Below are a few ideas for places to go and things to do. For many more ideas please visit our Pinterest Page and look at the different boards. Click here to find out more.

Gretna Green

Gretna Green is only 4 miles away. It is famous for marriages. Historically, young, English lovers eloped to Gretna Green because Scottish law allowed marriage without parental consent. Couples were married over the anvil in the blacksmiths shop, literally because it was the first house in the first town in Scotland. There is a big tourist complex with shops – including a good specialist Scottish food shop where you can get gourmet treats. Also Smith’s Hotel, which was built recently to accommodate wedding parties has a good restaurant and there is usually a trail of brides and grooms crossing the road to be hitched in The Blacksmiths Shop! Gretna Green is one of the largest tourist attractions in Scotland, probably because it is the first you encounter on crossing the border!

The Devils Porridge Museum

This is a new exhibit at Eastriggs about 6 miles West of Gretna and is dedicated to the massive WW1 munitions factory.

Gretna

Gretna was built later as a dormitory town for the first World War Munitions Factory. Gretna has similar shops to Longtown but also a large retail outlet, The Gretna Gateway which is on the right at the first roundabout after you cross the border. It has shops like Ralph Lauren, Gap, Marks and Spencer, Thorntons etc.

King Robert The Bruce’s Cave

Robert the Bruce fled to this cave in 1306 and was persuaded to re-engage the English at The Battle of Bannockburn after he watched a spider’s travails building a web. The saying Try and try again is said to originate from his time here.

Stead McAlpin

This Cummersdale Firm prints fabrics for many of the big London textile firms – Jane Churchill, Osborne and Little, Bakers etc.which are availalbe for less than £10.00 a metre. It is a very popular stop-off point for most of the people who come to stay with us and you can save yourself a small fortune if you are doing up your house.  Cummersdale is on the South Western edge of Carlisle near Dalston.

While you are there be sure to visit Garden House Nursery in Dalston for great value plants.

Buy Cashmere in Hawick. Visit Bowhill House or Abbotsford.

On the way back visit Hermitage Castle, where Mary Queen of Scots stayed with her lover The Earl of Bothwell.  Surely one of the most haunted places in Scotland.Try Pelosi’s Ice Cream in Langholm . Have you ever had a ice cream chocolate marshmallow wafer – if not, do not miss this opportunity! Go to the Langholm Amateur dramatic society’s annual concert at The Buccleuch Centre.

Explore Arthurian Legend around Longtown.  The Battle of Arderydd is thought to have occurred around Liddle Strength just a mile up river from here and the burial mound at Arthuret is thought by some experts to be King Arthur’s tomb.

Catch a Salmon in the Esk

Visit Hadrians Wall, Carlisle Castle, Carlisle Cathedral, Lanercost Priory

Visit the North Solway Coast. Great Birdwatching. Watch a high spring tide come up the Solway in Sir Walter Scott’s words; ‘faster than a galloping horse’. Watch the Haaf Nets and stake nets fishing the Solway

Visit WWT reserve at Caerlaverock to see the geese and other wildfowl. Caerlaverock Castle is a wonderful triangular medieval ruin too good to miss.

Play a round of Golf at Silloth or Southerness

Buy Brown Solway Shrimps from the dock at Silloth (or from Bell’s Fishmongers)

See the Burne-Jones stained glass in St. Martins Church in Brampton

Get Fudge from the Penrith Toffee shop. Stock up your fishing tacke from John Norris. Visit Larch Cottage Nurseries at Melkinthorpe for an enormous selection of plants

Chill on the lawn and imagine Sir Walter Scott’s Young Lochinvar swimming the river ‘where ford there was none’, on his quest to woo Fair Ellen of Netherby!