Thursday, June 14, 2012

Day 938: Armadale, Ferry, Gondola, Nevis Range, Fort William, Shopping & More!

Early in the morning, we set off for Armadale from where we were to take a ferry to Mallaig on the main island and then onward to our next destination, Fort William. Isle of Skye can be accessed either via road (the huge bridge at Kyle of Lochalsh) or ferries from different locations. GIven that we took the bridge one way, we decided to take the ferry on our way out.

Our hostess at the B&B told us that even if the ferry timings are such that we have to wait for an hour or so, Armadale is a great place to chill out because it has plenty of cafes and shops and there's a lot to do. Upon reaching Armadale, we realized that...sure, there are cafes and shops - like a grand total of 2 each, that too flung across a few 100 metres between them. You really gotta realize that the Scottish standard of "plenty" is not necessarily something someone from Singapore can relate to. Anyway we made use of the plenty of shops and went on with a little shopping.

At Armadale, near the ferry terminal 

Soon it was time for the ferry. It took all the cars and vans in, and all the passengers get out of the vehicles and move to the decks during the journey. So we made our way to decks and that was lovely as we could enjoy the breeze and the views. But of course, it got too cold for me very soon, so we got some hot chocolate from the cafe inside the ferry and sat out on the deck once again to enjoy the lovely ride.
On the ferry from Armadale to Mallaig 

The journey from Malliag to Fort William was eventless and we made our way straight to the Nevis Range in Fort Williams. Nevis range of mountains houses the tallest peak in Scotland called the Ben Nevis and the area is a popular ski resort in winter. We took a ride up to the range on a gondola and spent some time on the very, very, very gorgeous mountains. Both of us simply sat on a bench and took in the views around as much as possible. It was definitely one of the highlights of the trip!

 Gondola ride up the Nevis range 

 The bench at the Nevis range 

Nevis range 

We had our lunch from the restaurant on top of the range and then made our way to our B&B. Upon reaching the B&B, we realized that there was some confusion on the bookings and that they had booked us for July 14th instead of June! We thought we would be totally stranded but the hostess immediately called up her brother's B&B just next door and arranged a front-facing (i.e. facing the lake) huge room there for us. She apologized profusely and offered us fruit scones. But the most fun part was how she kept pronouncing the name of her brother's B&B - "Fassferrrrrn"! The hubby was thoroughly amused and kept asking her the name and she would go...."Fassferrrrrn"!

So we went off to "Fassferrrrrn", got a royal welcome there, were taken for a tour of their two rooms facing the lake and were given option of chosing the one we want. We picked a very big room, the biggest one we had been in so far, which was tastefully decorated in a rich deep red.
View from our room at "Fassferrrrn"

After checking in and freshening up, we set off to explore Fort William. The city centre was just a short walking distance. It was terribly cold but we walked there anyway, only to realize that "city centre" doesn't really have many vehicles or people. By 5:30pm there were only two shops open and we actually managed to shop from both of them!
On the streets of Fort William

Successfully looking like an eskimo in Fort William

Then we got ourselves some Indian food at this Indian-Thai place called Cafe Mango, rushed back in the cold once again to the B&B and tucked into our beds, full of memories of the lovely Nevis range!

62 more to go. 

1 comment:

  1. haha what a coincidence :) i ate at cafe mango too, in early may, right after we had climbed ben nevis and felt like we had earned ourselves a hearty meal!