Brand new holiday cottages in beautiful surroundings. Unbelievable variety of wildlife on your door-step with warm and comfortable accommodation to relax in. Swallow Cottage and Swift Cottage sleep 4 each - bring binoculars and walking boots.
Conveniently and peacefully situated between Dumfries (15 minutes) and Thornhill (20 minutes), McMurdoston House offers comfortable, warm and welcoming accommodation for visitors to this lovely, but largely undiscovered, area of Scotland.
Originally dating from 1540 our historic ex-farmhouse was extended in 1922 and provides a perfect get-away from the hustle and bustle of the 21st century.
Open all year round, McMurdoston is a paradise for wildlife and our main aim is to offer a haven for our human visitors too. We have two newly-converted self-catering cottages, each capable of sleeping four, and ideal as bases from which to explore the area.
Swift Cottage and Swallow Cottage
Just across the quiet courtyard from the owners’ house stands McMurdoston’s old granary, recently converted into two welcoming self-contained holiday cottages. Both Swift Cottage and Swallow Cottage are fully centrally-heated and double-glazed, making them snug and cosy whatever the weather. They each comfortably sleep up to four, with a well-equipped bathroom upstairs and a separate WC on the ground floor. A fantastic decked patio area to the rear provides a relaxing spot for bird-watching, enjoying an outdoor meal, or simply relishing the wonderful view over the Nith Valley.
Space and flexibility
Each cottage has parking for up to two cars, a washing machine, dishwasher, microwave, a neat wood-burning-effect electric stove and flat-screen TV/DVD. You’ll find a hallway and downstairs cloakroom for coats and boots as you enter the cottages. The open-plan kitchen and sitting room are carefully designed to give you as much flexibility as possible, with lots of storage space and the usual gadgets you’d expect to cook some wonderful holiday meals. A versatile dining table and chairs allows as much space as you need and there’s an inviting sofa, armchair and an upholstered window seat to relax in. We’ll even provide the basics so you can enjoy hot drinks on arrival!
Bird-watchers and star-gazers
Upstairs there’s a generous double bedroom with built-in wardrobes and comfy chairs from which to bird-/red squirrel-watch and a twin bedroom designed with star-gazers in mind. The lovely bright bathroom provides a shower-over-bath, vanity unit with shaver socket, oodles of hot water and WC. All linen and towels are supplied free of charge.
Each cottage is bookable for parties of up to four, either for short breaks (minimum 4 nights) or for complete weeks (change-over day is Saturday). You are welcome to arrive any time after 4 pm and asked to leave on your final day by 10 am.
Sorry – strictly no pets or smokers.
A taste of Dumfries and Galloway
To give you a hint of what to expect at McMurdoston itself – we’ve seen barn and tawny owls, great-spotted woodpeckers, nuthatches, yellowhammers, red kite, red squirrels, tree-creepers, roe deer, hares and tree sparrows from within the 3 surrounding acres. There are gorgeous walks from the door, many giving you panoramic views to the Lakes and the Lowther Hills. Auldgirth, 2 miles away, has a thriving pub and well-stocked shop and cafe, and Dunscore –well-frequented by cyclists and walkers – is only 3 miles away and also has a welcoming bar, where you may be lucky enough to find live music playing and where you can buy a home-cooked meal or bar snack.
The fishing enthusiast is well catered for with top-class fly-fishing on the River Nith or on one of many local lochs – there’s excellent coarse fishing not far away too. If you’re a cyclist you really are in luck… the famous 7 stanes trails are all around us (we’re mid-way between Mabie and Ae) and what’s more, the bike was invented just a pedal-ride away in Keir Mill. If you prefer your exercise on two feet you’ll find wonderfully quiet lanes to explore, hundreds of acres of moorland, or challenging hill-walking.
Golfers could try out some of the dozens of excellent courses within a short drive. You could even take to the sea, since the beautifully varied coastline is only a half hour’s drive away.
For the wild-life enthusiast there are stunning sites like Threave Castle and its ospreys, the beautiful RSPB reserves at Mersehead, Loch Ken and Caerlaverock (all within 30 – 40 minutes’ drive), or one of the spectacular gardens in this unusually warm part of Scotland (all thanks to the wonderful Gulf Stream!). For the historically-minded, Ellisland – home of Robert Burns – is under 2 miles from McMurdoston, and Drumlanrig Castle is just a half hour’s drive. You’ll also be astonished by the number of famous outdoor sculptures to be found locally.
Numerous amenities are available in nearby Dumfries including an ice rink, cinema and a wide variety of restaurants and pubs. Nearby Thornhill and the food town of Castle Douglas also offer enticing shops and galleries. Wigtown – a must for the book-enthusiast – is only an hour away.