A day off from HelpXing gives us the change to explore. It would be very easy just to sit and laze around all day but with our time in Scotland drawing to a close in the next few weeks we want to make the most of every chance. After consulting our trusty guide book for places that are within reach for a day trip, we headed off.
Our destination was St Andrews on the east coast but, in true land sailing fashion, we would go via a few places that the wind took us along the way. We were heading for the county of Fife, or as it’s historically known in these parts the Kingdom of Fife. Sandwiched between the Firth of Forth and the Firth of Tay we headed out from the Bridge of Earn through the Lomond Hills Regional Park towards the coast at Leven. Then east through Largo and down to Elie.
Said as “Ely” not “Ellie” it’s official name is Elie and Earlsferry. It has a sweeping beach and harbour. The High Street had lots of historic houses and the cleverly named Elie Deli. Evidently it is where the wealthy of Edinburgh and Glasgow come to play and have holiday homes.
This was another little harbour town. There was obviously still a thriving fishing industry here. There were plenty of recently used lobster pots to be seen. It struck me how much the houses looked like Cornish fishing cottages.
We wandered along the harbour and then up into the town. Lots of winding alleyways, known here as wynds, wind down to the harbour.
About half way down one of them is St Fillan’s Cave. This 7th Century Irish missionary has huge significance to Scottish Christians. He is the patron saint of the mentally ill and spent many years in this cave studying and preparing scriptures. Unfortunately the cave was very dark so when he asked God to help him, God gave gave him a magical glowing left arm so that he could hold it over his work.
We carried on around the coast to St Andrews, our last stop. We didn’t have too long to explore before we needed to head back but we were impressed by what we did see. The Castle ruins right on the shore front and only a short walk away the ruins of the Cathedral.
St Andrews is also the home to Scotland’s oldest university and is literally known as “the home of golf” because of The Open Championship which has been hosted by the Royal and Ancient Golf Club at The Old Course, St Andrews 29 times.
Where Prince William met Kate Middleton
For the non sport lovers, it was at the University of St Andrews that Prince William met his future bride, Kate Middleton. We even had a coffee in the same cafe that he took her to, the Northpoint Cafe. We could have spent a whole lot longer in this town and on it’s glorious beaches but it was time to head back inland and home.
Just so you know, the Fife Coastal Paths runs the whole coast that we had driven and would make a fantastic walking holiday. With so many picturesque villages to stay in on the way and the fairly flat terrain it would be easy to break it down into stages. Always planning the next adventure!