Armin's World Tour of Scotland

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Facts of the Day:
Date: 10/July/2002
From: Port Charlotte
Via: Colonsay, Oronsay
To: Port Charlotte
Miles: 32 (land, by car), 30 (nautical, by ferry), 10 (land, by foot)
Midges: 5 (Estimate), but 3000 flies
Weather: Sunny and warm
Mood: Fantastic

Picture of the ferryAfter discovering the eastern part of Islay it was time to go west this time. On Wednesdays you have the opportunity of a day trip from Islay to the Isle of Colonsay, 15 nautical miles west of Islay. The ferry leaves Islay late in the morning and arrives on Colonsay around lunch before continuing to Oban. It then returns in the evening, giving you approximately 5-6 hours on Colonsay. You have three options for this time:Picture of the road to Oronsay Take a bus around the island (didn't do that), walk to Colonsay House and on to Kiloran Bay (which I did on my previous visit)Picture of The Strand or if low tide is at the right time walk over The Strand to the Isle of Oronsay (which I did). The weather turned out to be very nice, sunny and warm. The two to three mile walk through the hills to the The Strand was very nice. The were no midges but for some reason lots of flies. After about an hour I reached The Strand, a mile of tidal mud flats acting as a causeway between Colonsay and Oronsay during low tide. Luckily it was low tide so I was able to walk over to Oronsay for a quick visit to the ruins of the Priory.Picture of the priory on Oronsay Legend links the priory to St Columba, who made his first landfall on Oronsay after leaving Ireland before moving on to Iona.Picture of the cross at Oronsay The buildings date back to the fifteeth century though, when the Augustinian Priory was built by the Lords of the Isles. The highlight is Oronsay Cross, carved by some of the most highly skilled craftsmen of their time. Unfortunately I only had time to take a few picture before having to head back to ensure I was able to cross The Strand with the tide starting to come in again. I made it without any big problems, although I was glad about my waterproof boots. Having returned to Scalasaig I had a short break at the Colonsay Hotel before heading up to the monument. From here you have a very nice view to Islay and Jura to the east.Picture of the view east To the north you can make out the Isle of Mull on the horizon. As you can see the ferry returning from Oban this is a good place to go before returning to the ferry terminal for the return to Islay. During the return journey you get a few good views of the Paps of Jura and Rhuvaal Lighthouse on Islay. The day concluded with a nice dinner of Jura venison at the hotel restaurant.Picture of the view northPicture of the Paps of Jura

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