Wednesday, 11 November 2009

Enchanted Forest, Goblins, Dragons and Nessie?

At the weekend there I did nothing but work. The weekend before that was also spent at work. The one before that however was spent doing something entirely different though.

Louise still has a lot of Scotland to see, so I had booked tickets for us to go to the Enchanted Forest. We decided to make a weekend of it. We went up to stay at my Auntie Susan's, who lives in a wee farmhouse on the shooting estate out the Back of Dunkeld. It's great up there, and I don't visit often enough. There's Heilan' Coo's right on her door step, a Barn Owl in the barn next door,Pheasants running about in front of your car constantly and that's before you meet my Aunties daft and slightly mental dugs, Geordie and Mickey!

As I drove up there were plenty of "Oooh's" and "Aaah's" from the passenger seat. The autumnal colours of Perthshire were as usual fantastic. It was like looking at one of those wee B&Q paint charts with every conceivable shade and hue of yellow through to the deep rustic reds. They don't last long though, and as I sit here and write this they have pretty much all gone to be replaced with some sharp frosts and and ice on my windscreen.

We arrived late, so we had dinner and a few bottles of Vino (Cheers Ross!) and then it was off to bed so we could make the most of our Sunday. After a lazy start (some being lazier than others!) we decided to go for a walk. We crossed over the A9 and parked up in the Hermitage. We followed the gentle tracks through the woods following the river Braan. Its a fantastic place, especially at this time of year. I imagine it would be just as pleasant in the spring and summer too though. It's definitely one to note for those bad weather day's when the mountain summits are clagged in and all you will see up there are your own feet.

It's not just a walk in the trees here. There's plenty to keep your interest up, especially if you were to have kids in tow. There's a picturesque stone bridge and an old Victorian Folly dating from 1758 that overlooks the mighty Braan falls (really impressive when the river is in spate).

Continue on through the colourful trees and you'll find "Ossians cave".

All this was making my belly start to rumble so we went back to the car and made our way to Grandtully. We were in search of a place my Granny and Auntie Susan had both told us about. The Highland Chocolatier! It's magic in there and it almost deserves a day out all of it's own. The Cafe is superb and the Chocolatier is just dangerous if you have a sweet tooth and a credit card. I'll be thinking of it as our "Real Food Cafe of the east"

After refuelling with a "Hot Goblin" each and a "White hot chocolate" to drink, the gear monster in me started to take over. I wanted to head off to Pitlochry early before the shops closed so I could have a poke about in escape route. They carry a good range of Haglofs kit and the staff all know their stuff in there which seems increasingly uncommon these days I'm afraid. My bank manager must've breathed a sigh of relief though when all I came out with was a hand full of Stoats porridge oat bars. We pottered about seeing the sights of Pitlochry for a while and had a pint whilst we wondered why Nessie wasn't up haunting her own loch?? I suppose monsters of the deep need a holiday too sometimes.

It didn't take long for darkness to fall and soon enough it was time for the main event. We got on the coach at the Fishers Hotel and 5 minutes later we were wandering through the Enchanted Forest. It's a wondrous show of light and sound set in Faskally Woods, sometimes eerie but always spectacular.

This year the theme was "Scottish Myths and Legends", we met Tam O'Shanter, The witches from "The Scottish Play", the Pictish Dundee Dragon, The Dunmore Faeries and many more.

It's amazing how some coloured lights can really transform the forest into something where the imagination can run riot...sometimes I really do wish I was 5 years old again!


  1. "sometimes I really do wish I was 5 years old again!" ha ha you bloody well are you! ;-)

  2. that looks like a right hoot and the autumn colours are brilliant! :)

  3. Oi Bassnett! I'm not the only one am I? ;o)

    Dave, it definitely is a hoot. Perthshire really is beautiful during the autumn months.


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