|The Great Glen from the A9, the main north-south road in Scotland.|
|The edge of the Highland on the way to Aberfeldy.|
Why are you back in Scotland? Haven’t you seen enough? No, we haven’t seen it all yet. And this trip is proving that we are correct about not seeing it all yet. We are traveling in familiar areas, but we are finding (discovering) new things. In this post I’ll tell you about two places that we’ve passed dozens of times and never stopped at--one is a tourist attraction that we thought would be hokey but isn’t, and the other is a golf course we thought would be boring but isn’t. I’ll end with some of our favorite photos so far from this trip.
|Pallas's Cat from Central Asia.|
First, we have passed by the Highland Wildlife Park in Kincraig, between Kingussie and Aviemore in the Cairngorm National Park, every time we’ve stayed in Aviemore (the Highlands) and that’s about 15 times. We thought it was similar to the safari park in central Scotland that’s rather dreadful.
|The head of a male Capercaillie, the largest of the grouse family and very endangered--only about 200 are left in the wild.|
Since we had time, we decided to give it a go. We found out that the park opened in 1972 and along with the Edinburgh Zoo is run by the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland. The 200 acre facility houses 40 different species of cold climate animal, most of which are endangered, and contains about 200 individual animals.
|The Scottish Wildcat, about the size of a very large house cat.|
There are a couple of drive-thru areas (the safari park concept) and several walking trails, as well as three cafes, a gift shop, and picnic areas.
|Some kind of goose, but I couldn't find out what kind.|
The park participates in two different levels of breeding programs, the most important being the breeding of European Endangered species. We are no experts, but to us the animals all seemed well cared for.
The second of our finds was a golf course we’d driven by several times and thought it looked rather unexciting.
|Anne tee's off on the 7th hole at Muir of Ord. The hole's name is Braid, the favorite of the designer.|
But since we were in the area and had played most of the other courses nearby we thought we’d stop at Muir of Ord Golf Course in Muir of Ord, a little northwest of Inverness. When I booked the course I found out it was designed by James Braid,
|The tiny green at the 3rd at Muir of Ord, only about 14 paces across.|
a famous Scottish designer of more than 400 golf courses. We like Braid’s design work so suddenly had higher hopes about Muir of Ord. The course designed in 1875 was anything but uninteresting. It has some challenging holes and is in good shape.
|A downhill par three at Muir of Ord, backed by lovely farmland.|
Definitely not easy, Muir of Ord GC was fun to play and we came off the course wishing we’d played it before. It will be one of the courses we’ll go back to when in the area.
Besides these two “finds” we keep discovering other new things in familiar places and some of those will be in DISCOVERING SCOTLAND (Part Two). Until the next post here are some of our photo favorites from this trip.
|Clava Cairns, tombs from about 4000 BC.|
|We also serve who wait for our masters outside the tearoom.|
|Two standing stones at Clava Cairns with the road in between.|
|The River Luineag in the Cairngorm National Park.|