Gardens of Dumfries and Galloway

Gardens of Dumfries and Galloway

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4 Days From

$1185

$1148

Gardens of Dumfries and Galloway

4 Days Starting in Ayrshire and ending in Various pick-up points available - please contact us for details"

Visiting: Drumlanrig Castle & Gardens, Glenwhan Gardens and Tearoom, Logan Botanic Garden, Logan House Gardens, Broughton House & Garden, Kirkcudbright, Dumfries, Crawick Multiverse, Dumfries House, Queen Elizabeth Walled Garden Dumfries House

Tour operator:

Brightwater Holidays

Tour code:

BDAG

Guide Type:

Fully Guided

Group size:

6 - 25

Physical rating:

Low, Light

Age range:

1-99

Special diets catered:

Vegetarians, Vegans, Meat, Please contact Brightwater with any specific dietary requirements

Tour operated in:

English

Trip Styles:

UK tours by Coach

Activities:

Sightseeing

From: $1185 $1148 Mid-Year Mayhem Discount: -$37

NB: Prices correct on 19-Jul-2024 but subject to change.

This tour is no longer available, please see similar tours below or send an enquiry

Tour Overview

In the south-western corner of Scotland, Dumfries and Galloway is home to some of the country’s most attractive gardens. The artistic highlight of our tour is undoubtedly Dumfries House, actually in Ayrshire, which Prince Charles helped to save. One of the Adam brothers’ finest achievements, the stunning interiors showcase a unique collection of Chippendale furniture, while the walled garden is one of the most exciting new garden developments in Scotland. 

We see something rather different at Broughton House – an artist’s garden at the restored former home of ‘Glasgow Boy’ EA Hornel, which shows the influence of his time in Japan and is always full of colour. 

Further highlights include Drumlanrig Castle, with its extensive gardens and  world-class collection of fine art and furniture. This was one of the first and most important Renaissance buildings in the grand manner built in Scotland. A hidden gem nestled in a bowl of rolling hills in the heart of Dumfries and Galloway, Crawick Multiverse is another interesting stop – with its unique combinations of natural features and artificial landscaping.

Highlights

  • Stunning interiors and a wonderful walled garden at Dumfries House

  • One of Charles Jencks’ distinctive landscapes

  • Plants from around the world in the lush surroundings of Logan Botanic Gardens

  • The tranquil pond at the heart of Glenwhan Gardens

  • The treasure trove of fine art that is Drumlanrig Castle

Places You'll See

Gardens Of Dumfries And Galloway

Gardens Of Dumfries And Galloway

Gardens Of Dumfries And Galloway

Gardens Of Dumfries And Galloway

Itinerary

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Day 1

Location: Drumlanrig Castle & Gardens

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Woodland House Hotel, Dumfries

Meals Included: Dinner

We depart from your local pick-up point and head for Dumfries House, near Cumnock in Ayrshire. Its stunning interiors are home to a world-class collection of furniture by Thomas Chippendale and many late 18th Century cabinet makers, which recently featured on BBC’s Antiques Roadshow. We are able to make the most of those interiors on our grand tour of the house, followed by tea and shortbread. We will also visit the Queen Elizabeth Walled Garden, which is one of the best examples of its kind in Scotland and in many ways the flagship of the restoration project. You may also wish to venture into the intriguing yew hedge maze and see if you can reach the Japanese pagoda at its centre – and then find your way out again!

After our visit, we will travel to our accommodation at the 4* Woodland House Hotel, where dinner is served this evening.

Day 2

Location: Glenwhan Gardens and Tearoom, Logan Botanic Garden, Logan House Gardens

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Woodland House Hotel, Dumfries

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Today after breakfast we visit Glenwhan Gardens, spread out over a windy hilltop with marvellous views of Luce Bay and the Mull of Galloway. Since 1979 a very large, interesting and individual garden has been created that is filled with good plants. At its heart is an extensive pool, divided by a grassy causeway and fed by a tumbling stream. The slopes above are lavishly planted with trees and shrubs – almost any gardener will find something unfamiliar here.

