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Home » Activities » Ancestral Tourism
 

Ancestral Tourism

  • Clan Armstrong Centre


    Gilnockie Tower

    The Esk Valley Clan Armstrong Reiver Centre

    The Clan Armstrong Ancestral Home

    History, Mystery and Discovery while exploring the far-reaching lands of the Anglo-Scottish Border Reivers, join us for an enthralling 500 years of Clan Armstrong History at Gilnockie Tower Reiver Centre.

    Gilnockie Tower is a stunning example of a Scottish pele tower. Built some 500 years ago, it was home to Johnnie Armstrong, a notorious border reiver. In 1530 this powerful chieftain was hanged by a Scottish king, his story romanticised by Walter Scott.

    Gilnockie Tower has five floors, including vaulted chamber, banqueting hall and spiral staircase. The entrance stone is thought to be two thousand years old. Once a roofless ruin, the place has been completely refurbished and is open as a clan and visitor attraction. The Clan Armstrong Centre houses reiving artefacts and the world’s largest collection of Armstrong archives.

    Many times recognised by historians, students and visitors alike as: the Gilnockie Tower; Armstrong’s Tower; Hollows Tower; or Holehouse Tower and believed to be from the period circa 1490-1520 as a rubble built, carved stone, Medieval Period Scots Tower House.

    Clan Armstrong Centre

    Ancestral Home of the Clan Armstrong

    Gilnockie Tower Reiver Centre Phone: 013873 71373

    Gilnockie Tower Mobile: 07733 065587

    Hollows Phone Intl: +44 13873 71373

    Canonbie Mobile Intl: +44 7733 065587

    Dumfriesshire Website: www.gilnockietower.com

    Scotland Email: gt@gilnockietower.com

    DG14 0XD Newsletter Email: gilnockietower@gmail.com

    Instagram: gilnockietowerreivercentre

    Registered Charity Company No. SC104156 (Scotland)

    Gilnockie Tower is open all year round.

    10.00 am until 4.00 pm 7 days Easter to end October 2018.

    Last tour 30 minutes before advertised closing time.

    Personalised guided tours of the tower available at 12.15 pm,

    13.15 pm, and 14.15 pm by booking through our phone number

    Open: 11.00 am until 3.00 pm daily end October until Easter 2019.

    Cafe now open

     
     
  • Armstrong Border Tours


    Darren and Eleanor’s trip to floors Castle.

    The grand Castle of Drumlanrig.

    Experience the Scottish Borders like never before with

    Foray unto reiver trail.

    A murdered laird and his followers Grave.

    Armstrong Border Tours

     

    Tours of the borders for the enthusiastic traveller who wishes, to learn more about the history of borders. From stone age man right through to modern day.

     

    Adam is a knowledgeable, experienced and passionate owner of the business. Go on tour with Armstrong Border Tours for memories that will last a lifetime

    Half Day Tours

    Half day tours, again will begin at 9am outside Langholm town hall, we do collect people from designated areas upon plenty of prior notice.Half day tours last until 2pm and then from 2pm until 6pm, half day tours take in a maximum of three sites. And refreshment breaks will be taken, during your tour. However, Armstrong Border Tours are not responsible for refreshments. Again, there are four regions to explore all of which are full of history and beautiful scenery.

    Full Day Tours

    Our full day tours will begin at 9am outside Langholm town hall, we do collect people from designated areas up plenty of prior notice.Full day tours last, until 5pm-6pm of which you will be transported back to the location at which we collected you. Once we have begun the tour we will explore one of four regions, Dumfries and Galloway, Scottish, Cumbria or Northumberland, a minimum of four sites per day on the full day tours. Refreshments breaks, and lunches will be at 11am, 1pm and then at 3:30pm, Armstrong Border Tours are not responsible for any refreshments. I aim to finish the tour at precisely 6pm but there maybe odd occasions of unforeseen circumstances. So therefore, ask for patience.

    Bespoke Tours

    Our bespoke tours are for the more, eager traveler, wanting to find or discover an old ancestral home or a place that’s not on the regular tours. We can take you off the beaten track and show you the wilds of the borders. Maybe you want to visit old kirkyards or see the colours of Edinburgh, maybe just see misty mountains all of which can be accessed with a little planning.Bespoke tours are from 9am to 6pm breaks and lunches will be given, you will be collected outside Langholm town hall or a designated place and returned there after the tour.Please note all tours must be paid for by the time the tour takes place, or your tour will have to cancelled. Deposits or/and cash on the day.

    Contact us today to book your Border Experience

    Call 07713 856101

    e mail us on adam.armstrongcrisp@hotmail.com

    See us on Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/armstrongbordertours/

    Some recent reviews

    Henry Jeffrey

    As a front of house member at the Eskdale Hotel I’d heard many positive reviews about Armstrong Border Tours from residents, so myself and the duty manager went on a tour with Adam. We were impressed, firstly, by the immaculately clean vehicle and comfortable seats.

