In a different field …

Over the coming weeks in the countdown to the Royal Highland Show, hundreds of children from across the country will be taken out of their classrooms – and many out of their comfort zones – to discover Scotland as they’ve never seen it before. From primary schools north, east, south and west, children will down their pencils and don welly boots to explore Scotland’s farms. And this unique opportunity is all thanks to the extraordinary work of the Royal Highland Education Trust.

Behind the scenes at Balmoral

Cairngorms Nature BIG Weekend 2018 delivered an amazing 60 events as “a celebration of the fantastic natural heritage of the Cairngorms National Park“, providing a flavour of what the Park has to offer. We took time out to visit just one event at Balmoral, basing ourselves at nearby Ballater and exploring more that Royal Deeside has to offer.

Work, rest … and the Scottish play!

Head out into the wildest landscapes across Scotland and you’ll find people working – managing the land that we see. We took time out to visit the eastern fringes of the Highlands – a land of forests, castles, ancient battlegrounds, salmon rivers, golf – and the landing point for close to 250,000 people flying in to the region’s airport at Inverness.

Wild about the Angus Glens

This is an ancient landscape – not just the rocks carved by the cascading waters of the glens – but a knowledge that folk have made these valleys their home for millennia. Angus is the recognised birthplace of ‘Scotland’ – but the Glens have been inhabited long, long before the signing of the Declaration of Arbroath in 1320. Try some 4,000 years more.  That knowledge gives them an otherworldly feel. We took time out to visit one of the five Glens – Glen Esk – and in particular to try a new experience being offered … a wildlife tour to discover the Glen’s flora and fauna …

From little acorns …

Since 1931, Scotland’s Garden Scheme has been raising money for charities – big and small – through opening gardens of horticultural interest across Scotland.   Many of the gardens are privately owned and would otherwise be inaccessible to the garden-loving public – so the project is a real winner for those gree-fingered enthusiasts as well as those who just love to walk and gaze at the work of gardeners across the country.

We were delighted to attend their recent Annual Conference and learn more about how this amazing scheme helps to support so many charities across Scotland …

Canvassing ideas on Fife’s coast

The East Neuk of Fife is a gem of a place: picturesque fishing villages, coastal walks, beaches, cricket and a growing focus on provenance … a passion for the area’s produce and producers. For those looking to stay on the coast, there’s a new destination. We took time out to visit and discover the thinking behind Catchpenny …

Choose Live … Scotland 2018

This summer sees an incredible collection of live events across the country that are showcasing Scotland’s countryside as never before. The following provides a snapshot – some big, some small – with links to the events for you to find more.

Luss – helping it happen!

A visit to Luss is a great day out – a lovely village sitting on the banks of Loch Lomond with spectacular views over to Ben Lomond.  A popular destination too – with over 260,000 people each week visiting.   A very happy problem to have and it was very interesting to visit last month (March 2018) to find out more … all that is going on behind the scenes.

Something old, something new …

Arriving at the Wigwams at Montrave Estate, you get the impression this is all very new. There’s a new access from the main road – onto a new road that cuts through the grounds … newly trimmed branches of cut back rhododendrons on either side of the track shining bright in the Fife sunshine. A new parking area next to a new open-sided barn. And the new wigwams – with new turf!

A weekend away…… to Islay & Jura

Taking the 6pm ferry from Kennacraig across to Islay is a perfect start to our latest long weekend away.   With our self-catering accommodation booked, it gave us time to enjoy a leisurely drive over from the East, with stops at Ardkinglas Woodland Garden and lunch at The Tree Shop on the shores of Loch Fyne before a wander around the pretty town of Tarbet.   And once we boarded the Caledonian MacBrayne Ferry, it was time for the traditional CalMac dinner – whether your preference is macaroni & chips, steak pie or fish n’ chips, it is a great start to the weekend.