There’s More to Ayrshire than The Open

Posted on 15 Jul 2016 by Anna Scott
The Open at Royal Troon is now underway and as magnificent an event as this is, there’s plenty more to its Ayrshire location than just a love of golf. Whether you’re a golf fanatic or not, Ayrshire holds many treats including historical castles, beautiful beaches and all the gorgeous scenery you’d expect from any Scottish tourist gem. So for anyone who wants a break from all that golfing activity (or just something to compliment it), here are my tips for some of the best sights and surroundings in Ayrshire…


Culzean Castle

Culzean CastleAs with pretty much everywhere in Scotland, Ayrshire is packed to the rafters with many beautiful and historical castles, but the jewel in the crown has to be Culzean Castle. Run by the National Trust of Scotland, this estate is situated in woodland and surrounded by scenic coastline. Its landscaped gardens can provide a haven on a sunny day and the Adventure Cove playground offers entertainment for the younger members of the family once you’ve all explored the castle.


Isle of Arran

Lochranza CastleA short ferry ride from the port in Ardrossan (situated just up the coast from Troon), Arran is perfect for day trips or longer getaways. This island is known as Scotland in miniature because even though it’s only 56 miles in circumference, it contains everything you could ever want from a Scottish holiday, just on a much smaller scale. And that long list includes the obligatory golf course (of course), stunning beaches, dramatic scenery, distilleries, water sports, local produce and walks for all the family.


Heads of Ayr Farm Park

Ayr is the largest town in the region, and just a short drive from the centre is the Heads of Ayr Farm Park – the perfect day out if you have younger children. As well as an extensive outdoor area where visitors can see tapirs, donkeys, goats, llamas and camels, they also have a large indoor Little Critters Animal Barn which is a home for many smaller domestic animals such as guinea pigs, birds, mice and rabbits. Other activities the family can partake in include quad-biking, an assault course and adventure playground.


Kelburn Castle

Kelburn CastleYet another castle, but this one isn’t your traditional sort. Kelburn Castle is situated a short drive up the coast from Royal Troon in North Ayrshire and it a must-see, as much for its striking paintwork as for its lush grounds and many different activities. Whether you want to do some horse riding, learn about falconry or take a walk around the picturesque glen, a visit to Kelburn Castle offers many surprises for all ages.


Local Beaches

And let’s not forget one of the region’s most popular attractions, and that’s not just because they’re free – Ayrshire’s local beaches not only offer up striking scenery and many different views, but also plenty of activities on a warm day (yes, they do occur in Scotland occasionally). Must-visit coastal hotpots include Troon Beach, Ayr Sea Front, Seamill, Girvan Beach and Lendalfoot Beach.


If you fancy a stay in Ayrshire after reading all that, it’s not too late to catch the end of the summer, although you might be pushing it a bit of you want to make a booking before The Open comes to a close. Sykes Cottages promo codes offers a number of different self-catering options throughout Ayrshire and Dumfries & Galloway, or if you fancy a family holiday packed with plenty of options, Haven Holidays have their site at Craig Tara, situated near to the Heads of Ayr.











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