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Home » Heritage » Heritage sites
 

Heritage sites

  • Criffel Coaches


     

    Welcome to Criffel Coaches. 

    We are a small, family run, concern, operating quality 15 seater mini coaches from our base near Dumfries.

    We take pride in providing a friendly, caring and professional service to all our customers, being committed to serving you to the highest standards possible. Whatever your travel requirements, please feel free to contact us and we will try our best to assist you.

    Dumfries and Galloway is ideally situated within a reasonable travelling distance of places of interest across the north of England, the Central Belt of Scotland and the Borders, returning again on the same day.

    The local area has much to offer those following active pursuits in the countryside, as well as quiet roads, attractive towns to visit, historic locations, and high quality accommodation

     
     
  • 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

     
     
  • The Mill on the Fleet


    The Mill on the Fleet, Gatehouse

    The Mill on the Fleet is a restored 18th century cotton mill on the bank of the River Fleet in Gatehouse of Fleet.  Now an exhibition centre it is spread over three floors and houses core displays about the development of the town of Gatehouse and the natural history of the Fleet Valley.  There is also an annual programme of temporary exhibitions.  On the ground floor the regional arts collective PA Pop Up representing artists and craft-makers from around the region has an outlet for their varied work.  On the top floor is a popular second-hand bookshop.  The café offers a range of home-cooked fare – soups, paninis, salads, sweets and a selection of cakes and bakes.  On a fine day the riverside terrace is the perfect place to relax.  The Mill also welcomes well behaved dogs!

     
     
  • Scotland In A Snapshot


     
     
  • The Devil’s Porridge Museum


     
     
  • NTS Threave Garden


    Threave’s spectacular gardens have been created over the years by students of the National Trust’s School of Practical Gardening. It was recently voted second in The Independent’s ’10 Best Gardens to Visit in the UK’. (more…)

     
     
  • Robert Burns’ Ellisland Farm


    Discover Robert Burns’ family home “His Domicile for Humility and Contentment”, built for him in 1788 and where many of his greatest works were inspired. Tam o’ Shanter, Auld Lang Syne and Ae Fond Kiss were all penned within its walls.

    Enjoy the audio visual story of the three and a half  years that the Burns family spent at Ellisland, explore the story of the Burns family and wander the bonnie banks of the Nith that inspired Scotia’s national Bard.

     
     
  • Solway Tours


     
     
  • Historic Scotland- MacLellan’s Castle


    Explore the impressive residence of a powerful family in the heart of Kirkcudbright and the vaulted ground floor rooms in which their servants once worked. Look for the laird’s lug, a spy hole in the great hall through which the lord could eavesdrop on his guests.

    Admission

    Member/Explorer Pass holder: FREE
    Adult: £4.00
    Child aged 5–15: FREE
    Child under 5: FREE
    Concession: £3.00

    Opening Times

    26 March to 30 September 2018:

    Daily, 9.30am to 5.30pm, last entry 5.00pm

    Monument may close for lunch.

    Closed

    1 October 2018 to 31 March 2019

     
     
  • St Ninian`s Cave


    st ninians cave whithorn galloway

    St Ninian`s Cave – a journey back in time.

    On the shores of Luce Bay in the Machars of Galloway, slightly to the north of Burrowhead (famed for the burning of The Wickerman) lies St Ninian`s Cave. (more…)

     
     
  • Historic Scotland- Cardoness Castle


    Cardoness was built in the 1400s by the notorious McCulloch family, as a demonstration of their status. The well-preserved prison shows the kind of reception their most unwelcome guests might expect.

    Admission

    Member/Explorer Pass holder: FREE
    Adult: £5.00
    Child aged 5–15: £3.00
    Child under 5: FREE
    Concession: £4.00

    Opening Times

    26 March to 30 September 2018:
    Daily, 9.30am to 5.30pm, last entry 5.00pm

    Closed

    1 October 2018 to 31 March 2019

     
     
  • Historic Scotland- Sweetheart Abbey


    A monument to human and divine love, Sweetheart Abbey was named for its founder, Lady Dervorgilla, who was buried here with the embalmed heart of her beloved husband. The abbey church, with a stone effigy of the founder, survives almost intact.

