Portpatrick is a pretty fishing village on the west coast of the Rhins of Galloway, south west Scotland. This quiet corner of Scotland is a haven for lovers of the outdoors and those wanting to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life.The harbourside at Portpatrick has a row of brightly painted houses and places where you can relax a while and enjoy delicious food and drink whilst watching the movement of the yachts, pleasure craft and fishing boats. There are attractive gift shops in the village selling local crafts and souvenirs of your visit and a general store and post office.
The scenic harbour in Portpatrick is popular with visiting yachts, fishing charters and pleasure cruises, especially as the coast of Northern Ireland is just 20 miles away. Portpatrick has its own RNLI Lifeboat, the John Buchanan Barr, and there is a well-stocked RNLI gift shop on the harbourside. The annual Portpatrick Lifeboat week attracts a lot of visitors to the area and is a week-long series of events for all the family, the grand finale of the week is an air and sea rescue demonstration followed by the crew bonfire and firework display in the evening.
The rocky coastline around Portpatrick is perfect for walking and you can start the 212 mile coast to coast footpath, the Southern Upland Way from here. From the village you can enjoy the walk to the ruins of Dunskey Castle, dating back to the 12th century.Portpatrick has its own 18 hole and 9 hole golf course with spectacular sea views. Portpatrick Dunskey Golf Course is a short walk from the village and has a PGA professional who is available for coaching and advice. Great fun for all the family is the village putting green and children’s playground.
The warm air from the Gulf Stream allows tropical plants to flourish in this area. There are six Galloway Gardens close to Harbourside and you can visit each one of them during your holiday. You can collect your garden passport from one of the gardens and enjoy discounted entry fees to each of the gardens you visit.
Dunskey Gardens has walled and woodland gardens, lochs and glasshouses and is only a mile from the village of Portpatrick. There is a tour with the gardener every Wednesday at 11.30am from April to October.
Logan Botanic Garden near Port Logan is Scotland’s most exotic garden with a wealth of exotic flowers, trees and shrubs. Visit the Potting Shed Bistro for delicious food and drink and the Botanics Shop has a fantastic selection of local crafts, gifts and plants for sale.
Logan House Gardens features champion trees, sweeping lawns and pathways through trees and monkey puzzle avenue.Rhododendrons take centre stage in March, April and May.
Glenwhan Gardens is filled with exotic plants, seasonal colour and rare species. Wander the paths through a variety of habitats with a 17 acre wildflower walk with 120 recorded species of flower, grass and fern.
Ardwell Gardens is a naturally unspoilt and idyllic location with stunning views over Luce Bay. You can see wide variety of azaleas, camellias and rhododendrons in Spring and early Summer. The walled garden grows a wide range of summer bedding plants and produce for visitors to buy.
Castle Kennedy Gardens comprises of 75 acres of magnificent avenues and gardens and is situated between two natural lochs. Enjoy the two acre circular lily pond, 21 Champion trees, rare and exotic plants, family trails, woodland and loch-side walks.
Another wonderful garden to visit in the Rhins of Galloway is Aldouran Wetland Garden and bird hide and this can be found at Leswalt village, near to Aldouran Glen and woodland. The woodland is owned and managed by the Woodland Trust Scotland.
There are some wonderful places to eat and drink in the Rhins of Galloway, we have selected a few for you from delicious lunch time snacks to fine evening dining.
In Portpatrick you can enjoy specialty beers on draught, including the new specialty beer from the new Portpatrick Brewery, and delicious food in The Crown on the harbourside. Next door you will find the Waterfront Hotel where you can enjoy a bar meal or fine dining in the restaurant with fresh seafood being a speciality. The Harbour House has a brand new conservatory to enjoy your food and drink with a stunning sea view across the harbour. The Port Pantry coffee house and gift shop serves delicious home baking and lunches in a very friendly atmosphere. Fernhill Hotel offers fine dining with a view across the harbour and the Irish Sea. Campbells Restaurant has an extensive al la carte menu with in-house seafood specialities and is located right on the seafront with a wonderful view across the harbour. Dine in the Michelin Star Restaurant at Knockinaam Lodge Hotel where you can enjoy fine Scottish based cuisine with fine wines and an intimate atmosphere.
Henrys Bay House has views across Loch Ryan and a sun terrace for alfresco dining. The menu features locally sourced fish and meat dishes and they are open for lunch, early bird and evening meals. You can enjoy freshly prepared soup, snacks, coffee and cakes at Stir It coffee house in Stranraer.
The Tigh Na Mara in Sandhead offers lunch, early bird and dinner in the warm and welcoming restaurant. Enjoy freshly prepared dishes using fresh seafood from the west coast and succulent Scottish beef. Woodlea Tearoom serves delicious soup, sandwiches and even home-made chips! The Torrs Warren Country House in Stoneykirk has an extensive menu using local produce complemented by a range of fine wines.