North Berwick: Rant and Roar across the Salt Seas

Not far from Edinburgh is the town of North Berwick. It’s a coastal town, part of the East Lothian Council area. Although they say you’re never far from the sea in the Netherlands, I actually hadn’t seen a beach in years. North Berwick and the waves of the North Sea managed to ensorcell me completely. The town is shaped by it’s two long bays, with the harbour jutting out between the two.

North Berwick looks and feels like a bona-fide Victorian seaside resort, though it’s history actually goes back much further. This is evident from the two photographs below: the first is Berwick Law, a low but steep hill overlooking the area. On top of it are the remains of an Iron Age hill fort, while in the town itself, the remains of the St. Andrews Church still linger since the twelfth century.

St. Andrews church is on a small peninsula between the two beaches. The peninsula also houses the very colourful harbour and the Scottish Sea bird Centre.

The Scottish Seabird Centre is a visitor attraction dedicated to preserving endangered wildlife in the area. Contrary to it’s name, the list of animals also includes seals, but the focus is on the many birds that populate the Lothian Area in very large numbers. Some of these birds we saw in the wild, but their main mascot are, naturally, the puffin and the gannet. Though we haven’t seen any puffins, we have seen some hints to their existence.
There’s a hint in here. Somewhere.

After crossing the East Bay, we decided to take a walk eastwards away from the town. Although there was a beautiful castle to be seen a stiff walk away if you used the pathway going over a golf course, we were drawn to the sea. Leaving the path, we started climbing the cliffs instead. Choosing this route means you will never arrive anywhere (unless you’ve got a whole lot of time to spend), but the seaside cliffs, beaches and nooks are capable of making you forget any pre-intended destination.


Finally, this is Bass Rock. Although we managed to get this close, from a distance, this rock looks very different. From far enough away, the rock looks completely white, because it is completely covered in gannets nestling there.

When we finally got back from our refuge amongst the cliffs, North Berwick was setting into a positively laid-back evening atmosphere. We returned to Edinburgh for a very late dinner. At the dinner table (in, honesty obliges me to say, a fast food pizza chain), one last prejudice about the Scottish was confirmed: they’re positively knit-crazy. This was exemplified by a long chat with the serving girl who had recognized the Owls Cardigan by Kate Davies that I was wearing.
This will be my last post on Scotland. I loved the place very much, enough to still blog about it two months later. Perhaps for the blog, it’s better that I can finally resume blogging about the knitting projects I finished in the meantime or the knitting books I’ve found, but personally, it feels like finally saying goodbye to the trip for real. Edinburgh; thank you for the great inspiration, blog readers; thank you for the patience, and Scotland: I will be back!


5 thoughts on “North Berwick: Rant and Roar across the Salt Seas

  1. Ha Nelson,
    Mooie foto's, de hond op het strand doet me denken aan Aldo, heerlijk om te kunnen rennen en snuffelen tussen het zand, wrakhout, zeewier, schelpen en zeeafval. De stenen op het stand lijken op zeekoeien met baarden en geweldig het geluid van de aanrollende golven, de zilte zeelucht de wind en de prachtige dorpjes aan de kust. De vissersboten die liggen te wachten op de vloed. Wat een geweldige plaats om te zijn. En natuurlijk de rots met de puffens. Dank voor je verslagen, je kunt zo in een reclamefolder voor het stukje Schotland! Margot

  2. Haa Nelson…prachtig…hadden we deze plek maar in het écht in de achtertuin..maar gelukkig kun je er floep zo zijn in je hart. Blij en/of Snifsnik. Bijna vakantie. Lekker uitrusten en leuke dingen doen. Tot in het weekend. Groetjes Kim

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