Christmas shopping can be really overwhelming, not to mention frustrating. No matter how much I protest that next year I will do it online (next year, I really will); sometimes it’s inevitable, you just have to bite the proverbial bullet and head into the city.
As we wandered the seasonal aisles of trusty old Marks and Spencers looking for treats to accompany our presents, we came across a tin of shortbread and on this tin of shortbread there was a map of the UK featuring landmarks for various locations. So if you’re anything like us, of course you will look for your area. Well, for both Aberdeen and Stornoway there was nothing. Cheers Markies!!
We did see a great big pineapple though. What? Things to do in Scotland and one of them is a giant pineapple? We had no idea.
So in the midst of Christmas shopping, we needed to get away from the crowds and decided to leave the city and go for coffee. This pineapple was irking us though. Pineapples have nothing to do with Scotland and I have never heard of a pineapple landmark in Scotland. So of course, out comes Google and we are searching ‘pineapple Scotland’ until we come across The Pineapple in Dunmore (one mile North of Airth), Falkirk.
Ranked as the most bizarre building in Scotland, how have we never heard of The Pineapple before? What, where, why? So many questions!
Luckily for us and our curiosity, we were travelling down to Peebles the following day for a nights stay at Cringletie House. We had already planned a trip to Glasgow and only being a short distance away, it seemed the perfect opportunity to visit this so called pineapple.
According to wikipedia, the Pineapple was built in 1761 by the Earl of Dunmore as a summerhouse. I have read that this was potentially a rather unorthodox birthday or wedding present to his wife. Pineapples were still a very exotic fruit to the UK at that time and pineapples, among other unusual fruit and veg were grown in the hothouse here. I believe the hothouse existed prior to The Pineapple structure was built at a later date.
Sitting at 37ft high, The Pineapple overlooks a large estate filled with wildlife which I think it would be perfect for summer picnics, although a little off the beaten track. It’s definitely quirky, I’ll give it that!
We visited early in the morning and the sound of birds were eerily haunting but equally comforting. There was a real sense of peace and calm surrounding the building. It was just us, a dog walker and some squirrels. However, beware of the walk down to the water towards the old curling pond, I had visions of sliding straight down and into it! And trust me, with all that algae, it would not have been pretty.
Now self catering accommodation with a private garden which you can book here, The Pineapple is undoubtedly up there with with the most unique of Scotlands hidden tourist attractions!