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Self-catering accommodation in the Scottish Borders
Tourist Information on the Borders
The borders of Scotland with England was much fought over land till the mid
17th century - towns were sacked and rebuilt and most settlements were
fortified. The magnificent abbeys at Melrose, Kelso, Dryburgh and Jedburgh
were destroyed and repaired many times until the Reformation led to their
final destruction. As well as the English, the Border Reivers (powerful
border families) fought amongst themselves and stole cattle. The
fast-flowing rivers Tweed and Teviot are famous for salmon and trout
fishing, and their waters used to drive the woollen mills (the Border towns
are still famous for their textiles). If you are staying in a during the summer, then try to see one of the Common
Riding Festivals, unique spectacles. Riding is particularly popular here
and there are plenty of riding centres offering pony-trekking.
On the Borders' coast, fishing and smuggling used to be the most important
activities. St Abbs is a pretty village with narrow streets running steeply
down to the harbour. Some of the brightly painted fisherman's cottages are
now available for holiday rentals, and as St Abbs has a sandy beach they are
much sought after. Eyemouth is a small seaside town with amazing cliffs and
The Tweed Valley is a popular location for cottage holidays in Scotland as
it is a particularly beautiful part of the Borders. The River Tweed is one
of the most famous salmon rivers in the world, and it meets with the Teviot
at Kelso. Kelso has a fine Georgian square and Kelso Abbey, which is one of
famous Borders' Abbeys. Nearby Floors Castle, is an Adam house and was
added to by William Playfair and is open to the public. It has a magnificent collection of paintings,
porcelain and tapestries, and is home of the Duke of Roxboroughe.
Mellerstain is one of Scotland's finest Georgian mansions, with fabulous
formal Italianate gardens.
Dryburgh Abbey, west of Kelso, is another of the Border abbeys founded by
David I, and is a beautiful ruin. Melrose Abbey was perhaps the most
beautiful of the four abbeys, and Robert the Bruce's heart is believed to be
buried here. There are many fine Border's towns and there is plenty
of luxury holiday accommodation available to rent in Kelso and Melrose and the surrounding area.
Abbotsford House was home of Sir Walter Scott and was built by him - it is a
mock Scots Baronial house and there is plenty of Walter Scott memorabilia on
display. Selkirk is a good place to buy tweed and other woollen goods, as
is Galashiels - both are great centres near which to base your cottage
holiday in Scotland. Traquair House is particularly famour for the gates
through which Bonnie Prince Charlie passed on his march to Derby - they were
shut by the fifth Earl of Traquair who vowed they wouldn't be opened until a
Stuart king ruled Scotland (and so they have never been opened again). The
River Tweed runs through Peebles, which is an old town with narrow streets
and some fine buildings.
Roxborough and Jedburgh are in the Teviot Valley, which is particularly
worth a visit if you are in Scotland for an autumn break as the colours are
fabulous. Jedburgh Abbey is another dreamy ruin, which echoes with the
ghosts of the past. Hawick is another well known Scottish borders' town and
is famous for its Rugby Sevens.
The Border region of Scotland is a fascinating place for a holiday - there
is a wealth of historical sights and abbeys, set amidst fabulous scenery.
Holiday cottages in the Borders range from country cottages to town houses - all of them delightful places to rent for a memorable
holiday in the Scottish Borders.