The Armin Grewe Homepage
Picture of a distillery on the shore (Bruichladdich) Our second day on Islay, after all the activity during the first day we took our time in the morning. Our parents would arrive at Islay Airport in the afternoon, we had plenty of time until we had to pick them up. Late in the morning we left and drove over to Loch Indaal.

Our first stop was near Blackrock, where we enjoyed nice views over Loch Indaal to Bruichladdich and to Bowmore. We spent some time here, at first on the top of the hill, later we walked down to the shore.

While not as good as the previous day the weather was still very nice. A bit hazy but still sunny, mild with a gentle breeze. Quite bright as you can see from the pictures.
Picture of a coastal village along the shore of a sea loch, including a distillery (Bowmore)
Picture of a view up a street with a round church at the top Our next stop was Bowmore. We visited the Valerie Ross Johnston are exhibition at the Gaelic College on the outskirts of Bowmore before driving on to the centre of the village.

We had a look around Bowmore, visiting the tourist information centre for the latest updates and walked down to the harbour pier. Very nice views over Bowmore with the Bowmore distillery right at the shore. The Round Church sitting at the top of Main Street looked beautiful in the sunlight.

Through a misunderstanding we missed the guided walk we had considered going on, but this then turned out to be a good miss: Talking with Lindy MacLellan from the Islay Community Access Group she suggested a good way to see the plane coming in from the Big Strand, which we decided to go for:
Picture of a panoramic view over a small village harbour next to a distillery
Picture of a small wave breaking on a beach Following the perimeter fence at the northern side of the airport a track leads almost all the way to the beach, from here it is only a very short walk to the sandy beach. We parked the car at the end of the stretch, making sure it wasn't blocking any emergency access, then quickly walked down to the beach.

At the beach we just enjoyed the view, the sun, the fresh air. Small waves from a light swell were breaking on the beach. The view along the beach was impressive, from where we were to the northern end of the beach it was approx 2.5 miles of sand.

We sat down on a piece of driftwood for a while, relaxing and watching not much happening around us. One car drove on to the beach and disappeared north, that was about it.
Picture of a panoramic view over a long sandy beach with some low dunes
Picture of 6 oystercatchers (birds) on a beach After a while we decided to walk south a short distance to Knockangle Point / Cnoc Aingil. On the way we spotted a group of Oystercatchers hunting for food on the beach.

From a tiny hill near Cnoc Aingil we had a good view over the airport on one side and Laggan Bay on the other. Soon we had to head back though, as the flight from Glasgow was now approaching.

Picture of a panoramic view over a small island airport (Glenegedale Airport on Islay)
Picture of a small passenger plane flying accross While we were walking to our planned viewing point we had confirmation that our little gamble (we weren't sure from where the plane was going to come in, but had guessed it would land against the wind) had paid off when the plane flew over the airport towards the Rinns. This meant it was going to come in over Laggan Bay.

For a while the plane disappeared, then a small dot appeared on the sky. The dot quickly grew, turning into the plane which approached the runway across the bay. Finally it reached the beach, flew across the beach and then just above our heads.

Picture of a plane approaching in the distancePicture of a plane getting closerPicture of a plane coming in to land over a bay
Picture of a plane touching down, smoke at one tyre Quickly turning around we saw the plane touching down on the runway, I even managed to capture the moment when a little bit of smoke came from the right tyre (You can just make it out on the picture when you look closely).

Our parents had arrived on Islay! We quickly walked back to the car to drive over to the terminal. When we arrived at the terminal we found there was a slight problem: While our parents had arrived their luggage hadn't. That was still in Glasgow. We were told it should hopefully arrive with the evening flight and agreed that I should call the airport once the flight had arrived. Not a good start to my parents holiday...

What helps best to calm down nerves? A good cup of tea. We drove over to Islay House Square, where we had some tea and biscuits at Elizabeth Sykes Batiks:
Picture of a small airport terminal with a plane (Islay Airport) Picture of a couple with their son drinking tea
Picture of a couple with their daughter walking through woodland Refreshed we had a look around Islay House Square, bought beer at Islay Ales and visited the Bridgend Community Garden. Through Bridgend Woods we walked to Bridgend for some quick shopping, when we returned to Islay House Square the evening flight had arrived at Islay Airport. A quick phone call brought relief: Our parents bags had arrived, the airport arranged for them to be delivered to Kilchoman.

Now we could enjoy the evening without having to worry about the bags: We drove over to Port Charlotte for dinner at the Port Charlotte Hotel, then visited the weekly Visitors Welcome Evening which was held at the Islay Natural History Centre. Very nice presentation about wildlife, followed by dancing and music!

And finally we were rewarded with some beautiful and colourful skies over Loch Gruinart and looking over to Mull when driving back to Kilchoman just after sunset.
Picture of Armin standing on the beach in Port Charlotte, the lighthouse in the background Picture of a colourful sky over a sea loch at sunset, mountains in the background
If you are interested in more information about Islay, Colonsay and Jura you might also be interested in my Isle of Islay pages. There you will find many more pictures and further information about Islay, Jura and Colonsay.

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