Tuesday 13 August 2013

Venturing East.

At the weekend we went for a short camping break, just to round off the holidays before the schools here started back - which they did today. It was N's first day, he was only in for two hours but has declared he's "not ever, ever going back". We'll see how things go tomorrow... Anyway, back to the weekend, we decided our destination should be somewhere we've not been, not too far away - within 100 miles or so, near a beach, and with low risk of midgies. We ended up going to East Lothian, and stayed at the campsite at Bellhaven Bay near Dunbar.

I liked the orange tiled roofs of many of the older houses.

A view of Bellhaven Bay. I believe this bridge is commonly referred to as the "bridge to nowhere". 

You get a better idea of why here with the higher tide. This photo was taken at the beginning of a walk along the coast to Dunbar on our first evening.

Lovely sea views. Here the two bumps you can see on the horizon are North Berwick Law on the left and the Bass Rock on the right.

Pink sandstone cliffs and sandy bay.

Smashing bouy collection on one of the houses at the harbour in Dunbar.

A view across the harbour. We'd got fish suppers in the town and ate them down at the harbour. We knew we were far from home when we were asked if we wanted "salt and sauce" on our fish and chips (common around Edinburgh) instead of the more usual "salt and vinegar".
We took the shorter route home along the road...

...en route we discovered a fantastic park and play park. The flowers in the park were beautiful, and I have to say I've never seen such a well equipped play park. We were slightly jealous!

There were even wooden toadstools.

 And a cafe, but it wasn't open late.

I love how colourful it is, we could do with some colour in our garden for this time of year, must try and track down suitable plants.

Before too long we were back near the campsite.

 The poppies seemed to glow in the late rays of sun.

 Bay view. The tide is on its way out again.

The view from the bridge.

The next day we started with a visit to Dirleton Castle. Lovely windows in the gazebo.

And a nice view over Dirleton.

Here we're inside the rather amazing beehive shaped doocot (dove coot). This is a wonky angled shot of some of the  nesting boxes, I think there were 2000 of them in all. Rich people used to keep doves for meat in the middle ages.

The castle entrance.

There were lots of different corridors and rooms to explore.

We all agreed it was our favourite castle yet (#4 to be visited with our Historic Scotland membership).

The gardens round the castle are rather lovely too, this is a little section of the perennial border in front of the gazebo.

After a picnic lunch at the castle it was time to go to the beach. I'd remembered reading about some East Lothian beaches on Forest Poppy's blog, which is how I found out about Seacliff beach, and what a find it was too! You'd never know it was there unless you knew to look for it - access was down a tiny little private road beside a farm, we missed it on our first attempt but found it next go. We'd remembered to take our £2 in coins for the car parking, and we were all set...

A view to the Bass rock.

 This crescent of rocks is called St Baldred's boat, the tip is marked by a large stone beacon and cross.

 Bass rock, clouds and surf.

The children and hubby went for a dip. I don't have a wetsuit yet so I didn't join them. Instead I went for a walk...

 ... and came across this tiny little harbour carved out of the sandstone with a view to Tantallon castle in the distance.

I scrambled up the rock a little to get some more views. It was a bit painful as I wasn't wearing any shoes and the rock is quite rough.

Worth it for the views though.

 Bye bye Seacliff...

...and hello again! The next morning we were back! Some friend had joined us at the campsite and we decided a morning at the beach would be good, we knew the perfect beach to visit.

The children and dads go off for some more fun in the water.

Meanwhile the mums decided to visit the cross.

Looking back at Tantallon.

 Bass rock and St Baldres's boat.

As we get closer to the rocks we realise what we're up against.

The dense covering of barnacles gives us a good grip. This time I'm wearing my shoes!

Getting closer...

Almost there...

Made it! A view of Tantallon and North Berwick Law from right beside the stone beacon. Look at the black clouds that have appeared though. We do encounter some rain on our way back, but the shower is quickly blown away.

 Rock pool.

Bringing back the kayak.

The girls helped the boys make racing cars in the sand.

We decide we don't want sand in our lunch, so off we go elsewhere for a picnic...

Looking over to the Law from the carpark beside our destination.

Orange roofs and fields of gold.

Very flat land and big skies seen on our walk from the car park to Tantallon castle.

A view from the top of the castle. It's possible to climb quite high, high enough to make my tummy feel all funny.

Looking out to sea.

Through the round window.

Looking down (hoping I don't drop the camera).

Much of the stonework is quite badly eroded. Soft sandstone and strong sea breezes 

The Bass rock yet again.

The front of Tantallon castle, castle #5 for us to visit.

 Later that evening...

 ...there was a goregous sunset.

The next day, after packing up the tent, we took a picnic to Barns Ness.

A rocky beach, said to be good for fossil hunting.

I collected shells instead. Then we went home. Phew!


Gerda said...

Thanks for sharing all these beautiful photo's. Such an amazing landscape. Rough, and gorgeous. Must visit once! groetjes, Gerda

Neighborhood Watch said...

What a beautiful place and such fantastic photos! (When my oldest started school, he put up such a fuss that the principal of the school had to carry him into the building over her shoulder. Haha!)

Grammy Braxton said...

Gorgeous. You live in such a lovely part of the world and I'm so glad you include us on your trips. I love the views from the Castle #5.

tove said...

Oh, what an absolutely stunning place, I love landscapes like these! I have to go thee some day. Your pictures are gorgeous!

driftwood said...

oh my, your photos are glorious, I want to go!

Rosemary said...

Too many lovely photos to pick out any individual ones here. What a great conclusion to the summer holidays - hope that N has settled at school.
Never been to that beautiful piece of the coast - Berwick-on-Tweed is the nearest I have been.

SaraJ said...

What a lovely way to end the school holidays. Hoping Day 2 goes well! My son liked school when he started (all those years ago!) but declared a couple of weeks in that he didn't think he'd go every day! It was quite tricky convincing him that wasn't an option!!

Lyn said...

Oh what a great weekend you had, full of memory making moments. I loved the cottage with the buoys how clever!
You find some beautiful places and I love looking at your photos of them.

Clicky Needles said...

Thanks for taking us too. Looks lovely.

topchelseagirl said...

Gorgeous photos.

Anonymous said...

You do find some beautiful places to show us and I am most grateful. I would relocate to Scotland in the blink of an eye, I love it so much.

Julie said...

I'm so pleased you had a good time. i feel all proud of my beloved East Lothian and lovely to know you enjoyed Seacliff! I'd have recommended both Tantallon and Dirleton Castles - Tantallon is my favourite from when I was wee and John and I were married in Direlton Castle (.....and we all walked across the road to the Open Arms Hotel for the party afterwards). Juliex

Sarah said...

What a lovely part of Scotland that I knew nothing about! I have heard of Bass Rock but that is about it. I am keeping it in mind for the future now. Your photos are beautiful!

Jennyff said...

East Lothian tourist board should pay you for that great post,. Gorgeous part of the world, wonderful photographs.

pembrokeshire lass said...

WOW absolutely fantastic photos. I loved the castle ones and that little boat nestling in the inlet carved out by the sea. Fantastic!! Just too much to take in and talk about. I'm so glad that the holiday is so fantastic!! Joan

Unknown said...

aha! you have a blog too! you take the most beautiful pictures. glad i found it!

Unknown said...

what a gorgeous time you've had. Beautiful photos!!

blueskyscotland said...

Some lovely photographs. It feels like visiting a different country through there doesn't it?
Nice to see Seaciff is still quiet. Looks like you had it to yourselves both days. Belhaven is still my favourite beach in Scotland.

Simone said...

Gorgeous photos.Every one a stunner! What sauce do you have with the chips? I am curious to know! I hope that N is settling down at school now. I never wanted to go back after the first day either!!!

Linda said...

So strange to see 'my' East coast through other eyes. A great collection of photos.
I did a double take when I saw your Bass rock photo - see http://occasionalscotland.blogspot.co.uk/2011/01/skywatch-friday-bass-rock.html

As you will see from my blog, I'm still no further forward in mastering f-stops!

Ana Artedetei said...

Las fotos son realmente maravillosas.


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