The day started like millions around the world with the excited pitter patter of little feet. Our world is still in darkness as D runs into our room ‘did he come mummy… did Santa really come here?’ R is still sleeping soundly. He doesn’t get the anticipation of it all just yet.
‘Where did you hang your stocking little man?’….. an excited shriek and he is out the door in search of his loot.
Being just the four of us this year, we decided to give ourselves the best possible chance of a white Christmas, and travel to the beautiful little town of Aviemore in the North of Scotland. (As it turns out we would have had a white Christmas in Edinburgh!)
Far far away from our usual Melbourne Christmas… which is admittedly not always hot.. but absolutely NEVER covered in a blanket of snow, Aviemore is a wee winter wonderland….
A gorgeous 3 hour train journey took us North through the Scottish country side to Inverness Shire. Aviemore itself is located about 10 Miles NW of the Ski fields in the Cairngorms National Park and is also only 50 miles East from LochNess.
The snow fell almost the whole way, giving only glimpses of blanketed villiages, frozen streams and heavily laden trees.
I have to say, it was absolutely dumping when we arrived and hauled our luggage (more than we had for our original trip overseas I think!) accross the platform and out into the ‘big snow’. D was having a ball in knee deep (for him) powder as we got our bearings (sort of) and found a taxi. R wasn’t so sure :(.
Our first ‘local’ encounter was with a taxi driver grumping about the weather… (live somewhere else?) who also succeeded in confusing us, in what eventually turned out to be a fairly simple trip from town to our accomodation. (thats a whole other story).
That aside… we arrived safe and sound with our white Christmas a certainty…YAY
From that first day, it snowed buckets everynight, and cleared most days…. perfect.
There is a lot to do around Aviemore, such as the Steam Train, Wild Life Park, Brewery and Funicular (transport to the tobagan park ‘up the mountain’). They also had some very Christmassy events throughout the town. We didn’t do any of that though….. why? Mainly the weather. The boys just didn’t cope with being out in the cold for very long… despite snow suits and thermals… too long meant tears. We spent our days building snowmen, sledging, throwing snowballs, and of course finding yummy places to eat. The rest of the time we spent in our lovely, large, warm apartment, taking in the views (and the odd Christmas drink!) The boys also had enough baths for the next six months! In fact I think the bath tub may have been R’s highlight for the whole trip ;D. (he pronounces it ‘bart’)
Christmas eve we had an early tea and watched some beautiful carols on the TV. After making sure the milk and shortbreads were left for santa, and the carrots for the reindeers, the wee boys were easily off to bed. The snow was falling as we wrapped the last of the gifts, enjoyed a drink or two and chatted to friends and family back home (where it was already christmas day).
And finally off to bed to eagerly await the pitter patter of little feet 😉
Fancy a wee look?…….. The best pictures are at the bottom 😉
And the afternoon in the snow
The Scenic Tour
Getting to Aviemore
Trains Depart Edinburgh and HayMarket Stations approximately 2 hourly throughout the day, with more frequent departures during peak times. The journey takes about three hours and there are comfortable seats and refreshmets on board. For more information please visit the National Rail website.
According to GoogleMaps the drive from Edinburgh to Aviemore is 127 miles and takes just under 3 hours. Given the recent conditions, I would leave more time to travel, and carry with you a shovel and a bag of sand.
For more information on Aviemore go to VisitAviemore.com
My personal recommendation for accomodation is Aspen 198