Today, we drove for several hours, stopping at many places along the way. I will skip all of the detail for today, and instead just give you the basics of where we went, and the photos.
From Dundee, we headed south for about 20 miles to St. Andrews, home of golf and a beautiful town complete with a university, ruined castle (1300 – mid 1500s), and ruined cathedral (from 1158). We also ate lunch where “Wills” and Kate met for coffee…if you care about that sort of thing.
Then, a one hour + drive to Dunfermline, a cute historic city which is known for its abbey. As the church came into view we were immediately impressed…not just by its look, but by its location right in the city center. It had a graveyard which we walked through a bit, and then popped into the church. Surprisingly, we entered into a modern church, complete with gift shop and two ladies telling us admission was free. I knew there was something in this city that was covered by our explorer pass, so we wandered through quickly. The main relic (?) of note here is that a famous Scot, Robert the Bruce, is buried under the altar.
We exited, a bit disappointed, and I began to wander through the city of tombstones…many from the early 1700s. Then, Kellie got my attention from a distance, and motioned to come to her. By the time I reached her spot, she was gone, but I saw another entrance…to the half of the church that isn’t renovated. I walked inside, and I believe this is truly the first time in my life my jaw dropped open in awe. It was like walking into an untouched church that had been sealed for centuries. The abbey dates to the 11th and 12 centuries!
Next to this church, was a ruined abbey; I believe it was sacked in 1560. But much of the structure remains, entry tower, refractory, kitchen,…. and I really admired seeing such old stone architecture right in front of my eyes.
You can read of all the famous births and burials at this church at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunfermline_Abbey
Tomorrow: sleeping in late, and a leisurely stroll along the western coast. White sandy beaches, and a 1 minute ferry ride that cost ten dollars.