• The Hymer motorhome is parked on green grassland while the sun goes down.

    Road trip: Exploring Scotland’s coast with the Hymer motorhome.

    Adrian, Noel, Linda and Marko are four friends travelling through Scotland. The first station of their road trip with the Hymer: the coast. On the islands Tiree and Skye they meet surfer William and head chef Scott.

    Photos: Linda Ambrosius | Autor: Aline Knobloch

The Isle of Tiree represents complete idyll.

Just as the four friends are approaching the rocky coast with the Hymer motorhome, the sun slowly disappears behind the mountain chains of the Isle of Tiree. Noel steers the caravan safely through the small winding streets, past idyllic farms, large pasture lands and grazing cows. It is completely calm here, only the ocean announced itself from afar with its gentle sound. Now the waves are breaking against the shore with a rumbling noise. Noel parks the Hymer with the Sprinter chassis opposite a rambling sand beach. The wind tickles the friends’ faces. Water as far as the eye can see – in shades of blue that nobody would have expected in Scotland.

William stands next to a wooden hut, the surfboard under his arm. Beside him there is the Hymer with the Sprinter chassis.

A place, as wild and precious as a diamond.

In the distance, a surfer plunges into the waves. As he slowly strolls along the beach, he brushes some wet strands of hair from his forehead. He is breathing fast and initially uses his surfboard to support himself. William MacLean says he is a little out of breath. William was lucky enough to grow up on Tiree. He knows the beauty of the Scottish island, he breathes the feeling of freedom that it gives to all its inhabitants.

“Tiree is wild and precious,” says the 40-year-old, with his surfboard tucked under his arm now. His gaze wanders back to the ocean which reflects the golden light of the evening sun. His love of the water prompted him to found his own surfing school here on Tiree almost 20 years ago: “Wild Diamond Watersports” was the name he chose for it. This name has been chosen to reflect the rough charm of the island.

The surfer William in his wetsuit in front of the sea.

From passion to profession.

Even as a boy William was a nature lover and was therefore bold enough to plunge into the waves at the tender age of ten. It soon became clear to him that he wanted to turn his big passion into his profession. While still at school, he started teaching at the Tiree Windsurfing Club, later he opened a surfing school in Ireland. “My grandmother was a key influence in this. She was very industrious and ran a busy B & B.” However, William soon felt drawn back to his native Scotland. “The Scots are curious, sarcastic, resourceful and patriotic.” No question, his deep voice holds a measure of pride.

“Problems are a part of life.”

Now Noel, Adrian, Linda and Marko are bold enough to step onto the surfboard, too. After that they speak with William about his job. He says he is his own boss – and that he likes it that way. Nevertheless, William describes his everyday life as a constant challenge. He says that self-employment requires courage: “Be aware you need to put all of your time into your project. Not just lots ... all of your time!” He also had to learn first how to deal with setbacks and doubts. Now he knows: Problems are a part of life. His love of sports has of course helped him to arrive at this insight. “As long as I can make a living from my business I will continue!”

With his surfboard, William walks towards the sea.

On a visit to top chef Scott Davies.

This view is shared by Scott Davies whom Linda, Marko, Noel and Adrian meet a few days later on the Isle of Skye. When they arrive at the island in the Hymer motorhome, Scott is carrying a large bucket full of freshly caught crabs, shrimps and crayfish across the street. The scent of the sea is hanging in the air, seagulls are crossing his path. The native Welshman is executive chef of the most renowned restaurant in Scotland. He has brought in his own style and delights the guests of “The Three Chimneys” above all else with authentic flavours.

When the four friends arrive at the restaurant, there is the usual hustle and bustle. Does he sometimes get nervous on such hectic evenings? Scott shakes his head. He says he has always been thrilled by the fast pace in the professional kitchen. “I think I made my mind up to be a chef when I was about thirteen, and that was it. I have never changed my mind!” Scott smiles.

Scott Davies distributes sauces out of a pot on prepared dishes.

The mission: to serve Skye’s nature to plate.

Inspired by his parents who were cooking enthusiasts, but also by TV star chef Gordon Ramsay, Scott starts his apprenticeship at the Catering College. His own style is taking shape in various restaurants, with his time in Australia being of special importance for his professional development. “The food there was a lot lighter and less influenced by heavy aromas.” With this experience under his belt, he moves to Skye in 2015. His mission in “The Three Chimneys”: “... to serve the most local nature to plate and give our guests the finest that Skye has to offer.”

A painful way to success.

The new concept is not immediately understood by everybody. For Scott, this is a painful insight: “It is very discouraging when people got out of their way to be negative. They clearly just did not get what I was trying to achieve.” This taught him: “I have learned that I need to communicate my story and my intentions more clearly.” The hard work is paying off. A selection of delicious seafood lands on the table, the scent of lamb steaks sweeps through the restaurant. With his choice of ingredients, Scott celebrates the unique nature of the island.

Scott Davies waits next to a fisherman in front of Skye’s coast and looks to the blue water.

With the Hymer to the most beautiful places.

“The most amazing thing about Skye is how wild and rugged this place is – and yet so beautiful and bountiful in many of its secret places,” Scott explains. The chef has quickly felt at home in Scotland. His tip for the exploration of the Highlands: take a road trip. “Head off in almost any direction from Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen or Inverness and you will be staggered by what you discover!”

Linda, Adrian, Marko and Noel leave Skye, too, and continue touring the country in search of all the other magic places and impressive personalities.