Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Trip to Scotland

After a year of planning, our trip to Scotland is less than a month away. I've made a packing list hoping to bring enough but not too much. I don't love being weighed down with luggage. If my list proves to be optimal I will post it here.

Places to stay in Edinburgh and the Highlands booked and confirmed and our rental car confirmed. Once again we used authenticireland.com and Maggie to book our trip since she did such a great job for us when we went to Ireland.

Oops, there were a couple of wrinkles in all of this meticulous planning.

I sent an email to The Sheiling in Ullapool inquiring about ferries. I received an email back from the innkeepers telling me they had decided to go on a trip to the south so the Sheiling had transferred our reservation to another guest house. What??? I'm certainly happy I contacted them. They had apparently outbooked us to the guesthouse next door without making certain our travel agent knew about it. Oh and in case you were wondering; the ferries run year-round.

All is well we are booked into a very nice place in Ullapool, the Eilean Donan.

The next wrinkle was our booking at Ben Tianavaig in Portree on the Isle of Skye. This one really disappointed me since I'd been chatting a bit with them on their Facebook page and was looking forward to staying there.
They sent a notification to our travel agent that they had decided to no longer take 3rd party bookings. This is fine but did they have to cancel all the 3rd party bookings already confirmed?

Once again Maggie found us a nice place, Viewfield House on Skye within a 10 minute walk to the center of Portree.

Looking through Rick Steves Scotland I found a very nice and highly recommended restaurant on Skye. It's called Three Chimneys, they only have 16 tables and book up far in advance. We've booked a reservation and are looking forward to an amazing meal. The restaurant is about 26 miles from where we will be staying in Portree.

I've added Verizon's TravelPass to my phone so we'll have international coverage while using our domestic plan in Scotland. Yippee! It costs $10 a day if you use it. If we don't need data or only use wireless we won't have to pay for that day. This should be much better than 2014 in Ireland when we were buying data 25MB at a time and kept running out. Plus it stays on your phone and only activates when you're in another country.