Interesting contrast of endless sea on our left and barren treeless landscape to our right as we set off eastwards from Durness. Eventually we glimpsed Ben Hope, the most northerly Munro rising above some lesser mountains and we passed through Tongue but didn’t stop. We paused to take a photo of Dounreay Nuclear Power Station ,largely because our friend Bill used to work there. Built on the site of an old WW2 airfield it is now in the process of being decommissioned. It is still the largest employer in the region, currently employing around 2000 people.
Onwards to Thurso to pick up supplies then just a few more minutes later we arrived at Dunnet Bay Campsite, a Caravan Club site again right on the edge of a long and empty beach. This was an immaculate site, keys to the toilet block ensured a high standard of cleanliness and the grass was cut to within an inch of its life! Anyway 2 nights here so off we set to explore. You just have to visit John O Groats don’t you? A quick photo opportunity was in order but bear in mind that this is NOT the most northerly point in the UK mainland, Dunnet Head itself has that honour.
We drove south on the A99 to visit Wick, an estuary town with an interesting history as once being the busiest herring port in Europe. We had booked a tour of the Pulteney Distillery as this is one of Chris’s favourite malts. A very enjoyable way to pass an hour or so.
Don’t miss the dramatic location and ruin of Castle Sinclair Girnigoe on the northern side of the town. The only castle in Scotland (and we have a few!) to be listed by the World Monuments Fund. Impressive!