Discover Ayrshire And The Landmarks Of Robert Burns
This month, Scots, at home and abroad celebrate the life of Scotland’s famous bard, Robert (Rabbie) Burns. The 18th century poet’s works continue to entertain and inspire fans around the world. Born in Alloway on 25 January,1759, and to this day, Burns Suppers are held in homes, pubs and hotels on Rabbie’s birthday.
The traditional dish that is served up is usually haggis, neeps (turnip/swede) and tatties (potatoes), and often accompanied by a few recitals of Burns’ famous poems and songs, especially after a few drams!
Burns suppers aside, the land of his birth is one of Scotland’s most stunning regions and certainly worth a visit at any time of year but if you stop by in January, you can be sure of catching some sort of celebration marking the famous poet’s life.
Ayrshire’s rich history affords the region some of the finest castles, stately homes and museums in the country. Robert Burns Birthplace Museum is a fascinating attraction, and a must for visitors to Ayrshire and you can also visit the famous Burns cottage where he was born and the historic settings for some of his greatest work. A passionate and complex man, Burns was born in Alloway, four miles south of Ayr and you can visit Burns cottage, which forms part of the Burns National Heritage Park that includes the famous Brig O’ Doon from his epic poem, Tam O’ Shanter.
The stunning Ayrshire coast is an ideal spot for blowing off the cobwebs and the coastal towns of Turnberry, Ayr, Irvine and Troon sit on the edge of an area of exceptional beauty. Rolling hills, rugged coastline and pretty beaches as well as some stunning views will transport you into a calm and happy place, far from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
Affectionately known as ‘The Golf Coast’, this neck of the woods is also a golfer’s paradise. It is also the birthplace of the sport’s most prestigious tournament – ‘The Open’ – The Open Championship began in Ayrshire in 1860. If you’re planning a weekend break to take in the sights and scenery of the Ayrshire coast you might want to dust down your golf clubs and tee off on some of Scotland’s most challenging courses at Turnberry and Royal Troon. Here you can follow in the footsteps of the golfing greats on these beautiful fairways…weather permitting!
There are some great attractions in this area, especially if you have the kids in tow. You’ll be spoilt for choice in how to fill your days if you want to get out and about.
Here are some of our top suggestions for family fun in Ayrshire:
Alloway Kirk and Brig o’Doon
Robert Burns Birthplace Museum
*Scottish Maritime Museum, Irvine *
Isle of Arran Heritage Museum
Harbous Arts Centre, Irvine
Ayr Race Course
Arguably one of Scotland’s grandest buildings is Culzean Castle. Located just 12 miles south of Ayr on the beautiful Ayrshire coastline is this breathtaking 600-acre estate. Culzean is the former home of the Marquess of Ailsa, the chief of Clan Kennedy.
Now owned by the National Trust for Scotland, the cliff top castle has become one of the country’s most popular tourist attractions and it’s a must for your to do list. It’s just dazzling and a wonderful day out for all the family.
Culzean Castle is a stunning spot for taking pictures or simply soaking up the atmosphere and breath-taking scenery. With spectacular views across to the Isle of Arran and Ailsa Craig, it really is a blissful wee pocket of Scotland to spend an afternoon.
Why not hop on a ferry over to Arran? A beautiful island of pretty villages and friendly locals, it’s also a haven for walkers and cyclists. The island boasts a stunning coastline, complemented by a mountainous interior in the north and woodland in the south. The island is served by ferry from Ardrossan.
Overseas travel has never been so affordable or accessible and it’s easy to forget the natural beauty that is so much closer to home. Perhaps not ideal for the big family summer holiday when sometimes only Mediterranean sunshine and foreign shores will do but it’s worth remembering these coastal gems for a long Bank holiday weekend, half term breaks and Easter breaks. Let’s face it, the kids get so many holidays nowadays that we need a lengthy list of options on how to keep them amused.
Why not give Scotland’s west coast a whirl this year and explore all that this region has to offer. We can’t guarantee fine weather but you’ll have a lovely time and you can make great memories together, even if it’s raining! Don’t forget to post and tell us what you got up to. We’re sure you’ll have some gorgeous pics to show off too. Have a great time in Bonnie Scotland, folks.