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5 of the Best Places to Visit When in Scotland

Posted by lomondshores on August 31, 2016 in Destinations |

Untamed, picturesque landscapes and diverse scenery are some of the words often associated with Scotland. It is a place of stunning natural scenery that also boasts of breathtaking architecture. It has gorgeous vistas that provide an enchanting backdrop for explorations and meanderings. And if you ever find yourself in Scottish shores, here are some of the many destinations you may want to add to your itinerary.

1. Edinburgh

Edinburgh

Edinburgh is a UNESCO City of Literature and its Old and New Towns have been on the UNESCO World Heritage Site list since 1995. The Old Town and New Town juxtaposes contrasting architecture. This gives the place its stunning cityscape that leaves many travelers in awe. The Old Town’s medieval facades blend well with the neoclassical vibe of New Town. Edinburgh also boasts of spectacular scenery, stunning architecture, and some of the best festivals in the world.

2. Fingal’s Cave

Fingal’s Cave

Fingal’s Cave stands at 72 feet and has a depth of 270 feet. It is one of Scotland’s wonders with its interiors, basalt columns, and pillars. It is an isolated scenic attraction that sits in the island of Staffa. You may not be able to explore inside the caves, but taking a cruise near it can give you more than enough view to admire the famous cave’s amazing beauty.

3. Fort William to Mallaig Train Ride

train ride

Fort William and Mallaig are interesting places to explore in their own right. But it is the train ride between the two towns that should be on your list of things to do in Scotland. Taking the trip takes you from Fort William through Glenfinnan Viaduct which has become even more famous after it was shown in the Harry Potter movies. The train ride also passes through Morar then reaches its end destination of Mallaig. You do not have to be a Harry Potter fan to fall in love with this train journey. The gorgeous scenery alone will make it worth your while.

4. Glasgow

Glasgow

Glasgow is one of the best destinations for architecture and music lovers. The city has a vibrant music scene and hosts a wide array of musical festivals. The creative arts are very much alive with interesting street arts to be found in many places.

5. Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park

Loch Lomond

Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park is an excellent getaway whether for a relaxing time or some active adventures. You can enjoy the tranquility by the water’s edge as you soak in the stunning view around you. It is a great way to take in the majestic snow-capped mountains that provide a breathtaking backdrop to the already beautiful natural scenery around you. You may even get a glimpse of some of the many wildlife that The Trossachs is teeming with.

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Abbey Timber: More Than Just A Sawmill

Posted by lomondshores on April 19, 2017 in Uncategorized |

timber

Duns may just be a small town in the Scottish Borders, but who’d have thought it’s also rich in history and culture – let alone being home to some great place, which is “more than just a sawmill?”

Yes, Abbey Timber is more than just a sawmill.

Located at Abbey St Bathans in Duns, Scottish Borders – a small community in the Lammermuir District in Berkshire and best known for having a unique landmark of a long-winding wooded valley trailing Whiteadder Water – Abbey Timber is a timber and wood business that only harvest and process wood from local woodlands nearby.

Further recognized by the Association of Scottish Hardwood Sawmillers, they are best known for harvesting and processing:

  • Larch – Specifically a British Larch, it’s considered to be the most durable among local softwoods. It’s mostly used for building posts and fences.
  • Douglas Fir – It’s described to be light, but can withstand heavy loads such as when used for construction purposes. However, it’s best for indoor use only.
  • Scots Pine – Despite having low durability, it’s still considered to be great for pressure treatments such as when used in building a fence or used as firewood.
  • Spruce – Just like Scots Pine, it has low durability, but considered great for pressure treatments. It’s mostly used for indoor and above-ground construction purposes.
  • Oak – Considered one of the sturdiest and most versatile wood types out there, oak is mostly used for almost everything – be it for construction, frames, windows, doors, floors, or furniture.
  • Ash – Considered the sturdiest native hardwood, it’s also best known to have an excellent shock-resistant characteristic. The only downside? Being fragile over time and prone to insect attacks.
  • Sycamore – Best for indoor use only and known to become fragile over time, it’s mostly used for furniture and kitchen works. It’s also known to be used for musical instruments like violins.
  • Beech – Considered sturdy and heavy, it’s versatile when used for furniture and other indoor works. However, it doesn’t have the sturdiness and shock-resistant characteristic as that of Ash.

Abbey Timber is also best known to provide the following: cladding, decking, roofing, marine timber, and Osmo wood care.

In terms of production, they are best known to use a Finnish-made circular saw called Laimet 1200 for sawing timber – one they have been using since 1993. A Laimet HP21 chipper is also used for the sawn timber, so as not to waste any remnants that can still be used for other purposes.

For larger trees, they use a Canadian-made band mill called Logosol Norwood MX34. For larger blocks of wood, they use a band saw called American-made Baker A Resaw.