    Admission

    Member/Explorer Pass holder: FREE
    Adult: £5.00
    Child aged 5–15: £3.00
    Child under 5: FREE
    Concession: £4.00

    Opening Times

    26 March to 30 September 2018:
    Daily, 9.30am to 5.30pm, last entry 5.00pm

    1 October 2018 to 31 March 2019:
    Daily except Thursday and Friday, 10am to 4pm, last entry 3.30pm

     
     
  • Joseph Thomson Local Heritage Centre


    The Joseph Thomson Group manages the Local Heritage Centre in Sundial Cottage, Marrburn Road, Penpont, the birthplace of Joseph Thomson, Victorian African Explorer.

    The story of Joseph Thomson’s  life and legacy is told as well as the cottage being the heritage base for the communities of Penpont, Keir and Tynron.

    Joseph Thomson (14.2.1858 – 2.8.1895) is Penpont’s most famous son. He was a geologist, a geographer and  explorer who played an important part in the ‘Scramble for Africa’. He led six expeditions into previously uncharted lands. Excelling as an explorer rather than an exact scientist, he avoided confrontations with indigenous peoples, neither killing any natives nor losing any of his men to violence. “He who goes gently goes safely, he who goes safely goes far” was his mantra.  He is revered in the areas of Africa he explored by, particularly by the Maasai.

    Joseph was probably born in the bedroom with the box bed where the exhibition celebrating his life and legacy is sited.  The other downstairs room is known as the villages room which has information, archives and artefacts from the three communities of Penpont, Keir and Tynron.

    The cottage itself is of architectural interest. Joseph Thomson’s father, William Thomson was a master stonemason. In the cottage he built the cantilever stone staircase and outside the armoury building, pigsty and privy.

    The Group holds  information about the three parishes and welcomes visitors keen to explore the surrounding area. Activities such as History Walks, and film shows are regularly organised by the group throughout the year.

    The Centre is open weekends (2.00pm – 4.00pm) from Easter to the end of September. Appointments can be made to come to the centre outwith these times. We have a number of guides who are happy to meet with visitors and share information or respond to queries.  Contact via e-mail – info@penpontheritage.co.uk or tel. 01848 330700 (answer machine) or Mrs Sophia Harkness, Chairperson, 01848 330411.

     
     
  • Scottish Industrial Railway Centre


    The Scottish Industrial Railway Centre is a ‘living museum’.  Here unique and historically significant industrial steam and diesel locomotives are restored and can be seen working in an authentic setting. We are the only Steam Railway in the south west of Scotland. Travel behind one of our restored steam engines along a short section of track.
    Want to come and visit? See our website and select ‘Steam Days’ for more information on open days, times and admission costs.

    Scottish Industrial Railway Centre is located at Dunaskin, Waterside, Patna, near Dalmellington, KA6 7JF

     
     
  • Dunskey Castle near Portpatrick


    portpatrick dunskey castle south west scotland

    Dunskey Castle is a spectacular ruin on the cliff tops a short distance from Portpatrick

    The castle can be reached by climbing a flight of steps to the cliff top above Portpatrick and following a good footpath for less than a quarter mile. (more…)

     
     
  • Culzean Castle & Country Park


    culzean castle visit south west scotland

    Culzean Castle is on the Ayrshire Coast of South West Scotland between Turnberry and Ayr. This magnificent castle and country park is extremely popular with visitors staying in the towns and villages in the west of Dumfries & Galloway and is the nearest National Trust property to Stranraer and the Rhins of Galloway (more…)

     
     
  • Galloway Forest Park


    Anytime is a great time to visit

    The Galloway Forest Park has everything you need for a great day out, whatever the time of year. Meet red deer and wild goats, choose from two scenic Forest Drives, follow in the footsteps of Robert the Bruce or picnic beside a peaceful loch. This is also Scotland’s first Dark Sky Park – one of the best places to stargaze in Europe!

    Start exploring from one of our three visitor centres. Kirroughtree is the gateway centre for the Galloway Forest Park and perfect for active adventures. Discover wonderful woods, water, hills and history at Glentrool and enjoy tranquil views over lochs and hills at Clatteringshaws.

