Monday, October 29, 2012

Some more Scotland Photots

The whole IES group! 


This past week was my midterm break, and my abroad program went to Scotland!! We flew into Invierness and made our way down throughout the end of the week and weekend. It was freezing, but absolutely beautiful. Scotland is definitely my favorite country so far - I have never seen such beautiful scenery in my life. The fall colors were in full force and everything was absolutely breathtaking. We started out trip with a trip to Aviemore, where we got to hang out with some wild reindeer on a mountainside (which was probably the coolest thing I've ever done!). We headed from there to the Loch Ness, to search for the monster and walk around some pretty amazing castle ruins. Then, we headed to the Glencoe Valley, to hike alongside some of Scotland's highest peaks! Following that, we traveled to Oban, an adorable, small coastal town of Scotland - famous for Oban scotch! It was so cute and cozy, I could have stayed there for weeks!! After that, we headed to Edinburgh, where we experienced Scottish city-life and got to see the Edinburgh Castle! Below are some great pictures from the trip!!
Me and my three roommates from the weekend playing with the reindeer!

Bennett and I standing in a beautiful scenic valley!

My three roommates again, this time with out new friend!

This little fellow befriended Annabelle and I! Such a cutie!

View of the mountains (the tops are covered with clouds) from the reindeer center!

Our hike to the mountainside with the reindeer!

This has to be straight out of a movie or something. This is the type of scenery you see on Pinterest, and never actually think you'll see in real life! I guess I've been blessed enough to get to see things like this in real life, so lucky!!


And here are the reindeer!!


I can't even believe I hung out with these guys!!

Just living the reindeer dream.

My first time feeding a reindeer!! The size of his antlers mean that he's the big leader of the reindeer pack, the man in charge! I was both excited and terrified to have him eating from my very hands, which can be easily seen through my facial expression. 

aww and now I'm feeding the baby reindeer!! She was the cutest! and not at all scary!

me and baby reindeer. aww I love this!

Perhaps the best picture of the trip! Bennett and the reindeer were waiting so patiently for me to snap their picture!

Our mountain hostel!! Complete with a fireplace and cozy lodge-type rooms. I loved it!!

The Loch Ness River!! Home to Nessie, the Loch Ness monster!

Isn't it beautiful?

Castle ruins! 

The castle had an amazing view.

This castle has an ideal location: on a river so it can see everyone coming in and out of the area, and on a mountainside, so it cannot get attacked from the back! The view from the lookout tower was truly amazing!

the castle ruins covered a vast area! and how beautiful!

My personal favorite picture from the castle! This is the view from the lookout tower!

Glencoe Valley!

This photo reminds me of Robert Frost's "The Road Not Taken." 

This house was part of the original Glencoe village that inhabited the valley in the 16th and 17th century. In 1692, the Glencoe Massacre occurred in which every single person in the village was slaughtered at the demand of the king. This was one of the few houses that remained.

The house again! I loved the waterfall above!

The Taj Mahal of hostels: queen beds, amazing showers, and home-cooked meals!! Heaven! 

The view from our hostel's front lawn! Amazing!
My and my three roommates in Oban!


A park we stopped at on our way from Oban to Edinburgh. I have no idea where we were or what it was called, but it sure was pretty!

Edinburgh Castle!

Gorgeous view of the city from the top of the castle!

Another amazing view of the city. You can see the ocean if you look far enough! and that hill on the left is Arthur's Seat!

There was a dog cemetery at the castle! It was the cutest thing I've seen in a while, and I definitely had tears in my eyes as I read this and looked onto the little dog headstones. 

The dog cemetery - they had headstones and everything. The headstones said their name, when they lived, and what service they provided! Some even had a cute quote about the dog. It was so beautiful to see that they cared to much about their service dogs back then - I know they are very well cared for today. 

This cute little cafe and restaurant is the birthplace of the Harry Potter saga. J.K. Rowling wrote the first Harry Potter novel here - and parts of others. It was very overwhelming to be sitting in the very place where so much magic and imagination came to life. There was definitely a spark within the restaurant - and my quiche was delish!