I was recently told that we must visit Inverewe Gardens on Scotland’s west coast and on our way to make sure we stopped at the bookshop in Gairloch. The way it was described to me was a mixture of anarchy and Buddhism – I was hooked and couldn’t wait to experience it so off we headed for the 2 hour journey.
The scenery on the way is stunning – lots of rocks, lochs, and a beautiful blue sky.
We made it to Gairloch and decided sustenance was the first order of the day. Hillbillies Trading Post is not just a bookshop, it’s also a cafe, so with Bramble Jelly we enjoyed our snacks on their very warm verandah.
The herb and cheese scone I had was nearly bigger than my latte – it was fabulous but I couldn’t eat it all.
The bookshop, was small but packed full of a really eclectic mix of genres, and yes there were a lot of books that were verging on anarchy alongside books about peace, love, and saving the planet.
This was the best display in the shop, as it is all cat related books, and not just for children, lots of adult ones as well. I’m sure you won’t be surprised to find that I had to buy at least one of these books. I also bought a recipe book about porridge – lots of sweet and savoury uses of oats. Any time I go into an independent bookshop I always buy something as it’s important to support small businesses.
Inverewe Gardens was established over one hundred years ago and is absolutely stunning. It’s also very surprising to find such a wonderfully vibrant garden in the northwest of Scotland, but thanks to the gulf stream the climate in this area is perfect. We timed our visit perfectly for all the colourful rhododendrons, some that are more like huge trees they’re so old.
The walled garden that is planted up with a mixture of flowering plants, herbs, fruit, and vegetables
In the middle of the garden is Inverewe House where there is an interactive display alongside an art gallery. The exhibition that is there at the moment is by the artist Mike Dodd, who made tree bark rubbings on calico. The one below is of a Tasmanian Snow Gum – seemed fitting to take a picture of that one. Here’s the link to Mike’s blogg from when he was based at the gardens. https://mikedoddinverewe.wordpress.com/
Here’s a few more pictures to show you how lovely these gardens really are, and how lucky we were with the weather.
This is a very special tree all the way from Australia that up until 1994 was thought to be extinct. A ranger discovered them in a gorge 200 km west of Sydney in the Wollemi National Park. This tree along with a few others were planted in 2009 from seeds taken from the ones found in NSW.
I really like what was written on the information board for these trees; “special plants need special places for special people”.
A few more shots from our wander around the garden for you to enjoy.
Below are two very large Californian Redwoods that arrived as seeds in the 1880’s which makes these trees very young as Redwoods can live up to 3000 years.
We sat down by the water for a while as it was so tranquil.
There are lots of eucalyptus trees throughout the gardens which was making me feel right at home. I loved how this one has spread out over the footpath – almost like it’s creating seats for people passing by.
Final plant I’m going to share with you is this beautiful protea all the way from Tasmania.
It was a perfect day with my beloved enjoying the beauty of this special land.