25 things to do in the East Neuk of Fife

25 things to do in the East Neuk of Fife

Here are 25 things we have done as a family whilst on holiday at Sandcastle Cottage. There is definitely something for everyone on a holiday in the East Neuk of Fife and St Andrews.  As seasoned holidaymakers in the area, there are of course some glaring omissions but we thought the selection might inspire you if you’re considering a break here.

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Crail Harbour – cake shoot!

This might seem ever so slightly eccentric, but you’ll just have to bear with me… There’s a story to be told.

In the course of the last few years I’ve met lots of wonderful people who love cake, and quite a few who also like to travel. One such friend has combined the two loves by creating a blog about cake in beautiful places.

As she received (and accepted) a proposal of marriage on the Isle of May, it seemed only fitting that whilst on holiday in Crail we should attempt to create a photograph for her blog involving some delicious cake from Crail, and a distant view of the island.

We tried some practice shots on the beach at Kingsbarns the other day, and discovered that this cake – view combination is more difficult than you’d think. With a requirement to squeeze a distant view in to make it recognisable, but to keep the foreground in focus too, there were some poor shots – even with my junior cake-holder holding the plate!

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There was some millionaire shortbread on the plate, but it was barely visible. We’d need to be sure to pack some real stand-up substantial cake to make it work.

And then of course there was the cake choice – what to pick? A coconut biscuit was tasty, but didn’t fit the definition of cake (would we have got away with a Jaffa Cake?)

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We knew who’d have the answer, the lovely Edna, baker of fine cakes at the Honeypot Guest House and Tearoom – and producer of a very fine lemon drizzle cake. Arriving at 3:30 pm, I was very fortunate to find just a sliver of delicious cake left. It was difficult to keep it nestled in its little carry-out box long enough to ensure that it made the journey down to the harbour.

Then there was the pretty, but bothersome issue of wanting to include both the harbour and the Isle of May in the shot, but the bunting from the Lifeboat Gala Day meaning that the chance of that elusive island view was even more difficult to capture.

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Moving around the harbour meant that we lost the chance to see the fishing boats, but did get a better glimpse of the Isle of May.

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You’ll have to visit the Cake with a View blog to find out which photographs of cakey deliciousness made the final cut, but I can assure you that the cake didn’t last much longer (did I mention the seagull-swooping hazard which has to be overcome when photographing foodstuffs at a harbour?).

We hope that you’ll be inspired to get out and about with some cake and a camera, and send some pictures to Sophia – she’s married her Scotsman and moved to Canada now, so photos of Scotland are much appreciated, but we think this idea is one which should be celebrated with some cake wherever your travels take you!

Visit to the Honeypot Cafe

Before we put wi-fi internet access into Sandcastle Cottage, our guests used to have to wander along to the Honeypot Café to use their wi-fi network.  Although you can now surf the net to your heart’s content in the cottage, you’d be missing out on Edna’s great cakes and Graham’s delicious soup.  On warm days you can sit outside either at the front or the back. Its great for light lunches. If you haven’t tried Crail Crab yet then this is one of the places that sell it.

Pop in and say hello next time you’re out for a wee wander round Crail.

Honeypot cafe Honeypot Guest House and Tearoom Crail

Honeypot for great soup, delicious cakes, coffees and more

This time, Chocolate!

If you followed our year end walk on 31 December 2010, you’ll see that we ended the walk in Anstruther having a portion of chips at the Famous Anstruther Fish Bar.

Today we decided to fortify ourselves at the Cocoa Tree in Pittenweem before starting a walk back to Crail from there, figuring that it was cold and we needed some incentive to get us going.

What a choice! We were greeted warmly by Chris Walker who was spending his New Year break helping out in the cafe. The Cocoa Tree was one of the few places to be open on 2nd January, but this was due to demand from regulars and at the time when we were there a steady stream of customers was arriving to savour the delights on offer.

This was our first visit, and certainly won’t be our last. The Caliente: a divine combination of quality hot chocolate and a hint of chilli is definitely addictive and a perfect pick-me-up for someone who doesn’t like sickly sweet chocolate drinks. Paradise in a cup. If you can’t wait to get here to sample some, then the Cocoa Tree offers on-line ordering and I’ve just noticed that they also stock Willie Harcourt-Cooze’s World Class Cacao products too. Oh, I’m lost!

We measured our distance using iMapMyWalk (a free app for iPhone) and from the western end of Pittenweem to Sandcastle Cottage at the eastern end of Crail we clocked up just over 8 miles, to bring our total for the three days over New Year to 20 miles. Great training for the Moonwalk!