Saturday, 17 March 2012

Springtime holiday

We went away and things were beginning to hint at Spring, we've come back and we're now absolutely sure that it's Spring.

We've been to Kintyre, it's the peninsula that sticks out and down along the bottom west of Scotland:

While there, we've explored the beaches and rocky shores, been for long walks ("Bear Hunts", though we never saw any bears, just lots of Gruffalos).  We've had lunches in cafes, picnics on beaches, dinner in a hotel, all a big adventure for a toddler.  

Best of all for Mummy and Daddy I think, while exploring the coast nearby, and stopping in some woods to take the Waggy-Tailed-One for a walk, we stumbled across the Scottish Beaver Project.  I had been hoping so much that we would be able to see the Beaver place, knowing that it was in Argyle, but I had assumed that it would be too far from where we were staying and much more remote, so I was delighted!  
We didn't see the Beavers themselves, I think they would have sensed the Waggy-tailed-one and made themselves scarce, but I was amazed to see a real beaver log chew, and the dam that they made!  Folks not from the UK might not know, but here beavers were hunted to extinction quite a long time ago. This Beaver project is a heavily monitored trial area, to see what impact reintroducing beavers into the wild in the UK might have.  It was a real privilege to be near these creatures, and see the work that they've done in their habitat, even if we didn't actually see them.

The other place I really enjoyed visiting was Kilmartin.  It's a valley/glen which is filled to brimming with bronze age cairns, standing stones, stone circles, ancient forts and all sorts of ancient archaeology.  We visited one of the forts and the excellent and child friendly museum (with its overpriced cafe), but the weather and tired children didn't allow for much more exploration.  We now have the guidebook for the area though, and a year's free pass for the museum, so we'll be back in the future.

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