A train ride to Inverness, a couple of hours clattering across Inverness' cobbled streets with my luggage, and a long busride later, and I'm away from the glamour of the Scottish cities and deep into the Highlands. Ullapool is a small village on the northwest coast of Scotland, in the Highlands but also easily reached by bus from Inverness. I chose it because it seemed like a place to walk around and take in scenery while also having the basic amenities and some places to hide out and sketch the view in case the day should turn wet. Most of the Highlands require a car, and Ullapool seemed like a perfect solution for me. Getting off the bus, immediately I knew I had made the right decision. Ullapool was dramatically beautiful, even in the cool, wet weather.
My bus came in a little early and I started to walk towards the b&b, when the b&b owner actually came and found me in her car and gave me a lift and an incidental quick tour of the village, pointing out everything I might want to know about during my stay - book stores, restaurants, an art gallery, and so on. Alice was really kind and helpful, and arriving at Wingfold B&B was a relief after a long trip. They have one of the few single rooms in Ullapool (in most cases, a solo traveler has to either take a hostel bed or pay for double occupancy), which the owner calls "The Lilac Room" and decorates accordingly. It was cozy and sweet and so good to come home to.
Immediately I went out to explore the main area of town, and sketched along the harbour area. The harbour actually looks into Loch Broom, not to sea, which confused me at first. ≈ ...and I had dinner at the Ferry Boat Inn. The scampi was luscious.
I was still deeply sad to have left Glasgow and Edinburgh, but it was deeply wonderful to be in Ullapool. Even in poor weather, which seemed to be arriving, I looked forward to sketching this amazing place.