Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Kirkwall, Scotland

After sailing all day yesterday and all night, today we woke up in Kirkwall, Orkney Islands, Scotland! The Griffins, Madisons and Johns' signed up for an excursion entitled, "Ancient Standing Stones and Dramatic Cliffs" 

The drive to the cliffs was gorgeous, everywhere you looked there was a postcard worthy photo waiting to be taken. It is amazingly green there!

The cliffs of Yesnaby are so gorgeous, there are no words to describe what it's like standing on the edge, looking at the crashing waves below and feeling the icy breeze on your face.

After our time at the cliffs, we drove to the ancient Ring of Brodgar

We walked up a hill full of wild flowers to get to the stones

The Ring of Brodgar, is a Neolithic stone circle. It is thought to have been erected between 2500 and 2000 BC, which makes it significantly older than Stonehenge. It probably originally contained about 60 stones, 27 of which remain today, it's amazing that any stones still stand after that many years!

After a very chilly and windy walk around the stones, we drove back to the ship for lunch

The ship put on a fun Scottish/English themed buffet. I tried the fish and chips, which came wrapped in newspaper like it did back in the day, a buttery pop over and a miniature toad in the hole.

After lunch and changing into some warmer clothes, a small band of us set up to explore the itty bitty town of Kirkwall.

The main things to see in town are the cathedral and the antique shops

The antique shops were a little hodgy podgy, but if you looked hard enough there were some treasures to be found

These little birdies livened up one of the shops, I thought they were pretty adorable

Then we headed back to the ship to make sure to be onboard when it set sail. Kirkwall is such a small place we were only in port for a half a day. The entire town showed up to send us on our way, there were performances by bagpipers and dancers. Many of the little kids in the crowd were hugging Disney stuffed animals, it seems to be quite the town affair when the Disney ships come in.

About half way through the performances, we could tell some of the Disney characters came out to wave to the spectators on the dock on one of the lower decks of the ship because the crowd started cheering and the kids were jumping up and down and waving.

The show that night was an ABBA tribute band, playing all of their famous hits. I thought one of the performers looked like Justin Timberlake's long lost twin...

Sam looked slightly confused at what he was seeing...

When I returned to my room for the evening, I was greeted by a rather cool looking ... lizard...?

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