Summer officially arrived in the Highlands today, it was hot and sunny! Unfortunately we had a delayed start to our touring as firstly we lost all the lights in the back of the van last night so Andy had a busy hour trying to solve the problem, which thankfully he did. It ended up that we had a dodgy fuse that sometimes made a connection and sometimes didn’t. After replacing the fuse all seems good and it was off to Tesco in Wick to use the WiFi so we could find a vets, plus I managed to publish one blog post. Luckily the vets was almost next door to Tesco and they saw Finn almost immediately. It is nothing serious, just an eye infection so we have some drops that should sort him out.
Our first sightseeing stop was a detour off the route to Noss Head. There is quite a large car park here where you can stop overnight if you wish. We did the short walk from the car park to the ruins of Castle Sinclair Girnigoe which was good fun to have a wander around with some impressive cliffs. The first castle on the site dates back to the 14th century but what you can see today is mainly from the 1600’s.
From one Head we got back on the official NC500 and drive north up to Duncansby Head to have a look at the Stacks of Duncansby. The largest stack is over 60m high and you can get a good view by following the path from the car park to the viewpoint.
It is a short hop along the coast from Duncansby Head to John o’Groats to have the obligatory photo at the signpost. This is definitely a stop for the tour buses and Motorhomes. The car park was rammed.
It was then time to head off to find an overnight spot. We ended up in Castletown in the car park next to the Castlehill Heritage Centre at one end of Dunnet Beach. We have an fantastic view looking over to Dunnet Head, which will be our first stop tomorrow. Castletown itself used to have a thriving flagstone industry in the early 1900’s but now there is just ruined cottages where the workers would have lived and lots of flagstones on the beach.
Miles driven – 55
Miles walked – 6.5
Weather – cloudy morning, hot and sunny afternoon and evening