    Our tour took us North of Langholm through the Ewes Valley before cutting across to Hermitage Castle. The tour continued through Newcastleton, Kershopefoot, Rowanburn, Hollows and returning to Langholm at 5pm.

    Throughout the tour Adam shared his knowledge of not only the Armstrong family, but of the Elliot’s, Scott’s and Turnbull’s – to name a few. His tour was delivered at a good pace and easy to understand.

    If you plan to pass through the border area then I’d highly recommend a visit to Langholm and experience a tour yourself. A very informative tour with a very knowledgeable guide.

    Becca Jill

    I made arrangements with Adam online. I had a special request to visit Rosslyn Chapel, and he was happy to oblige. Adam is very knowledgeable about the history of not only the Armstrongs but the entire Border area. Having Adam for a guide made for a very enjoyable day!

    Darren Kiddell

    I had my girlfriend visiting from Germany and wanted to do something for her where she could get to know the region and see some of the unknown sights that ordinary tour guides would miss. I’ve known Adam for a good number of years now and when I found out about his border tours I booked one up straight away.
    I had a few things I wanted to fit into the day, but asked Adam to surprise us with things he thought we would enjoy. The places we visited were amazing, Floors Castle, Traquair House, Gilnockie Tower, and while they were great to see and snoop around, it was Adam’s knowledge and his enthusiasm that made the day most enjoyable for us. I had worried my girlfriend and Adam might have communication issues but there was none at all and she understood nearly all of his informative talks only asking once or twice for him to repeat himself, considering the amount of knowledge he shared with us on our tour I was seriously impressed!
    Adam is a great guy with loads of passion and pride for what he does and he made sure we had a great day. If anyone wants to see some of the most beautiful countryside I’ve ever seen, points of interest off the beaten track and pick up a bit of history along the way, I’d definitely recommend going on one of his tours!

     

     

     

     
     
  • Dundonald Castle


    DUNDONALD CASTLE

    AND

    VISITOR CENTRE

     

    War and romance, smuggling and heroism, tales of the supernatural and more – Royal Dundonald Castle is one of Scotland’s most unexplored and fascinating treasures.
    Home to Scots King Robert II, grandson of Robert the Bruce; it’s where the formidable Stewart dynasty was born. The 14th century Castle, its ancient hilltop and surrounding woodland hold their secrets and those of the powerful Cochrane family, favourites of King Charles I.
    Experience impressive barrel-vaulted ceilings, enjoy spectacular coastal views and join the Castle Team for stories and rare finds from the site’s 2000-year-old past. The Castle’s rich history is illustrated for all ages, through initiatives in Education, Archaeology, Events and Exhibitions.
    Dundonald Castle’s legacy is just beginning. It’s a vibrant ‘living’ monument and holds a special place in the heart of its village. The busy Visitor Centre and welcoming café are the focal point for the famous Dundonald Highland Games and a unique place for local residents and their children to make memories for years to come.

     

     

     
     
  • Sorbie Tower


    sorbie tower on SWC300

    Sorbie Tower is a striking ancient keep and dates back to the 16th century.

    The Tower and surrounding land is owned by the Clan Hannay Society and is gradually being restored. The Tower was built on the site of an even older wooden fort – 12th century the foundations of which can still be seen. There are guided tours of the tower one day a week during the summer and visitors are always welcome to view the tower, its gardens and picnic in the grounds.

    In November 2017, Sorbie Tower hit the headlines displaying a “weeping window” of thousands of hand knitted and crocheted poppies which were hung from one of the tower’s windows. This attracted thousands of visitors and it is planned to repeat this for 2018.

    Sorbie Tower is approximately half way between Sorbie and Garlieston.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     
     
  • Carsphairn Heritage and Craft Centre


    carsphairn-heritage-centre1

    Carsphairn Heritage and Craft Centre is open daily from April until the end of September.

    Days of opening – to be confirmed soon

    NEW for 2018….the Centre is now home to a wide selection of Craftwork and Art for sale, all made locally.

    The Centre is manned entirely by volunteers, who provide a warm welcome, an expertise about Carsphairn and also a wider knowledge of this beautiful part of Scotland. The volunteers freely give their time to set up an Annual Exhibition and to steward it during the season. New volunteers are always welcome! The Heritage Centre relies on donations and membership fees.
    The seeds of Carsphairn Heritage Group were sown in 1982 with an exhibition of local interest in the Village Hall. The Group was formed in 1987 since when it has amassed a collection of family history records, photographs and slides as well as numerous items of local interest. Ancestry records are available for family history researchers. The Heritage Centre was built in 1992 and is run by the Heritage Group which is made up of local residents and others further afield who are interested in the history of this small community. Members receive a quarterly newsletter which reflects the abundance of local history in the area.
    There is a permanent timespan display of the parish in the Centre as well as an annual exhibition which covers an aspect of the varied history of Carsphairn which once had a far greater population than now. This fact gives the ancestor hunter some advantages in that many buildings and sites remain undisturbed and the fact that we have detailed histories of 36 local families provides a magnet for any genealogist.

    silvia2carspharinheritagectr

     
     
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