Rosslyn Chapel, Abbotsford House and the Borders Railway
This full day tour introduces you to the delights of the Scottish Borders and its literary connections and offers a perfect combination of attractive countryside, history and a scenic journey on Scotland’s newest railway line.
Leaving Edinburgh you will head firstly to the mysterious and legendary Rosslyn Chapel made famous by Dan Brown’s novel ‘The Da Vinci Code’. Rosslyn is located just half an hour south of Edinburgh and you will have plenty of time to explore the excellent visitor centre and uncover the myths and legends of the Knights Templar and the Holy Grail. You will then have the opportunity to examine the ancient carvings that adorn the chapel and explore the chapel grounds and its many impressive grave stones.
Your next stop is the impressive Abbotsford House, the baronial style home of Scottish Novelist Sir Walter Scott, famous for such works as Ivanhoe, Rob Roy and Waverley. A fascinating character, the house is packed full of Scottish artefacts, coats of armour and ancient furniture, including the writing desk he used to write many of his works. Set on the banks of the River Tweed the house is framed by impressive gardens and you will have plenty of time to explore them too.
Your guide will then transfer you to the local railway station at Tweedbank where you will enjoy a scenic journey back to Edinburgh. Your tour ends at Tweedbank Station and the journey time back to Edinburgh is around an hour, you will arrive back in the city around 6pm.
The Borders Railway is the longest domestic railway to be built in the UK in over 100 years. The original line opened in 1849 and was known as the Waverley route (after Sir Walter Scott’s first published novel). It provided direct rail services between Edinburgh and the Scottish Borders for 107 years before closing in 1969.Work began in 2008 to re-open the line and after removing just under a million tonnes of earth, laying 30 miles of new railway track and 90,000 sleepers and creating seven rail stations and six station car parks, passenger services began on 6 September 2015 and the railway was officially opened by Her Majesty The Queen later that month.