Scotland tour and Hogmanay for New Year
26.12.2008 - 02.01.2009 0 °C
We welcomed in the New Year with new friends, in below zero degree weather at one of Europe's biggest street parties...Hogmanay in Edinburgh!! Prior to that we did a Haggis Adventure tour of the Scottish Highlands and the Isle of Skye. Here we visited Hamish the hairy cooow, tasted Haggis, drank whisky, and visited the banks of Loch Ness. Unfortunately there were no sightings of Nessy! But there was some spooky fog and some foamy, wavey patches of water...make of that what you will!!
The Scottish highlands has some great scenery! We also stupidly held our faces in a freezing river as the legend goes you do this for 7 seconds and you will gain eternal beauty! Just to emphasise how cold this river was, it was mostly frozen over with ice so thick we couldn't break it with rocks! Out of our tour of about 30 only about 5 people were stupid enough to do this, of course Grant and I were two of these people!
After three days in the highlands we headed to Edinburgh for Hogmanay. Night.1 of Hogmanay we got into the spirit of things with the locals and did the torchlight procession. Thousands of people walk through the streets of Edinburgh with torches alight to the end where there is a giant bonfire. It was an awesome sight and one to be experienced!
Pretty much everyone had a giant candle on fire, the only thing stopping the wax hitting your hand was a bit of cardboard...this definitely would not be allowed back in Oz! There were even children carrying these things! And of course what happens when thousands of people carry flaming torches...trees get lit on fire! We witnessed one lady set some trees on fire.
So NYE, what a night! The night started in true Scottish style with a shot of whisky. Then we moved from the hostel to a pub up the road for a yager bomb! Then we hit the street party with our plastic bags full of alcohol. Yes you are reading right, unlike back in Oz you can take alcohol into festivals here...crazy!
The night is a bit of a blur but it was a hell of a lot of fun! I did manage to lose a button off my coat and the back of my phone, but it was fun! The night involved drunken shennanigan's, silly hats, flashing glasses and lots more!
The night ended with a lot of sore heads, and Grant deciding that his cone hat entitled him to direct traffic in the middle of Edinburgh!