This section is dedicated to take away all your "I wish someone had told me that before I went!" experiences. This way, you are better prepared for what to expect, what not to expect and can spend less time settling in, and more time making new friends in your chosen hostel. We share our insider knowledge of tips, tricks and important things to look out for in Dumfries. To help you make friends with Dumfries before you visit, we've included a few helpful and fun things you should know about the area. Enjoy!
Dumfries, on the River Nith, is a small market town that has seen many occupants -- the Romans, the Picts and Scots, and the Saxons, to name a few. As such, bits and pieces from all of these periods have left traces throughout the town. The Dumfries Museum, a good place to start out from your Dumfries hostel if you’re looking for a bit of historical context of the town, is home to many relics from throughout Scotland’s past.
The Theatre Royal is the oldest running theatre in Scotland, thanks to a lucky save from an acting Guild in the 1960s that prevented the building from being torn down. Drumlanrig Castle, a popular destination for many visitors to the Dumfries, is a seventeenth-century Renaissance castle with excellent staff and guides to lead you around. There are about forty acres of grounds to explore as well, so save this one for a sunny morning or afternoon. Threave Castle ruins sit on an island in the River Dee. Admission is fairly cheap and it is in a very picturesque location, even though the man who built it was named Archibald the Grim.
Also good for a sunny day are parks in the area -- Castledyke Park is on a former castle site, and is a good place for a picnic lunch. If you’re up for a day trip, Ae Village is nearby; while it is a young village, relatively speaking in British history, it is a worth a visit.
Getting to your Dumfries hostel by car is easy, and the railway station runs regular trains to Carlisle and Glasgow and (a little less regularly) Newcastle. There are plenty of grocery stores in the town as well, and pubs and cafes and plenty of other shops. It still is a market town!
Written by local enthusiast for Dumfries hostelsEmily Schreiber