Scotland is a very popular destination for visitors looking for majestic landscapes and this often results in many people heading to the far north. But, the south of the country also offers something special with the area of Dumfries and Galloway at the top of the list of places to take a holiday. You can find sandy beaches and inspiring landscapes around the Mull of Galloway as well as sleepy harbours such as Port Logan. Like all of the other areas of Scotland, Dumfries and Galloway has castles, natures reserves and lochs so there are plenty of things to do and to see.
The Moffat Hills is just one area where you can enjoy walking and the town centre of Moffat is also a joy to explore. Moffat has many historic buildings, a museum and a toffee shop as well as the famous Star Hotel which is officially recognised as the narrowest hotel in the world. If you love walking, mountain biking or just relaxing, this part of Scotland is a very rewarding place to stay. Quieter than the Highlands, it feels less commercialised and ultimately more remote. Nevertheless, there are lots of opportunities for family days out.
The Mull of Galloway Experience at Scotland's most southerly point has a working lighthouse established in 1830 and it was built by the lauded civil engineer Robert Stevenson. From the top of the lighthouse you can take in the spectacular views of Ireland, the Isle of Man and the Lake District of Cumbria. Take a tour around the lighthouse and have a blast on the only working foghorn in mainland Scotland. After a fascinating tour you can relax and enjoy some food and drink at the Gallie Craig Coffee House. This attraction is an excellent choice for a good day out with the kids.
History buffs will already know that this part of Scotland was subject to bloody battles and religious strife well up to the 17th century and there are many historic sites to see. However, these days the area is much more tranquil. So, whether you want to discover some more of the history or indulge in some quiet bird watching over the Solway, you will not be disappointed. One of the most important estuaries in the UK, the Solway is home to over 40,000 wildfowl and 83,000 wading birds.
Glenwhan Gardens and Arboretum is another wonderful place to visit. With 12 acres of stunning gardens and another 20 acres of moorland walks, there are spectacular views of Luce Bay and the Mull of Galloway. The gardens have two lakes and world class exotic plants as well as some local wildlife in the shape of rare red squirrels. Take the chance to relax in these spectacular gardens where you can also enjoy homemade delights in the cosy tearooms. Located in the village of Dunragit, this is a delightful attraction in the often underrated South West of Scotland.
The social history of Dumfries and Galloway can be explored by paying a visit to The Museum which is situated at Newton Stewart and housed in a former church. With historical photographs, artifacts and uniforms, the museum also has different sections to explore like the smithy, the dairy and the kitchen. Staffed by volunteers the Museum give you an opportunity to see how Newton Stewart operated in the past and provides a unique insight into the wider surroundings of Dumfries and Galloway.
Exploring the hills, lochs, forests and glens of Dumfries and Galloway is easy by road if you follow the South West Coastal 300 route. This part of Scotland caters for adventure seekers, nature lovers, families looking for fun and also has wonderful local cuisine. In the remoter parts of the area there is no light pollution so you will get the opportunity for fantastic star gazing. In this wonderful region you can find charming coastal villages and towns, plenty of outdoor events and an abundance of nature.
So, why not take a trip to Dumfires and Galloway and experience the holiday of a lifetime?