After a long first day of teaching at Troqueer Primary School, we ventured out to Moffat to hike Grey Mare’s Tail. The hike was strenuous and exhausting; however, the views were significantly rewarding. While journeying up the mountain, the trek resonated metaphorically with me. The hard work it took to climb was trivial compared to what we saw at the top. As we reached the peak of the journey, we discovered the breathtaking views of Loch Skeen.

After spending days in Dumfries, we traveled to Glasgow, where we hiked across the University of Glasgow’s historically rich campus. It was so cool to see the locations where some of the Harry Potter scenes were filmed. The university was built in 1451 and is older than the country of the United States.

Next, we ventured up to the Scottish Highlands, the largest region in Scotland spanning almost ten thousand square miles. The ride from Glasgow to the Isle of Skye was an incredible journey that offered a unique and scenic experience. We were able to visit stunning viewpoints, such as the famous Loch Lomond and the Three Sisters Mountains in Glencoe. We enjoyed seeing some charming villages as well as the “most photographed castle in Scotland,” the Eilean Donan Castle, on our journey.

The Isle of Skye is known for its rugged mountains, majestic cliffs, picturesque lochs, and captivating coastline. The landscape evoked feelings of enchantment as if in a fairytale setting. The hike to the Fairy Pools, as well as touring the Dunvegan Castle, added to this feeling.

We traveled by boat on Loch Ness from Urquhart Castle to Inverness. Inverness is the capital of the Scottish Highlands. Our countryside tours took us through immaculate settings, where we were able to appreciate the beauty of the Scottish Highlands up close. The Highlands feature highlights of historic castles, ruins, and ancient sites, where there is a significant presence of the rich Gaelic heritage.