Long time no see! To be honest there really wasn’t anything interesting to write about apart from me drinking coffee and binge watching “The Spanish Princess”. I had to make a journey for something newsworthy to happen I guess! Travelling as an au pair means automatically that you travel on a budget because we are literally constantly broke – no matter how high our pocket money is we manage to have nothing left at the end of the month. 😉
I was looking for somebody to travel with me to Scotland or Ireland for a few days amongst my friends and in the end Johanna managed to get some days off to come along. We decided to go to Edinburgh – mostly because we found a ridiculously cheap hostel and already had a city guide for that city. After booking the trains and everything we wanted to do in the four days we were going to spend in Scotlands capital city all that was left to do was waiting.
We started our journey on a train leaving for London on a Saturday morning. But when we arrived at King’s Cross (where we were supposed to take a direct train to Edinburgh) we were surprised with our train being cancelled due to a lack of staff! Luckily the alternative connection only took us four hours longer, consisted of 3 different vehicles and and gave us the chance to wait a full 30 minutes in the rain for our bus! Never let it be said that you can’t rely on trains! To be fair we got all our money back for the ticket – but still!
After we’ve finally arrived we headed for our hostel which was located about 20 minutes from the train station and therefore the city centre. It was nice and clean and we made new friends within the first 20 minutes. Three lovely girls from Germany being au pairs themselves and here comes the twist: One of them was my old host-familys new au pair! What are the odds??
Johanna and I had a Pub-Tour booked for the evening which was really lovely! The guides showed us around the city a little and taught us about Scotlands most famous writers and their connection to the very places we visited. Since it was a Pub-Tour after all we could not resist a few beers as well!
We got up early the next morning to a full day of sightseeing. The first thing on our list was Edinburgh Castle which was very interesting but rather cold even though the sun was shining bright and warm. I loved to explore the old building which had been a home to so many great people such as Mary Stuart and wander through the corridors they might have passed as well. After 4 hours we left the castle and went to the Chocolatarium where we had booked a tour but since we had some time left we stopped at a cafe and had a delicious lunchbreak!
The Chocolatarium is a museum about chocolate. We learned about the production of chocolate, the difference between the chocolate seals, the cocoa bean and it’s usage. In the end we even got to make our own chocolate and taste loads of the sweet treat.
In the evening we made wrap-pizza with the girls from our hostel and enjoyed chatting with them about our host-families.
The third day was the most exciting for me because we did a guided Highlands-Tour. The bus picked us up at 8.30 in the morning and our guide Brian drove our group to different sights in the Highlands and Lowlands of Scotland. We visited the Wallace-Monument, two lochs and a lovely little city but my absolute highlight was Doune Castle which was used to film scenes from Game of Thrones and Outlander. My fangirl heart bursted with happiness! Brian was a hilarious guide and knew a lot about the Scottish history, he even made some additional stops to see “Hairy-Cows” which are the cutest cows I’ve ever seen! We spent the whole day with our group and really enjoyed it a lot! When it was time to go to sleep we literally fell in our beds our heads full with new impressions.
The last day went by really fast. We were both rather tired and a little overwhelmed by everything we had seen in the last days so we only stayed two hours at the National Museum and then went to have lunch after which i t was time to go to the train. The return was pretty unspectacular, we arrived back in London and then took our train back to Bracknell and Ascot.
There’s nothing more to say other than admitting that Scotland – especially the Highlands absolutely stole my heart! I loved the people and the landscape and just everything altogether! I’ll be back one day!