From Aberlady to Gosford Sands….

A mostly grey day for us and still that rather irritating wind! Ah well, onwards! Aiming to pick up where we left off yesterday we drove to the outskirts of Aberlady, intending to continue our beach walk – however…

What wasn’t apparent when we were on Aberlady Beach yesterday was that the inner part of the bay is largely a sandy mud inlet with the Peffer Burn running across and along the high tide line, making it difficult to get out onto the beach proper.

Though we did get there by walking along past Kilspindie Golf Club to Aberlady Point, where we managed to cross the burn onto the sand.

There was absolutely no one about so Poppydog was soon a little dot in the distance, leaving a cross cross of footsteps as she went.

The sand is not as nice as it was on the other side of the bay, coarser and a bit muddy in places and the wind was battering us head on.

We stuck with it, walking around Craigelaw Point and were rewarded with the magical sight of about 15 seals basking in the sunshine on the beach, we didn’t go any closer and I made sure Poppydog was entertained chasing balls well away from them – but how magical?

And then we found our own little island – Green Craig From where I could keep an eye on the seals…

And Poppydog could just run herself ragged as again this beach (Craig Beach?) is empty!

We pressed on a bit further and onto Gosford Sands.

Another large expanse of sand though again a bit muddy in places. By now, however I have had enough of this wind and so we walked back inland and completed our 5.5 mile walk along the John Muir Trail.

Two thoughts of the day:

So many beaches here are unnamed so I am using a little poetic license in naming them based on what they are near!

Our little island was only about 10m by 2m and surrounded by sand but it did feel like a little adventure!

A stunning walk along the shore to Gullane….

At last the wind seems to be letting up and a mostly sunny day was in store for us. With the sun on our faces we wandered down to Broad Sands, looking breathtakingly beautiful at low tide…..

Today we turned left and soon popped around the headland to Longskelly Beach which was again deserted.

At the end of this beach we ventured up onto the dunes to get around the Weaklaw Rocks and clambered down (the last few metres with the assistance of a rope!) onto this amazing expanse of sand….

Eyebroughy Beach, backed by a small bank of pebbles and dunes and a golf course beyond that was completely empty.

Poppydog had an absolute ball!

And I am completely blown away by the absolute beauty and the fact that no one else is on it?

Part way along the beach is this magnificent cairn…

Though quite what it marks with its propellor on the seaward side, remains a mystery as there was no accompanying plaque.

If we had been a bit earlier the tide goes out far enough to allow you to walk to Eyeboughy Island briefly so maybe another day.

Though Fidra clearly always remains an island!

Around the next corner lies yet another long sandy beach – Muirfield Beach (as it is backed by part of Muirfield Golf Course!) with what looks like some pretty ominous clouds just beyond!

A stunning beach.

We press on (regardless) towards the black clouds, dipping down onto one of the smaller coves at Black Rocks.

And then the black clouds gave up their burden as we looked across at Gullane Bay – ah well we will come back another day to see it properly!

At this point we made our way inland to follow the John Muir Way to complete this 8.5 mile walk back to site and the rain kept us company most of the way – how sweet!

Two thoughts of the day:

Steam drying in the sunshine could be a new trend?

This area is certainly on my list of beautiful places – these beaches are quite incredible.

Oh my, our first island experience on Great Cumbrae…..

A cloudy start to the day but still warm and as the afternoon arrived the sun came with it! Today we are having our first experience of an Island visit by ferry – we are off on the 7 minute crossing from Largs to Great Cumbrae.

And what a happy little journey it was – first on and first off!

We decided to take an anti-clockwise journey using the coastal road which hugs the shore all the way round and we very soon came across our first beach – White Bay.

The road is mostly a wide single track road with plenty of passing places and little nooks to park up in on the way. There were few cars on the road but plenty of bikes and little scooters, both of which are available to hire in a number of places, so stopping and starting to take photos or explore further was never a problem. Our first stop was appropriately Wine Bay (not that I had any then but I am now!) a mostly stony beach though the tide is fully in.

We took the opportunity to have a play and a paddle as apart from a fairly constant stream of cyclists along the road there was no one about.

It really is absolutely magical, clear, warmish waters, misty island views (Bute), birdsong, the occasional chatter of passing cyclists – what a pity I didn’t bring a tent or we would have been tempted to stay awhile!

We did eventually move on to Little Skate Bay and just around the corner the larger and sandier Bell Bay.

Finding ourselves a little sandy nook for another paddle and wonder!

A short hop to Fintry Bay…

A stony beach, with a popular picnic spot on the grass above and also home to a very busy cafe with atleast 50 bikes abandoned outside!

And a particularly well loved (and indeed much appreciated) Toilet block.

A bit further along the road was this rather lovely memorial to those lost during the wars with no known graves.

Beyond which we discovered this little gem – Sheriffs Port Beach.

Here we spent a good while paddling in the shallows, watching the world go by and of course chasing stones.

It was nearly 5pm by the time we reached Millport, with the tide well on its way out, we wandered through the town? which was buzzing with people enjoying the sunshine, picking up or dropping off hired bikes and scooters, eating in the many street cafes or wandering along the promenade gazing at the fabulous views beyond the towns plentiful beaches – fabulous place to live – I wonder what it would be like to retire here? From the pretty little harbour…

Along the lively sandy main beach – Newtown Bay.

To the mostly deserted sandy Kames Bay…

And all the way around the crescent shaped beach to view the town from the other side.

One more beach to see – Ballochmartin Bay.

Then it was time to catch the ferry home Two thoughts of the day:

What a fabulous day we have had – up there with my favourites.

We will definitely return to visit as many if the other islands as we can – maybe with a tent?