Have you heard about the Falkirk Wheel, Scotland?

I was keen to visit this attraction because Warren recently organized two groups to sail the locks of England. At Falkirk I could see how it worked for myself. 

The Falkirk Wheel is a rotating boat lift in central Scotland that connects the east and west coasts for the first time since the 1930s.

The Falkirk Wheel is the only rotating boat lift of its kind in the world, and one of two working boat lifts in the United Kingdom, the other being the Anderton Boat Lift. …

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

About 400,000 people a year visit. Including me.

I followed the tourist boat up through a tunnel under the Antonine Wall. And back.


Have you heard about The Kelpies in Scotland?

Not as HUGE as I had expected. 😀

Actually, those are the little horse models that tour the world.

The Kelpies are 30-metre-high horse-head sculptures … (300 tonnes each)

… a monument to horse powered heritage across Scotland.

The sculptures were opened to the public in October 2013 …

During the first year following the opening, nearly one million people visited the sculptures.

Lessons learned:

driving Norway

Today I pick up my rent-a-car from Hertz at the Oslo airport. And spend a week driving to some of the most famous hikes and attractions.

Here’s my plan so far … though it’s bound to change on the road.

Doh! 🙄 … It’s already changed. The good deal I got on a rent-a-car was from the other Oslo airport. The one where Ryanair flies. I had to take a 2 hour train to go get it. Late.

revisiting Edinburgh

I made the tourist pilgrimage to FRINGE and the Tattoo in 2009.

Since my flight was out of the Edinburgh airport, I booked one night to once again shuffle crowded streets filled with revellers. Edinburgh is crazy fun in August.

One night was enough.

Last time I enjoyed the free street performers more than the free indoor events. Or even the paid shows.

LOVE Glasgow

I’ve now spent many weeks walking Glasgow, Scotland over 3 long trips. Of all European cities it’s perhaps the one I identify with most.

“People Make Glasgow”

Click PLAY or watch it on YouTube.

I love the architecture, certainly.

And the free, quirky  Kelvingrove and Hunterian museums.

But it’s the surprises that keep me walking. I stumbled on to charming Ashton Lane near the University of Glasgow. A pedestrian strip of shops and restaurants.

The weather is crap, of course. Can we move Glasgow to the Mediterranean? 😎

Quite recently the reputation was ‘The Murder Capital Of Western Europe‘.

Over the last decade, Scotland’s biggest city cut its homicide rate by two-thirds. A change in the style of policing is seen as a major factor.

Today Glasgow is established as one of the world’s friendliest cities. Wonderful volunteerism. They keep hosting marvellous events.

I like how Glasgow tries to be the opposite of tourist darling Edinburgh. They don’t take themselves too seriously here. This disarmingly hilarious statue of the Duke of Wellington is the de facto symbol of the city. Thousands of Glaswegians signed an online petition insisting the traffic cone STAY!

I find Glasgow down to earth. Good value for the tourist.

Give it a chance.

Cook & Indi’s World Buffet

Glasgow is more expensive than Canada. Tourists have to watch their pence.

Like the last time I visited, I ate one big meal a day at a lunch buffet.

This time Cook & Indi’s was my favourite. All you can eat for US$11.50.

Most of the best food is Indian. But they do have sushi, pizza, pasta, burgers. This keeps kids happy.