Full disclosure: We are now home safe and sound. The reason for the late post will be explained in a day or two. Let’s just say that British Airways and I are not on friendly terms right now.
No map today, you should know where we are by now! Day 7 was a no travel day. We took a nice city bus tour of the city of Edinburgh. Then it was up to the castle.
The castle is very imposing. It sits atop a rock that is eons old. There has been a royal castle at this location since the reign of David I in the 12th century. Archeological finds have dated human occupation on Castle Rock to the Iron Age in the second century BCE.
The view from the castle is quite spectacular.
Back in the 17th and 18th centuries, they would fire a canon everyday at 1300 (1 PM) so that folks could set their timepieces, but more importantly, so the ships could set navigation.
Alas, were not allowed to take photographs of the crown jewels nor the Stone of Scone. But it was amazing to view them.
After our visit to the castle, we had a free day to explore Edinburgh. Before we headed off to the Royal Mile to shop, we had to stop at the grass market area for lunch. The grass market was exactly what the name implies. It served as the city common area. Everything was done here centuries ago, the market, offical announcements, and even the hangings of those sentenced to die. Today, there is no longer a grass area, it’s been paved and it’s lined with shops and pubs.
After a very nice lunch (and local beer) we headed to Greyfriars Kirk. The church was originally started in 1602. We didn’t go into the building, but instead walked among the old cemetery.
I was looking for a particular tomb. This is said to be haunted! I’ll leave it to you to read about Bloody MacKenzie.
And no visit to Greyfriars is complete with a vist to the statue of “Greyfriars Bobby“.
I have to admit that as beautiful as the Royal Mile is, it has become a tourist trap. The majority of shops that claim “Authentic Highland Tartans” have the same mass produced crap. It took some doing to find a shop with quality product without having to go over to the “expensive” street. So I didn’t take any pictures of the buildings. Besides all you’d be able to see were the tourists anyway!
But I did find this:
As the saying goes, all good things must come to an end. As so we had to say goobye to Bonnie Scotland. Day 8 was an early morning cab ride to the airport and some interesting flights home. That will the subject of another post.
The traditional highland goodbye is “Hasten ye back!” And that we shall.