Sir Walter Scott’s Borders and Abbotsford

Sir Walter Scott's Borders

This tour is available during Abbotsford’s opening times between 1st March and 30th November 2017. Please note that Smailholm Tower and Selkirk’s Courtroom Museum opening times may vary.

Abbotsford was Sir Walter Scott’s Borders home and “conundrum castle” from 1811 until his death in 1832. The house and its fabulous collection of historical artefacts re-opened to the public in July 2013 after a two year programme of refurbishment. The visitor centre hosts an exhibition celebrating the life of the world’s first best selling author. The Ochiltree Restaurant is an ideal setting for your morning coffee, refreshments and lunch.

From Abbotsford we travel a short distance to the market town of Selkirk. The town’s Courtroom Museum commemorates Scott’s time as Sheriff of Selkirkshire from 1799 to 1832, James Hogg ‘The Ettrick Shepherd’ and explorer Mungo Park.

Leaving Selkirk we travel through beautiful scenery to the Scott ancestral home at Smailholm Tower. It was to Sandyknowe Farm, adjacent to Smailholm, that Scott was sent as an infant to live with his paternal grandparents. It was at Sandyknowe that Scott fell in love with the Borders and learned the history and tales of the local countryside from his grandmother and aunt. Today Smailhom Tower hosts the Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border exhibition linking Scott with Smailholm.

From Smailholm we travel a short distance to Scott’s View, here you can admire the stunning view of the Eildon Hills and surrounding countryside. Close by we will visit the 21.5 metre high Wallace Monument; this was the first statue to be erected anywhere to commemorate William Wallace.

A short drive will take us to the 12th Century Dryburgh Abbey, burial place of Sir Walter Scott.

News reports about the re-opening of Abbotsford can be found on our Abbotsford – Home of Sir Walter Scott page.


Smailholm Tower
Scott’s View
Wallace Monument
Dryburgh Abbey


The cost of a full-day private guided sightseeing tour starts from £395.00 which includes all planning, tour guide and transport costs.

All entrances fees, meals & refreshments are excluded.


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