    Kirroughtree and Glentrool are also home to two of the world-famous 7stanes mountain bike trail centres.

     

     
     
  • Historic Scotland- Glenluce Abbey


    Tucked in a tranquil valley is one of Scotland’s best-preserved monasteries. A highlight is the magnificent chapter house, with its ornate windows and grotesque carvings. There is also a remarkable plumbing system that supplied the Cistercian monks with running water.

    Admission

    Member/Explorer Pass holder: FREE
    Adult: £5.00
    Child aged 5–15: £3.00
    Child under 5: FREE
    Concession: £4.00

    Opening Times

    26 March to 30 September 2018: Sunday to Tuesday, 9.30am to 5.30pm, last entry 5.00pm

    Restricted access Wednesday to Saturday.

     
     
  • Kirkmadrine Stones


    Some of the oldest early Christian memorial stones in Britan are to be found at Kirkmadrine Church just a few  miles from Sandhead on the Rhins of Galloway.

    While the current church was built in the late 1800s, some of the stones date back as far as 400-600 AD.

    The stones are displayed behind a glass door on the church building and, on a sunny day, the views from the churchyard are outstanding.

     

     
     
  • Easterbrook Hall


    Full of grandeur with a historic soul, the Easterbrook Hall and Crichton Memorial Church is a hidden treasure situated on the 100 acres Crichton Estate in Dumfries, South West Scotland.

    The red sandstone buildings on the estate date back to 1834 with the Easterbrook Hall dating back to 1938. The building has been lovingly modernised whilst retaining its original charm and Art Deco features. The Crichton Memorial Church is more like a mini Cathedral and is considered to be one of the finest examples of ecclesiastical architecture in South Scotland. The ceiling is of carved oak and the floors a remarkable pattern of white, red, green and black marble imported from Italy and Ireland

    Established from the very beginning of the estate, acres of beautifully manicured lawns and impressive flower beds are maintained by our dedicated grounds keepers. The Rock Gardens have a wide variety of plants, miniature waterfall, ornamental pond and numerous seats and alcoves. Visitors are more than welcome to walk around our grounds, there are Heritage leaflets available from reception detailing walking routes around the estate. Why not have lunch at Neuro’s afterwards? www.neuros.co.uk

    Should you have an occasion to celebrate, our team has a wealth of experience in event management ranging from intimate family events to large scale celebrations, the talented and creative Kitchen brigade will tantalise your taste buds and our friendly events team will be on hand to make sure your event is everything you’ve dreamed of.

    Perhaps you are looking for live entertainment whilst visiting the region? Please see our sister site www.easterbrooklive.co.uk for details of upcoming events.

     
     
  • Drumlanrig Castle and Country Estate


    If you like delving deep into history, soaking up the finest culture, exploring beautiful countryside – or adrenaline-fuelled mountain biking – you’ll love a day at Drumlanrig Castle. From activities for kids to salmon fishing, you’ll find a raft of activity awaiting you. The Castle has 120 rooms, 17 turrets and four towers and from your very first glance you’ll know you’re entering a special place. Special enough, in fact, that the producers of Outlander recently used the Castle for filming their second series!

    You will discover Rembrandt’s Old Lady Reading and family portraits by artists such as Thomas Gainsborough, landscapes by Paul Sandby and the Dutch masters, and cartoons by Rowlandson amid the finest furnishing and antiques.

    The 90,000 acre Estate boasts miles of beautiful walks and acres of gardens. Launch yourself down one of our championship mountain biking trails, or hook yourself a salmon, fishing on the river. Activities for kids include everything from the adventure playground to ranger-led wildlife walks and a host of events.

    The Castle is the stunning Dumfriesshire seat of the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch and Queensberry, and they hope you find it as inspiring as they do.

     
     
  • Loch Skerrow Halt


    One of the most remote and isolated points on the line from Dumfries to Portpatrick, and later Stranraer, Loch Skerrow halt is accessible only via the trackbed from either Mossdale or Gatehouse Station. (more…)

     
     
  • Wanlockhead Lead Mining Museum


    The Visitor Centre is situated in the heart of the village of Wanlockhead, which is Scotland’s highest Village at 1531 ft./468.08 m. above sea level.

