For those of you that know me, you’ll know my husband is proudly Glaswegian and his parents still live up there. We haven’t been to visit for a while so we decided to make a trip up over the August Bank Holiday. It was only a short break but we decided to pack in as much as we could! Here’s a run-down of the places we visited, it’s a bit shorter than my normal travel pieces but we weren’t there for very long!
My in-laws live in a small but beautiful village in Lanarkshire called Douglas. It’s a pretty old town, mentioned in the history books and even has the ruins of an old Scottish castle (Castle Dangerous) on a small loch just two minutes walk from their front door. The weather was glorious whilst we were there and it was a lovely place to walk around.
We decided to take a day trip to the seaside with the in-laws. Largs is about an hour away from Douglas, about half an hour from Glasgow. It’s a small seaside town in Ayrshire, on the west coast of Scotland. It’s much like most seaside towns but it is pretty to wander around and looks out onto the Scottish isle of Cumbrae – you can catch a ferry to it’s only town of Millport for the ridiculously cheap price of £3.40 return as a foot passenger! It’s home to the smallest cathedral in the UK too. Unfortunately we didn’t have time to visit but I’d like to visit maybe next time we are up.
We had a great fish and chip dinner from the award-winning The Fish Works on the promenade and the weather was so good, we even sat outside to eat it! We followed it up with some amazing ice cream from Geraldo’s. I love ice cream and this was really good, right down to the melted Nutella in the bottom of the cone!
We love being by the sea so we jumped at the change to go to the seaside for the day so really enjoyed our day in Largs and would definitely head back again.
We’ve been to Glasgow before and this time was just a flying visit to meet some friends for a drink and a catch up. It was another beautiful day weatherwise and on our way into Glasgow we stopped at the Tunnocks factory and cafe in Uddingston. I wouldn’t go out of my way to visit normally but I’d recently seen Charlotte Jacklin (of Instagram fame) had visited there and had bought a cute little vintage style Tunnocks truck which I desperately wanted! It was a bit like stepping back in time but the bakery cafe was cute and we had a nice breakfast in there which set us up for the day.
We then headed into Glasgow’s West End (detouring to Tantrum for a couple of their epic creme brulee doughnuts) and went to Brel on Ashton Lane to visit our friends. I hadn’t actually been to Ashton Lane before and I’m so glad we went there. It’s such a cute little spot tucked off Byres Road, with a few restaurants, bars and even a cinema. We had a lovely afternoon in the sunshine, sitting outside catching up with our friends. We had dinner at Brel too, which was an epic mac ‘n’ cheese which I could totally eat again right now!!
After dinner, we walked with one of our friends over to Loop & Scoop on Great Western Road which I was desperate to try. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know I’m determined to tour the world one ice cream shop at a time, and this one would definitely make The List of must stop venues. Who knew a churro would be so perfect with ice cream, but it was!
We spent our last couple of days in Edinburgh, just having a wander around the city. But before we went into Edinburgh, we went to the Pentland Hills which is a regional park just south of the city. We stopped for breakfast at Swanston Farm restaurant (amazing sausage, egg and tatty scone roll) and then heading for a easy-ish walk up the hills to find some highland cows! I’ve always wanted to see them and I was so excited to find them! They were contained in fenced off fields but we did manage to get pretty close and take some good photos of them. We also had an amazing view over the city! If you’re ever in Edinburgh and want a taste of nature whilst you’re here then I can highland recommend vising the Pentland Hills which is only about a 15 minute drive out of the city.
We’ve been to Edinburgh before so didn’t have anything we desperately needed to see so we just enjoyed our time there wandering around Princes Street, around Victoria Street, the Vennels and our friend that we missed in Glasgow came over to Edinburgh to see us for lunch on our last day. Edinburgh is a lot like London in that it has a great public transport system so we stayed a little way out of the city centre, in a Travelodge in Cameron Toll which is right on the bus route straight into the centre in about 20 mins. It was the perfect spot, clean, free parking and very reasonably priced especially as we stayed over on the last night of the Fringe Festival. There’s also a bar/restaurant in the hotel and a McDonalds across the road too. I’ll definitely stay there next time we’re in Edinburgh.
Top places we visited on this trip were:
- Stockbridge – a beautiful little area of Edinburgh, with quaint old buildings, quirky little shops and cafes, and the river running through it, it’s the perfect place for a mooch and a coffee. It was my first time visiting this part of the city and I loved it. We’ll definitely be back.
- Chez Jules for lunch – we went on both days we were there it was so good! It’s a little French place below street level and it’s got a great bistro style atmosphere, with old school French music, chalk boards and wine bottles with drippy red candles on the tables. They have the most amazing value menu from 1pm – 4pm which is only £9.95 for 3 courses. It doesn’t look much from the outside but the food was amazing quality for the price and if they were any closer to us I am sure we would be regulars.
- Mary’s Milk Bar – the cutest spot for ice cream. We went there the day after the Fringe Festival finished so it was quieter but apparently if you go during August you can expect queues to snake down the road. I had the salted caramel and it was one of the best I’ve ever had.
- Grown Urban – a great little plant shop not far from Stockbridge. The staff are knowledgeable, there’s a huge selection of plants and they have a coffee shop with cake – what more can a girl want?! I finally got myself that Chinese money plant I’ve been after for a while, a mini spider plant and a mister but I could have bought half the shop!
And that was it! It started raining just as we headed home and we realised how lucky we were to have such nice weather the entire time we were there! Until next time Scotland!
I always have a long list of places to visit and I’ve had to create a separate one or all the spots I want to visit when we go up again but if anyone has any top spots I should be adding to it, please let me know!