The 18th Century market town of Castle Douglas is located in Kirkcudbrightshire, in Dumfries and Galloway. Surrounded by beautiful countryside, the town is a designated Food Town, with a large number of local businesses producing local food and drink. To the south of the town, Carlingwark Loch offers an attractive spot to picnic or stroll, and if you are after a bit of activity, boating and sailing is also available. Out to the west, dramatically positioned on an island on the River Dee, Threave Castle is worth a visit. A short walk takes you to the shore, and a bell summons the ferry to take you across to the island! Threave Gardens and Estate is also a beautiful stop, with some lovely garden features and trails to enjoy. The estate is a wildfowl reserve and Threave Wetlands are a designated Area of Special Scientific Interest. The town also offers an attractive 9 hole golf course.
One of the former counties of Dumfries and Galloway, Kirkcudbrightshire stretches across the Solway coast from Dumfries to Creetown on the River Cree, and encompasses a vast range of the Galloway Forest Park to the north. Found on the Solway coast, Kirkcudbright is an attractive harbour town. Popular with artists, there are a great number of galleries to be found here. The magnificent ruins of the MacLellan Castle can be found near the harbour, the townhouse and former family home tell of a historical Scottish lifestyle within its walls. Nearby Broughton House, former home to a celebrated artist, displays an impressive collection of art and furniture, and has a fantastic Japanese Garden to explore. The town of Castle Douglas is a thriving market town. Here you will find plenty of local produce to sample. The nearby Calingwark Loch offers boating and sailing, and is a lovely spot for a fair weather picnic! To entertain the kids, take a trip to Galloway Wildlife Conservation Park, showcasing an extensive range of native and exotic animals within its 27 acres. For a bit of action, Dalbeattie Forest is home to a 7Stanes mountain biking route, and there are plenty of other opportunities for hiking, cycling and horse riding in this area.
Dumfries and Galloway
From shores to hills, Dumfries and Galloway is an area of magnificent landscapes, and natural beauty, and a paradise for walkers and cyclists, thanks to the rolling hills, and verdant forests. 200 miles of coastline offer beautiful beaches and seaside towns, and thanks to the Gulf Stream, a unique climate here, a perfect setting for a beach holiday.
Stretching across the border with England, and reaching up to the central belt from Glasgow to Edinburgh, the Southern Scotland region is a popular location for short break holidays. Although you may not find the monumental mountain ranges of the Highlands, don’t think that this region lacks the traditional Scottish landscapes. The famous 7Stanes mountain biking routes can be found across the Border counties and Dumfries and Galloway, as there is an abundance of hills, glens and forests to challenge even experienced bikers. The region has plenty of fishing opportunities too, most popular perhaps is the River Tweed, well known for its salmon, and miles of coastline, ideal for walking and bird spotting. Golf can be found in abundance in this area too. For gentler activities, visit the Four Borders Abbeys, magnificent tributes to the religious history of the area, at Kelso, Jedburgh, Dryburgh and Melrose.