Dumfries is the provincial capital of the South West of Scotland, but is also home to plenty of activities and attractions itself. Dumfries is a market town with a strong agricultural heritage and rich borderland history.
The Dumfries and Galloway region has a wide range of outdoor activities and sports on offer: over 30 golf courses, shooting estates, freshwater fishing, sea angling, walking, mountain biking, and sailing.
Dumfries is steeped in history, most notably for being the deathplace of Robert Burns the illustrious Scottish Bard.
Robert Burns lived in Dumfries in the 1790s and the town has many homages to him, including the Robert Burns House which is open to the public, the Mausoleum at St. Michael’s Church, and the Robert Burns Centre, situated in an 18th century watermill on the west bank of the River Nith. Ellisland Farm just north of Dumfries was Burn’s first accommodation in the area.
Dumfries is 25 miles from the Scottish border with England at Gretna, the wedding capital of the UK historically because of it’s border location.
Crossing the 15th century Devorgilla Bridge over the River Nith visitors will find the Old Bridge House, Dumfries’ oldest house, which dates from 1660 and is built into the sandstone of the bridge.
Dumfries Museum and the Camera Obscura Observatory are also on the west side of the Nith in what was formerly known as Maxwelltown.
The 18th century windmill tower contains the Museum which has exhibits from prehistoric times, wildlife of the Solway salt marshes, stone carvings of Scotland’s early Christians, and Victorian farm implements. The Camera Obscura, an astronomical instrument installed in 1836, has a screen on to which are projected panoramic views of Dumfries and the surrounding countryside.
Dumfries railway station provides services to Kilmarnock and Glasgow to the north and Carlisle and Newcastle to the east. The Beeching Cuts in the 70’s mistakenly caused the direct link to Stranraer to be wiped from the map, leaving only the A75 trunk road for access to the West and Northern Ireland.