Roadtripping | Scotland Day 5

Dunnottar, Castle, Views, Scenery
Dunnottar, Selfie, Mummy, Son,
Aberdeen > Livingston

Today involved a lot of driving and a lot of castles. We left Aberdeen after a three-course breakfast and drove straight to Dunnottar Castle. A beautiful medieval castle on the Cliffside, we didn’t get too close and instead, meandered across one of the pathways. It was a lovely walk, although it obviously wasn’t pushchair-friendly and also not really suitable for Alfie to walk. We got some really lovely photos though and the views of the castle and the sea were spectacular. I wish we had got closer to the ruins.

We then drove to Stirling to visit the castle there, passing by the shops en route. Although there is parking at the castle, it’s limited and instead we decided to park in the town centre. It was a bit of a walk through the pedestrianised shopping streets and then steep, narrow cobbled streets leading to the castle – but it was worth it, in my opinion.
Stirling, Castle, Stirling Castle, Gardens, Rose,
After getting our tickets, we started at the exhibition which was three of four rooms with plenty of information, artefacts and even interactive elements. While we were reading about the kings and queens that have lived in the castle over the years, I clocked a castle-themed snakes & ladders game and wished Alfie was old enough to play it. Once again, it was a quick walk around as Alfie threw a tantrum. Like most castles, it wasn’t pushchair-friendly, so we weren’t able to do a lot of things, including visit the castle vaults, great hall and royal palace. But we did walk around the gardens and had a quick look at the ‘Weaving the Unicorn’ exhibition.

A pitstop was required and thankfully, there was a lovely little pub near the castle, on our walk back to the town. The Portcullis was a traditional, cosy pub, with classic decor. We sat inside, although there was outdoor seating and it was nice to actually relax (for a bit anyway). I got my first Edinburgh Gin fix, with a gin liqueur and tonic.

It was then time to continue our journey to Livingston, where our two-night stay was. That evening, we just drove into the town to grab some dinner – Nando’s, which was perfect for Alfie – before going back to the hotel to chill.

Today we drove 165 miles
Today we walked 6.1km
Where we stayed
Livingston Lodge Hotel - Hawk Brae, EH54 6TW
We stayed at the Livingston Lodge for two nights and our first night and following morning’s breakfast was better than the second night and second breakfast. Laura took us to our room on arrival and was so helpful and friendly during our stay (even leaving a note to say that she didn’t want to move our things so didn’t fully clean on our second day – not a problem). Unfortunately, we didn’t see her again after that! The room was basic, but met our needs; while the en suite was far too small for me. Breakfast was good: I had a full Scottish breakfast on our first morning and on our second, wanted the porridge, to find there wasn’t any. We weren’t given menus so I didn’t know about the alternatives, but was made a stack of pancakes, which was good. Another downer on the second night was a fight that broke out in the car park, just as we needed to get something from the car.

Love, Lucy xx

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Love, Lucy xx

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