Portsoy’s pick of activities to keep the mind and body active during lockdown
January 16, 2021
Beat the January blues the Portsoy way
Stuck at home and lacking in drive and inspiration due to the latest lockdown, coupled with the January blues?
We feel your pain. Our Portsoy caravan park is closed, and so too is our Sail Loft self-catering accommodation. Likewise, the Portsoy Salmon Bothy has the shutters up and there’s no traditional boat building courses going on at The Boat Shed.
Coronavirus has had a far-reaching impact on people and it’s important during this time to take care of your mind as well as your body.
So, let’s help get you motivated: here’s our top nine ways to look after your health and stay connected.
Walks This Way to Get Up and Go
It’s often overlooked as a form of exercise, but walking is simple, free and one of the easiest ways to get more active, lose weight and become healthier. Walking brings mental wellbeing benefits too, particularly when you are close to water. So-called blue spaces, like the sea and coastline, are associated with inducing positive feelings and reducing negative mood and stress.
You don’t have to walk for hours. A brisk 10-minute daily walk has lots of health benefits and counts towards your recommended 150 minutes of weekly exercise. If you take walking in your stride, we are blessed with some great coastal routes, including the Aberdeenshire Coastal Trail which stretches from Portsoy to St Cyrus. www.visitscotland.com/destinations-maps/aberdeen-city-shire/coastal-trail/
The Salmon Bothy is one of our prized assets, being home to an award-winning heritage centre and genealogy base. So, it will come as little surprise that we’ve thrown our weight behind the Banffshire Memories Project.
This initiative led by Andrew Simpson, the Lord Lieutenant of Banffshire, seeks to collect stories from this area. Stories that relate the changes that have been experienced in the county over the past 70 years and relating to school life, family occasions, extreme weather, festivals, work, sport and social activities.
The gathered stories will feature on a website and some will be included in a commemorative book that will be published to mark the 70th anniversary of Her Majesty the Queen’s reign. Find out how to share your own story here:
Grab yourself a cuppa – or order one from us– and start browsing. You’ll find many specialist books, the latest of which is a record of the burial stone inscriptions at Fordyce Kirkyard. An invaluable resource for anyone doing family history research with roots in that part of Banffshire.
Read all About It!
Join the growing band of people making use of local library services.
Here in Aberdeenshire, more people signed up for library membership last year, and little wonder. The service provides access to a whole host of online materials and resources, perfect when you are stuck indoors.
You can choose ebooks and audio books for free, as well as browse emagazines and enewspapers and download music.
If you live, work or study in Aberdeenshire library membership is free and you can find out more here:
The boat festival has been a feature of life in Portsoy since 1993, although the 2020 event was cancelled due to Covid 19.
With a determination to see the event return on the weekend of 26 and 27 June, a new committee has been formed and is looking to deliver a safe festival in line with Government guidelines that are in place at the time.
The boat festival annually attracts up to 16,000 people and includes craft, local music, food and drink, dance attractions, as well as a fleet of traditional boats. We would love to hear your ideas or enlist your support for helping out over the two days of the festival in June. Interested in getting involved? Email email@example.com
Plan your next holiday
We can’t wait to welcome tourists back to Portsoy when it’s safe to do so – and planning your next break is an important part of the anticipation and fun of holidays.
Our site caters for the full mix of static, caravan, tent, campervan and motorhome usage.
For those who prefer self-catering style breaks we have The Sail Loft.
It shares uninterrupted views out across Portsoy Links, as well as having a hot tub, wood burner and comes with five-star Trip Advisor reviews.
Take Up Knitting
Portsoy Bothy Knitters is a friendly group of people who meet to knit, spin, weave and chat and have a good chat.
The talented members have produced hundreds of hats, gloves, scarves, blankets and other knitted goodies on behalf of local and national charities.
They enjoy a great spirit of friendship and camaraderie in their efforts, and they are represented in the craft marquee of Portsoy’s Scottish Traditional Boat Festival in addition to having a couple of fundraisers throughout the year.
Their meetings at the Salmon Bothy may be on hold meantime, but the nimble-fingered members remain active. Enjoying handcrafts is an excellent way to achieve mindfulness, by becoming focused and concentrated on the activity, relaxing and unwinding at the same time. You can find out more at the Bothy Knitters here
Join Folk at the Bothy
Another group that normally meets in Portsoy is Folk at the Salmon Bothy. As the name suggests this is a folk music club that uses the performance space Upstairs at The Bothy. They haven’t let restrictions over musical gatherings stop them enjoying their shared love of music as they have switched sessions online during the pandemic.
They have kept active with regular Zoom gatherings which are billed as “Just like the real thing – virtually!” Read more here
Connect with the Natural World
Be inspired by your surroundings, the Perfect Planet is all around. In Portsoy, Links Bay offers incredible opportunities for nature spotting.
Looking out across the bay and the sea is often covered with a variety of birds.
The most popular visitors are Gulls; Herring, Black Headed and Common Gulls are the norm, but there will be some rarities out there, like Glaucous and Icelandic gulls which have been spotted.
Around the shoreline Oyster Catchers and Curlews regular visitors, as well as Turnstones Redshanks and the occasional Plover.
Along the cliffs close by the bay and Gannets, Kittiwakes, Guillemots and Razorbills will be seen.
Out in the bay, lone seals sometimes visit, along with divers and Cormorants, and of course you might get lucky and see the Moray Firth bottlenose dolphins passing by.
On the land, look out for Rock or Meadow Pipits, Pied Wagtails and Starlings.