When Liam and I traveled through Scotland, we rented a car and drove from Edinburgh, looping the country. First we drove along the east coast, took a ferry over to the Orkneys, and then drove back along the west coast and the Isle of Skye, and after a couple of weeks, ended up back at Edinburgh.
In order to save money, we slept in our rental car most nights, parking at the edge of the heath, with shaggy rust-red Highland cows or flocks of wild-haired sheep as our only neighbours. For whatever reason (spoiler: the reason was that we were dumb), we decided on the first night of doing this, that we should sleep in the trunk. This was problematic for a number of reasons. First, if you have even the slightest wariness about enclosed spaces, claustrophobia will make an appearance when you’re sleeping in the rather small trunk of a rather small car alongside another adult person. Second, we were parked on a slight incline, which meant we kept rolling whenever we laid down to sleep. Third, every time we rolled in the trunk, it triggered the car alarm. Suffice it to say, the quality of sleep that night was less than ideal. After that first restless night, we wised up and slept on the bucket seats inside the car.
As rough as it may sound, this was one of my most joyful adventures. We didn’t have a guidebook, but we had a map of Scotland, and we’d hunt down and visit castles whenever possible. One of my most favourite ones we discovered was Castle Stalker. We never saw anyone while we were there. This was probably because it’s just castle ruins in the middle of water, unreachable by foot. But with the clouds and castle reflected in the surrounding blue lake, it looked like something straight from a fairy tale.