About the South of Scotland
Defined by rolling hills and vast, open landscapes, the South of Scotland invites visitors to take the time to roam and discover Scotland’s spirit at their own pace.
The three regions, strategically located between the country’s capital of Edinburgh and the border with England, are steeped in history: Rugged coastlines and wooded hillsides shelter natural splendour. Tales of knights, reivers, smugglers celebrate the unwavering spirit. Just like the ruined abbeys and castles, they are testament to the battles won and lost across the centuries. Today local entrepreneurship mingles with tradition, creating outstanding experiences, cuisine and stories at every turn.
Telling the stories of the past and present, and celebrating the distinct personality of their people, Midlothian, Scottish Borders and Dumfries and Galloway have now joined forces. Find three multi-facetted areas that turn your expectation of Scotland on its head. A new kind of Scottish adventure starts here.
Bordering on city limits, it’s hard notice when you’re leaving Edinburgh and arriving in Midlothian. As part of Scotland’s central belt, and forming the Lothians together with West Lothian and East Lothian, the area lies less than 6 miles from the capital and enjoys fantastic access from every direction.
With Midlothian a relatively small area, travelling around is easy. The main towns of Dalkeith, Penicuik and Bonnyrigg are full of local charm, and former mining communities like Newtongrange celebrate their heritage throughout the town. And you never find yourself far from parks and rolling hills. Locals and visitors alike can lose themselves in secret gardens, enjoy miles of beautiful woodland walks, parklands and – of course – have direct access to the Pentland Hills Regional Park.
Enjoy a taste of the countryside, and the delightful tipples and fantastic food inspired by it. Along with discovering fascinating stories and hidden gems – from the mystery of the Da Vinci Code at Rosslyn Chapel to actual templar connections, from the peaks of the Pentlands to the depths of the National Mining Museum, Midlothian is sure to keep you busy and coming back for more.
About the Scottish Borders
Just north of England, bordering on Northumberland and Cumbria, the Scottish Borders form the main gateway to Scotland. East of Dumfries and Galloway and south of Midlothian, you’re never far from anywhere but, soaking up the unique landscape, it can certainly feel like it.
With a population of just 115,000 across 4,700 km2 across the historic counties of Berwickshire, Roxburghshire, Selkirkshire and Peeblesshire, wildlife thrives in the vast countryside of the Borders. In the forests of the Tweed Valley, ospreys have made their nests, and off the Berwickshire coast, Scotland’s first marine reserve is teeming with life. Dolphins enjoy these parts as well and can often be spotted around Eyemouth.
These lands, stretching from the coast to the Southern Uplands, are dominated by gentle rolling hills, winding rivers, heather topped moors and farmland. On the hills, ancient ruins and peel towers tell vivid stories of battles won and lost. Border reivers – raiders and cattle thieves – wreaking chaos on communities in both Scotland and England, clans defending their territories and legends that define the nation to this day live on through the time honoured tradition of the Common Ridings. In the picturesque market towns dotted across the landscape, traditional industries live on. Tweed was invented here and many luxury brands’ textile mills produce their collections in these parts.
Today, the Borders are reinventing themselves. Pockets of adventure invite cyclists, mountain bikers and walkers alike to explore. A unique approach to field to fork experiences means award-winning food and drink can be enjoyed in almost every town. And inspirations live on, too, in the Borders. Breathe in the scenery that captivated literary greats over centuries – you will never want to leave.