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Galloway Escapes > Blog > History > Historical sites in Dumfries & Galloway

Historical sites in Dumfries & Galloway

- March 21, 2019 -

With a mix of rolling hills, stunning coastline and a range of historical sites in Dumfries and Galloway, it’s the perfect place to come and relax, soak in the great outdoors and revisit scenes from history. From romantic towns to impressive castles, you will never be short of places to see and learn more about the history of the region. Here a few examples to get you started on your journey.


Sweetheart Abbey

Located only a stone’s throw away from our Rosewall Cottage property, the Abbey, once a Cistercian monastery founded in 1275, now allows the public to wander its grounds and take in the remarkable ruins and graves that surround the site.  A testament to enduring love, Sweetheart Abbey is named after Lady Devorgilla, who had the Abbey built in memory of her late husband, John Balliol


Orchardton Tower

A ruined tower house first built in the later part of the 15th century,  located near the town of Castle Douglas. The Orchardton tower is the only cylindrical tower house in Scotland. It is free to visit and is open to the public most of the time. You can even climb to the top and look out across the vast greenery.


Threave Castle

Also located near Castle Douglas, Threave castle is an amazing example of 14th-century design. It was once the stronghold of the Black Douglases and you can still see the artillery fortification around the base of the tower which was an innovative defence ahead of its time. To get to the tower you must take a boat across, which during the tourist season is called upon by ringing the little brass bell, where a boatman will come and see you safely across.


Gretna Green

A famous place due to its romantic roots, Gretna Green, for centuries, has seen eloping lovers come to marry here. Mainly due to the Scottish law that allowed couples of 16 to be married without parental consent. But it has become a place of tradition and still sees many couples travel far and wide to be married here.


Robert Burns Museum

Dumfries was very close to the famous poet, Robert Burns’s, heart and saw him live his life here. Dedicated to him, there is a museum where you can learn more about Robert and his poetry. But if you want to get a sense of the places he visited then all you have to do is wander the streets of Dumfries. You can drink in a few of the pubs that he frequently visited, still going today. You can read more on this in our article The Best Pubs in Dumfries and Galloway were a number of places cited used to be the stomping ground for Robert Burns.


Carsethorn Pier

Close to our Craigbittern House, lies the village of Carsethorn. Now a quiet and sleepy village, the coast that Carsethorn lies on used to be a busy port during the 18th and 19th centuries with frequent sailings to Liverpool and the Isle of Mann. It once saw the departure of over 21,000 emigrants leaving Scotland to start a new life in the New World. And whilst the original pier is no longer, you can still stand upon the beach and see the same view those people did so many years ago. Carsethorn also features in our Best Beaches in Dumfries and Galloway list for its historical and beautiful scenery.


These are but a few of the historical sites located in the region, and a starting point for your exploration. There is so much that Dumfries and Galloway has to offer that can’t be written down so our best advise is that you come and see for yourself the beauty and historical lands of Dumfries and Galloway.

Happy Clients who have stayed with us

  • We stopped here for new year with a large bunch of friends and what a perfect way to see in the new year. The house is amazing and very well equipt, from the decor and furnishings, the hidden den for the kids, cosy throws and a real fire, farmhouse style kitchen and the stunning beach just over the road. There's a lovely coastal walk up to kipford which has stunning views and at the end a pub to enjoy a well earned drink! It's a great holiday home to escape day to day life and I will certainly look forward to spending time here again!
    Rebecca Louise Adam
  • Stunning house and location that the beautiful pictures don't do justice.
    Jonathan Porter-Craigbittern
  • I stopped here for new year 2016/2017. The house is furnished incredibly well & looks amazing. There was plenty of room for everyone to celebrate without feeling cramped. The house is just across the road from the beach where you can join the coastal path to Kippford & take in the beautiful local scenery. I would definitely recommend this to anyone who is looking for somewhere special to stay.
    Stuart Marshall- Craigbittern
  • We stayed in the winter and it was a warm, beautiful and we'll equipped base from which to explore - really luxurious!! We will be back
    Thom Groot- Craigbittern
  • The beautiful views of the Irish Sea from the house led me into a morning run to the beach to discover a stunning landscape of green hills, shallow waters and steep cliffs. Definitely made an exceptional start to my Saturday! The house is furnished to a very high standard and made us feel cost and warm. For those wanting to spend quality time with their friends, this is the perfect retreat (the house accommodates 13 people!).
    Manuel Fernandez Isabel- Craigbittern

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The perfect spot for a Scottish coastal break at Craigbittern House
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