The Belle of the ball
Moody skies, rapid rain, the mysterious Firth of Forth under the dramatic shadows of the famous Forth Bridges. Storming the Firth of Forth in the most Scottish boat in boatland. That, my friends, is how you tackle a Monday Morning. You would think the rain would of put us off however it did nothing but add to the secretive new atmosphere we were about to explore. Besides, I look forward to the Summer in Scotland, the rain gets warmer.
After our first lie in of the century and some right good grub at the Principal Hotel, we took to South Queensferry for an afternoon of frolicking on the Firth. We were invited along by the captain of the Forth Belle who runs a tight ship. We at The Aye Life love a good boat but little did I know that I would come away with stars in my eyes and romance in my heart. Which by the way, is a rarity for this stern and sarcastic Scot pot. More on that one later…
Seas the day
Upon arrival at the stylish South Queensferry, we took to Port Edgar Marina for our first date with our new fancy, the Forth Belle. The boat-tastic beauty also sails from Hawes Pier. Yes I knew it was raining and no I never took a waterproof jacket. It turns out water proof jackets weren’t invented until 1766. I was taking one for the team for all those ballsy Brits who went out in their vests. The Forth Belle is how I feel I would look like if I was a boat. Loaded with flags and Scottish sass. We stepped on to the Belle and took our seats, waiting in awe to sail the fascinating Forth of Firth.
The boat was singing us Scottish tunes with a favourite of mine, ‘granny, where’s your trousers.’ Sorry, I mean ‘You cannae shove your granny of a bus.’ I love my Scottish music so I was right at home and steeped in buzz.
What do you with a sick boat? Take it to the doc.
Unfortunately, I suffer with motion sickness. Any kind of motion, sometimes I walk upstairs and have to take a travel sickness tablet. So of course I would pick a career in travelling, a little like the waterproof jacket situation. This means that can I eat full packets of ginger nuts and nobody questions me. However, not once on the Forth Belle did I feel any kind of motion sickness. The Forth Belle just got me, and the heavy dose of anti-sickness helped.
The Forth Belle tour sails out to Inchcolm Island, dropping its crew off for a glorious gander. An hour and a half later, the pretty Forth Belle returns to complete the tour of the Forth and ships everyone back to land. The journey lasted for around 3 hours including the island stop. For half an hour, my bum did not hit the meet a seat.
The Belle Bar onboard serves a variety of drinks and nibbles. This would prove very useful should the anchor accidentally slip over the side whilst out on voyage. The Forth Belle consists of various different areas, both indoor and outdoor so the photo opportunities are second to none. The rain was soon forgotten as we climbed to the highest point of the boat for a soaking and a lense session. Scott was in his water element. I was a Scottish, female Captain Hook and The Forth Belle was my Jolly Roger.
Land Ho, Land Ho, Land Ho!
On our joyful journey out to Inchcolm Island, we were spoiled for choice on sights. Inchcolm may be the only habited island on the Firth of Forth. However you can fix your eyeballs on the other island sights in the dreamy distance including the Isle of May, Inchgarvie and Inchmickery. Although these Islands are not populated, they still have remains of various monasteries, hermitages and fortifications. Inchmickery Island looks like a battleship from the distance due to its various strategically placed buildings.
Inchmickery island from cramond island – meant to look like a battleship to confuse Germans pic.twitter.com/x4uwVpA4vi
— steve millar (@arranskyeharris) February 28, 2016
Upon arrival at Inchcolm, we were both left speechless. This is an incredible example of a preserved and mysterious island with insane exploring opportunities. In fact, I have written a standalone feature on the wonders of Inchcolm Island which can be viewed here.
This trip was an all rounder with the potential to keep the whole family entertained. Gulls, kittiwakes and puffins can be found however on our trip we got up close and personal with some super seals. Not only do they make a point of spreading themselves out on many of the passing features but if you look close enough, you will see their little heads bobbing up and down. Seals are one of my favourite animals and I could watch them and their amazing animations for hours on end. Not sure the other passengers appreciated my squeals every 2 minutes however.
There are many different kinds of plant life on the islands. Reedbed are tall reeds common to wetlands. I thought reedbed was how someone from Aberdeen would describe a bed which is red in colour…
Scott and I have tourist attractions coming out of our… We see and do the tourist life all year round, therefore we really know our stuff. I can confidently say that The Forth Belle tour to Inchcolm Island was one of my favourite attractions to date.
The boat had a super speaker system which not only played some excellent and appropriate music but also filled us with Forth facts. I spent most of my journey back from Inchcolm Island taking thousands of notes on my phone. Unfortunately I have had to reign it in as I wouldn’t want to spoil the tour for you. This tantalizing taster should leave you hungry for more!
Seal the deal
Scott and I were engaged in August 2016 and I am always on the lookout for wedding venues. The problem lies with the whole ‘organising a wedding’ part. We have been too busy recently to take on the heavy task off organising a specific day to love each other more than normal. Forth Boat Tours are available for private hire with endless options for wedding receptions. Many couples are taking to the rocks of Inchcolm for a not too shabby abbey ceremony with a Forth Belle reception.
I have fallen in all kinds of love with the Forth Belle and Inchcolm Island that I am relatively certain on a wedding venue.
This post was not only fabulous but it was also sponsored. As usual, my opinions are funny, relevant and priceless. The Forth Belle has stole my heart and left us as loyal customers.
We would both like to thank Forth Boat Tours not only for a wonderful afternoon but for their excellent communication from the first port of call, literally. We not only recommend the tour but we would buy a season ticket.