Until recently, the seaside town of Largs would not have been a Scottish destination I would have associated with hill-walking. Ice-cream, yes, scenic hiking, not so much. However, I am happy to admit when I am wrong and wanted to share with you a fairly easy hill walk that I discovered which gets top marks for effort to reward ratio in my opinion.
Castle Hill has the best view of the Firth of Clyde that I've come across and a short detour at the start to visit a prehistoric tomb makes this a worthwhile adventure to add to your Largs itinerary.
The walk up Castle Hill is accessed via Douglas Park, a short stroll from the town centre, and when I visited the play-park opposite was full of gorgeous pink cherry blossoms. I couldn't resist standing beneath the floral coated branches while the fragile petals rained down in the wind.
The start of the Castle Hill walk is well signposted once you reach the park but I suggest you follow the path to visit the Haylie Chambered Tomb first.
Discovered in 1772 by James Wilson of Haylie, the remains of 5 bodies were found within. Sadly today all you are likely to find within is rubbish and the tomb does seem pretty unloved considering it is such a fascinating piece of local prehistoric history. However, its unexpected location in a little clearing behind some houses is worth a look.
I took a well worn short cut from the chambered tomb up to the official path for the Castle Hill viewpoint but you can take the path back to the signposted route at the start if you prefer. This is really a walk of two halves as the first stretch is along a path surrounded by patchy grass and scrubby undergrowth and isn't that picturesque. It is also quite steep going in places and I certainly felt my calf muscles working harder than usual.
However, keep checking behind you as the view opens up across the Firth of Clyde and you will get all the encouragement you need to keep going. There are also some benches where you can enjoy the view if you need a little breather.
Competition - Win 2 Access-All-Areas-Money-Can’t-Buy Golden Wristbands for the Edinburgh Whisky Festival!
If you're a fan of whisky or curious to find out more about Scotland's national drink and can make it to Edinburgh on Saturday 17th June then you are going to love my latest competition.
I'm giving away 2 x Access-All-Areas-Money-Can’t-Buy Golden Wristbands for The Edinburgh Whisky Festival to one lucky reader.
I'm sure that I don't have to remind you that Saturday the 17th June is also Father's Day so this prize could make an extra special gift for a very lucky whisky loving dad.
The Edinburgh Whisky Festival is bringing more than 50 whisky producers, makers and bottlers together under one roof on Saturday 17th June, for a one-day celebration of all things liquid gold. As part of their quest to quash the misconceptions around whisky, festival organisers, The Whisky Lounge, are including a special ‘beginners’ area, featuring talks and workshops from industry insiders.
This year, they are upping the fun factor and interactivity levels by adding the whisky creche, which will be hosted by HuffPost UK’s Matt Chambers, as well as cocktail workshops and a ‘Blending Lab’ – where festival-goers can have a go at making their own blended whisky.
More than 150 whiskies will be available to taste at the Festival, which is celebrating its fifth year in Edinburgh. Brands including Bowmore, Macallan, Jameson, Glenlivet and Talisker are among those exhibiting.
The Edinburgh Whisky Festival will provide a laid back, informal environment to break down barriers, unlock myths, educate and excite those who haven’t ever tried whisky or are cautious about where to start
The festival takes place in the Assembly Rooms in George Street, Edinburgh and the winner will be able to choose from two sessions, either 12pm - 4pm or 5pm - 9pm.
Standard entry includes
In addition The Golden Wristband will also provide access to any of the masterclasses and workshops (Blending Lab/Whisky Creche/Cocktail Workshops etc) for free and you will also experience the full VIP treatment as you won't need to queue either.
The Golden Wristbands are not for general sale so the winner really will enjoy a money can't buy experience! One winner will receive 2 Golden Wristbands.
So how can you win this amazing prize?
You can obtain up to 5 competition entries through the Rafflecopter App below. Each option is worth one entry.
Please note all entrants must be over 18 and available to attend the event on 17th June.
One winner will be picked at random via Rafflecopter on Wednesday 14th June and notified via e-mail. The winner can collect their wristbands from the venue on the day of the event.
Please see below for further terms and conditions.
TERMS AND CONDITIONS
All entrants must be over 18 and available to attend the event on Saturday 17th June 2017.
The prize is as stated and no alternatives are available.
The winner will be drawn at random on the closing date of 14th June.
There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition.
This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook, Twitter or any other Social Network.
The winner will be chosen at random by Rafflecopter and notified by email within 24 hours of the closing date.
If the winner cannot be contacted or does not claim the prize within 48 hours of notification, we reserve the right to withdraw the prize from the winner and pick a replacement winner. The prize can be collected in person from the venue on the day of the event.
In Scotland you are surrounded by history wherever you travel in the country and for every popular historical attraction there are dozens of others that remain under the tourist radar. Many of these sites have just as much, if not more, historical significance but receive much less attention for various reasons.
Nestled tightly between a housing estate and the Main Street of the North Ayrshire town of Kilwinning is the unexpected gem of Kilwinning Abbey.
Follow me as I search for the best and most original travel experiences in Scotland.