This day was so full of adventure (mostly good, a little bad), that I felt it needed it’s own post. We started out our day with a drive to Stirling…
We drove up and up and up to Stirling Castle, home of the Scottish monarchy and location of the coronation of a number of Scottish monarchs including Mary, Queen of Scots.
The castle has seen numerous battles including an unsuccessful takeover attempt by “Bonny Prince Charlie.” This is damage from cannonballs.
At first, the light tan colored stone looks out of place, but we soon learned that it’s the dark gray that is out of place. That lighter color would have been the original color of most of the castle and what we’re seeing today is years of weathering.
On the castle lawn, they were preparing a 21-gun salute for Queen Elizabeth II’s birthday.
Additional birthday preparations.
Inside, many rooms had undergone restoration. I loved this ceiling!
These tapestries are new, but gives one an idea of how the castle may have looked. They were woven using 15th century techniques and based on the Unicorn Tapestries at the Metropolitan Museum of New York.
After leaving Stirling Castle, we drove to Falkirk to see the Falkirk Wheel.
In the previous photo, boats could go into the top and bottom of the wheel. In this photo, the wheel is being turned so that the boat on the bottom will be at the top and the boat at the top will be at the bottom. It’s an interesting way to get a boat from a canal at one elevation to another.
I simply had to make a stop at Doune Castle. If it looks familiar, it’s because it has been a filming location for everything from Monty Python and the Holy Grail to Outlander to Game of Thrones.
This castle certainly had the fun factor going for it. Since it hadn’t been restored, we could wander about most of it freely, wandering through rooms and climbing one of the towers all the way to the roof.
One of the more impressive parts of the castle to me was the kitchen. Here is the massive fireplace where they would have done much of the cooking.
After a full, fun-filled day, we were in for a bump in the road on the way back to the hotel quite literally. Those narrow roads with curbs and driving on the wrong side of the road got the best of me. I hit a curb and blew the tire. I had never, ever damaged a rental car before so wasn’t sure what was going to happen. While my husband and dad changed the tire, I called Avis. The representative found a local tire place where we went immediately. They put a new tire on the slightly damaged rim and put it on as a spare. Fortunately, I had purchased the full damage coverage when I rented the car so the tire went on Avis’s account and we simply went on our way. All in all, the worst thing that happened was we were delayed getting back to the hotel by about an hour so not too big of a bump. Thank goodness!