With its coastline of rocky shores and sandy beaches and acres of forest and green spaces inland, Dumfries & Galloway, in the south of Scotland, has much to offer visitors.

From mountain biking, arts and crafts, performing arts and literature to music festivals, galleries and Galloway Forest Park, the first forest park in the UK to be given Dark Sky Park status, this southwest Scotland gem has something for everyone. Here’s a flavour of what you’ll find:

Country Lifestyle Scotland: Caerlaverock CastleCaerlaverock Castle

One of Scotland’s great medieval fortresses, Caerlaverock Castle, with its wide moat and twin-towered gatehouse, may have a fairy-tale appearance but it has turbulent history and was caught up in many border conflicts. At one time it was among the finest castles in Scotland and although now in ruins it remains a substantial structure, and its formidable red sandstone defensive walls are unique in Britain for their triangular shape.


You don’t have to be a serious astronomer to enjoy looking at the stars but if you’re usually in the city when you’re gazing upwards then it’s safe to say you’ll see much more than usual in Galloway Forest Park. Named Britain’s first Dark Sky Park in 2009, it’s the perfect after-dark spot to enjoy the wonders of the night sky. Along with thousands of stars and planets, stargazers can often spot the Milky Way if the weather conditions are right.


This scenic 300-mile road trip around the south west of Scotland lets you explore coastlines, lochs and forests – with a bit of history, arts and culture thrown in. A short drive from Gretna Green, you can join the loop, which passes through Dumfries, Stranraer and Ayr, at any point. Points of interest are Scotland’s Artist Town, Kirkcudbright, which is home to many galleries and Wigton, Scotland’s Book Town.

Country Lifestyle Scotland:

Crawick Multiverse is an amazing land art installation by the renowned cultural theorist, landscape designer, architectural historian and co-founder of the Maggie’s Cancer Care Centres, Charles Jencks. The late Mr Jencks was commissioned by the Duke of Buccleuch in 2015 to design an inspiring landscape on the former open-cast coal mine near Sanquhar. It’s a beautiful landscape that everyone can enjoy.