Well, what a wonderful little adventure I’ve had this week, up and down bonnie Scotland.

We started down at Gretna Green on Saturday night for a wee overnight stay and then we left first thing on Sunday morning to start our journey up to Wick then onto Thurso on Monday morning.

Now, what would bring me all the way up to Thurso, the north most town on the British mainland I hear you ask?

Well it was to visit the current Scottish Baker of the year, Reids of Caithness. Now, I know I look like a woman who would travel hell and high water for a cream cake but this was actually an official visit, you see, as I host many events for Scottish Bakers and I’ll be back on board again next year, helping to launch the search for the new 2018/2019 Scottish Baker of the Year.

I’ve been to lots of different places in Scotland over the years but it’s mainly been up the west coast of the country.

I’ve been and performed in Inverness many times and I’d even been to Wick once before when I was presenting Let’s Do The Show Right Here for BBC Radio Scotland about nine years ago but other than that I hadn’t really done much sightseeing or driving up that neck of the woods. By the time we hit Inverness at 3.30pm it was already dark so we didn’t get to see much of our surrounding on the road to Wick. We checked into the lovely MacKay’s Hotel on Sunday evening where we had the lobbies dinner and drinks, the staff couldn’t have been more friendly and helpful. We were up and out the next morning to head to Thurso to meet with Gary and Tracy at Reids and it was easy to see why they are Scotland’s top bakery with their spotless kitchens and friendly hardworking staff.

As we were that far up the country we decided to travel the extra 20 miles to John O’Groats for the obligatory picture under the famous sign.

It was our journey on the way back down to Glasgow though that afternoon that really blew us away. As I said it had been dark when we travelled up but the sun was shining brightly as we drove through gorgeous little villages like Golspie and Brora with their wee Christmas lights up and village shops. The scenery down that road was just breathtaking especially going through places like Castletown, Dornoch and Tain. We had to stop so many times in the little passing places just to take pictures and I don’t think I’ve used the word wow so many times in my life. My husband and I just looked at each other and said how incredibly lucky we are to live in such a breathtakingly beautiful country. Also did you know that Scotland was most recently voted the most beautiful country by a Rough Guide readers poll? Honestly, if you live in Scotland but you’ve never been outside the central belt I can’t urge you enough to just take some time off, get on a train or in your car and go explore our beautiful country. It will be the best decision you’ve ever made, trust me.

l If you are looking for a traditional Christmas Carol concert like no other then why not head down to St Andrew’s Cathedral on Clyde Street in Glasgow next Thursday, December 14 at 7pm?

The beautiful St Andrew’s Cathedral choir will be performing some of the world’s best loved Christmas carols and I will have the pleasure of hosting the evening. Entry is absolutely free and there will be a wee collection for The Mungo Foundation who support some of our city’s most vulnerable people. Nothing makes you feel more festive than a good Christmas carol!