The home of golf: revisted

This post is from the archives…in other words, from a blog I wrote years ago. We were lucky enough to live in Europe for three years (the Netherlands for one and Scotland for two) due to my husband’s job at the time. We loved getting to visit a bunch of different parts of Scotland, Ireland, Scandinavia and Europe. You’ll notice my kiddos, who are now pre-teenish, are toddlers, evidence of the time that has passed. But even so, I want to share these travels, because they deserve to be highlighted.

Easter 2012 rolled around and we decided that we would head out of town to celebrate it someplace special.  Which would mean St. Andrews, right?

Justin had been there before on a golf trip with his father.  But it was my first time.  And the kids first time too (obviously).

We decided to stay at the Fairmont, and as we drove up on Friday afternoon…this is what we found.

So, evidently someone important was staying here.  Important enough to travel by helicopter, anyways.

Saturday morning, we decided to head into the heart of St. Andrews.  And unbelievably, our first stop was NOT the Old Course at St. Andrews.

First, we headed to the ruins of the St. Andrews Castle and Catherdral.

 While Joey did some rock climbing, Jillian did some reading…

The castle remains that are at the site now date back to the year 1400, but there were other castles built there earlier, dating all the way back to 1189.

We were literally the ONLY people in the Castle for the majority of our visit.  At the time, it paid off to be native Minnesotans who are used to cool weather.

This would be Joey in a jail cell.
Evidently he wasn’t very clear on that, seeing as how he looks happy. 
The Cathedral of St. Andrews was built in 1158 and at the time was the center of the Medieval Catholic Church in Scotland. After Catholic mass was outlawed during the 16th Century Scottish Reformation it fell into disuse and ruin.

 St. Andrew’s Pier may have made me a LITTLE nervous. Little three year old Joey without any barriers?!

And Jillian was left wondering, “but what about the golf course?”

Sunday.  Sunday was the day that we headed to St. Andrews Old Course.  See, on most Sundays you can walk the old course, as it turns into a park that can be enjoyed for walks and picnics.  So, walk we did.

St. Andrews Old Course is considered the ‘the home of golf’ and one of the most famous golf courses in the world. It was founded in 1552. It has a storied history including being the subject of 20 years of legal battle between rabbit farmers and golfers in the early 1800’s when the course had gone bankrupt.

The Swilcan Bridge spans the 1st and 18th holes and is one of the most iconic sights in all of golf.
A Scottish Terrier. Because…well, Scotland.

St. Andrews will always be one of my favorite places, and definitely at the top of the list in Scotland.

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