We’ve had a pretty busy start to the 2019 season but it hasn’t been all work and no play. A couple of weeks ago we were lucky to join a trip out to Eileach an Naoimh one of the Garvellachs an archipelago in the firth of Lorne to the south west of Seil.
The weather has been kind to us this month and we had a glorious day for our trip, just as well as we had to make what is known as a “hard landing” from our Seafari RIB ! Everyone made it onto the island even though there was a bit of scrambling over the rocks before we could walk to the first of the ancient sites on the island.
I develop walking pole envy in this type of situation
Eileach an Naoimh is the site of the oldest monastery buildings in Scotland, built in about 542. There are also very well preserved beehive cells, thought to have been occupied by the monks.
inside a beehive cell
The island is linked to St Brendon, St Columba and a grave high above the monastery is said to be that of Eithne, mother of Columba.
looking down at the monastery site from Eithne’s grave
We climbed to the trig point and up to the light beacon, I had a paddle in the inlet which the monks used as a harbour, and we enjoyed a picnic looking out over the sea. We tried to walk around the coast to view the natural arches but even the most intrepid of our group (not me) failed to quite reach them.
Luckily for us all our skipper took us past them on our return journey
A beautiful day out, if you get the chance to visit you should.
Sorry, can’t guarantee the sunshine. X
We’ve had a very busy summer, met lots of lovely guests,
thank you cards and notes from our guest book
cooked many breakfast and baked a whole lot of cake.
Now it’s time to take a breath. The season isn’t quite over there are still guests to greet but change is in the air. Autumn activities are starting on the island, regular classes resuming and the morning walk changes colour every day. We’ve enjoyed a few days of September sunshine (though not today)
It’s time to celebrate birthdays, meet up with friends and family, become tourists ourselves. It’s also time for work, maintenance and redecoration where needed. We will be open on request over the Autumn and Winter period and there’s still lots to enjoy, perhaps Oban Winter Festival in November? The weather may get colder (and wetter) but you’ll get a warm welcome at Sheiling.
Two weeks ago we had our trip down to Kintyre, today and last Monday we stayed a little closer to home and enjoyed what our beautiful neighbouring islands have to offer.
Seil has ferry links to two of the other Slate islands, last week we took the “big” ferry (it takes cars) over to Luing. We weren’t lucky enough to see the dolphins* we’d spotted on our last visit but the view is beautiful even without cetaceans.
We drove up to Cullipool for a walk along the shore and lunch at The Atlantic Islands Centre. Bramble loves it there, not only is she welcome at the centre but there are sooooooo many stones to chase on the beach.
Today we took the little ferry (passengers only) to Easdale our nearer neighbour. It’s a great place for dog walking as there aren’t any cars. We took the paths around the old quarries and climbed to its highest point (not that high, around 38 metres). After that it was back to the friendly Puffer Bar and Restaurant for coffee and a scone. Dogs aren’t allowed in the tearoom but are welcome in the bar, there’s also plenty of seating outside, which is where we enjoyed our drinks today.
So will we get another “Blue Monday” next week? Fingers crossed.
*when I didn’t have my camera
Even though we escaped the worst of the recent storms and wintry weather we haven’t really travelled very far from home recently. So it was nice to have a little day out yesterday.
We headed south down Loch Fyne to the beautiful Kintyre peninsula. We had a quick stop in Tarbert to stretch our (and Bramble’s) legs and then on along the coast towards Campbeltown.
We stopped short of Campbeltown at Glenbarr where Glenbarr Stores has a cafe serving delicious locally sourced food, garden centre and farmshop (as well as the Post Office)
We even got a look at their lovely B&B rooms, it’s nice to see what other B&Bs are like. It would be a great spot to explore what Kintyre has to offer.
We continued south to Campbeltown where you can find the newly restored Picture House , one of the oldest surviving cinemas in the country, next to Campbeltown museum which we’d visited on another trip. We decide not to indulge our inner Paul Mccartney by continuing down to the Mull of Kintyre but headed over to the east side taking the sometimes switchback B road to Saddell with its ancient stones and beautiful beach*
We all enjoyed a walk there, but Bramble most of all.
Kintyre is a fairly long day out from Sheiling BnB but well worth it; or maybe spend more of your time exploring beautiful Argyll and take a few days there too. A road trip to rival the North Coast 500?
*park in the village and walk down past Saddell Castle.
It’s only the 4th of February and some recent sunny days may have turned my head but I think there are signs of Spring in the air. I’m definitely noticing longer days, it’s so nice when it stops being dark by 5pm. On my walk this morning I spotted these pushing their way through the roadside verge.
Soon there’ll be daffodils brightening my way. The view down to the bay was extra beautiful too.
We decided to drive down to Arduaine gardens to see how Spring was looking there.
And I think beautiful is the word?
Then stopped off for a bite of lunch at The Lord of the Isles at Craobh Haven and enjoyed more gorgeous views. It’s dog friendly too.
Back home I was pleased to see these signs of Spring in our garden
and hopefully there’ll be more ready to welcome guests soon.
We’re just back from a short break in sunny Tenerife where the trees were full of oranges and bananas.
It’s been a bit chillier here in Argyll
So I was pleased to find a little reminder of Spanish sunshine in our local deli. *
Seville oranges, perfect for marmalade. So MrS** has been busy chopping, paring, boiling and generally filling the kitchen with delicious smells.
And lots of jars of this.
Which means there’ll be plenty for our guests to enjoy later on in the year.
As long as I don’t do too much “quality control”
*Kitchen Garden, Oban
**MrS(heiling) aka George.
I can’t promise weather like this……
Or the prince/princess of your dreams….
But I can promise……..
A comfortable bed….
……..a delicious breakfast
….. a movie to share..
And perhaps a little extra.
So don’t be shy, give it a try (As I might have “sung” last week )
We’ve been lucky to escape the worst of the winter storms so far but Gertrude and Henry gave us a bit of a buffeting. So it was lovely when the sun peeked out yesterday afternoon and we were able to enjoy a walk more or less upright and without one layer of waterproofs.
oops! need to clean the windows
We climbed up the hill behind the house looked down on the Sound bathed in sunshine.
that’s Sheiling peeking out on on the left hand side
Although on our return we crunched through this…
hailstones on the path
Today dawned brightly and as we needed to make a trip into the town we took Bramble to her favourite beach for a run and then walked over the hill (following the cycle path ) to Dunstaffnage Castle.
inside Dunstaffnage Castle
I spotted some signs of Spring in the ditches,
but Winter will be with us a while yet, there was sleet after lunch. Still it’s beautiful here , whatever the weather.
if we didn’t have rain there wouldn’t be rainbows
Welcome to Sheiling B&B. I hope we’ll be welcoming you in person soon. We’re practising our frying skills, making the final adjustments to the house and hope to be ready for guests mid July 2015.
On our days off we’ve been taking time out to enjoy some of the things you might like to do on your holiday.
Whether you like excitement on the sea or visiting beautiful gardens you’ll find something to entertain you not far from Sheiling. Check out the links.