1998 was the last time I went to the Highlands of Scotland. That was a memorable trip for different reasons but this time I just wanted a short break for a few days. I decided to head to Pitlochry, only an hour and a half by train from Edinburgh. What I got was a great mixture of stunning nature, great music and lovely people.
The weather wasn’t very hospitable the evening I arrived there. But one thing I love about travelling is the first initial feeling that you get from a new place. Sometimes you can be undecided whether you like the first impressions or not, other times it’s definitely a case of “God, get me out of here” but within a few minutes of walking through Pitlochry I thought to myself “Ooh, I like it here”. The grey stone buildings that are prominent in the town were a common feature apparently in the Victorian times. They add a certain character to the town though and I liked them. Down one side of the street was a black, wrought iron, old-style Victorian canopy and there was a good mixture of pubs, gift/retail shops and cafes. What I liked most about it though was the sound of the roaring Moulin Burn (Scottish word for stream) in various spots throughout the town.
My Bed and Breakfast was ten minutes walk outside the town and I found it quite easily. I left it quite late actually to book accommodation and found what seemed to be the only B & B that had space on a Saturday night. This B & B didn’t have a website and wasn’t on the internet, which is a bit strange these days, but I just had to hope that it would be ok. The Festival Theatre in Pitlochry had events on both Friday and Saturday nights that weekend so that’s why it was difficult to find affordable accommodation.
It was coming up to 8pm and I was looking forward to trying out some good food. MacKays Pub on the main street was where I plumped for in the end, mostly because of the sound of the band who were playing by the window. They were very good and Mackays turned out to be a good choice. It was a Friday night and the bar was already full but I managed to find a table and order some food just before the kitchen closed at 9pm. I had the roasted salmon, with haggis crusted mash, on a bed of cabbage with sloe gin jus. Well it was one of the tastiest meals I’ve had in a long time. I was very impressed and it was great to have the accompaniment of a good band called K2, who played songs from the ‘70s to the ‘90s. Overall it was a very good start to the weekend.