Threave Estate - around 5 miles
Threave Estate is a National Trust for Scotland property at the edge of Castle Douglas. Threave Garden with Threave House is one of the most popular gardens in Scotland are is on the walk route. Threave Castle, in a separate location on the Estate and situated on an island in the River Dee is accessed by ringing the bell for the ferry boat! Also see an ospreys nest nearby in the summer. Apart from the Estate walks, there are several other walk options including nearby villages, Carlingwark loch and Castle Douglas itself.
On return to the town we advise on refreshment places, e.g. an artisan bakery cafe, a chocolates producing tea room and Sulwath brewery.
The Scottish Riviera Walks - around 6 miles
Not far from Castle Douglas at the Solway coast is the East Stewartry National Scenic Area, part of which was known by the Victorians as 'the Scottish Riviera'. It is a popular and picturesque area between two villages and Rough Island and is managed by the National Trust for Scotland.
Depending on your preferred distance, at your welcome meeting we suggest several walk options which can include further along the coast at nearby Sandhills and to the town of Dalbeattie via Dalbeattie Forest. There are several places of interest which we give info on, including beaches, villages, and a 6th century mote and bailey hill fort. We also advise on options for refreshment with tea rooms and a good food pub.
Dalry Circuit – around 5.5 miles
St. John’s Town of Dalry was originally known as the Clachan of Dalry or the Clachan of Galloway. The original settlement was a stopping off point for pilgrims travelling from Edinburgh to St. Ninian’s Priory at Whithorn.
The walk starts and ends by the Water of Ken riverside in Dalry, crossing a bridge in between. You also climb up to a trig point (550 feet) in this circuit which continues partly on a road also with views over the glens. View a hydro power station fish ladder, with an option of another hill before ending at the local hotel fort refreshment.
A 2 day walking break review
I undertook a short, two-day walking holiday with Galloway Holidays in October 2016. As it was my first walking holiday, first trip to Scotland, and traveling alone, I needed a lot guidance and reassurance, which Robin provided in spades. His knowledge of the local area and various options that could suit my needs were evident from our first email exchange. Additionally, he was familiar with the connections to and from London and Manchester, which helped me immensely in fitting the holiday into my schedule. Robin accompanied me on my first day's walking, around Loch Trool, for which we had the perfect weather and gave us both a sense of where my capabilities lay, as well as building my confidence. Continued below.
On the second day, I did the coastal walk from Sandyhills to Kippford by myself. I found it challenging, but not beyond my abilities, and there was a sense of achievement in having completed it. Just allow room for interpretation when a Scotsman tells you that something is "a wee bit of a climb"! I loved my short walking holiday in Dumfries and Galloway, including my stay at Robin and Tina's Summerhill B&B, and can vouch for Robin's ability to tailor a holiday to suit anyone's needs.
Elmari Whyte, Australia.
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