We caught the ferry by the skin of our teeth due to parking issues yet again (there's a car park opposite the church a hundred yards or so south of the ferry terminal which is useful to know about (though not for use on a Sunday!)).
The crossing was amazing. I hadn't been to Bute for a few years and it's definitely the best crossing of the ones we've done more recently (Arran and Cumbrae). There were fantastic views to all sides and it was lovely to see the yachts bobbing about in the sun. The cloud formations were pretty fabulous too.
We'd taken the bikes and had planned to do a short loop involving visits to two beaches on the west of the island. Although Bute is not a moutainous island, there is a hill to climb and descend in order to get to the far side if taking the shortest route. It was a little too much for N. We made it to one of the beaches with a lot of help from hubby who practically pushed N the whole way up the hill. After time at the beach we just went straight back the way we came. I always feel I've never explored Bute properly. I'd like to come back on my own sometime and get right round the island properly (along with my camera, of course!)
This was the last section of the path to the beach. I thought it looked lovely with A cycling ahead. It was only after I'd taken the photo that I realised I'd actually managed to capture her falling off her bike! She was fine.
A picnic at beautiful St Ninian's Bay and a short wander/play (I wish I'd taken a longer wander myself), then back to Rothesay. For some reason it was a lot easier going back than it had been coming and took a lot less time. After ice cream and a fish supper (in that order!) and a sighting of the very busy Waverley ("the last sea going paddle steamer in the world") in Rothesay, it was time to make the crossing back to the mainland.
Of course, the fantastic weather helped. It's not been a great summer weather-wise so we were determined to make the best of what we had. A week of sunny, summery, warm weather would be lovely please, before school starts back (we've two weeks of school holidays left, aaargh!).
Anyway, here's a map showing the various Clyde ferry routes. Having these so close to home is one of the good things about living here. Somehow it's just magical to get on a ferry and cross to an island for the day. We're spoiled for choice really. Cycling-wise, Cumbrae would have been a better choice for us today. You can cycle right round the island, the distance in doing that is only about 10 miles and it is very flat, N would have managed it fine. Next time!
And finally, I hope I didn't come across as too much of an Instagram fan in my last post. I actually wish it didn't exist! I'd much prefer it if everyone there were back blogging or using Flickr to share photos. I like to take photos with a proper camera not my phone. I don't have time to take and post pictures with both. However, Instagram is there and it's very popular and there's nothing I can do about it. "Nothing endures but change" as they say...