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Clare
Clare

Day 4: Isle of Mull

It looked like it had been raining overnight when we woke up in our expensive hotel this morning. The room definitely wasn't up to much, but the view from the window was good; we could see the port of Craignure where we'd arrived last night.

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Breakfast was included in the price of our room, because I'd got some sort of deal by using the booking.com app. When I'd been looking at booking online originally, breakfast was going to cost an extra £25 each per person :o Despite the fact we hadn't had to pay that, we definitely wanted to make the most of it this morning.

It did turn out to be quite a posh breakfast offering. We could have started with oysters if we'd wanted to! Instead we opted for a breakfast platter as our first course; I had the pastry platter (which consisted of a pain au chocolat, a cinnamon whirl and a croissant!), while Tim had the cold cuts platter (which consisted of ham, cheese and salami with toast). That was only the first course and was followed by a full Scottish breakfast. I opted out of having haggis with mine, though Tim was brave enough to try it. I was happy to get potato scone with mine :)

We may not have eaten £25 worth of food but we definitely ate enough that we weren't going to need any lunch! We checked out of the hotel and drove a few miles down the road in the direction of Craignure.

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Our first stop for the day was Duart Castle, which I had seen from the ferry yesterday evening.

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We didn't want to actually go into the castle, which at £8 each seemed rather expensive, but I'd read on the internet that you could park for free and there were a number of marked coastal trails.  We followed the first path we found, which led us into some woodland.

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However, after two minutes it led us out of the woodland and back to where we'd started! 

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After consulting the map, we eventually found a path towards the coast.

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The weather was starting to improve and there were some really lovely views.

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Describing the grounds as having coastal trails turned out to have been a bit ambitious, but we were able to stroll down to the beach.

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There weren't exactly marked paths, but we wandered around and enjoyed the views.

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From down here there was a good view back up towards the castle too. It looked a bit more impressive from this angle than it had from the car park.

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It seems like they are doing some work on it; there was quite a lot of scaffolding.

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Duart Castle definitely isn't somewhere to come for a long hike, but it was a nice place to come and stretch our legs :)

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From the castle we drove about 25 miles north across the island in the direction of Tobermory. We were looking for a Forestry Commission car park called Aros Park where I was also hoping we could do a short walk. We parked and after walking into the forest for two minutes, found ourselves at a viewing gallery for this enormous waterfall :o 

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From the viewing platform there were some lovely views out across the coast too.

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We followed a marked waterfall trail through the forest...

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...and soon found ourselves at the bottom of the falls.

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It turns out those were the Upper Falls and when we continued walking along the trail...

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...we eventually found the Lower Falls too :)

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From the bottom of the Lower Falls we could see out across the sea to Tobermory.

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It's famous for the colourful houses along its sea front, so I was excited to just about be able to make them out :) 

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We followed another path round the corner, towards an old pier. From here we had a slightly better view.

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We started heading back to the car park, but took a detour when we saw another trail signposted around a small lake.

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It was pretty and we had a nice stroll around it...

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...before climbing back up to the Upper Falls.

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Then we got back in the car and drove another 5 miles or so past Tobermory, to a place called Glengorm Castle. The castle there isn't open to the public, but there's a coffee shop and it's possible to walk around the grounds.

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The walk instructions we were following took us along a grassy path below the castle.

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It didn't take long before we had some amazing views of the coast.

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The weather had definitely picked up now and I may have been overly cautious in bringing my coat on this walk :D

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Once we'd walked for a while we had a view back up towards the castle itself.

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The path continued around the corner...

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...and we had a view towards three standing stones.

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From there we walked through some fields of sheep...

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...and I was really glad that we didn't have to walk through the adjacent field of cows!

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They had some really big horns :o 

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Once we had walked through the fields, the path began leading us down towards the sea.

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It was really pretty here in the sunshine :)

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There was supposed to be an ancient fortress here somewhere, but we didn't start climbing up the rocks to explore.

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I had initially expected this walk to be circular, but now it was clear that it wasn't.

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We turned around and started walking back the way we had come.

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Soon Glengorm Castle came into sight again on the horizon.

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Once we got back to the castle we visited the coffee shop, where we enjoyed some ice cream and iced coffee. After the torrential rain yesterday it was a surprise to be able to sit outside in the sunshine with ice cream :) Then it was back in the car to drive a few miles back down the road to Tobermory.

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There's a free car park on the outskirts of Tobermory and from there we had some great views of the colourful main street.

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It was rather sunny, hence the squinting :D 

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It's a really beautiful little town :)

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Our plan was to walk along the main street to the Co-op.

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We found it without any difficulty, though had to queue for 10 minutes or so to get in. They are taking social distancing more seriously in Scotland at the moment, so there was a limit to how many people were allowed into the store at any one time. It wasn't the end of the world waiting with views like this though :)

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Once we'd stocked up on some mince and chicken, we had a drive of another 5 miles or so down the road to checking into the cottage where we're staying for the next few days.

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It's a lot more spacious than the hotel room we had last night! We've got a kitchen...

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... a rather colourful living room...

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...and a choice of two bedrooms.

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There's also a little garden with some beautiful views out across the sea :) 

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First impressions of the Isle of Mull today have been really good and it seems like this is going to be a really lovely place to stay :) 




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