There’s no mystery to the name of this region. It comprises the area in the south of Scotland that borders on England, of course. But there’s ample reason to celebrate the mystery, wonder and allure of the Scottish Borders as a holiday destination. As you head over the border this gateway is a magnificent introduction to the north and all of its historical and cultural significance.
Let’s start at the triple peaked Eildon Hills which lie at the heart of the Borders and are a must for ramblers. Beginning at the Melrose Abbey car park this is a half day hill walk heading out of Melrose via St Cuthbert’s Way. Pack a picnic and enjoy the panoramic views at the summit, a perfect walk for a summer’s day. Do make time to explore Melrose Abbey whilst you’re parked there, it’ll be worth it. It has suffered through the ages, being so close to the English border, but its graceful architecture is evident and it’s amongst Britain’s finest surviving church buildings from the 1300s.
If you wander in a different direction from Melrose and follow the River Tweed west you’ll discover Abbotsford, the home of writer Sir Walter Scott. Famous for novels such as Ivanhoe and Rob Roy, Sir Walter Scott was a prolific writer who adored his family home calling it his ‘flibbertigibbet of a house’. It’s now open to the public and a happy day can be spent exploring the house, the estate and the gardens. If you have little ones in tow head for the play trails. Challenges have been set so solve the clues, muster the horses and then go ahead and storm the castle!
Turning our attention towards an activity to get the blood pumping, just an hour away from Edinburgh you’ll find Go Ape at Peebles. Taking 2-3 hours to complete it’s not for the faint hearted at a dizzying 160ft high and 300 metres long. If tarrying in the tree-tops just isn’t your cup of tea, head to nearby Kelso. It perches on the junction of the Tweed and Teviot and is a pretty country town to explore whilst the adrenalin junkies are risking life and limb. Take a breather, enjoy a pub lunch and take in the five arched bridge which was the model for London’s Waterloo Bridge across the Thames. For peace and quiet we know which view we’d choose!
We’ve just scratched the surface of the myriad of adventures that await you on your holiday in the Scottish Borders. And we haven’t even touched on the succulent local dishes, locally sourced ingredients and the whiskey….