Sunday, 25 May 2014

The Kingdom of Fife

We started off the day with no real plan in mind.  Before heading off down the road in the car we got out the map and saw there was a national trust property not far away.  It had a walled garden so we decided to go visit.

On the way we saw a sign to a cheese shop called St Andrews Farmhouse Cheese Factory.  A quick detour and we were at their door to check it out.  It was a dairy farm and the lady of the house was in charge of cheese production.  They had a very nice cafe and some goodies for sale too.  We had a coffee and a chat with the owner, buying a piece of cheese to take with us.

From there we went on to our original destination, Kellie Castle.  The castle itself wasn't open until 12.30pm but what we really wanted to look at was the walled garden.  It was just lovely.  We thoroughly enjoyed strolling around the garden and planning what we'd do with our own garden when we get home.

Sitting back in the car we had a look at where we could go next.  The National Trust lady at Kellie Castle had given us a booklet of NT properties in Scotland.  There was one at Culross, on the other side of the region called the Kingdom of Fife.  Off we went.

Culross is a quaint little village, looking like time forgot it.  Many of the streets are cobbled and the houses (many of them 16th and 17th century) look like they belong on a movie set.  The NT property is Culross Palace, dating from 1597.  We spent the entire afternoon there beginning with lunch of soup and a sandwich at Bessie's Tearoom.  We explored the palace and the stunning terraced gardens.  We had a lovely chat with a guide in one of the palace rooms.  She enjoyed talking to us about the Scots accent. 

There was a guided town tour just as we finished looking at the palace so we went along for that too.  The guide was a fountain of interesting information.  A noisy bus load of tourists with their kilt wearing guide bustled past.  We looked inside what used to be the court house. It had ceilings that were ornately painted but extremely faded.  We also saw inside one of the houses.  The ceilings in this building had been painted as they originally had been.  What a great afternoon it was.

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