The Scottish Borders, a charming and scenic region of Scotland, is located in the southeastern part of the country, bordering England to the south, the North Sea to the east, South Lanarkshire and West Lothian to the west, and Midlothian, East Lothian, and Edinburgh to the north.
Geographically, the Scottish Borders is a truly spectacular region that’s characterised by a mix of rolling hills, moorland, valleys, and farmland, with the Cheviot Hills defining the southern border with England, and the River Tweed – one of Scotland’s most significant rivers – crisscrossing it along with the Teviot, the Ettrick, and the Yarrow. The coastline, meanwhile, is a beautiful stretch of rugged cliffs and secluded bays that are home to a variety of wildlife reserves, especially around the area of St. Abbs Head near Eyemouth.
When it comes to landscapes, the Scottish Borders are in stark contrast to the bustling cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow. The region is home to an array of flora and fauna, from large forests like Tweed Valley Forest Park to hill ranges like the Lammermuir and Cheviot hills.
Tourist attractions in the Scottish Borders are as diverse as the landscape itself. History lovers will find an array of ancient abbeys such as Melrose Abbey, Dryburgh Abbey, and Jedburgh Abbey, while nature lovers will enjoy the Sir Walter Scott’s Way, a 92-mile walking route that takes visitors on a journey across the landscapes that inspired Scott’s writing.
The region is also full of attractions that celebrate the heritage of the Borders, like the Borders Textile Towerhouse in Hawick which tells the story of the region’s textile industry, and the Jim Clark Motorsport Museum in Duns which pays tribute to the legendary Formula One driver.
For those interested in outdoor activities, the region offers nearly limitless opportunities for walking, cycling, and horseback riding on routes like the 212-mile-long Southern Upland Way and the 7stanes mountain biking centres at Glentress and Innerleithen forests. The region is also known for its salmon and trout fishing on the River Tweed.
Find places to visit and things to do in the Scottish Borders with these visitor guides.
Visiting Scotland’s tourist attractions can be an expensive business, especially for those visitors travelling with a family. In this article you will discover a list of completely free-to-visit attractions in the Scottish Borders that are suitable for all ages, including historic buildings, walking routes, museums, and public parks.
The Southern Upland Way runs for 212 miles between the west and east coasts of southern Scotland. This section on the east coast is located a short distance from the coastal town of Dunbar. The route starts at Cove harbour and continues along gorse-covered cliffs before finishing at Pease Bay which is best known for…
Glentress Forest is situated near the town of Peebles in the Scottish Borders. The forest is best known for its world-class 7Stanes mountain biking trails that offer exciting routes for all skill levels, but there’s plenty to see and do for everyone. Whether it’s enjoying woodland walks, wildlife watching, or getting active on treetop adventure…
Melrose Abbey is located near the village of Melrose on the River Tweed. It was founded in 1136 as Scotland’s first Cistercian monastery and is famous for being the burial site of Robert the Bruce’s heart. The abbey is managed by Historic Environment Scotland. Paid entry is available for all visitors but HES members can…
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