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Tour Scottish Borders

Abbotsford House

Scottish Borders Hotels
Scottish Borders Hotels

Kelso Golf Breaks
Borders Golf Breaks

Border Reivers
Border Reivers

Borders Walks Scotland
Border Walks

Borders Buildings
Borders Buildings

Borders Maps
Borders Maps

Borders Cottages

Scottish Borders
Borders Books

Scottish Borders Photographs

Visions Of The Borders

Welcome to Walkerburn

Lost Railways Of The Scottish Borders

Old Traquair

Old West Linton

Old Yarrow and Ettrick

Rails Across The Border

Borders Railway Rambles

Scottish Borders Steam

Abbotsford House


Dryburgh Abbey

Dryburgh Abbey

Ferniehirst Castle

Floors Castle

Greenknowe Tower

Hermitage Castle

Hermitage Castle

The Hirsel


Jedburgh Abbey

Lauder Kirk

Thirlestane Castle

Tour Scottish Borders,
Teviotdale and Lauderdale

The Scottish Borders, with a gentle, wooded landscape rising to rounded hills is at odds with its violent history, this border country saw numerous clashes between Scots and English, as its ruined castles and abbeys attest.  And each year towns like Hawick remember the stormy past with the Common Ridings. Sir Walter Scott made the area famous, drawing his inspiration from the countryside and its people.

Sir Walter Scott's home set above the Tweed. Originally a farmhouse, Scott largely rebuilt it in 1822. Inside are 9000 book library, armour collection, historical relics and paintings. Sir Walter Scott, The Laird of Abbotsford.

Addinston and Longcroft Hill-Forts
Two Iron Age hill-forts built less than a mile apart. They were constructed about 27 centuries ago to protect their makers' settlements.

Village of stone and stucco houses with 16th-century cross on its green. Border wars victims were said to have sheltered in Ale Water caves nearby. Battle of 1545 on Ancrum Moor between Scots and English still remembered.

Bonchester Bridge
Little bridge over Rule Water has single inn set beside it. Bonchester Hill, with traces of ancient hill-fort, overlooks bridge.

Georgian mansion frequented by Queen Victoria. Inside are paintings by Canaletto, Gainsborough and Reynolds. Trails explore estate's wooded hills and lochs.

Carter Bar
Upright boulder marks border between Scotland and England. 1370ft Carter Bar has views of Rubers Law and the Cheviots.

Chew Green
Three Roman earthwork camps and small permanent fortlet; earliest camp dates from AD 80 when Agricola, Governor of Britain, was subjugating fierce local tribes.

Scots killed in 1513 Battle of Findden Field buried nearby. Coldstream Guards, though not raised here, took their name in memory of marching through here to defeat Richard Cromwell and place Charles II on the throne.

Village with large green set above salmon-rich River Teviot. Victorian monument honours local scholar John Leyden, plaque honours Sir James Murray, Oxford Dictionary editor. Denholm Church dates from 1844. Near Denholm the River Teviot flows between the Minto Crags to the north and the more massive Rubers Law and Dunion Hill to the south and east. These localities, like most in the Borders, are rich in legend and history.

Dryburgh Abbey
Twelfth-century abbey ruin, sacked by English invaders in 14th and 16th centuries. The remains include delicate rose window in west wall. Sir Walter Scott, Field-Marshal Earl Haig are buried here. Dryburgh Abbey. Annals Of Dryburgh.

Birthplace of Thomas the Rhymer, 13th-century seer and poet. Wall fragment of his tower remains, hidden behind a cafe.

Eildon Hills
Hills, rich in legend, rise 1385ft over Tweed valley, suitable for climbing. Northernmost summit of three hills held largest Iron Age fort in Scotland, site of a Roman signal station later. Eildon Hills.

Eyemouth is a small town and parish in Berwickshire, in the Scottish Borders, just eight miles north of Berwick-upon-Tweed. The town's name comes from its location at the mouth of the River Eye. The Berwickshire coastline consists of high cliffs over deep clear water, with sandy coves and picturesque harbours. A fishing port, Eyemouth celebrates an annual Herring Queen Festival and Seafood Festival.
Tour Eyemouth.

Ferniehirst Castle
Ancient seat of Kerr family. Story of 16th-century frontier fortress and history of border region. Ferniehirst Castle, the ancient feudal fortress of the Kerrs.

Floors Castle
Georgian structure with 19th century turrets and domes. Collections of paintings, porcelain, tapestries and furniture. Walled garden with herbaceous borders and rosebeds. Floors Castle.