This afternoon we continue on to our next destination: the world-famous Logan Botanic Gardens at Port Logan. Port Logan lies in the Mull of Galloway, which juts out into the sea in the extreme south-west of Scotland. The garden was started by the McDougall family who lived here for 800 years, and since 1969 it has been in the care of the Royal Botanic Garden at Edinburgh. Logan Botanic Garden is beautifully laid out, particularly in the walled garden with its fine terraces and well-planned borders under an avenue of cabbage palms. The climate here is exceptionally mild and several different habitats provide conditions for a huge range of plants.

Next door are the gardens of Logan House, which were originally part of Logan Botanic Garden. This Victorian woodland garden features champion trees, sweeping lawns and ancient shrubberies, meandering pathways and a majestic monkey puzzle avenue. It also features seven United Kingdom and fourteen Scottish champion trees. Opened to the public in 2002 Logan House has benefited from a programme of replanting and renovation and the results have been very successful.

NB: as the gardens at Logan House are at their best in the early summer, on our August and September departures we will instead visit Cally Gardens at Gatehouse of Fleet after Logan Botanic Gardens. With over 4,000 perennials, the borders at Cally are not only stock beds and trial grounds for the nursery, but a magnificent display for visitors. There is plenty of interest throughout the year, with Geranium in midsummer and Agapanthus, Kniphofia and Crocosmia in late summer and autumn. The nursery has established plantings of several thousand varieties, and you can choose from a selection of several hundred in the sales area.

We return to our hotel where dinner is served in the evening.

Day 3

Location: Broughton House & Garden, Kirkcudbright, Dumfries

Accommodation: Hotel

Accommodation Name: Woodland House Hotel, Dumfries

Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

This morning after breakfast we visit Broughton House, a fascinating 18th Century house and garden which was home to E A Hornel from 1901 until his death in 1933. During his lifetime he had twice lived in Japan and his experience there influenced many of his paintings. The garden which runs down to the estuary of the Dee also shows the influence of his time in Japan and is always full of colour.

After our visit to Broughton, we spend some more time in Kirkcudbright, a haven for artists, as paid testament to by its abundance of art galleries. We visit one such gallery and browse the work of local artists before stopping for a well-deserved lunch (not included).

Following this we visit the wonderful plantsman’s nursery of Ellenbank. This wonderful nursery is full of cottage garden perennials such as violas, clematis and penstemons.

Our last visit of the day will be to the gardens of the Threave Estate. The gardens have been largely created by students at the School of Horticulture which started here in 1960. Mature woodland of beech, conifers and oaks form the background to a large collection of shrub roses, sweeping mixed borders, dwarf heathers, peat and rock gardens, a walled kitchen garden and superbly maintained glasshouses.

Finally, we return to our hotel in time for dinner.

Day 4

Location: Crawick Multiverse, Dumfries House, Queen Elizabeth Walled Garden, Dumfries House

Meals Included: Breakfast

This morning we check out of our hotel and visit the gardens at Drumlanrig Castle. Surrounded by the 120,000 acre Queensberry Estate, Country Park and grand Victorian gardens, Drumlanrig Castle was completed in 1691 by William Douglas, 1st Duke of Queensberry and is one of the first and most important Renaissance buildings in the grand manner in Scotland. Drumlanrig hit the headlines in 2003 following the audacious theft of the Leonardo da Vinci painting ‘Madonna with the Yarnwinder’ and it was as a consequence of this that formal guided tours of the castle were introduced.

Our final visit is to the Crawick Multiverse, a hidden gem nested in a bowl of rolling hills in the heart of Dumfries and Galloway. This major new land restoration project on the Duke of Buccleuch’s Queensberry Estate has transformed a former open cast coal mine into a spectacular artland and public amenity and was designed by Charles Jencks, the celebrated landscape architect and author. The ecology of the site, and the materials found within it, inspired its design which is based around space, astronomy and cosmology. Following our visit we return to our original departure points.

