When a friend found Discovery Bicycle Tours’ trip through Scotland and suggested I join her, my only hesitation was hoping that my husband wouldn’t mind. We’ve always talked about visiting Scotland – an ancestral homeland for his family – and I would be visiting it without him. He didn’t mind (too much) and soon I was booking the tour and plane tickets. This would be 2015’s grandest adventure!
We arrived in Glasgow yesterday after a mostly sleepless night on the plane. A nearly two hour shuttle ride brought us to the impressive Ballathie House in Perthshire near the village of Murthly. The hotel is in a former manor, surrounded by impressive an old growth forest and is home to amazing dining. We were treated to a simple and tasty lunch over which we received our basic orientation and went over the map of our first ride – an easy 13.4 miles (21.4 km). This short ride got us familiar with the bikes provided for the tour and with riding on the left side of the road.
The ride was a beautiful introduction to Scotland. Taking us through the village of Murthly and through the surrounding rolling farmland, we saw herds of sheep, cows, horses, and a train track framed by purple wild foxglove. After a short break at the Byres of Murthly, we headed back to the hotel, arriving before it started to rain.
After a delicious 4-course dinner and a glass of single malt whiskey, I could barely keep my eyes open. I fell into bed and was sound asleep by 10pm, recharging for the over 42 mile ride planned in the morning.
Map Of Our Ride: