Caledonian Classic & Historic Motorsport Club
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The Grand Caledonian Tour was a 15 day tour of Scotland visiting the all 4 points of the compass. 

 Through Galloway Forest

Tinkers Heart site

Tinkers Heart


Going 'Doon the Watter'

Inveraray Bridge

Inveraray Castle where the club has visited on a number of past events.

Graeme Gallaoway's Anglia
Grand Caledonian Tour - 25 September to 9 October  
stories Margaret Campbell and John Stuart

Day 3  - Monday 27 September ; Portpatrick to Inveraray

After breakfast on a dry but very windy morning we packed up and set off heading for the Clyde coast. 

To start with the roads were very small unclassified roads which were challenging but fun and some lovely scenery. We passed through Glentrool and the Galloway Forest then back on the bigger roads just south of Ayr.

The A roads were to take us north through the busy built up areas around Ayr, Prestwick, Irvine, Ardrossan, Largs and eventually to Gourock. We found a nice Garden centre just outside Ardrossan for coffee and a bite to eat. 

The weather was mostly dry but we did encounter some heavy showers. Western Ferries carried us across the Clyde to Hunter’s Quay from where we joined the A8003 to take us to Tighnabruach where we were back on really small B roads round the south end of the Cowal peninsula and up the east side of Loch Fyne where we stopped to visit the Tinker”s heart, a Scottish Travellers' commemorative monument. It is also known as the Gypsy's Heart, Gypsies' Heart or Gypsy's Wedding Heart.

We then joined the A83 and drove round the head of Loch Fyne to the pretty town of Inverary where we spent our third night.  Joe & Hazel Norman arrived in Inveraray in the evening to join us the following morning, and we said goodbye to John Stuart who was leaving at this point.

Through the windscreen from John Stuart

Heavy rain during the night was replaced by sunshine as the cars set off for Inveraray with the 188 mile route taking in some spectacular scenery. This started with the quiet minor road through the hills north east of Glenluce and continued through Glentrool. One well travelled entrant thought he had not seen better anywhere.

The route then headed away from the hills to the coast at Dunure giving more spectacular views west over the Firth of Clyde. Continuing up the coast to the ferry at Gourock we passed through the traditional “Doon the Watter” towns where Glasgow folk headed for their holidays. They obviously still do as they were quite busy.

The Firth looked quite rough but the ferry passage to Dunoon was pretty smooth with inviting views of the Argyll hills in the distance. The next section of the route gave views of Bute and several sea loch culminating in a drive up the east side of Loch Fyne, at 40 miles long, the longest of these.

Rounding the head of this loch brought us towards Inveraray via the Category A listed bridge over the mouth of the River Aray nwhere it flows into the loch. The stone bridge was completed in 1776 and carries the A83 road as a single track and is controlled by traffic lights. The approach seems quite steep from the drivers seat.

Tomorrow we head south into the Mull of Kintyre, heading all the way to the southern point at Campbeltown. Only way is up so north toward Oban, our final destination for the day. 

Published 25 October 2021