The first stop was to Assynt’s mountains to the Highland Folk Museum, where they have recreated Baile Gean Township faithful to the original site’s archaeology. The buildings look as though they had been there for centuries.
The museum sits on 80 acres, and we did not have enough time to see it all. I would set aside half a day to enjoy this site. Well worth it.
From there, we travelled to the 15th-century ruins of Ardvreck Castle. We could not walk right up to the ruins as the water was too high for us to cross. The castle was the property of the MacLeods of Assynt. James Graham, Marquis of Montrose, took refuge in 1650 after losing the Battle of Carbisdale. Montrose was betrayed to the Covenanters and subsequently executed in Edinburgh, his body dismembered and displayed in public. Gruesome story.
Just a short walk from Ardvreck Castle is Calda House. The lands were the property of the MacLeods but passed to the Mackenzies. They built the house in about 1660. The family was said to have held wild parties and soon became short of money. The house was plundered and torched in 1737. As the story goes, it was perhaps done deliberately by the Mackenzies as they were in debt. The Mackenzies felt that if they couldn’t have the house, then no one could.
The ruins are said to be haunted by the apparition of a woman. There are also reports of eerie lights around Calda in the middle of the night, making motorists think that cars are approaching, although they do not encounter any other vehicles.
On our drive to Achmelvich Bay, we passed magnificent scenery. Scotland is such a beautiful country. I will probably be repeating that phrase a lot.
Achmelvich Bay is a surprise. Pure white sandy beach. It is small but very delightful. One does not expect to see this in Scotland. It looks like it belongs to a hotter climate.
We spent another night in Ullapool.