Planning to cut a tree by yourself? Learn more about picking a great chop saw first.

Moreover, they are not only up for providing locally-made wood products. They are also known to provide donations for Tree Aid, a charity established by some foresters back in 1987 to help out those affected by the famine in Ethiopia.

Indeed, Abbey Timber is more than just a sawmill.

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Where You Can Buy Healthy Food In Scotland

Posted by lomondshores on March 30, 2017 in Tips |

healthy food

As more people nowadays realize the importance of being fit and healthy, the need for organic food has also increased – especially in Scotland, where health is considered as gold.

Here’s where you can buy healthy food in Scotland:

Real Foods

With a slogan of “natural, healthy, ethical shopping,” one can only guess an epitome of what healthy living is supposed to be like. With two branches in Edinburgh, Scotland – specifically in Broughton Street and Tollcross – and an online shop dedicated for those who prefer buying at the comfort of their own home, Real Foods offers more than just natural and healthy food products.

From fresh fruits and vegetables to wholesale and retail products, Real Foods have been around since 1963. They are best known for offering vegetarian, organic, gluten-fee, wheat-free, and special diet food for those who want to lose weight the right way, those who aim to improve their overall fitness and health conditions, and even those who are just looking to make fresh drinks using a Ninja blender.

Stirling Health Food Store

Be it whole foods, dietary foods, health foods, or frozen foods, Stirling Health Food Store has it all in bulk sizes or in small packages. They are best known for offering fairtrade, freefrom, dairy-free, egg-free, and other vegan foods. Aside from that, they also offer all-natural and organic supplements, toiletries, and brewery kits.

It’s worth noting that Stirling Health Food Store is run by only three people, further branding them as independent. But despite the overwhelming demands of consumers, they are still able meet the highest of standards when it comes to wholesale, retail, and online purchases. Moreover, they believe that being an independent shop is a great benefit – both for the local community and the environment.

Highland Health Store

Located in Perth, Highland Health Store is not just home to whole foods. Their first store, which was opened back in 1986, is dedicated to special dietary foods and herbal teas. Their second store, which was opened back in 1989, is dedicated to nutritional supplements, alternative medicines, and various body care products.

Moreover, Highland Health Store is a reputable, friendly, and family-run business. They also give advice for health and other related concerns that a person may have, have an eco-friendly Ecover refill service, and affordable prices. Furthermore, they have a dedicated mail order service – enabling them to send products to consumers right away.

But as they say, “great power comes with a great responsibility.” Visit these stores in person or online now and take a step closer to being fit and healthy.

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Trip Planning Tips to Stretch Your Budget

Posted by lomondshores on August 7, 2016 in Tips |

travel

You do not have to spend a lot of money on your travels. In fact, there are many travelers out there who spend less than most people think they do. The next time you think twice about planning a trip, keep these simple hacks in mind. It might inspire you to start crossing out some of those destinations on your travel bucket list.

Opt for connecting flights

Booking connecting flights instead of flying non-stop can save you more money. Besides, layovers nowadays are not exactly a hardship. An increasing number of airports around the world now have excellent amenities. There are even interesting activities you can do to pass the time while waiting for your next flight.

Find the cheapest times

This is when travel planning comes handy. Learn about dead zones and how they can help you save more on upcoming trips. You can plan your vacations around these times if you want to enjoy a wide array of travel discounts. Or just avoid traveling during peak season. Cheaper rates and fewer crowds of tourists are just some of the perks of traveling off-peak.

Book train tickets in advance

Check the websites of railway companies in your destinations. If you expect to be traveling by train on more than one or two occasions, consider buying a rail pass in advance. Or you can purchase single journey tickets depending on which comes out the cheapest in the long run throughout the duration of your trip.

Consider other types of accommodations

Alternative and cheaper accommodations made traveling on a shoestring budget more possible. And cheaper does not mean uncomfortable or unsafe. Instead of staying at hotel chains, there is an extensive list of options you can try. You can rent a well-equipped home or apartment or go couchsurfing. You might even want to try those capsule hotels and other decent places that fit a smaller budget.

Get a money belt

Pickpockets and thefts are among the common woes of tourists almost everywhere. Regardless if you are traveling to the safest places in the world, it is still best to err on the side of caution. Always keep your money with you. A money belt is a good way to keep your cash around you at all times.

Download travel apps you can use for free

There are many smartphone apps as well as printed guidebooks that can help you save on your travels. You can get useful tips on cheap places to visit. Or it will help you find the easiest and cheapest routes to your destinations.

Use public transportation

Taxi fares can eat up a huge chunk of your budget. Even some modes of transportation are more costly than others. Find out which options offer cheaper rates and get used to traveling around using them. Traveling by public bus, tram, or subway likewise allows you to see and experience more of the places you visit.

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