Honeymooning in Scotland: Day 1
I am officially a married woman! I am so excited to be married to the man of my dreams and my best friend. Our wedding day, while rainy, was the perfect day. I'm excited to share about that perfect day, but will wait until the photos are in. However, here is a quick sneak peek from the talented April Teceno Photography...
I would like to share our fabulous honeymoon to Scotland with you, though! Garrett and I had a rather large list of potential destinations to honeymoon, but ultimately decided to explore Scotland. I was extra excited as my grandma immigrated from Scotland in the 60's. I couldn't wait to see where she had grown up.
Garrett and I worked for weeks to plan the perfect itinerary, but left room to be flexible and change up the schedule too. I love doing trips this way! It makes life less stressful, and you can enjoy the moment more. We would fly into Edinburgh, stay there a few days, make our way to the Isle of Skye, and then drive back to Edinburgh for a total of 2 days of flights and 7 days of exploring.
The day after our wedding we headed to RDU airport to catch a flight to JFK then to Edinburgh. As we watched the flight updates, we became increasingly nervous. The flight to JFK kept getting delayed. It soon became clear we would miss our flight to Edinburgh if we waited for the JFK flight. Garrett talked to the airline folks, and we ended up rebooking our flights completely. We flew to Heathrow in London and then to Edinburgh. It wasn't what we planned, but it would only put us 2 hours later than our original plan rather than a whole day! Sadly, this meant Garrett lost his extra leg room seats (tall people problems), and we wouldn't be able to be seated together on the flight from London to Edinburgh. We took it anyway!
Our flights were without incident (minus me balling in the middle of the flight due to watching a movie). I started to get way excited when we flew over Scotland, and I saw the scenery. I was so excited to be there!
We waited in line for our rental car for more than an hour and made our way to the lot. Garrett was really dubious when he stopped in front of a tiny smart car. I told him it was the next car over which was a much better fit for G.
We climbed in the car and prepared to drive on the wrong side of the road. I was to navigate. The trip from the airport to our hotel in Edinburgh was the scariest one of my life. We ended up going downtown Edinburgh! Bad idea to new European drivers. I was sucking at navigating. To Garrett's credit he kept his cool and made several u-turns thanks to my navigation. When we got to the hotel, we parked and didn't get back in the car for two days. My feet were much safer.
While we were pretty exhausted from the flight and time change, we decided to explore the city after a quick shower. We grabbed lunch at Starbucks (risky right?) and headed to Calton Hill. Edinburgh streets are gorgeous and filled with history. We could actually appreciate them now that we were on foot.
Calton Hill views were a fabulous place to start in Edinburgh.
We climbed on the National Monument and climbed to the top of Nelson Monument. I would definitely recommend spending the money to do that. The views are stunning!
While we saw Arthur's Seat, we voted to not climb it. We were pretty dead on our feet.
We then walked to the Palace of Holyroodhouse. Sadly, we weren't allowed in as it was occupied. It was still cool to see the guards and area, though.
We ended our day with dinner at Tollbooth Tavern. We happened upon it and thought it looked good. The neat part was it had a long and interesting history. It once collected tolls for a bridge, was a prison, courthouse, and even a site for an exorcism. It now serves yummy fish and chips and bangers and mash with other menu items.
While it wasn't late, but we called it a night at 8:30pm. I had already fallen asleep standing up at Calton Hill and walked 5 miles around the city. We managed much the first day in Scotland, and I was very pleased. We would sleep for 12 hours. Day two of Scotland awaited...
Make sure you know how to operate the GPS before leaving the parking lot.
Rent a special GPS that does European roads.
Push through the time change and tiredness. You can sleep later.