Sinclair & Girnigoe Castle / Durnoch

Die Doppelburg Sinclair & Girnigoe CastleEindrucksvolle Uferfelsen bei Sinclair & Girnigoe CastleLeuchtturm von Tarbat NessDas Ballone Castle ist nicht so sehenswert

Today we were surprised by our daughter. She had made breakfast early in the morning and so we were able to start well-timed. Near by Auckengill we visited the "Northland Viking Centre", a small but excellent museum about the everyday-life of the Viking. The Viking left a lot of  bequeathment in this area. For example up to today the northern part of Scotland is called "Southerland" due to the fact that it was the land in the south for the Viking. We had to search a little for the ruins of the twin castles Sinclair & Girnigoe Castle shown at many Scotland guides and flyers. However, at last we found the car park and then we strolled over blooming meadows to the castle. The ruins of the twin castles by themselves were not very impressive. Much more interesting were the rocks below the castles. The sea had shaped a deep canyon and a peninsula with vertical edges and free standing rocky towers.

The city centre of Wick reputed as worth to see we did not found. Instead we went shopping in a Scottish Lidl. After that we had some difficulties to prepare lunch. There were no parking places along the coastal route and even the short trip to a lighthouse was ending because of a fence - private ground. So we decided to turn into the Rumster Forest and there we found a nice place for lunch. Before we drove back to the coastal route we visited a stone circle, the standing stones of Achavanich. Passing Durnoch we decided to pitch our tent at the camp ground of Portmahomack. But before that we wanted to visit Ballone Castle. This was not easy. At first we alight at the Lighthouse of Tarbat Ness and then we stranded at the end of a way adventuresome to drive. From this point we went over a wet meadow to reach the castle. And then for our disappointment Ballone Castle was an ugly building impossible to enter. To complete the misfortune of the day the camp ground was only open for caravans (not for tents). So we drove back to Durnoch and there we pitched our tent at a giant but nice and silent campsite in a spacious area of dunes. 

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