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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

  • I recently spent the weekend at this beautiful house and recommend it highly. The house itself is decorated and furnished to a very high standard with lots of attention to detail. It's very well equipped with everything you need for a very comfortable stay. The kids were never bored with the games room, den and toys to keep them entertained. As well as the house being beautiful it is set in beautiful surroundings, right on the beach and with some lovely walks near by. We had a fantastic weekend and hope to return again soon
    Rebecca Cameron Crawley- Craigbittern
  • What a stunning house. We loved everything from the fully stocked kitchen to the cosy decor to the open fires and luxurious bedrooms. They've thought of everything - even a games room, x box, and treasure hunt for the kids!
    Jenny Fitzgerald-Craigbittern
  • Perfect is the only way to describe this property and it's surroundings. The house itself set in a stunning location, with each room furnished to a very high standard is so warming and welcoming. If you can pull yourself away from the property, you are never short of things to do, with the beach across the road and coastal walk to the beautiful coastal villages Rockliffe and Kippford. Such an amazing place, perfect for a family get together or group of friends, can't recommend enough. Will definitely be back in the near future.
    Kristofer Lorimer- Craigbittern
  • My first trip to Scotland was to gorgeous Craigbittern House. Stayed with 10+ friends, loved the beautiful landscape, long walks and coming "our" stylish (decorated so tastefully!), comfortable house to enjoy the fireplace. They thought of everything, including the a big collection of dvds and a game room! Best weekend getaway and can't wait to go back to explore more!
    Idil Akyol-Craigbittern
  • What a perfect place to celebrate with friends! The house is beautiful with real fires and huge sofas to relax on with a film, book or just enjoy the wonderful sea views - the beach is just across from the house. We had fun playing table tennis in the games room! The surrounding area is great for walking but I found it hard to leave the house and gardens as this is one of the most relaxing places I have ever stayed at!
    Ros Rowcroft- Craigbittern

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