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Visitor attractions

Dumfries and Galloway, in the south-west of Scotland, is known to locals and thrilled visitors alike as 'Scotland's best kept secret'.

From Moffat in the east, along the Solway coast to Stranraer in the west, and north to its border with Ayrshire, the unspoilt beauty of the diverse and varied landscape is second to none. Nithsdale is no exception, with the dramatic patchwork of the heather-clad Lowther Hills, through rolling farmland to the beautiful coastline of the Solway Firth.

From the river's source it flows south through the royal burgh of Sanquhar, home to the oldest working Post Office in Scotland. From there, it meanders through the Queensberry Estate with stunning Drumlanrig Castle - the 'Pink Palace' - home to the Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry, as a backdrop with its beautiful gardens and country park.

It continues on past the bustling market town of Thornhill with its excellent shops, hotels and facilities, and on to Ellisland, once home of the Scottish Bard, Robert Burns, and where Tam O'Shanter was conceived.

The historic county town and royal burgh of Dumfries, with its further associations to Burns and to Robert the Bruce, straddles the river before it flows into the Solway estuary at Glencaple, past Caerlaverock Castle and the Wetlands and Wildlife Centre.

In truth, there are a wealth of things to do and places of interest along the way, too numerous to mention. It's an ideal destination not only for anglers but for their families and freinds too!

For local events and other activities and things to do in Nithsdale, please see below or visit, the tourist board's site.

Game shooting

You can enjoy an exhilarating day's sport on the magnificent Queensberry Estate thanks to generations of careful planning and hard work, led by successive Dukes of Buccleuch and overseen by expert head gamekeepers and estate managers. Conservation and sustainability have always been a priority, and now there's a bigger range of field sports for you to take part in than ever before, with a new and varied programme of activities to suit all interests and abilities.


Over the last seven years Drumlanrig has become renowned as one of the premier partridge shoots in the world. The partridges are released on the edge of the moorland and are then driven over the guns below, providing challenging shooting amidst stunning landscape. You can benefit from 20 drives, ranging from high to exceptionally high birds, meaning it is possible to do three consecutive days without doing the same drive twice.


Pheasant shooting at Drumlanrig continues to be a very traditional experience, providing you with sport of the highest quality set among high hills, mixed woodlands and some fantastic gullies, offering some truly memorable shooting.


Drumlanrig offers you 25,000 acres of heather moorland with four main beats: Durisdeer, Wanlockhead, Daerhead and Locherben.

Conservation and responsible land management are of utmost importance on the Estate. All the moors are well-maintained by burning resulting in a mosaic of colour on the hills ensuring a variety of different ages of heather for the grouse to live on. The moors also provide an excellent example of habitat for wader birds, for example Golden Plover, Curlews and Lapwings. Smaller birds such as Skylarks, Ring Ousels and Meadow Pipits are also abundant with all of these species doing very well in the area. This is a direct result of stringent vermin control measures.

For further information on game shooting at Drumlanrig please contact Fishpal.

For local events and other activities and things to do in Nithsdale, please see below or visit, the tourist board's site.

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