Our last stop of the unforgettable Trafalgar guided vacation just so happened to be one of my favorite experiences of the trip. The local expert we were with in the morning continued on with us to to the nearby village of Rosslyn, where we explored the notorious Rosslyn Chapel.
Famous for its associations with the Knights Templar, the Masonic movement, and Dan Brown’s the Da Vinci Code, this mysterious church moves you whether or not you are a religious person. There is something so captivating about coming face-to-face with over 550 years of controversial history. Plus, places like this fascinate me to no end, as I was a Comparative Religious Studies major in College.
Rosslyn Chapel was created by the devout Sir William St. Clair, however it was never completed before or after his death. Nearly every surface is carved with scenes from the Bible and nature. The symbolism behind his elaborate stonework has inspired, intrigued, and attracted millions of visitors for generations. To this day, there are still countless theories and legends associated with this national treasure and many are impossible to prove or disprove conclusively.
Once back in Edinburgh, I decided to go for a quick walk downtown to do some last minute souvenir shopping. I was so distracted by the city’s beauty, that I almost forgot to buy presents for my family. Every single corner of the city enchanted me.
VisitBritain and VisitScotland worked together to ensure that our guided vacation ended in an unforgettable way, which included planning a gala night farewell dinner on the exclusive Royal Yacht Britannia.
The Royal Yacht Britannia, otherwise known as the floating palace, is celebrating its 60th year since it was first launched. It was opened up at night especially for us and we were given private tours of the five decks too see how the Royal Family and 220 person crew used to live while on board. We were even allowed a glimpse of the room shared by Princess Diana and Prince Charles on their honeymoon.
Over a delicious candlelit dinner, VisitScotland informed us of their extraordinary plans for 2014. They will be hosting a year-long event called Homecoming Scotland 2014. The country will welcome the world with a spectacular program of ongoing festivals that will celebrate the very best of Scottish cuisine, active pursuits, and natural beauty, as well as its creativity, culture, and ancestral heritage. Scotland will also host the Commonwealth Games and the Ryder Cup. Thus, whether you have Scottish ancestry or you simply love Britain, 2014 is the time to visit and experience a place where everyone feels at home!