My best friend Nadine came over for a week to see me and celebrate my 33rd birthday with me last Thursday. It was nice to have someone close around on the day. If she would not have been here I would probably have gone somewhere cool but would have spend my birthday alone, which is not great but I would have survived ;). But this way it was really really cool.
She arrived on Tuesday evening and I picked her up from the airport. We then got the hired car and drove to my place. So glad I have my own car again now though as I was really pissed off with the car hiring company. Rude staff and just so ruthless. Never gonna hire with them again anyways. But well, at least we had a car to get around.
I still had to work on Wednesday but as I work in a co-working office I was able to take Nadine with me and gave her guest access so she was able to work as well. After work we went to town so she was able to see a bit of Edinburgh already. The weather was amazing and we sat in Princes’ Gardens having a drink while catching up. We went to Wahaca for dinner then. I just love that place. Could go there all the time if it was not so expensive.
We then walked all the way home to my flat. I have not done that before but should definitely start doing it. Saves me the gym haha. But honestly could do that when it is dry. Takes about 50 minutes which is actually not that much longer than taking the bus in rush hour.
Thursday was my birthday and I had the day off (Friday too). We left later in the morning and headed off to Loch Lomond. The original plan was to walk up Conic Hill as the weather was brilliant. But is was just way too hot. So we drove down to Milarrochy Bay and walked along Loch Lomond to a little beach where we had a nice picnic on our blanket and just enjoyed the sun. It was a shame though we had no swim wear with us. I bet swimming in Loch Lomond that day was great. I obviously got sun burned though, as didn’t expect the sun to be so strong … Should know better at that age haha. We later also walked up to Balmaha and then back again.
We could not stayed that long as we had a table booked at Scott’s down at the harbour of South Queensferry for my birthday dinner. I love Scott’s. Great location and great food for a good price. We just made a little mistake when we ordered crispy whitbait and thought it was some kind of bread but turned out it was fried little fish ;D ;D Nadine even organised a little birthday cake for me and staff was singing Happy Birthday to me. However, I actually hate people singing on my birthday lol. It was really cute though anyways.
We then went to the car park under the railway bridge but it was suddenly really cold so that we had to leave fairly soon. Bagged some pictures of Highland cows on the drive back, too ;).
Trip to Glen Coe
Friday morning we made our way up to Glen Coe (surprise haha). I loved that Nadine could see why I find it so stunning here. And while we were driving up she was already so impressed and I kept saying it’s going to be even better :D.
And obviously I did not disappoint her. It was roasting that day though. Weather forecast on the radio said that it was up to 30 degrees in the West Highlands. Did it ever get that hot out there???
Before we entered into Glen Coe, I took Nadine down Glen Etive and it was just the best decision. We sat down in the river, enjoying the cold water running around our bare feet, enjoying the sun and stunning nature around us. Thing was though, that I was a bit clumsy bare feet on the slippy rocks that I actually fell and landed with my bum in the water… Luckily I didn’t hurt myself too much. Just my big toe turned a bit black later. After all it was a nice refreshment, too. And since I had changing clothes in the car as we were going to stay the night, it was all no problem.
We drove until we reached Loch Etive but there was some filming going on so we did not stay very long. On the way back we spotted a deer along the road which even came super close too us.
We did another stop at the river and Nadine actually went all in :D. I am just too much of a shite bag to do that…
We then finally made our way to our B&B in Kinlochleven. It was run by a super nice young couple – an English guy and a French girl and their little baby who was just the cutest. There were also some older guys from Munich who were walking the West Higland way for their mum’s 80th birthday!!!! We hardly understood them though hahah.
The room and breakfast was super nice and I am sure I will definitely stay there again! Also because Jack and Sarah are so nice. The location is also great as you are just right in the middle of the highlands but still have good access to a little co-op supermarket and pubs for food. We went to the Bothy Bar right down at Loch Leven where I normally always go when I am staying overnight in the Glen Coe area. And I had the best burger ever! The Higherlander. It comes with black pudding and haggis. Yes – I know lol . But it was great! Generally the food there is really good and it just a very relaxed environment with a great view across Loch Leven and Pap of Glencoe.
We then actually wanted to go for a swim in the Loch and also see the sunset but it got pretty cold soon and also Loch Leven has a lot of alga. We drove down to Loch Linnhe but the soon we sat down we were pestered by midges… So we left and drove back to the B&B. We were shattered anyways from the eventful and hot day.
The next day it was not sunny at all anymore, but it was dry in the morning so we went up to Glencoe Lochan for a walk around and then down to Loch Achtriochtan to start our walk through the Glen up to the Three Sister. There is a path along the A82 you can walk and enjoy the great scenery.
When we arrived at the little bridge to cross River Coe to head up to the Three Sisters we actually wanted to sit down for some lunch but it started raining. Me thinking it would just be a quick rain shower we sat down under the bridge to wait. Well – guess what … midges again all over. So we left and started making our way back. However, it did not stay with the little rain… Thunder was roaring down from the hills and then the sky opened it’s doors and it poured down like hell. We were wet down to our pants within minutes.
But we still had to walk all the way back to our car parked at Loch Achtriochtan… It kept raining heavily and we already thought about getting a car to stop and take us down to our car. But I mean … we were soaking wet… and when we stood by the road we got even wetter when the passing cars splashed all the water from the road at us.
So we kept on walking and it eventually only rained a bit then at one point. When we arrived at the car we were very glad we had changing clothes. No spare shoes unfortunately, so the first half until we arrived at Loch Luib I drove with only socks on…
I then had to get my wet shoes back on because I was too unconformable and also not safe enough to go on the motorway then.
We were knackered when we got back home. The drive down to Edinburgh was not at all nice either, as it was blasting down and still thunderstorm all around and it did not stop until night time. We just ordered some Indian food and watch LION in bed – sobbing lol
Fife and Kelpies
Sunday then was the last day we had the car so we drove off to Falkland. That village is just too cute and you could take photos at every corner. All these little shops with the stuff you can buy are seriously a threat to my bank account haha. We only walked around the city, been to a few shops and then made our way through Fife over the bridge of Kincardine to the Kelpies.
We sat down in the visitors center at the Kelpies to have some lunch and just chatted along until it was time to go back and return the car.
We took the tram into town and walked up Calton Hill then. I want to go up there for sunset at one point but atm I cannot be bothered to be in town that late lol. So maybe need to wait for autumn to come.
Thank you for a great week! Love you!
Monday and Tuesday we both had to go back to work. It was a great week and I am happy to finally show people why I love it so much up here and for them to understand. When my mum was over in May I think she also understood, even though I was not able to show her the highlands yet. But since I my own car again that is all easier to do when she comes back again. I can’t wait for my sister to visit beginning of September. We still have not decided where we should go for a couple of days. I am thinking of Torridon and Applecross again or to Oban and then do a day trip to Mull. Too many options ;).