Thursday, 25th September

We awoke to a grizzly grey day in Glasgow. Since it wasn’t a very nice day for sighting and we had a long trip ahead of us, we ventured out early.

For the Ireland leg of our journey, we had to catch a ferry across from Scotland to Belfast. We arrived at the ferry terminal in Troon (Scotland) early and found a place to have some breakfast. Once loaded up, we sat in the special VIP lounge for the trip.

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The ferry trip was very quick, arriving in Larne (Northern Ireland) two hours later. We were blown away by how organised the whole process was of getting us and our car across the water. It was quick, efficient and very well managed.

It took an hour from the ferry terminal to arrive in Belfast. We checked into our hotel, which was quite central and once settled we planned our walking itinerary for the day.

The walk ended up being huge covering a large part of the city. We loved the old buildings but there is so much character in a small space, it almost seems like the buildings are keeping their granduer secret.

A building on College Square.

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Assembly Buildings Conference Centre was built in 1905 as the headquarters of the Presbyterian Church in Ireland.

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City Hall and City Hall’s Garden of Remembrance.

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St Annes Cathedral.

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After 82 days of walking, Bec’s Converse finally had to be retired. So we did some retail therapy in the main shopping mall and grabbed some replacements.

We headed back to the hotel, dropped of our shopping and made our way to the conveniently located pub across the road for dinner.

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2014 European Adventure Northern Ireland Scotland

Wednesday, 24th September

After enjoying a lovely breakfast with our host, we took in the scenery at the front door. Our BnB was across the road from the loch and the first photo below was the view from our bedroom window. The second photo is the BnB in Dornie that we stayed in.

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To get to our next destination, Glenfinnan, we had to drive past Eilean Donan. Since we were in the area, we thought we might stop and take another thousand photos. 🙂

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The scenery between Dornie and Glenfinnan was incredible – different to what we had seen so far in Scotland, but no less beautiful. We even found a secret clearing in a forest on the side of the road in the area of Loch Eil. It was magical. We stopped and had a cup of tea and took lots of photos.

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In the movie Highlander (the same one filmed in Dornie) there is a line: “I am Connor MacLeod of the Clan MacLeod. I was born in 1518 in the village of Glenfinnan on the shores of Loch Shiel. And I am immortal.”

Keith wanted to see the village of Glenfinnan and stand on the shores of Loch Shiel. When Bec found out that it was also home to the Glenfinnan Viaduct – famous for scenes in Harry Potter involving the Hogwarts Express train – we HAD to go there.

Sometimes things fall into place. We arrived about fifteen minutes before a daily event – a steam train crossing the viaduct. People had come from all over the world specifically to see this and we happened to be there at the right time.

It was surreal. Keith took lots of photos and Bec shed a little tear in happiness.

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Ten minutes walk away from the viaduct was Loch Shiel. Keith got his chance to stand on the shore.

IMG_4097 IMG_4131IMG_4120 While standing on the shore of Loch Shiel, the bleak grey day gave way to a stunning blue sky. The landscapes on our drive to Glasgow were nothing short of amazing.

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Today was one of our favourite days, but also one of the longest. We reached Glasgow just as night fell (around 7:30pm). We checked in, had some dinner, wrote a blog post and planned the next day.

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Fortunately during our trip so far there hadn’t been much on our itinerary that we had missed. On this occasion time had beaten us and we just didn’t have an opportunity to explore Glasgow. Definitely one for the list of places to see when we come back to the UK.

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2014 European Adventure Scotland