The Scottish Borders is one of the 32 counties of Scotland. The heart of the borders is located only an hour’s drive from Edinburgh, with a large array of things to do in the Scottish Borders from grand historic houses and castles, lush green rolling pastures, Botanical Gardens and much much more! Here are just a few of the highlights in this beautiful area of Scotland.
Things to Do in The Scottish Borders
The best way to see the Scottish Borders is by car. Why not hire a car and explore one of the 12 national tourist routes – Borders Historic Route?
Here is a sample itinerary with some of the best things to do in the Scottish Borders:
Visit the grand partially ruined St Mary’s Abbey, which was once a monastery of the Cistercian Order. Today, Melrose Abbey is protected and restored by The National Trust for Scotland. (Don’t forget if you become a member you can access over 90 properties.)
St Ronan’s Wells
A historic spa built in 1828, St Ronan’s Wells spring waters are said to have health benefits and lay close to ancient geographical Ley-Lines.
Robert Smail’s Printing Works
The Victorian Letterpress printing works – Robert Smails, the working museum takes you back in time to a bygone era, to when newspapers where all created by hand, with skill and precision aligning all the individual letters, inking and finally using technology of the time printing presses. See the preserved newspapers and tickets that were once issued to passengers boarding ships to Canada and America. (National Trust For Scotland members can visit for free!)
The oldest inhabited house in Scotland, Traquair House, is a fortified mansion with its own brewery dating back to the 1700’s. Have you tried a wee hauf and a hauf? Wander around the garden maze and explore the craft workshops, including leather, jewellery and woodwork.
One of the grandest stately homes located 7 miles from Kelso, Mellerstain House, has some of the finest examples of Robert Adam ceilings. Did you know that wallpaper back in the day was made with flour, water and sugar? Spot the Roman and Greek influence inside and out around the formal garden.
Time for a pit stop? Enjoy some homemade delights, such as flapjacks and Victoria sponge at The Coffee Shop.
Said to be one of Sir Walter Scott’s favourite views, enjoy the picturesque view overlooking the valley and River Tweed.
After enjoying this spectacular view point over the Scottish Borders, drive a further 5 minutes to see the 31 feet high sand stone statue to commemorate William Wallace.
We stayed at the 16th century tower house located in the heart of Peeblesshire – Barony Castle Hotel, set in 25 acres of lush gardens with ponds and The Great Polish Map of Scotland. It is an ideal location to explore the Scottish Borders, relax and enjoy the leisure facilities and not forgetting the delicious cuisine available at the award winning Thomson’s At The Castle Restaurant.
We hope we have inspired you to visit the beautiful Scottish Borders.
As always we would love to hear from you. Have you tried anything from our list of things to do in the Scottish Borders? Have you visited St Ronan’s Wells and sampled the spring water? Or perhaps been an apprentice for the day at Robert Smails Printing Works? Please leave any comments or questions below and if you enjoyed reading don’t forget to share! Happy Travels:) x
Thank you to Barony Castle Hotel, Robert Smails Printing works, Traquair House and Mellerstain House.
Disclaimer: All comments and opinions are my own.