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***In Search of Ancient Scotland

A Guide for the Independent Traveler

by Gerald M. Ruzicki and Dorothy A. Ruzicki

Reviewed July 29, 2003.
Aspen Grove Publishing, Mead, Washington, 2000.  335 pages.
$12.95 on

I would definitely want to have a copy of this book if I had weeks or months to spend in Scotland.  For sheer abundance of ancient sites and practical information about how to find them, this book is excellent.

Since we only had a one week trip, the main attractions listed in the corporate guides were plenty for us.  This book didn’t have nearly as many pictures.  It presents more of a personal way of traveling than the books written by committee, which gives it a certain charm.  You’ll learn about small ancient sites that tour buses would never bother stopping for, but that can give you a thrill of discovery.  This book is a great idea, but I think that Castles and Ancient Monuments of Scotland did it better by presenting far more pictures.

The first chapter of this book, “Beyond Tartans and Bagpipes,” included a section called “Why Independent?”  They say, “We especially like to travel independently because we can manage our own time, stopping when we want, exploring some places more than others.  Tours have predetermined schedules to keep, limiting time to tarry.  On tours we might have missed some of our most magical moments…. Most importantly, we go places tours don’t.”

I brought this book along, since that section told me I had found kindred spirits.  However, the truth was that I didn’t reach for it very often.  Maybe some day, when we have more time to wander and explore, I will be able to put this book to good use. 

Copyright © 2003 Sondra Eklund.  All rights reserved.

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