Historic attractions in Ayrshire & Arran

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  • Exterior of Brodick Castle which is floodlit at night, the Isle of Arran
    Brodick Castle, Isle of Arran
  • Looking over to the ruins of Crossraguel Abbey in the sunshine
    Crossraguel Abbey
  • Culzean Castle & Country Park, by Maybole
    Culzean Castle & Country Park, by Maybole
  • People sit outside on tables and chairs at the Robert Burns Birthplace Museum
    Robert Burns Birthplace Museum, Alloway
  • Look onto the front of the Dick Institute in Kilmarnock
    The Dick Institute in Kilmarnock

The history of Ayrshire & Arran covers hundreds of years of social and political change which has helped shape a nation’s future. From nurturing several true Scottish icons to the ancient and mysterious standing stones and castles, this region boasts a vast array of historical attractions and has many stories to tell. 

Ayrshire & Arran is home to an array of magnificent castles from Dundonald and Portencross to Culzean and Brodick. This charming region is also scattered with intriguing historic buildings and homes like Dumfries House, the Bachelor’s Club and Souter Johnnie’s Cottage.

Why not pay a visit to Britain's smallest cathedral? Located in Millport on the Isle of Cumbrae, the Cathedral of the Isles dates as far back as 1851 and boasts a fascinating history to explore.

Ayrshire boasts connections to some of Scotland’s most influential historical icons. The region is awash with fascinating tributes to the life and work of Scotland’s National Bard, Robert Burns. Another national hero, William Wallace, spent the last few years of his life in Ayrshire and a grand tower stands proudly in Ayr town centre to mark this connection. You can download a free ebook of Ayrshire’s Famous People, or check out Ayrshire & Arran Tourism's Castles & Culture guide for more inspiration.

For more historic attractions, learn more about this fascinating region in the museums or admire the beauty of one of the local churches, cathedrals and abbeys.

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30 results, currently showing 1 to 10
  1. Gradings

    West Kilbride

    Welcome to Friends Of Portencross Castle

  2. Rowallan Castle





    Set in rolling Ayrshire parkland, Rowallan Castle is a hidden gem.

  3. Crossraguel Abbey


    Churches, Cathedrals & Abbeys


    • 3 Historic Attraction
    3 Historic Attraction


    Founded in the early 13th century by the Earl of Carrick, the remains Crossraguel Abbey sit just a few miles south of Ayr on Scotland’s west coast.

  4. Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction


    The Scottish Dark Sky Observatory is publically accessible observatory, located in the Galloway Forest Dark Sky Park.

  5. Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction


    From an early Bronze age grave to a 5,000 year old head, discover the fascinating history of this stunning island at the Arran Heritage Museum.

  6. Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction


    Dean Castle Country Park is an excellent free day out for all the family. The Country Park boasts a 14th century castle, beautiful woodland walks, adventure playground, pets corner, visitor centre, tearoom and shop.

  7. Gradings

    • 4 Museum
    4 Museum


    Cumnock's 4 star museum and gallery space featuring a mixture of temporary and permanent musuem and art displays.

  8. Gradings

    • 5 Visitor Attraction
    5 Visitor Attraction


    The Robert Burns Birthplace Museum offers a truly unique encounter with Scotland's favourite son.

  9. Gradings

    • 4 Museum
    4 Museum


    Explore the unique history of Millport and the islands of Great and Little Cumbrae at the Museum of the Cumbraes through a mix of permanent exhibits and temporary displays.

  10. Souter Johnnie's Cottage


    Historic Buildings & Homes


    • 3 Historic House
    3 Historic House


    Visit the fascinating cottage of the original Souter Johnnie, situated in Kirkoswald near the south west coast of Scotland.


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