meandering :: down by the harbour

It was bitterly cold on Thursday with a capital B. We poked our heads out of the caravan door and quickly retreated back inside. We could see snow on the distant hills and the civil engineer confirmed that he had driven through snow in Dumfries on his way to us. It was a quick meeting with him – too cold to stand outside for long discussing the burn banking and what we might do to stop further erosion. We talked quickly and once he had gone I did a quick turn around the garden to see if there was any part of it sheltered from the howling wind passing through…. but it seemed to be circulating all around the cottage from every direction and so it was declared a definite no gardening day. 

So instead we gave in and went out.  At least it was toastie warm in the car. We packed a flask of soup and bread roll and decided to drive around the bay to the Machars across the water from us. 

We took the scenic coast road round to Stairhaven and ate our lunch in the picnic area looking out across the sea.  The place was deserted and peaceful. Wonderful. We then drove on further into Port William.  Anyone who has been there will know it is quite a cold place anyway by the harbour so it didn’t seem quite the time to stop for a stroll.  We drove on through Monreith and Glasserton and at the crossroads chose the windy road down to the Isle of Whithorn and parked by the little harbour. 

I don’t ever remember seeing it without water and the boats bobbing up and down but yesterday the tide was well out and all the boats quite still like they were sleeping. It felt warm sitting in the sun so we braved the elements and went for a stroll around the village.  The wind had dropped a little by now so it seemed a shame to have come so far and not to have a walk around. There were plenty of bright little planters dotted around filled with a wonderful mix of tulips. A good use of an old boat. I have shown pictures of this village before but I can never capture too many photos here and of course the light is always different. For anyone wanting to see more pictures of the Isle of Whithorn click here.

The cute little Tower House.

We decided against a walk to St Ninian’s Cave this time – much better on a warm day.

There has been a big problem in the area with overnighters sleeping in laybys and everywhere you go there are signs saying no overnight parking. Many of the grassy parking areas don’t have any facilities or they have been closed due to lockdown and the virus so people without their own facilities on board have been resorting to using bottles and crisp bags…..I won’t go into detail……but many volunteers have spent an afternoon clearing up this mess and picking up a mountain of rubbish.

We noticed many of the houses around the harbour have changed hands since we last came and have been spruced up a bit by their new owners; a lick of paint, a house name sign and a pot of bay or olive trees on the doorstep seemed to be the norm. I much prefer the properties to be done up sympathetically and not over done or as I would say ‘done in’ or done to death. The character of the village would disappear if it becomes too gentrifeid by comers in with too much money. Many of the wee country cottages are now being extended and turned into monstrosity mansions and look quite out of place in the countryside.

I do like a bit of dilapidated and shabby though (even without the chic) – it has a kind of charm.

And my favourite picture of all – I do so want to make some little red gingham curtains for this tiny boat and take it home with me.

Well I hope you enjoyed the tour – today was a much better temperature – good gardening weather and I have pictures of the garden (when I remember to take them) to show next time – those wonderful before and after – and in some cases just the after when I forget the before!

Back soon x

9 Replies to “meandering :: down by the harbour”

  1. Some lovely photos…especially the flowers in their various receptacles. Surprising to see so many flowers considering how cold it has been. And it is amazing just how different little port areas look when the tide is out. Sad to hear about so many locations like your area and others around the UK where folks are not treading lightly or decently when they visit. Think that has happened in various places in the US, too. Certainly hope the weather soon warms up a bit for you.


  2. I thought some of the scenery looked familiar, then I realised where you were. We’ve spent many happy times at Port William and the nearby villages. It’s a beautiful area and such a shame some people show no respect for it.
    Yes, that little boat is so cute and it looks like it belongs in a children’s book. I like your gingham curtains idea. 🙂


  3. Such a pretty tour! I like the variety of “flower boxes” that people use – clever use of old items!


  4. Yes, a lovely tour of a part of the country I never visited when I lived there. Thanks for sharing!


  5. Lovely tour Viv, thank you for the photos reminding me of when I had a visit to that part of the coast. Have you ever been a wee bit further down the road and climbed up to the top of the Barsalloch Fort? That was my favourite part of the whole area 😉

    Great to catch up with you this week and so sorry that I had to change my campsite dates and will miss you – but hopefully next trip? xxx


  6. Thanks for the tour and gorgeous photos. Love the one of the cows (or is it more like coos?) looking over the wall, waiting for you to decide. The boat reminds me of the boat in Escape to the Château.

    I love cold weather but can’t stand wind! Currently winter but I’m north at my mother’s – sunny and 18° – in the sun it is too hot as the sun has a great deal of strength.


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