As soon as you arrive on holiday at Craigwell Cottage, Edinburgh you’ll see views towards Salisbury Crags from the living room window. Read more
Exploring Edinburgh City Centre for beginners
If you are heading to Edinburgh it can be difficult to decide how best to start your explorations. With this in mind, we designed an Edinburgh walk for first-time visitors Read more
Top Tips for Outlander Fans in Edinburgh
If you’re a fan of the Outlander series of books by Diana Gabaldon, you may be planning a trip to Scotland to find out more about the land which inspired your favourite characters. Read more
Rosslyn Chapel and a Walk in to Edinburgh
Over the years of hosting visitors in Edinburgh at Craigwell Cottage, we’ve had many guests who have gone to visit Rosslyn Chapel, on the outskirts of the city. They have often been prompted to make their trip their because they have read about it in Dan Brown’s book “The Da Vinci Code” Read more
Dragonfly in Amber – The Battle of Prestonpans
It was fun investigating around the Royal Mile in Edinburgh using Diana Gabaldon’s Voyager as a guide (see Outlander Exploring on the Royal Mile). So for the next adventure I’ve gone exploring out to East Lothian, down the coast to the east of Edinburgh to find out more about The Battle of Prestonpans, which features in Dragonfly in Amber, the second book in the Outlander series. Read more
I’ve wondered if visitors to Craigwell Cottage would take a walk over the Forth Road Bridge, and thought that maybe giving some idea of what to expect might entice some of our visitors to take this thrilling walk. Read more
We really like the questions which have been chosen for April 2014’s #ScotlandHour, so we’re writing an article for our guests at Craigwell Cottage who may be interested in using our city centre cottage as a base for walking or other outdoor adventures in Edinburgh or around central Scotland.
Sometimes there are ideas which inspire you, but you don’t quite get round to it… you know the ones, often crystallised in a list of New Year Resolutions, which are forgotten by February.
One such idea, in the back of my mind for some time, since I found out about Cameron Black‘s Book “The St Andrews Way – Restoration of a Medieval Pilgrimage”, has been to undertake a long-distance walk. But not one of the sort which requires all sorts of preparation and planning, one which can be achieved in sections, perhaps as a series of day trips.
Earlier this week I was browsing the Internet looking for inspiration to inform an article which I was encouraging a colleague at the Lammermuir Festival to write about a pilgrimage from North Berwick to Cellardyke by boat. I came across an article about a pilgrimage which was due to take place on 1 July 2012, walking from St Mary’s Roman Catholic Cathedral in Edinburgh, to St Andrews Cathedral in Fife. I slotted the article away in my memory, thinking that I probably wouldn’t have the opportunity to join in. However, with the family all declaring that they were off to busy themselves in different ways, I woke thinking that maybe I just might be able to go along and achieve part of my ambition to walk a little of the way at least.
We were accompanied along the way by Huw Williams, a reporter from BBC Radio Scotland, and you can hear about the walk in this BBC News item as he interviews some of the walkers on the way. I joined the walk because of my fascination for the route between Edinburgh and St Andrews. Luckily, my local knowledge and the gentle herding by the leaders of the group meant that I made it to South Queensferry by the most direct route. Huw and some of the others in the group had to rely on Smartphone apps to get them to the end point. I hope that the ladies in the group of 6 who were aiming to complete the whole walk this week, including Bridget and Yvonne and the others, enjoy the experience and make it through to St Andrews. For me, that will have to await another time.
Post script: I’ve followed up my researches with some investigations about the Camino de Santiago, whose revival sparked the interest in reviving the Way of St Andrews. The aforementioned journalist, Huw Williams, led me to the blog of Bob Walker, who is walking the Camino de Santiago in July 2012, and writing a blog about his walk. Some friends in Edinburgh lent me a video, The Way, which my husband and I watched and really enjoyed. They also told me about their friend Gordon Davidson’s blog about his personal journey, which I’m now adding to this postscript as it is a very moving account of his journey.
Wandering around Edinburgh this morning reminded me of city walking in Rome – the sort where you move from shady spot to shady spot with frequent stops for coffees and ices.
As I’d arranged to visit a friend with an apartment near Nether Craigwell, I was strolling up the Canongate section of the Royal Mile when I spotted the sign for Dunbar’s Close and thought it would be a good time to go in and explore the shady spaces there. What a treat!
Several others had chosen to take a picnic lunch there, and I was wishing I’d done the same as it’s a real haven of peace among the city streets.
You can find Dunbar’s Close Garden by following the close off the Royal Mile next to the Christmas Shop and opposite the Canongate branch of Starbuck’s.