Haggis

17 March 2024 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Bon appétit Reading Time:  7 minutes

displayed for sale © flickr.com - Chris Brown/cc-by-2.0

displayed for sale © flickr.com – Chris Brown/cc-by-2.0

Haggis (Scottish Gaelic: taigeis) is a savoury pudding containing sheep’s pluck (heart, liver, and lungs), minced with onion, oatmeal, suet, spices, and salt, mixed with stock, and cooked while traditionally encased in the animal’s stomach though now an artificial casing is often used instead. According to the 2001 English edition of the Larousse Gastronomique: “Although its description is not immediately appealing, haggis has an excellent nutty texture and delicious savoury flavour”.   read more…

Islay, Scotland’s whiskey island

20 January 2024 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Bon appétit Reading Time:  6 minutes

Main street of Bowmore © panoramio.com - Martin Cígler/cc-by-sa-3.0

Main street of Bowmore © panoramio.com – Martin Cígler/cc-by-sa-3.0

Islay (Scottish Gaelic: Ìle, Scots: Ila) is the southernmost island of the Inner Hebrides of Scotland. Known as “The Queen of the Hebrides“, it lies in Argyll just south west of Jura and around 40 kilometres (22 nautical miles) north of the Northern Irish coast. The island’s capital is Bowmore where the distinctive round Kilarrow Parish Church and a distillery are located. Port Ellen is the main port.   read more…

Highland Main Line in Scotland

11 January 2024 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Bon voyage Reading Time:  6 minutes

Culloden Viaduct © geograph.org.uk - Peter Moore/cc-by-sa-2.0

Culloden Viaduct © geograph.org.uk – Peter Moore/cc-by-sa-2.0

The Highland Main Line is a railway line in Scotland. It is 118 mi (190 km) long and runs through the central Scottish Highlands, mainly following the route of the A9, and linking a series of small towns and villages with Perth at one end and Inverness at the other. Today, services between Inverness and Edinburgh, Glasgow and London use the line. At Inverness the line connects with the Far North Line, the Aberdeen-Inverness Line and the Kyle of Lochalsh Line. All trains are diesel-powered.   read more…

Unst, the northernmost of the inhabited British Isles

6 January 2024 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  7 minutes

Viking ship, Skibladner © Unstphoto/cc-by-sa-4.0

Viking ship, Skibladner © Unstphoto/cc-by-sa-4.0

Unst (Scots: Unst; Norn: Ønst) is one of the North Isles of the Shetland Islands, Scotland. It is the northernmost of the inhabited British Isles and is the third-largest island in Shetland after Mainland and Yell. It has an area of 46 sq mi (120 km²).   read more…

Portrait: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, a British writer and physician

27 September 2023 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Portrait Reading Time:  6 minutes

Arthur Conan Doyle by Walter Benington, 1914 © RR Auction

Arthur Conan Doyle by Walter Benington, 1914 © RR Auction

Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle KStJ, DL was a British writer and physician. He created the character Sherlock Holmes in 1887 for A Study in Scarlet, the first of four novels and fifty-six short stories about Holmes and Dr. Watson. The Sherlock Holmes stories are milestones in the field of crime fiction.   read more…

Stirling in Scotland

5 September 2023 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  9 minutes

© flickr.com - Stirling Council - John McPake/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – Stirling Council – John McPake/cc-by-2.0

Stirling (Scots: Stirlin; Scottish Gaelic: Sruighlea) is a city in central Scotland, 26 miles (42 km) northeast of Glasgow and 37 miles (60 km) north-west of Edinburgh. The market town, surrounded by rich farmland, grew up connecting the royal citadel, the medieval old town with its merchants and tradesmen, the Old Bridge and the port. Located on the River Forth, Stirling is the administrative centre for the Stirling council area, and is traditionally the county town of Stirlingshire. Proverbially it is the strategically important “Gateway to the Highlands”.   read more…

University of St Andrews in Scotland

1 September 2023 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Universities, Colleges, Academies Reading Time:  6 minutes

© Holger Uwe Schmitt/cc-by-sa-4.0

© Holger Uwe Schmitt/cc-by-sa-4.0

The University of St Andrews (Scots: University o St Andras; Scottish Gaelic: Oilthigh Chill Rìmhinn; abbreviated as St And, from the Latin: Sancti Andreae, in post-nominals) is a public university in St Andrews, Scotland. It is the oldest of the four ancient universities of Scotland and, following the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, the third-oldest university in the English-speaking world. St Andrews was founded in 1413 when the Avignon Antipope Benedict XIII issued a papal bull to a small founding group of Augustinian clergy. Along with the universities of Glasgow, Aberdeen, and Edinburgh, St Andrews was part of the Scottish Enlightenment during the 18th century.   read more…

Theme Week Outer Hebrides – Lewis and Harris

26 August 2023 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  10 minutes

Stornoway © PaulT (Gunther Tschuch)/cc-by-sa-4.0

Stornoway © PaulT (Gunther Tschuch)/cc-by-sa-4.0

Lewis and Harris (Scottish Gaelic: Leòdhas agus Na Hearadh; Scots: Lewis an Harris), or Lewis with Harris, is a single Scottish island in the Outer Hebrides, divided by mountains. It is the largest island in Scotland and the third largest in the British Isles, after Great Britain and the island of Ireland, with an area of 841 square miles (2,178 km²), which is approximately 1% of the area of Great Britain. The northern two-thirds is called [the Isle of] Lewis and the southern third [the Isle of] Harris; each is referred to as if it were a separate island and there are many cultural and linguistic differences between the two. The main town of the island and the most important town in the Outer Hebrides is Stornoway.   read more…

Theme Week Outer Hebrides – Benbecula

25 August 2023 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  8 minutes

Benbecula Beach © geograph.org.uk - Richard Webb/cc-by-sa-2.0

Benbecula Beach © geograph.org.uk – Richard Webb/cc-by-sa-2.0

Benbecula (Scottish Gaelic: Beinn nam Fadhla or Beinn na Faoghla) is an island of the Outer Hebrides in the Atlantic Ocean off the west coast of Scotland. In the 2011 census, it had a resident population of 1,283 with a sizable percentage of Roman Catholics. It is in a zone administered by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar or the Western Isles Council. The island is about 12 kilometres (7 miles) from west to east and a similar distance from north to south. It lies between the islands of North Uist and South Uist and is connected to both by road causeways. Benbecula’s main settlement and administrative centre is Balivanich (Scottish Gaelic: Baile a’ Mhanaich, meaning “Town of the Monk”).   read more…

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