    (more…)

     
     
  • Historic Scotland- Caerlaverock Castle


    The epitome of the moated, medieval stronghold, Caerlaverock’s great triangular defences guard the Solway shore. This site has had a turbulent past. In 1300, its 60-strong garrison was defeated by Edward I’s vast English army in a siege.
    Despite the castle’s rugged appearance, its walls conceal a stunning Renaissance residence of the 1630s. See bluebells in spring, dragonflies and wildflowers in summer and barnacle
    geese in winter.

    Admission

    Member/Explorer Pass holder: FREE
    Adult: £6.00
    Child aged 5–15: £3.60
    Child under 5: FREE
    Concession: £4.80

    Opening Times

    26 March to 30 September 2018:
    Daily, 9.30am to 5.30pm, last entry 5.00pm

    1 October 2018 to 31 March 2019:
    Daily, 10am to 4pm, last entry 3.30pm

    Café opening hours

    The café is situated within the visitor centre and is open:

    April to September, daily from 10am to 4.30pm October, daily from 10am to 3.30pm November to March, closed Tuesday and Thursday, 10am to 3.30pm

     
     
  • Historic Scotland- New Abbey Corn Mill


    See a beautifully-restored village mill in action and learn about how oatmeal, a staple of the Scottish diet, was once made. A mill was probably built here by the monks of nearby Sweetheart Abbey, but parts of the present building probably date from the late 1700s.

    Admission

    Member/Explorer Pass holder: FREE
    Adult: £5.00
    Child aged 5–15: £3.00
    Child under 5: FREE
    Concession: £4.00

    Opening Times

    26 March to 30 September 2018:
    Daily, 9.30am to 5.30pm, last entry 5.00pm

    1 October 2018 to 31 March 2019:
    Daily except Thursday and Friday, 10am to 4pm, last entry 3.30pm

     
     
  • Mull of Galloway Experience


    Mull of Galloway

    Mull of Galloway Experience

    Visit ScotlandThe Mull of Galloway is Scotland’s most Southerly Point. At the end of a narrow peninsula with stunning views in every direction, the Mull of Galloway Lighthouse, the Lighthouse Exhibition, the RSPB Visitor Centre and Reserve and the stunning Gallie Craig Coffee House comprise the Mull of Galloway Experience, a Four Star Visit Scotland Visitor Attraction. The Mull of Galloway Trust purchased the land and buildings at the Mull of Galloway, with the exception of the tower, in a community buyout in 2013. The Mull of Galloway Trust is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) Charity Number: SC043557.

    The Mull of Galloway Lighthouse

    The Lighthouse at the Mull of Galloway is perched on the end of a 260 foot cliff. It was built by Robert Stevenson and first lit on 26th March 1830. The Lighthouse remains operational and is managed and monitored by Northern Lighthouse Board.

    The Lighthouse Tower is open to the public during the main season by kind permission of the Northern Lighthouse Board. A climb up the narrow, spiral staircase with its 115 steps to the viewing platform is rewarded by stunning views over Luce Bay to the Galloway Hills, the Fells of the Lake District, over the Irish Sea to the Isle of Man and Northern Ireland – four countries from one viewpoint! Friendly and knowledgeable staff from South Rhins Community Development Trust are at the top of the tower to answer any questions you may have and you will be awarded with a certificate of achievement for climbing the 115 steps. For members of the Association of Lighthouse Keepers’ the Mull of Galloway participates in the Lighthouse Passport Scheme.

    The Lighthouse and Exhibition open for the 2018 season on Good Friday. Please check the calendar on the website for the days of opening.

    Opening times are 11am until 5pm with last entry to the top of the Lighthouse Tower at 4.30pm.

    Lighthouse Exhibition at the Mull of Galloway

    The Exhibition is based in the former fuel store workshop and engine room next to the Stevenson Lighthouse. The original diesel engines that powered the fog horn can still be seen in the engine room.

    There are many interesting artefacts on view along with a wealth of fascinating information about the life and work of the Lighthouse Keepers’ in such a remote place and their families that lived there with them.

    Please check the website for the days of opening.

