For detailed information on all local and Scottish visitor attractions call Visit Scotland on 0845 2255121
Duns, the county town of Berwickshire lies 15 miles north of the border between Scotland and England. The surrounding countryside is beautiful and varied, from rich farmland to the heather covered and rolling Lammermuir Hills, and the stunning coastal sands and high cliffs of St Abbs just 15 miles away. Most of the turbulent Borders history happened within an an hour of Duns, including the start of the Civil War, when the Covenanters rebelled against the King in 1639 just outside the Duns town boundary. Many of the famous Abbeys, Castles and Stately homes are all within easy reach. One of these is Abbotsford, home of Sir Walter Scott. In the 13th century Duns was the birthplace of famous Franciscan philosopher John Duns Scotus, and in the 20th was home to Jim Clark, world champion racing driver. The Jim Clark rally takes place annually in July, drawing thousands of devotees to watch or partake in the only rally in the UK that involves closing public roads.
The famous salmon river, the Tweed, is 20 minutes from Duns reaching the sea at Berwick-upon-Tweed, where the mainline railway station now occupies the site of the old castle and the town’s well-preserved mediaeval walls.
Nearby local towns in or near the Tweed valley, and just a few of their attractions:
- Melrose – Abbey and the Eildon Hills; Scots View, Abbotsford
- Galashiels – Museum & Gallery, Mill Shop, Multi-screen Cinema, and Golf Course.
- Peebles – Woollen mills, famous Gardens, beautiful woodland walks
- Selkirk – Sir Walter Scotts Courtroom, Selkirk Glass, Mill Shops, Golf Course.
- Hawick – Museum, Drumlandraig, Mill Shops, Tweeddale Leisure Centre
- Jedburgh – Abbey, Riverside Walks.
- Kelso – Abbey, Cinema, Floors Castle, Mellerstain
Sport & Recreation
Golf Courses: Duns (7 miles), Dunbar (15). Eyemouth (16 miles), Gifford (20 miles), Gullane (25 miles), Hirsel (18 miles.), Bamburgh (35 miles)
£7-£25 per person per round depending on course.
Tennis/Squash/Swimming: All available in Duns. £3.50 per person.
Hill-Walking: The Southern Upland Way runs right opposite Green Hope, and wonderful walks (short or long) begin at the front door.
Fishing: Local permits can be obtained for Trout or Salmon Fishing on the Whiteadder. The Tweed is only 30 minutes away.
Horse Riding, Mountain Biking, Archery, Clay Pigeon Shooting: Detailed information on request
An hour from Green Hope, Edinburgh is of course an essential visit. Apart from the renowned Castle, Princes Street, The Royal Mile and Holyrood Palace, its Theatres, Museums, Art Galleries, Zoo and Botanical Gardens are all world-class. The International Edinburgh Festival takes place over 3 to 4 weeks in August / September, and the New Year (Hogmannay) Festival now ranks as one of the great annual celebrations in the UK.
The airport is just over an hour from Green Hope.
Other places to visit
St. Abbs Head – only half an hour to dramatic cliff-top walks and picnic spots in this exceptional nature reserve)
Castle Ruins in Dunbar – Dramatic ruins dating from the 12th Century, overlooking the delightful harbour. Nearby is the John Muir Country Park and Nature Reserve. For information call 01620 827421. A few miles up the coast is North Berwick with its memorable Seabird Centre, and boat trips to visit the Bass Rock and its famous gannetry, lighthouse and Covenanter prison. For details call 01620 890181
Cranshaw Church – Dating from 1739, this church replaced an earlier 13th Century buiding nearby (remains still visible) which itself occupied an ancient site of worship dedicated to St Ninian. The present building was restored in 1899. On the north wall there is a carved stone bearing the Royal Arms of Scotland which is dated before 1473. The church is still used regularly.
Local Scenery – River Whiteadder at Abbey St Bathans – Abbey St Bathans is a 2-mile walk down the river from Green Hope. (or 6 miles by car). Here is a historic church, still used actively, the Riverside Restauarant and Craft centre, a Fish Farm and a sawmill. Abbey St Bathans is on the Southern Upland Way, and near to the prehistoric Edin’s Hall Broch.)