Monday, 28 November 2011

TENTSMUIR AND TAYPORT

The north-eastern corner of Fife appears on the map as a big splodge of green. This is Tentsmuir Forest, a mature pine forest whose shy inhabitants include red squirrels and roe deer. Waymarked trails have been laid out so that walkers and cyclists can explore the forest. The forest lies adjacent to huge sandy beaches just begging for long walks with the family dog. The Tentsmuir Point National Nature Reserve is a favourite sunbathing spot for the common and grey seals who live in the area, while the birdlife includes eiders and bar tailed godwits. Add to this the heather-covered dunes and a range of flora, and you have a diverse and constantly evolving habitat.

Thus we find ourselves at the mouth of the next major river on this side of the Scottish coast, the Tay. The estuary town of Tayport came about as a result of the ferry which was set up to service pilgrims making their way between St Andrews and Arbroath. The town has gone through several name changes in its time. By the time it had acquired the name of Ferryport on Craig in the 18th century, it had established textile and shipbuilding industries, and the attendant influx of people looking for work in these industries led to a growth in the town's size. Visitors might want to have a look at the town's website, which includes a map showing a selection of walks taking in some of the main points of interest. Tayport's Auld Kirk, although no longer used as a church, is well known for its wonky clock tower. For golf enthusiasts there is the Scotscraig Golf Club, the world's 13th oldest club.

Map of the area.

'IMG_0076' photo (c) 2007, Chris Pearson - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

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