    Entry Charges for the Lighthouse & Exhibition for 2018

    Admission charges: Lighthouse Exhibition – £3.00 for adults and £1.00 for children under 14.
    Lighthouse Tower – £3.00 for adults and £1.00 for children under 14. Access to the Lighthouse Tower is by guided tour only.
    Combined visit to both the Lighthouse and Exhibition– £5.00 for adults and £1.50 for children under 14.

    Please note the tower tour is not suitable for anyone suffering from heart, breathing or balance difficulties and that any person under 1m in height will not be allowed access, this includes carried children. Visitors must wear sensible footwear to climb the tower.

    RSPB Nature Reserve at the Mull of Galloway

    The nature reserve at the Mull of Galloway is a 30 acre site and contains a huge variety of wildlife. There is a visitor centre where you can view the colonies of sea birds on the cliffs from cliff mounted cameras including guillemots, razorbills and kittiwakes. You may even see a puffin or two. On the nearby Scare or Scaur Rocks are enormous colonies of gannets

    On the clifftop heathland, there is much to be seen as well. Rare butterflies, birds such as the linnet and the stonechat and maybe some hares or a deer. Peregrines are also regular visitors.

    Guided walks are held every  Wednesday from 1pm to 3pm throughout the open season (April to the end of October).

    Opening Times –   The nature reserve and walks are open all year round. The RSPB Visitor Centre is open from Easter to the end of October.

    Gallie Craig Coffee House

    Gallie Craig is Scotland`s most southerly coffee house and gift shop and is named after the Gallie Craig Rock protruding from the sea south of the Mull of Galloway.

    The coffee house and gift shop have been designed in a most environmentally manner with a grass roof and predominantly glass walls enabling it to blend into the cliff side into which it is set.

    There is also a viewing platform right on the cliff edge from which you can enjoy a coffee whilst admiring the views and watch the seabirds and tides swirling below you.

    Visit the Mull of Galloway Experience at Scotland’s most Southerly Point in the far west of the region of Dumfries and Galloway. Dumfries and Galloway has been voted BBC Countryfile Magazine Holiday Destination of the Year for 2015/16.

     
     
  • The Crichton Gardens and Church


    The Crichton Gardens and Church

    Open to the public all year round, you can visit the Crichton Estate and explore the stunning scenery, enchanting rock gardens and discover the intriguing history – all within walking distance of Dumfries town centre. The Crichton truly has something for everyone. Hidden amongst the 85 acres of parkland and outdoor spaces, you’ll find snapshots of the Estate’s 100 year history along our heritage walks, combined with stunning architecture that has been sensitively repurposed

     
     
  • Historic Scotland- Threave Castle


    Cross the River Dee by boat to visit this enchanting castle set on its own island. Rich with wildflowers in summer; you might see ospreys and otters hunting in the river.

    The castle was besieged by King James II for two months in 1455, and fell after the king bribed the garrison to surrender.

    Admission

    Tickets are available from the NTS Osprey Centre (closed 12pm to 12.30pm), and not on the island. Last tickets available at 4.15pm.

    Member/Explorer Pass holder: FREE
    Adult: £5.00
    Child aged 5–15: £3.00
    Child under 5: FREE
    Concession: £4.00

    Opening Times

    26 March to 30 September 2018:
    Daily, 10am to 4.30pm (last outward sailing)

    1 to 31 October 2018:
    Daily, 10am to 3.30pm (last outward sailing)

    Closed 1 November 2018- 31 March 2019

     
     
  • Historic Scotland – Dundrennan Abbey


    Enjoy the peace of this beautiful Gothic abbey set in tree-fringed pastures where Mary Queen of Scots spent her last hours in Scotland.

    This was the major abbey of the Cistercian order, which was founded on austere principles but became very wealthy from farming – especially sheep farming. The abbey’s surviving
    stonework includes beautiful carvings.

    Admission

    Member/Explorer Pass holder: FREE
    Adult: £5.00
    Child aged 5–15: £3.00
    Child under 5: FREE
    Concession: £4.00
    Opening Times

    26 March to 30 September 2018:
    Daily, 9.30am to 5.30pm, last entry 5.00pm

    Closed 1 October 2018- 31 March 2019

     
     
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