Dundee – Edinburgh

Tuesday 3 July 2018 

Today in Dundee we visited:

  • Broughty Castle
  • Discovery Point
  • Verdant Works.

We also visited St Andrews Links on the way to Edinburgh.

Broughty Castle sits at the mouth of the River Tay. It was built in the 15th century on a rocky promontory and faced many sieges and battles. On the walls you can see the marks made by cannon shots. Today it houses displays on the life and times of Broughty Ferry, its people, the environment and the wildlife of the area. The castle has magnificent views over the river. Today it was a very busy place as the school holidays have begun and with the magic weather everyone was out and about.

Discovery Point is a museum and home to Captain Scott’s famous Royal Research Ship Discovery on display in a purpose-built dock.   The first part of the exhibition is in the museum and begins with a film about Discovery and Scott’s expedition to the Antarctic in 1901.  As an added effect, you sit on seats in the shape of ice and the whole area has blue grey lighting to give an illusion of being in the Antarctic. It is very effective, and the film is a great introduction to the expedition.  The gallery has several other films, original Polar artefacts, with personal items from the ship’s crew as well as information on her scientific activities and interactives throughout which show the risks and dangers faced by the early explorers.  After this we went aboard the ship Discovery, the first vessel to be constructed specifically for scientific research. It had a strengthened hull and a steel plated bow which helped it endure two years locked in the Antarctic ice and still stands today as a testament to the skill and ingenuity of the men of the Dundee Shipbuilding Company. Walking through the ship you get a feel of how the men lived and worked together during this epic voyage to this unknown continent.

Verdant Works is a restored mill built in 1833 which houses interactive displays telling the story of 19th and 20th century local jute production. The collections cover the entire history of the jute industry and the machines used in the production of jute.  At the time of our visit an ex-employee demonstrated a few of the machines involved in the processing of jute which was interesting but the noise was quite incredible. These were only a few out of the 50 machines which would have been working in the mill in the day.

We then headed along the A917 to St Andrews to the St Andrews Links regarded as the ‘Home of Golf’. It has one of the oldest courses in the world, where the game of golf has been played since the 15th century. There were very well-dressed golfers everywhere practicing their game from putting to chipping. We walked around a small part of the course near the clubhouse and watched a group of golfers tee off on the first hole.

We then drove to Edinburgh where we met Pam and Michael at the Newcraighall Park and Ride which is located beside the train station into Edinburgh and costs 50p for 24 hours. We headed off to The Cuddie Brae pub and restaurant across the road from the train station carpark for a catch-up and dinner. It was a nice way to end the day.

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