Home > Things that make me happy, travel > London to Edinburgh – east coast train trip

London to Edinburgh – east coast train trip

At the end of a very busy 10 day trip I’m finally on the train home. I feel the calm of a long train journey. I can watch the world go by, lost in thoughts, with no guilt that I should be doing anything else. Its restful, meditative, nourishing. And its a spectacular journey, up the east coast from London to Edinburgh.

The expansive flatness of east Anglia is really striking to my adopted Scottish eye. Towns with high steeples churches provoke imaginings of how they would have worked and felt hundreds of years ago.

Further north and we pass allotments, red bricked terraces with back lanes behind them – why were alleys between rows of houses made? That’s a genuine question by the way – please do answer if you can. :)

And then off to the left suddenly a profile of a giant face in a bing! Luckily my smartphone could tell me where I am and googling “cramlington sculpture” I found that it wasn’t a mirage, but someone is actually creating a giant sculpture out of the waste from an opencast mine! I find this a bit disturbing – opencast mining is really destructive of local environments and this seems like the art version of greenwash… but it was still pretty cool.

Then a herd of deer on a hill! And holy island – the tide was in so couldn’t see the causeway but def want to visit someday.

The further north I get the more agriculture and buildings are replaced by hills, wild areas, cliffs, trees and birds. Landscapes made more dramatic because just a couple hours ago the picture was so different. My personal history of moving from London to Glasgow, and falling ever more deeply in love with Scotland, gives a subjective context for this train journey.

Pretty berwick. Again on a future to visit list for a future slower journey north, perhaps by bicycle.

Rugged coastline. Now overtly human presence is the exception to the wild rule. When the trainline does rejoin the A1 we easily swoosh past the cars.

As we approach Edinburgh the landscape becomes more manshaped, with fields and buildings again. The coast is still closeby and frequently visible. The roads have less traffic than down south. And brick is rarely visible now. I missed neat cozy brickwork for a good few years after moving north, and still enjoy it when I’m back in England. Sandstone and various cladding is mostly visible up here.

Approaching Edinburgh mountains can be seen in the distance. Oh to be catching another train further north yet, rather than my Glasgow connection!

  1. Jonathan Nicholson
    January 29, 2012 at 3:36 pm

    Its always good to swoosh past cars when on a train. I take the west coast route to Manchester for similar reasons. More hills too!

    • January 29, 2012 at 4:05 pm

      Yeah west coast is my usual route to London and is stunning. :) east coast was much cheaper for today, and its good to have variety. How you doing? Coming to the STAR quiz tonight?

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