Travel: Scotland’s Kelpies Sculptures

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The Kelpie is a legendary Scottish creature that is said to haunt lochs and bodies of water. Since April, there has been a phenomenal sculpture to honor it.

In myth, the Kelpie appears to takes on both the physical appearance of horse or a human, and is said to represent the strength and endurance of the horse.

Standing at an astonishing 98-feet-tall, ‘The Kelpies’ statue located at The Helix Park towers over the Forth and Clyde Canal, in Helix Park, Falkirk. The two beautiful metal myths form their own magical entranceway to the canal and the newly built extension where visitors can walk under the heads of the gargantuan creatures.

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The awesome sculptures weigh a combined 600-tons between the two and were created by Scottish artist Andy Scott for a rumored £5m budget.

“The original concept of mythical water horses was a valid starting point for the artistic development of the structures. I took that concept and moved with it towards a more equine and contemporary response, shifting from any mythological references towards a socio-historical monument intended to celebrate the horse’s role in industry and agriculture as well as the obvious association with the canals as tow horses.” – Andy Scott

A lighting test is carried out on the Kelpies in Falkirk ahead of their official April 7, 2013 opening to the public. Designed by sculptor Andy Scott each of The Kelpies stands up to 30 metres tall and each one weighs over 300 tonnes.

Each of the sculptures are made from sheets of metal, with an intricate display woven between the panels that light up at night, giving off quite a show. The statues are slated to bring in 1.5 million a year from guided tours, and plenty of people have been happy to cough up a few bucks to learn a bit more about Scottish mythology.

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The Kelpies are part of the £43 million redevelopment project that hopes to attract thousands of new tourists to the areas local parks, restaurants, stores, and museums. And if you’re a fan of mythology, art, and really big sculptures (and who isn’t) it’s worth it to spend the afternoon exploring the park and visiting the two largest horses in Scotland.

On the Web:

Kelpie – on Wikipedia

Kelpie – Mysterious Britain & Ireland

Kelpie – Harry Potter Wiki

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