04 Dec Ailsa Craig, Ayrshire, Strathclyde
One travel writer displayed typical Scottish pride, if not ingenuity, by writing that Ailsa Craig was from a certain angle a perfect pyramid, ‘with this advantage over the pyramids of Egypt, but twice their height’. Ailsa Craig, the fairy rock, Paddy’s Milestone (so called because of its position halfway between Glasgow and Belfast), is a volcanic lump ten miles off the coast of Girvan, 1100 feet high. It belongs in Scotland all right, in the parish of Dailly. The memory bank which every Scottish adult reserves for holidays on the Clyde is haunted by it (‘Where is Ailsa Craig, again?’). it houses a ruined castle and a lighthouse, is riddled with rabbit warrens and shrieking with gulls, and is also a quarry for a special kind of granite (ailsite) used for best quality curling stones.
Ailsa Craig is a hidden gem, when you are touring the North Coast of Ireland, see if you can spot it!