The Scottish Borders is a secret little known to many enthusiasts of this beautiful country. Despite this part of Scotland entertaining an increasing number of visitors each year it is still a relatively well kept secret. Many visitors only see the borders when rushing past to reach the north or west. Yet this lowland border region has a tremendous amount to offer. The landscape is soft on the eye and often undulating. In the late summer and early autumn the hedgerows everywhere are bursting with wild fruits that are often picked by walkers and enjoyed as a desert that evening. At Berryhill the roadside hedgerows drip with blackberries, raspberries, and gooseberries from late august onwards. We also have redcurrants, blackcurrants, fantastic field mushrooms and an abundance of elder with which we make elderflower cordial and elderflower champagne.
Listed below are more of the area’s attractions…
Walking in the local area
There is an abundance of great walking in the local area. From hill climbing in the Southern Uplands to walking the beautiful coastal paths around St Abbs, there is something for all abilities.
Here is a selection of our favourites. If you have any other suggestions, please email us and we will include them on our web pages.
Edin’s Hall Broch
Edin’s Hall Broch (also Edinshall Broch; Odin’s Hall Broch) is a 2nd-century broch situated on the northeast slope of Cockburn Law above the Whiteadder Water. It is one of very few brochs found in southern Scotland.
The walk starts just a 5 minute drive from Berryhill. To get there, turn left onto the A6112 for just over 2 miles, then turn right signposted to Edin’s Broch. Just after you turn there is a large layby on the left hand side where you can park. From here you can either take the well signposted walk directly up to the Broch and return by the same route or you can do a circular walk taking in the beautiful hamlet of Abbey St Bathans, perhaps stopping at the Riverside Bakehouse for a bite of lunch or a yummy cake half way (well, with all that walking you will have definitely earned it!). For more details of the walk see https://www.walkhighlands.co.uk/borders/cockburn-law.shtml
The sea around St. Abbs with its crystal clear water is a well-known scuba diving area. The adjacent headland with its towering cliffs is a noted National Trust Nature Reserve boasting a wide variety of bird life. The glorious sandy beach at Coldingham Bay recently awarded a Blue Flag is only five minutes walk along the cliff top path.
Previously known as Coldingham Shore and now shortened to The Shore, the village was founded as a fishing community and its success has in the past, but less today, been dependent on that industry. Always popular with visitors coming to enjoy the sea, coastal views and quieter pace of life.
Dunbar and Belhaven, Coastal Walks and Sandy Beaches
Just a few miles away is the magnificent John Muir Country Park, an area that covers some of the most spectacular East Lothian coastline and is a haven for wildlife and beach lovers alike. From the Castle Ruins in Dunbar, to the Peffer Burn just a few kilometres to the north, visitors walking the cliff top trail can take in the most spectacular views of the sea beyond miles of an uninterrupted sandy beach. Just out to sea the historic Bass Rock can be seen shining white with guano in the height of the breeding season. At the right time of year walkers can watch gannets dive like arrows into the sea as they stroll along the long sandy sweep of Belhaven Bay. Where the bay meets the River Tyne estuary there is an extensive areas of grassland, salt-marsh and adjoining woodland which provides an infinite number of varied walks, runs or cycles paths for the fitness enthusiasts.
There is also the opportunity to go canoeing, kayaking or even do a spot of kite surf along the beach. If you don’t fancy it yourself, kite surfing is an equally enjoyable spectator sport. Saunter into Dunbar for a spot of lunch from the local deli or visit one of the friendly local seaside pubs where local beers and home cooked pies are a must.
Berryhill is situated on a small ‘B’ road that joins two of the most scenic Scottish borders cycle routes and if you wish to explore the area by bike, we offer our guests the opportunity to hire bicycles and soon hope to be able to offer e-bikes as well. On warm summer evenings a short 5 mile cycle down the hill to the local Craw Inn is very popular with guests wanting to wash down dinner with a glass or two of wine. However, beware the home journey is almost all uphill!
There are few places better to enjoy a relaxing round of golf than the beautiful Scottish borders. Being just fifteen minutes away from the championship-standard 18 hole Eyemouth Golf club the proprietor of the hole voted Britian’s most extodinary golf hole, Berryhill offers a superb venue for the golf enthusiast. The area is home to a number of varied courses that offer superb value to the golfer all of which are within easy reach of the cottage.
Just a few miles away is the stunning costal village of St Abbs, its spectacular underwater tunnels, gullies and archways forming some of the finest underwater scenery anywhere along the British coast. Berryhill has a small garden and an outside tap ideal to wash off and hang out dive gear so for diving enthusiasts this is an absolute must. If divers need additional space to store tanks and dry off gear in the winter please let us know in advance and we will provide access to a locked shed. For facilities see www.stabbs.org/diving
The Lammermuir Festival was born of a conviction that historic architecture and beautiful landscape can provide an inspiring environment in which to experience great music and music-making.
Building on a tradition of concerts in Haddington’s great mediaeval parish church of St Mary, the festival was established to bring musicians, local people and visitors together in celebration of music in towns and villages across the county. There is a wealth of evocative buildings to return to each year, but we are always seeking out unexpected new places for music.
The programme encompasses music large and small, from the splendour of a symphony orchestra to the sound of a single violin. Among the musicians invited are famous, established names and young, rising stars. The festival has a close and enduring relationship with some of Scotland’s internationally acclaimed ensembles, including the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Dunedin Consort, the Hebrides Ensemble and the National Youth Choir of Scotland. Music has the power to enhance, sometimes even to change, people’s lives. The Lammermuir Festival is for the people of East Lothian and for those who come to discover and share the magic of beautiful music in this beautiful place.
The Edinburgh Mela is Scotland’s biggest and best celebration of world music and dance. The Mela seeks to embrace all its diverse communities and cultures, providing a showcase and development opportunities for artists from within those groups, working alongside artists of national and international stature. For twenty years Edinburgh Mela has been bringing outstanding world music and gorgeous international dance to Scotland’s capital city, in a joyous carnival of colour, rhythm, community celebration… and delicious food. The Mela attracts thousands of people of all ages to the beautiful green space of Leith Links, in north east Edinburgh, to enjoy an atmosphere of fun and diversity.
Edinburgh Film Festival
Established in 1947, the Edinburgh International Film Festival is world renowned for discovering and promoting the very best in international cinema – and for heralding and debating changes in global filmmaking. Intimate in its scale, ambitious in its scope, and fuelled by pure passion for cinema in all its manifestations, EIFF seeks to spotlight the most exciting and innovative new film talent, in a setting steeped in history.
Edinburgh Festival Fringe
The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the largest arts festival in the world and takes place every August for three weeks in Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital city.
Every year thousands of performers take to hundreds of stages all over Edinburgh to present shows for every taste. From big names in the world of entertainment to unknown artists looking to build their careers, the festival caters for everyone and includes theatre, comedy, dance, physical theatre, circus, cabaret, children’s shows, musicals, opera, music, spoken word, exhibitions and events.
In 2014 there were 49,497 performances of 3,193 shows in 299 venues, making it the largest ever arts festival in the world.
Edinburgh International Festival
Every August, the Edinburgh International Festival transforms one of the world’s most beautiful cities, presenting three exhilarating weeks of the finest creators and performers from the worlds of the arts – for everyone.
Edinburgh’s six major theatres and concert halls, a few smaller venues and often some unconventional ones too, come alive with the best music, theatre, opera and dance from around the globe.