Situated on the storied Firth of Clyde coast and filled with majestic castles, charming townscapes, and astounding natural beauty, Scotland’s Ayrshire County, also known as “Ayrshire and Arran” and the “County of Ayr,” is an excellent choice for the Royal Holiday member searching for old-fashioned, Scottish country living. Whether one is in the mood for frolicking at the seaside, hiking the rugged countryside, or exploring the numerous excellent museums, the region can deliver plenty of fun. Royal Holiday travelers will find the great outdoors in all its splendor in Ayrshire, and thanks to the club’s excellent location, it’s all within easy reach.
The club’s affiliate in Ayrshire, Brunston Castle, provides all the comfort and diversions Royal Holiday members expect. Located in beautiful Girvan Valley with easy access to the coast, Galloway Forest Park, and several nearby towns, this condominium resort offers accommodations ranging from two-bedroom cottages to four-bedroom, two-story houses. Each lodge comes complete with a full kitchen and balcony, while the resort’s grounds include easy access to swimming pools, kids’ activities, and entertainment options. Perhaps the key selling point for Royal Holiday’s golf enthusiasts is the resort’s close proximity to courses like The Royal Troon and Turnberry, as well as the Brunston Golf Course located right on the resort’s grounds.
Ayrshire has a long history, with the Kingdom of Scotland first claiming the region in the 11th century. First-time visitors should begin by paying their respects to Robert Burns, one of the most famed Scottish poets and a significant figure in Ayrshire. The Robert Burns Birthplace Museum and Burns Cottage & Museum offer a glimpse at the poet’s life and work, as well as easy access to the nearby Belleisle and Rozelle estates. In addition, Royal Holiday travelers should take the time to explore places like Dean Castle Country Park or the impressive 13th-century Lochranza Castle. Royal Holiday members hoping to bring a piece of Scotland home should head to the monthly Ayrshire Arts & Crafts Fair, while those who want to sample the region’s most famous beverage should take a drive to Kirkoswald to see the Whiskey Experience and Whiskey Shop for a taste of Scotch magic.
However, Ayrshire truly shines for its plethora of outdoor activities. In the summer, the Firth of Clyde’s inviting calm seas make for wonderful days on the shore. Royal Holiday visitors looking to get out on the water, whether for sailing, kayaking, or windsurfing, will do well to start at the sportscotland National Centre Cumbrae. Charter a trip out to the Isle of Arran or take the drive to Galloway Forest Park, a gorgeous nature reserve renowned for having the darkest night sky in Europe. Be sure to bring your telescope to enjoy unparalleled views of shooting stars and far-away galaxies. Royal Holiday members looking to explore more of the region will want to consider taking advantage of the incredible bike trails snaking through Ayrshire, while impressive hikes, like the path up to the peak of The Merrick, will challenge any outdoorsman or woman.