Thursday, April 2, 2015

Culloden Battlefield, Fort George #VisitScotland #goaheadtours #Inverness #Outlander_Starz



Tuesday morning March 24-had a wonderful restful sleep. We had to push the twin beds together but the mattresses were comfortable and despite being above the train station depot, the room was very quiet. The stall shower was a bit of a challenge. I think phone booths maybe bigger, I had to really think before bending down to get my shampoo and soap, but I survived. Breakfast at The Royal Highland Hotel was yummy. Tried the Blood pudding and Haggis, a wedge of brie and some homemade bread, a wee bit of bacon and hash browns too.

Today's adventure was to Culloden Battlefield and Visitor Centre. Again, as an Outlander Fan, I knew this was the last stand for the Jacobites but I had no idea just how horrible this battle was; so many bad decisions led to a horrendous defeat for Bonnie Prince Charlie on April 16, 1746. In little over one hour, some 1200 Highlanders died that day and were buried in mass graves.
The Duke of Cumberland, son of the reigning king George II, and leader of the Hanoverian Army earned the nickname "Butcher" for his brutal treatment of the defeated Jacobites. The battle sounded the death knell for the Clan system and the horrors of The Clearance soon followed.

After this somber visit we headed next to Fort George and The Highlanders' Museum.
From the Fort George website: Following the 1746 defeat at Culloden of Bonnie Prince Charlie, George II created the ultimate defence against further Jacobite unrest. The result, Fort George, is the mightiest artillery fortification in Britain, if not Europe.

Its garrison buildings, artillery defences bristling with cannon, and superb collection of arms - including bayoneted muskets, pikes, swords and ammunition pouches - provide a fascinating insight into 18th century military life.


We had a light lunch at the cafe of Scotch broth and bread. Then stopped at the gift shop where Jay purchased a bottle of Loch Ness beer.

Back to Inverness with some time before dinner, we decided to make a pilgrimage to the Black Isle Brewery. We split the cost of 20 pounds round trip taxi with Libby and Robert.

From their website: "Based near Inverness, the capital of the Highlands of Scotland, it is our beautiful, unspoilt, unpolluted, wild, and not a little bit wet highland home - and we love it! We have our own organic farm where we grow malting barley for brewing. We even have our own brewery house cow, called Molly, who eats the malt from the brewery mash tun and gives us 20 pints of fresh creamy milk every day.

The Black Isle is famous for the quality of its malting barley and it was here on our farm, at Allangrange, that Sir Roderick Mackenzie recorded, in the Statistical Account of 1790, that the land was first cultivated for growing barley because it was found to be of "superior quality for the brewer and distiller." Thanks Rod!

We started off brewing in a bucket in a shed, in 1998, and basically the bucket has just got bigger. Today we can brew up to 10,000 litres a day packaged in bottles, casks and kegs. We ship beer all over Scotland and the UK, and around the world from Sweden to Japan.

We live, work and brew delicious organic beer at Allangrange, translated from the Gaelic as "a fertile field of corn." We see ourselves and what we do, as a natural link between our traditional cultural heritage and the contemporary craft beer world."

We had a nice little tour of the place from Andre (an Italian engineer) and a tasting of three of their organic beers. To kill time waiting for the taxi to return, the guys tried a few beers and the ladies tried some organic ice cream that they also sell in their gift shop. Jay had two Organic Porters and bought some Porter and Oatmeal Stout to go. I woofed down a small tub of Honey-combed Vanilla ice cream-oh boy was that good.

Loaded with some yummy beers we head back to Inverness and dinner at The Mustard Seed but not before an evening River Walk.

At The Mustard Seed we started our meal with a smoked haddock and spinach frittata for me and bruschetta for Jay. He had the chicken special and I had Ocean Trout with an amazing sauce. Great last dinner in Inverness,

More images: http://photosbynanci.smugmug.com/Scotland-2015/Inverness/Culloden-Fort-George-Day-6

Next up: Loch Ness Museum, the town of Drumnadrochit, Urquhart Castle, the Commando Memorial and Fort William

Edinburgh and the Castles of Scotland
Day 6 March 24 Culloden Visitor Centre, Fort George, Black Island Brewing Co., River Walk
Go Ahead Tours
March 19-30, 2015
Copyright ©2015 Nancy Nutile-McMenemy
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