Tweed and woollen industry centre has produced wool since medieval times. Peter Anderson Museum, Borders Wool Centre tell story of tweeds and tartans. Braw Lads' Gathering recreates town's past every June. Tour Galashiels.

Greenknowe Tower
Sixteenth-century roofless tower built 1581 by James Seton. Clock-wise staircase gave retreating defenders advantage of an unhindered sword arm while attacker's would be hindered. Greenknowe Tower.

Border town once famous for knitwear and rugby, largely destroyed by English in 1570. Museum tells knitwear history. Festival of Common Riding every summer recalls past, when townsfolk rude around town ensuring other towns had not encroached on their common land. Hawick Golf Breaks. Old Hawick. Borders Textile Industry.

Hermitage Castle
Fourteenth-century castle on Hermitage Water. Violent history recalls stories of death by boiling, drowning and starvation. Mary, Queen of Scots rode here in 1566 to visit her lover Bothwell, who lay wounded. Hermitage Castle.

The Hirsel
Country residence of Lord Home, former Prime Minister. Grounds are open to public, stable yard now houses folk museum and craft centre. Picnic site and paths through grounds.

Mary, Queen of Scots stayed here, her house now an information centre. Jedburgh Abbey, founded 1138, with tower and roofless nave. Castle jail converted to museum of Victorian prison life. Tour Jedburgh.

Town at confluence of Tweed and Teviot rivers with wide square, elegant houses and five-arched bridge. Kelso Abbey, now in ruins, was founded in 1128 by monks from Chartres, in France. Tour Kelso Scotland.

Kirk Yetholm and Town Yetholm
Twin villages in foothills of Cheviots. Town Yetholm is larger, Kirk Yetholm, where gypsy queens were crowned until 19th century, is older. Gypsy Palace, a tiny cottage, still stands. Edale to Kirk Yetholm.

Tolbooth and several large inns indicate town's importance in coaching days. Thirlestane Castle, a turreted sandstone mansion, has family portraits by Gainsborough and others. Border Country Life Museum nearby.

Church retains much original 12th-century interior. Its Norman arch of red stone is one of Scotland's finest.

Georgian house built by William Adam and his son, Robert. Interior features exquisite ceilings. Italian-style terraced gardens give wide views of the Cheviots.

Town clustered around 12th-century abbey, founded in 1136 by David I .for Cistercian monks. Badly damaged in border wars. Melrose Motor Museum illustrates vintage motoring. Tour Melrose.

Mertoun Gardens
Walled garden and ancient circular dovecote are featured. Twenty acres of trees, flowering shrubs, herbs and views of nearby river.

Town enjoys an attractive setting amongst the hills on the banks of the River Tweed. The High Street has an old Mercat Cross and the ruined Cross Kirk, standing high above Eddleston Water, was founded in 1261. The Cornice Museum recreates an ornamental plasterer's workshop, while the Chambers Institute features the Tweeddale Museum and Gallery.
Tour Peebles.

Priorwood Garden
Garden specialises in flowers suit-able for drying. Unusual strains of apples are grown, some known since Roman times. Picnic areas and orchard walks.

Remains of Roxburgh Castle stand above confluence of Teviot and Tweed rivers. Present village, 3 miles south of original site, has views of Kelso. Roxburgh Parish. Michael Scott the Wizard.

Rubers Law
Hill, nearly 1400ft high, is topped by remains of Iron Age fort. Excellent fort site, no attacking party could approach without being detected by defenders.

Scott's View
Sir Walter Scott's favourite prospect allows views of River Tweed curving through woods below peaks of Fildon Hills.

Sir Walter Scott sat as sheriff in town courthouse from 1800-32. Halliwell House is now a museum illustrating Selkirk history. The Clapperton Daylight Photographic Studio has photographs which date from the 1860s. Old Selkirk.

Smailholm Tower
Five-storey watchtower with 7ft thick walls sits on isolated crag. Surprisingly, it now houses museum of dolls and tapestries rather than more warlike items.

Waterloo Monument
Monument honouring Duke of Wellington is prominent land-mark on top of Peniel Heugh Hill. Built in 1815 by Marquis of Lothian and his tenants.

Wilton Lodge Park
Langland family's ancestral home, now containing museum of border history. Wilton Park covers 107 acres and has riverside walks, garden, greenhouses, and scented garden.

Woden Law
Hilltop of 1388ft once had Roman legions stationed on it; Iron Age people lived there before that. Good walking in the surrounding Cheviot hills.

If you would like to visit this area as part of a highly personalized small group tour of my native Scotland please e-mail me:

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