The rich contrast
means that it is easy to spend a day enjoying the fishing villages of
the East Neuk of Fife, the Angus coastline with its rocky bays and red
sandstone cliffs or the shops in Perth or Dundee. And yet the lochs and
glens of Highland Perthshire are never far away.
Kingdom of Fife boasts two ancient "capitals" - Dunfermline was the seat
of the early Celtic kings while St. Andrews was the ecclesiastical capital.
An abbey and royal palace survive in Dunfermline today, while Abbot
House, bearing witness to the history of the town, is also nearby.
To the west lies Culross with its atmospheric 16th and 17th century architecture
and below the shadow of the Forth Bridge is Deep Sea World,
the largest aquarium in Britain.
the Fife Tourist Route signs from the Forth Road Bridge
through the coastal towns of Fife to Dundee to enjoy spectacular seascapes
and views of the Firths of Forth and Tay.
This route takes you through coastal towns and villages including Aberdour,
Burntisland, Kirkcaldy and Leven before reaching the villages of the East
Neuk of Fife. In the East Neuk of Fife (Neuk, by the way is the Scots
word for corner), Scotland's European links are recalled by the Dutch
influence in the local architecture of a string of attractive fishing
villages including Pittenweem and Crail. The Scottish Fisheries
Museum at Anstruther explores the long struggle with the sea.
university town of St Andrews blends religious history with an academic
air, though it is certainly better known as the "Home of Golf".
St Andrews also offers outstanding shopping, fine beaches, two local
history museums and the British Golf Museum, as
well as St Andrews Castle, Visitor Centre and the St
Andrews Sea Life Centre.
Dundee make an excellent touring base. Heather covered hills and glens,
castles, gardens, beaches and Dundee's visitor centre, Discovery Point,
are matched by a wide range of accommodation, places to eat and shopping.
Point with the famous ship RRS Discovery, Captain Scott's vessel
on his Antarctic explorations, berthed alongside, tells the story of the
ship and its dramatic voyages. Dundee's heritage is also on view at the
McManus Galleries, while the Verdant Works
also interprets the past. Formerly, it was just one of many mills processing
jute, imported from India. Now, using audiovisual displays this visitor
centre tells the tale of how Dundee supplied all the world's demand for
lies Angus with its outstanding coastal scenery, including beautiful sandy
beaches. Towns such as Arbroath make good bases for shoreline discoveries.
Arbroath is also noted for the ruined 12th century abbey,
right in the town. Here in 1320 was written perhaps the most famous document
in Scottish history - the Declaration of Arbroath, which stated Scotland's
case for self-rule. Contrasting with coastal interest are attractive and
peaceful glens such as Glen Esk or Glen Clova.
mountain and sea are many varied historic towns and places of interest
including Brechin Round Tower, the spectacular interior
decoration of the House of Dun near Montrose, the formal garden of Edzell
Castle and the regal splendour of Glamis Castle,
childhood home of HRH Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.
of hills, which marks the beginning of the Highlands, is an ever-present
feature on Perthshire's northwest horizon. Within easy reach of the area's
main town of Perth, lie the lochs and glens of Highland Perthshire and
a host of attractive little towns. Blairgowrie makes another excellent
choice as a base on the edge of the high hills, with an excellent golf
course, held in utmost regard by even the most discerning golfers.
Queen's View, at the head of Loch Tummel, captures the spirit
of Perthshire - a sweeping vista through the gentle glen to the highland
ridges beyond. Many delightful walks can be found at nearby Killiecrankie,
scene of a Jacobite battle whose story is told at the nearby Visitor
Centre. Aberfeldy is also within reach with good shops plus the
Aberfeldy Water Mill to visit. Nearby Pitlochry is a popular
touring base and is home to the Pitlochry Festival Theatre
as well as the smallest whisky distillery in Scotland at Edradour.
Crieff, another attractive Perthshire touring base has Glenturret
Distillery, Crieff Visitors Centre, with its pottery and paperweight
craft and Drummond Castle Gardens, all just minutes from
also offers a range of castles to visit, including Blair Castle
and Scone Palace, the ancient crowning place of Scottish
monarchs. The palace lies on the outskirts of Perth itself, whose other
attractions include Caithness Glass and Branklyn Garden.