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
  • Looking over the Firth of Clyde towards Culzean Castle, Maybole
    Culzean Castle, 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

    • 4 Museum
    4 Museum

    Cumnock

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

  2. Rowallan Castle

    Type

    Castles

    Gradings

    Fenwick

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

  3. Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction

    Kilmarnock

    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.

  4. Alloway Auld Kirk

    Type

    Churches, Cathedrals & Abbeys

    Gradings

    Alloway

    The eerie setting for Robert Burns' famous tale of Tam O'Shanter, Alloway Auld Kirk dates back to the 16th Century.

  5. Vikingar!

    Type

    Exhibitions

    Gradings

    • 3 Visitor Attraction
    3 Visitor Attraction

    Largs

    The award-winning Vikingar! allows you to meet real Vikings and hear about their exploits, adventures and battles in Scotland.

  6. Gradings

    Dalmellington

    The Doon Valley Museum is located in a conversion of one of the oldest buildings in the small market town of Dalmellington, dating from 1744.

  7. Gradings

    • 4 Visitor Attraction
    4 Visitor Attraction

    Irvine

    Explore Scotland’s relationship with the sea at this fascinating seaside museum.

  8. Gradings

    • 3 Museum
    3 Museum

    Saltcoats

    The North Ayrshire Heritage Centre, formerly North Ayrshire Museum, is found in Saltcoats on the south west coast of Scotland.

  9. Gradings

    • 4 Castle
    4 Castle

    Brodick

    No visit to Arran is complete without exploring Brodick Castle, Garden and Country Park - a perfect combination of heritage, nature and relaxation.

  10. Gradings

    • 4 Museum
    4 Museum

    Millport

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