Stranraer & The Rhins of Galloway Community & Tourist Information Site

Outdoor Activities / Things to Do in South West Scotland

southern upland way


There are some waywarked walks around the Rhins, but most of the walks in the area are just well trodden paths. Dumfries & Galloway Council provide leaflets on some of these walks, however, they are being discontinued, so below I have linked to the online versions of the walks previously published.

Walks in the Rhins...


Most of the roads around the Rhins are quite quiet for most of the year, which makes them ideal for cyclists. There are are couple of trails listed in Dumfries and Galloway Council's Cycling in Wigtownshire Leaflet, available from local tourist information centres. The first takes you on a circular route from the Mull of Galloway to Drummore and the second (also a circular) takes you from Portpatrick to Stranraer. Both are very scenic routes with spectacular views, so well worth doing.


Please see individual golf course websites for details. There are 4 main golf courses in the area:

bird watching

Birdwatching / Wildlife Watching

The Rhins has an abundance of bird life, particularly when it comes to seabirds, waders and wildfowl. The best places to watch birds are the Mull of Galloway, Stranraer Harbour, Balyett, Penwhirn, Wig Bay and Corsewall. If you want to venture out of the Rhins, Wigtown Bay (complete with a hide) and the Wood of Cree are two top spots.

For marine wildlife, our shores are sometimes graced with visits from cetaceans such as porpoises, dolphins and whales, so bring the binoculars, or telescope, sit on the cliffs and go whale watching! You may even spot basking sharks, sunfish or even turtles. DGERC organise occasional whale watching events - see their site for details. Something you are much more likely to see here are grey and common seals - these are often spotted all along the coastline, even in Loch Ryan.

See the Scottish wildlife page for more information on the Rhins' wildlife.



There are a number of fishing lochs in the Rhins, most notably Soulseat Loch and Knockquassen Reservoir. Many of the local estates have lochs stocked with fish and some will let you fish with a permit. For more details on where to fish, visit If you want to venture out of the Rhins a bit, the river Cree is well stocked.


Art / Painting / Photography

Although these activities can be done anywhere, the Rhins of Galloway has to be one of the best. With such variety in coastline, varied landscapes, diverse wildlife, stunning views of 3 countries and two thousand acres of sky, it really is an artist's or photographer's dream!

horse riding

Horse riding

There are lots of long beaches (such as at Sandhead) and wide open spaces, as well as quiet country roads right accross the Rhins that are ideal for horse riding. If you love horses and want a holiday with a difference, then you can get a taster of a Romany way of life with Old Spittal Wagons' Gypsy Caravan Holidays.

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