Stirling Castle and Loch Lomond

September 2 – We had hoped to embark on a 2 day trip to the Isle of Skye but our lack of early planning meant there wasn’t room on any of the tours we checked for both of us. We opted instead to combine multiple single day tours to get essentially the same experience but with more travel time.

We drove past the Kelpies on the way to Stirling  Castle. A pair of large metal horse head sculptures in easy view from the motorway were an impressive sight. I wish I would have gotten a decent picture to share.

Stirling Castle is even more impressive sitting atop a lush hill. The views of the countryside were incredible. In the distance you can see the Wallace Monument on another hilltop. The castle has plenty of interesting rooms to tour through and it was a lovely walk along the wall.

From there we took a short side trip to Doune Castle. If you think it looks familiar that’s because it should. The castle is a popular filming location and has featured in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Game of Thrones, and Outlander.

After the brief stop we took a nice drive through the forest covered hills of the Trossachs, making a few stops along the way. Then into the rolling green hills of the Loch Lomond National Park where we stopped for a lunch break.

After lunch the group was taken to Loch Lomond. It had been a bit wet but I was looking forward to stretching my legs a bit. The bus dropped us off at a trailhead for a short walk to the restaurant where he would be waiting for us. It was a bit breezy but otherwise a nice afternoon. As much as I try to keep the hair tucked under the hood the wild ones always find a way to get free.

We encountered a little bit of an obstacle when we found a fairly heavy stream running over the trail. One of the guys from the group offered the ladies a hand in crossing. Hooray for chivalry!

We made a few other random stops on the way back to Edinburgh. Our last stop was in a quaint little town where 3 very different bridges, each from a different century, connect North to South Queenferry.

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