Approximate Duration:

4 Hours 36 Minutes

Approximate Distance:

162 miles (261 km)

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Burns Country Run

South West Scotland


[ PLANNING: For places to Stay | Eat | Shop | Visit | Refuel on and around this route view the South West Scotland Page on a new tab hereLink ]

Route at a Glance

Rabbie Burns is widely respected and passionately regarded as The National Poet of Scotland and is celebrated worldwide. He is most certainly celebrated in Scotland and is often referred to as Scotland’s Favourite son. Amongst some of his most notable works; “Auld Lang Syne”, “To a Mouse”, “A Man’s a Man for A’ That”, “Ae Fond Kiss”, “Scots Wha Hae”, “Tam O’Shanter”, “Halloween” and “The Battle of Sherramuir”.

This route – perhaps fittingly starts in Dumfries the place of his death where before you even start the ride you can visit the Robert Burns House, Burns Street, Dumfries, DG1 2PS. It was in this simple sandstone house in a quiet Dumfries street that Robert Burns, Scotland’s national poet, spent the last years of his brilliant life. The house gives us a picture of how the poet and his family lived in the late eighteenth century. It is now a place of pilgrimage for Burns enthusiasts from around the world.

Whilst still in Dumfries you can also visit the Robert Burns Centre, situated in the town’s eighteenth century watermill on the west bank of the River Nith. The Robert Burns Centre tells the story of Robert Burns’ last years spent in the bustling streets and lively atmosphere of Dumfries in the late eighteenth century. The exhibition is illuminated by many original manuscripts and belongings of the poet. There is a fascinating scale model of Dumfries in the 1790s and a haunting audio-visual presentation.

Also on the trip it will be worth visiting the Burns Birthplace Museum which offers a truly unique encounter with Scotland’s favourite son. Set among 10 acres of the poet’s cherished Alloway countryside; the museum comprises the famous Burns Cottage where the poet was born, the historic landmarks where he set his greatest work, the elegant monument and gardens created in his honour and a modern museum housing the world’s most important collection of his life and works.

The route itself offers up a splendid overview of this South Western corner of Scotland with some great scenery and quiet roads to simply enjoy the journey with some interesting Burns stops along the way.

We would strongly recommend that you ride this route in conjunction with; http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/robertburns/biography/
and
http://www.visitscotland.com/about/robert-burns/


Route Notes & Highlights

(Icons on the map)

  • Moffat – The biking heart of the region. A quaint picturesque market village with a variety of choice in shops and eateries. The home of the renowned Moffat toffee shop. Also the burial place of Tar Macadam the creator of the tarmac as we know it.
  • Crawick Pass – Crawick Pass is the most northerly of the three passes and carries the B740 from Crawick to Crawfordjohn and on to the M74. Full of moments of complete wilderness!
  • Drumlanrig Castle – The Castle has 120 rooms, 17 turrets and four towers but what will really impress you is the grand red tar driveway over 300 meters long and lined by manicured green grass and trees. Lovely gardens and well worth a visit.
  • Culzean Castle – A fantastic sight of turrets and battlements, Culzean Castle is surrounded by wild seas, lush forests and spectacular gardens. It featured in the 41973 cult movie, ‘The Wicker Man’.
  • Burns Cottage – The birthplace of Robert Burns, known as “Burns Cottage”, is located in Alloway opposite to a museum containing original manuscripts of his poetry.
  • Loch Doon Castle – Also known as Balloch Castle, it was located on an island within Loch Doon but was dismantled and rebuilt beside the Loch. A uniquely shaped castle with 11 sides and links to Robert Bruce.
  • Moniaive – A quaint little village, well known for having more musical events and festivals (per head of population) than anywhere else in the country. It is quite common for “jam sessions” to randomly occur within the number of hotels and pubs.
  • Ellisland Farm – Ellisland is now a popular museum and visitor attraction and it provides a wonderful insight into the life of Robert Burns on a farm two hundred years ago. He was 29, in the prime of his life and at the peak of his powers, when he came to Ellisland Farm.
  • Robert Burns Centre – Robert Burns spent the remaining years of his time in Dumfries. The centre has a fantastic exhibition with many original scripts and belongings of the Poet as well an impressive scale model of Dumfries in the 1790s and a haunting audio-visual presentation.

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Filling Stations on Route

No problem with fuel on this route, all the major towns have fuel stations.

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