What's Included

  • Accommodation

  • Services of a professional tour manager

  • Comfortable coach travel throughout

  • Meals - as per the itinerary

  • All Domestic Transportation (including internal flights)

  • Drinks with Meals

  • Entrance Fees

What's Not Included

  • Tipping and Gratuities

  • International Travel

Check out our Q&As

  • Are airport transfers included in this tour?

    Yes

  • Are children permitted to take part in the tour?

    Yes

  • Are the local guides on the tour English speaking?

    Yes

  • Are all entrance fees included in the price?

    Yes

  • Are flights included in this tour?

    No

  • Will I receive more details of the holiday before I travel?

    You will receive detailed joining instructions around 10 days prior to you departure, but you are of course welcome to contact us at any time should you have any queries.

  • What facilities do your coaches have?

    Generally, our coaches have reclining seats, air-conditioning and toilets, however this cannot always be guaranteed as sometimes we have to use smaller vehicles. Toilets are recommended for emergency use only and regular comfort stops will be made throughout your holiday while travelling around.

  • Do I have to go on the included excursions?

    Absolutely not. You are more than welcome to spend the day at your hotel or exploring independently should you wish. All we ask is that you inform your Tour Manager, so they are not left waiting for you to join the group.

  • Is there time to relax?

    Although our itineraries may seem jam-packed, boasting access to some of the most exclusive sites across the UK and beyond, a Brightwater Holiday is just that: a holiday. Each trip will counter in more than enough free-time for you to explore places at your own leisure. And with most nights and the majority of meals being included in our tour prices, you can relax in hand-picked accommodation.

  • Do I need to be an expert?

    Absolutely not! Although some of our tours are specifically focused on one thing, all you need to enjoy a Brightwater holiday is interest and bags of enthusiasm! Even on our most specialist tours, we take travellers from all skill levels, from experts to beginners.

  • How fit or active do I need to be for one of your holidays?

    You need to be able to get on and off the coach unassisted, and most – but not all – coaches have a kneel facility that lowers the front step for ease of boarding

  • Do you have self-drive holidays?

    Yes, we do – tailored to your exact requirements!

  • What’s the luggage allowance on your coaches?

    There’s no fixed limit, but we generally say one large suitcase to go in the luggage compartment and a smaller bag that you can take onto the coach with you. For flight-inclusive holidays, we include a luggage allowance of at least 20kg.

  • Where are your departure points?

    UK garden holidays generally depart from London, with additional pick-ups depending on the route of the coach, while holidays to Scotland depart from Glasgow, Edinburgh and Perth, with Dundee, Inverness and Aberdeen sometimes included. All Eurostar holidays depart from London St. Pancras and flight-inclusive holidays depart from one or more of the main London airports, with regional flights .

  • What about the company that will be kept?

    For single travellers, those with a companion or even those travelling in a larger group, you'll find that the signature of any Brightwater Holiday is the company. You won't ever be travelling with a group of strangers, instead, you'll find yourself surrounded by like-minded people with a strong shared interest who will soon become your firm friends.

  • What is a Brightwater Holiday?

    Bursting with enthralling, educational and enlightening itineraries, a Brightwater Holiday, by its very nature, is packed with bucket-list-worthy destinations, behind the scenes passes and expert-led experiences. From creating bespoke quality garden and special interest tours for groups and individuals alike, we have made it our business to make our guests' travel dreams come true.

  • Why is there a single supplement?

    Unfortunately, single room supplements are charges that are often imposed on us as a company when we book rooms for group holidays. However, most hotels do charge less for single occupancy, and we always pass this saving on to our solo travellers in the form of a modest single supplement.

  • How much are your optional excursions?

    Prices start from as little as £20, but please contact our friendly team for questions about specific itineraries or excursions.

  • Can I pre-book my coach seats?

    Yes, you can. In the case of front seats, guests with limited mobility are given priority. Please get in touch with our friendly team to discuss any requirements you may have.

  • How to get there? Easy!

    With a Brightwater Holiday, the journey is just as important as the destination and we make getting you to your tour start point easy. From organising group flights and individual travel plans, to offering accessible local departure and pick-up points, we go out of our way to ensure that your journey is as convenient and hassle-free as it can be.

