Features Ed Blog: The Atmosphere of Iona

Shutterstock © the atmosphere of iona

There’s no denying there’s something special about the atmosphere of Iona.

I don’t mean the air, though the fresh island breeze is lovely! The place has a sense of calm about it, as many of the Western Isles do.

In this week’s issue, Morag Fleming is visiting. Morag drives the scenic road across Mull to the ferry, then hops across to Iona before hopping one step further to tiny Staffa and Fingal’s Cave.

News to me

I’m ashamed to admit that when I visited nearly a decade ago, I knew very little about it. We were bustling around Argyll and the Isles on a very busy press trip. From Glasgow we headed to Bute, visiting Mount Stuart, before hopping around on some more ferries and heading up through Argyll to Oban.

The next day we left for Mull. To be honest, I was happy enough with the drive across Mull – golden eagles circling overhead and glorious views made it something special.

I had no expectations of Iona, but we had a good few hours there after our trip to Staffa. Not that Fingal’s Cave wasn’t amazing, but the Abbey and island itself were a bit magical.

An overnight stay

Morag is lucky enough to stay overnight for her feature. I can only assume she’s right – we were day guests, but judging by the number of us leaving at the end of the afternoon, it must’ve been much quieter without us!

With her trusty campervan, Morag’s never short of a spot to sleep in. I really enjoyed seeing some pics of her campervan this week, actually – I’m glad she sent them to us.

Morag’s a teacher, and heads off for us on adventures during the school holidays in the van. We have a chat each year about where she could go, then we don’t hear from her for a while and she sets off, touring the countryside of Scotland and north England.

Then the features come rolling in later in the year! This is one of my favourites, and one of my favourite places. I’m sure those of you who’ve been will understand why – and if you haven’t, add it to the list!

As Morag says, it’s a journey to get there. But every mile of that journey is magical in and of itself…

Read more travel from the “Friend”.

Alex Corlett

Alex is the "Friend's" Features Editor, working with the talented Features Team to bring you everything from cryptic crosswords to financial advice, knitting patterns to international travel and inspirational real life stories. Always on the hunt for a new feature idea, Alex also enjoys cycling and loves a good tea room.