Sunday, 12 July 2015

Towards St Andrews and a little bit beyond

Towards St Andrews and a Little Beyond

10th July 2015

We left Beecraigs Country Park with our van empty of waste and full of water with the intention of finding a wild camping spot for tonight, however, we also needed to restock our food cupboards so we stopped off at good old Aldi in Linlithgow.  I think at this stage I must have thought I was stocking up for a siege because I brought loads! and then struggled to get everything in the fridge.  Anyway, once everything was safely stowed we set off following the Fife Scenic Route which took us over the Forth via the Kincardine Bridge, and continued on through the small pretty village of Culross.  It was a bit unfortunate that it's ambience was spoilt by the view over the water of the chimneys belching flames and smoke from the Grangemouth Oil Refinery.
Loads of pollution!
We continued on through the villages of Charlestown, Aberdour, Burntisland and Kinghorn, and it was here that we decided to stop for lunch.  We had to potter around a bit to find a suitable parking spot because a lot of areas were restricted by height barriers which prevented us from entering, but eventually we found a little unrestricted car park and sat and ate cheesey crumpets.

After lunch we dropped down into Kirkcaldy and decided we needed to stretch our legs, so we had a walk along the unremarkable promenade, but as we could find nothing much of interest we were soon back in the van.  By this time it was getting on for 5 o'clock so we felt we needed to keep our eyes open for a suitable spot to spend the night, however, all the car parks said 'no overnight camping' and we didn't come across any other suitable spots.  So as we're only novices at this wild camping lark we were starting to get a bit worried and thought maybe we would have to book onto a proper site after all.  The first one we tried at Leven golf course seemed to only cater for static vans, but on enquiry they did take tourers - but with the price tag of £29 which we thought was a bit excessive for a 1 night stop.

We continued on our way but didn't see anything else until we got to Shell Bay where we had seen another camp site marked on the map. This turned out to be a huge commercial site that was absolutely packed - but they did have 3 spaces available, and as it was now 6pm we opted to take one of them.  The site had everything - a shop, a take away, a club house, loads of noise - just the sort of sight John and I prefer to avoid, and it also had a price tag of £28, but beggars can't be choosers, so we coughed up and just made the most of it.  However, we were gone quite early the next morning!!

11th July 2015

This morning we headed for St Andrews, and to our dismay and as sod's law usually has it, we saw several other small roadside camp sites that would have suited us much better.  We comforted ourselves by saying 'maybe they were fully booked', because we now new why it was so busy - The Open Golf Championships start on Monday!
The Grounds were very Impressive.
Anyway, as we were 'early' we managed to 'bag' the last parking space on East Beach in St Andrews and we then spent the day exploring the city, sitting watching the antics of people on the beach and exploring the Botanic Gardens where we were able to follow the Gruffalo Trail.

Part of the Gruffalo Trail - mouse with a tasty nut

The Botanic Gardens

The Cathedral as it was
and as it is now

Not sure who these belonged to!

We eventually left St Andrews about 5pm, but after our worries of yesterday re finding a camping spot, we didn't leave it to chance for tonight.  We had found a little Certified Location in our directory which turned out to be much more suited to our likes.  It's in the middle of nowhere, no electric and with very minimal sanitation, but it does have a 4G wifi signal, so with our myfi hub we have full access to the internet!!

The Karsy!! Good job we've got our own!

We have two other caravans for company but they are one end of the field and we are at the other! and after an initial trauma of trying to get the van level we are very comfortably set up and plan to stay for the next two nights.  And at a £5 a night in an honesty box we think we've found a bargain!!

12th July 2015

Today we've cycled around Tentsmuir Nature Reserve, a distance of about 22 miles.
We were mainly on quite country roads and cycle tracks within the forest so it was a very relaxing and peaceful ride.  We found miles of beautiful golden beaches and sand dunes but alas, although the sands are supposed to provide a haven for grey and common seals, we didn't see any.  However, we did thoroughly enjoy ourselves and we are now back in the van in the sanctuary of  The Beaches CL.

Tomorrow we will move on again, but not too far.   The weather forecast looks fairly good so we've got another couple of rides planned, and hopefully we will find another little gem to pitch our van on.

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