  • Do I need to have travel insurance?

    Travel insurance is required for all overseas holidays and is also strongly recommended for UK holidays – primarily to protect yourself against cancellation charges should you be unable to travel.

Reviews of this operator

Trusted Customer  

Brightwater Holidays offers great value

28-Nov-2019

I would highly recommend Brightwater Holidays. It offers excellent service and value for money. This was my first tour as I normally arrange holidays myself, but this tour - which was to the gardens of Kent and Sussex - was a very pleasant change of pace.

Feefo Trusted Reviews
Brightwater Holidays Customer  

My experience with Brightwater Holidays

08-Aug-2019

The tour was well managed, the sites visited were all interesting and linked to the theme of the Picts and their place in history, the hotel was comfortable and the coach journeys were well paced. I have been with Brightwater before and will certainly travel with them again

Feefo Trusted Reviews
Alan Hawkes (Google Reviewer)  

We were on the Tour...

28-Aug-2022

We were on the Tour of the Outer Hebrides. We had a great experience, in no small part due to the excellence of the tour manager and driver.

Brightwater Holidays Custome  

Wonderful experience with brilliant information

31-Jul-2019

The most important factor was an amazing guide in Alastair Walker whose knowledge and care for clients was fantastic. The whole trips are superbly organised

Feefo Trusted Reviews
David MacLennan (Google Reviewer)  

Noted a comment on taking...

23-Aug-2023

Noted a comment on taking coaches on A814 by a local person who didn't know the facts: When the A82 was blocked and the POLICE divert you onto that road you do as instructed not what a you know are tight roads but they only way to your destination as intructed by officials. We know this route is not suitable for large vehicles but the driver does as instructed by someone in authority.

Eric Webb (Google Reviewer)  

Recent (September 2023) Scottish holiday...

07-Oct-2023

Recent (September 2023) Scottish holiday not so good. Various 'issues' to do with scheduling and organisation. I'm happy to report however that - after an interval - a letter expressing disappointment brought a full response - including a generous refund. So - with fingers slightly crossed - we'll be booking with Brightwater again in due course.

Kevin Barrett (Google Reviewer)  

The recent tour in Northumberland...

30-Sep-2023

The recent tour in Northumberland turned out to be a shambles. Our South London driver took us to Newcastle, but no guide to meet us. Next day still no guide and the bus driver attempted to salvage the tour the best he could despite having no knowledge of the attractions. Fortunately one of the passengers Googled the tides for Holy Island. No holiday guide ever showed up. Coach and hotel were fine. Do these people only offer self guided tours? Take Shearings next time.

ALEXANDRA MCQUEEN (Google Reviewer)  

Been trying to get a...

17-Oct-2023

Been trying to get a reply from them for over a week. Booked Xmas tour, confirmation said pick up subject to numbers, they never said anything when booking and theyve been paid in full. Would not recommend!

Dp Green (Google Reviewer)  

I had heard this company...

20-Feb-2024

I had heard this company was a nightmare to deal with, but thought I'd give it a go. Signed up for a tour, then emailed them about how to pay off the balance. No response to 3 emails. I've never encountered a tour company that ignored questions on how to pay off a balance. Looked into other reviews and found many complaints about cancelled tours and refusals to refund deposits.

Kieran Thompson (Google Reviewer)  

Two of your tour busses...

26-Jul-2021

Two of your tour busses used the A814 from Garelochhead to Arrochar on 24th July 2021. This route is not suitable for large vehicles and your drivers should not have taken the huge coaches that way. There are clear signs at both ends of the road indicating it is not suitable for HGV's. Our car had to go off into the soft verge to allow your coaches to pass. Please amend your routes to avoid this road in future.

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Sunday - Wednesday

Sep 15, 2024 - Sep 18, 2024
$1185 $1148

Mid-Year Mayhem Discount: -$37

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  • Cancellation Policy

    We don't charge a cancellation fee, here is a summary of brightwater holidays charges.

    At 40 days before tour starts: Forfeit 50% of booking price.

    At 7 days before tour starts: Forfeit 100% of booking price.

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