Newcastle Photographer and Content Creator, Mandy Charlton, Always on a quest for adventure, often seen on buses, trains and planes. On a quest to be happier and healthier. Lives in Newcastle with her 3 cats, Iris, Maggie and Arthur. Loves good vibes, musicals and cakes. Full time professional wedding photographer in the north east of england alongside content creator on Tiktok, Instagram and Facebook

Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Scotland by Rail, part 2 - Inverness is quiet!

Inverness is quiet, scotland by rail part 2, mandy charlton photographer, blogger

Inverness is quiet! Sleepier than I can ever remember, a lot of the Scottish gift shops are closed, the Citybus tour isn't running, the bars and restaurants are half empty even though the governments "Eat out to help out" scheme is currently running.  If there's one good thing for me it's that Inverness feels safe and empty but this cannot be good for the city which relies so much on tourism during the summer months.  

The differences between Scottish and English Coronavirus Procedures with regards to travel

There are subtle differences between England and Scotland in their post-lockdown Coronavirus procedures.  For instance, when I stayed in the Lake District throws and cushions were not allowed on the beds, the buffet breakfast was gone and all of the information leaflets were removed from the hotel rooms.  Not so in Scotland, I have cushions, I have a throw, I have copious amounts of touristic brochures...

What I did find weird was that I went to the Visit Scotland shop this morning to buy a book of local walks and they were only giving out free information and not selling anything, when I was in the Lakes, you could buy a book of walks but all of the leaflets were cleared away.  Someone needs to decide which way is the right way.  I did end up getting the books that I wanted from the local Waterstones and I have earmarked several walks for when I'm back in town at the weekend, I'm really hoping the weather picks up too as I want to go on a  boat trip to spot dolphins in the Moray Firth.

I had been hoping to do the City sightseeing tour as it's a good way to while away an hour and you can hop on and hop off but I think they've probably just decided it's not worth it given the lack of tourists. Maybe this will change over the weekend, I had issues finding somewhere with 5 nights availability and currently, I'm due to stay somewhere way out of the centre, I am trying to change it now I know where it is but it's down to whether they have the kindness in their hearts to let me change it to a closer, safer hotel.

Today has been a good day, I love the Ardentorrie Guest House in Inverness where I currently am, I would have come back here again if they'd had availability as it's lovely and the view from my window is beautiful, even if it's raining currently.

When I said I was coming to push myself, I really meant it, today I've walked ten and a half miles. This morning I went down to the Ness Islands, The Botanic Gardens and all through the city centre and it was lovely.  I sat on the edge of one of the islands just listening to the waters of the River Ness as they babbled and bubbled over the rocks.  

the view from room 2 at the ardentorrie hotel, inverness, scotland by rail part 2, mandy charlton

The Botanic Gardens was also delightful, it's free entry, they have a safe one-way system and it was so quiet I couldn't feel anything but safe, plus I was amongst the glorious flowers.  The only part of the gardens still to open is the tropical house and well that just makes sense when you think of the conditions in tropical greenhouses. I last visited the gardens in 2014 and they're still just as beautiful today.

I also went to a pub for a late lunch/early dinner,  now this is massive for me, I would never usually go to a pub on my own, I have way too much anxiety but because of the quietness, I thought I would give it a go so I drank Gin on my own in a pub with lunch, possibly for the first time ever.  I'm so proud of myself!

Getting ready for the Far North Line

Tomorrow I leave for Thurso on the Far North Line, my journey may only be taking me another 81 miles but it's a 3 hour and 43-minute journey on this line, crazy when you think about it but it does go through some pretty remote places, if I remember my trivia right, I think there's a stop which only gets used by about 180 passengers a year!!  The train travels along the coast and in some places, there's just one single-track line, to me this is fascinating. Indeed one stop is just for a castle so it only gets used in the summer, it's really things like this which make me so enthusiastic to be finally travelling it and yes, you can bet,  I am going to tell you all about it.

Ways to support my writing

If you have enjoyed this article or found it useful and would like to support my writing you can buy
I also have a lovely Facebook group I'd love you to come and join 
You could also come and follow me on Instagram to keep up with my adventures, I really am grateful for all
of your love and support.


No comments

© Mandy Charlton - Photographer, Writer, Blogger | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Designed by pipdig