I hold my hand up and admit for many years we joined them, until the imminent arrival of our first child in 2011, left us constrained to a choice of holiday destinations within driving distance of our new military posting in Moray. So the west coast of Scotland it was!Of course the doom-mongers warned us it would rain relentlessly, and I the eternal optimist, cautiously packed wet gear whilst praying for just one day of sunshine so that we had pictures to wave in their faces on our return.
But yet against the odds here we were, sitting astride the verdant lawn of the wonderful Kishorn Seafood bar overlooking a sun-dappled loch, dining on fresh seafood and enjoying not one isolated day of sunshine, but our fifth consecutive day.
Around us diners were seated at rustic picnic tables reading newspapers and munching on fresh prawn baguettes, and the only noise was the gentle hubbub of their chatter. It felt like we had stumbled upon an extremely well kept secret. Where were the tourists? Where was the litter? And where the heck was that rain everyone had said we'd have?
Caught up in the preparations for the arrival of our son, our planning for this trip had been woefully under-prepared. By rights we deserved a dud vacation, but by chance we had stumbled upon a destination that exceeded all our expectations.
As we sat on our benches at the Kishorn Bar taking in the plentiful Scottish sunshine, we took stock of the sights we had seen so far that week. Beginning on the A86 where fleeting glimpses of a sprawling mansion across a loch prompted us to pull the car into a layby and take a closer look. We were at the shore of Loch Laggan and the majestic property the other side of the water was Ardverikie House the location of TV's Monarch Of The Glen. We were just two hours into our trip and already impressed...
On day 2 we negotiated the twisty country roads to meet the ferry that took us to the Isle Of Mull arriving in Tobermory the fishing village made famous by the BBC's Balamory. We drove up the coast on the quest to find a place we had seen on the map called Calgary. Arriving in a tiny hamlet we turned a corner to discover a white sandy beach with turquoise water lapping at the shore.
Our third day was spent at Castle Tioram the crumbling fortress on the remote Ardnamurchan peninsula where access is by foot across a tidal causeway. The following day we drove to Mallaig stopping midway on our journey to climb the hillside beside the Glenfinan Viaduct, taking in stunning views of Loch Shiel and capturing photos of the Jacobite steam train on its route to the coast.
Our eyes had feasted on some of Britain's finest scenery whilst our stomachs had taken in some of its best cuisine, and we weren't at the end yet! Ahead of us lay the beautiful gem that is the Isle Of Skye with its copious tiny bohemian art galleries and dramatic views of the islands of Eigg, Rum and Canna...
This is my entry to the Travel Supermarket Holiday Postcards competition, for a chance to win £1000.