One of the occupational hazards of writing about Scotland is incredibly itchy feet. I am forever mentally planning trips and short breaks; dreaming of Scottish beaches and lochs and empty winding roads. The balancing act of work and motherhood (plus my husband’s new 4 day on, 4 day off rotation) doesn’t make it easy to squeeze in trips around Scotland, and so we try to spend our family day each week exploring the surrounding area (much more to come on the blog about the treasures we’ve discovered in Aberdeenshire and Moray). After a busy few months (we packed up and moved from our cottage in Speyside to Peterculter near Aberdeen in a head-spinning three weeks), we have organised a much-needed short break in Argyll for the beginning of May. Planning our self-catering break has brought back memories of our first family holiday together, last autumn.
Isaac had just turned one. In the aftermath of his birthday party we had the whirlwind task of packing for a week’s holiday; throwing clothes in bags and clearing wrapping paper at the same time. I was particularly excited as we were setting off to explore an area of Scotland I had previously never experienced – the very south. And what a wonderful trip it was. We spent a couple of nights near Kelso in the Borders (in one of the oh-so-lovely Hendersyde Farm Cottages) and the remaining time near Kirkcudbright in Dumfries and Galloway (in the picture-perfect Cutlar’s Lodge on the Orroland Estate). I was in my element discovering the charm of the Border towns and their fascinating abbey ruins – particularly atmospheric in the pale autumn light. The drive from Kelso to Dumfries and Galloway along the A708 (passing St Mary’s Loch and the Moffat Valley) was so beautiful; the countryside brightening the grey day with its fiery oranges and burnt reds. We were lucky enough to enjoy some sunshine whilst exploring the gorgeous Galloway Forest Park and Colvend Coast from our base near Kirkcudbright, but also made time just to wander the grounds of the estate, soaking up the peacefulness.
The trip was a brief taste of all that Southern Scotland has to offer… and before we had even left, I was already planning where we’ll explore on our return.
To read more about our wonderful southern Scotland holiday, click the links below: