the steam subside. The sound returns, sharpens and so the train resumes its march.
On the same path as the steam train (or train Jacobean Harry Potter, the famous bridge of the films), between Fort William and Mallaig (where you take the ferry to the island of Skye hébrida), we found the beautiful place called Gelnfinnan, a historical place where Bonnie Prince Charlie was defeated by the English (1745) and thus ended the dream of the rebirth of Scotland as a nation. The landscapes are great, and Gelnfinnan really speaks for itself. On the banks of Loch Shiel (Shiel Loch), there is a monument in the form of column Glenfinnan (one of the best-selling postcard images in Scotland), a little behind the museum and visitor center, where we the singular historic landscape is explained, including its featured natural origins. It is a place where only the sounds of the lake are heard and where time seems to stand still.
Near London. Deep into England. If you're Spanish you'll realise that you mostly only see English people just like how in certain parts of Spain you only see Spanish locals. Highly recommended are its castle, the church of San Nicolas and taking a walk around this small town in the green English countryside. It is the typical English village with only English people, in a relaxed environment where you can rest and stroll.
Lightwater is a village near Windsor in England. Noted for its beautiful natural environment offering many opportunities for sports. In the region of Surrey, you can go horseriding, hiking, mushrooms picking in autumn. The paths are very well signposted. Some are suitable for horses and bikes, others only for pedestrians. Lightwater is a traditional English village, with its main street and low houses. There is a train station, but it is best to go from London to Woking and then take a bus. Aside from the forests, the village has a very nice entertainment center for the whole family.
Balloch, a village near Loch Lomond, in the natural park Trossarchs, in Scotland. An enclave of importance as cruises depart from there by famous Loch Lommond. There are many different places to stay but traditional area, always looking for the tourist summer season. From there you can take three boats, which differ in size, depending on the duration of the tour and the services offered on board. Notably the cafeteria - shop "The Maid of the Loch" (The Lady of the Lake), a former Victorian ship which gives an exotic touch to the coffee shop concept.