Friday, 5 July 2013

Flat Susan Travels Up Country To Strathpeffer

Hello Everyone

One of the highlights of Flat Susan's adventures in Scottish Highlands was this trip to Strathpeffer, a village and spa town in the Ross and Cromarty region.
Although there is no longer a rail service to Strathpeffer (the branch closed in 1946), the charming old station is still well used as it contains a number of shops, for crafts and second-hand books, and an excellent coffee shop that serves delicious soups, light meals and home bakes.

The Victorian architecture is stunning and what was the line has now been planted up with roses and hostas. Impressively, there is no evidence of slug damage at all to those hostas, but then the many busy birds that inhabit the nearby trees probably provide all the pest control needed. They also take advantage of the fall out of crumbs from coffee shop customers seated at the tables on the platform. Here's a cheeky wee robin using the sign as a lookout point :)

A project is under way by the Strathpeffer Spa Railway Association to restore some of the track, buy an engine and run a short heritage line. Whilst this would undoubtedly be good for the village, encouraging even more visitors, I can't help thinking it would be such a shame to pull up those fabulous hostas.

Flat Susan got very excited on discovering that the Highland Museum of Childhood is also located at the station. Being a bit of a doll herself, she was delighted to be able to see the Angela Kellie Doll Collection - over 300 of them in fact. The big kid in me enjoyed being reminded of the toys and dolls I played with too many years ago to number!

Just outside the museum was this Rowan Tree in full bloom. There was a heavy sweet perfume coming from it ... the local bumble bee population clearly thought it was heavenly because the tree seemed to hum with their pleasure as they buzzed from flower to flower. Hope you can spot the bee in the lower photograph.

Strathpeffer has a pretty little village square with a few shops, some sheltered by a very pretty Victorian canopy. Nearby is this bicycle shop, the name of which seems to be a contradiction in terms! Alan was fair taken with the penny-farthing ... he would have taken it home if it had been for sale :)

Although the main Pump Room was demolished in the 1950s, the Upper Pump Room still exists and now houses displays showing the history behind the development of the Spa and visitors can, if they want, sample the healing waters. This representation of a lady being lowered into a mud bath is the display that most amused Alan ... he suspects I was the model!?!?

On the approach to Strathpeffer we spotted this stunning display of oriental poppies ... we just had to stop the car and take these shots ... they make a fabulous welcome to the village.

We had a wonderful day at Strathpeffer and would happily return there in the future, perhaps making it our base for another holiday. Flat Susan certainly enjoyed her day there.


  1. Wonderful photographs Elizabeth. I love the way you have created a travelog for Flat Susan, makes me smile :o)
    Jackie xx

  2. Sounds like my kind of place Elizabeth. When Flat Susan comes home she will no doubt be buzzing with Strathpeffer.
    The shops, poppies and architecture sounds right up my street.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Hugs, Neet xx

  3. What fab snaps Elizabeth. Love those poppies :-)
    Annie x

  4. Wonderful pictures of your holiday with Flat Susan. Love your stories as well. Getting ready to watch an afternoon of great tennis. Hugs Rita xxx

  5. Ah you, Susan and EM have really been having such a great time it seems, Elizabeth lovely pickies wow those poppies were amazing! love Shaz in Oz.x

  6. What a beautiful place Strathpeffer is. Thank you for sharing the piccies with us. Where will Flat Susan go next xx

  7. What a wonderful day out for Flat Susan ...I enjoyed your day too. xx

  8. Hi Elizabeth so nice of you to share your photos looks like a brilliant time had by all including flat Susan nice that your sharing your stories too enjoy your weekend x

  9. Sounds a delightful place to visit. My hostas are huge this year and so far so good not a snail in sight. Hugs Mrs A.

  10. What a fantastic place Elizabeth. No wonder you had such a good holiday.

  11. Lucky Flat Susan to be taken to Strathpeffer. I know exactly where you are. We were there in Autumn 2008. Beautiful flowers there and I am not sure MY Hubby would be alive after the comment about the model!!
    If you go in Autumn you may be lucky to see some of the mushrooms growing on the old stumps in and around the village. That is if you like mushrooms of course.


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