There is an abundance of things to do on both within walking distance or a short drive of the Thirlestane Caravan Park. The Scottish Borders is popular due to the sheer range of activities packed into such a small and accessible region – castles, historic festivals, arts and crafts, delicious local produce and miles of rolling hills, beautiful valleys, and the Berwickshire coastline.

Here are some of our favourites to enjoy during your stay.



When exploring the Lauderdale Estate, you will discover some beautiful walking routes, offering incredible views of the surrounding area and glimpses of local wildlife. Guests can enjoy the woodland and riverside walks, and for those who like a longer hike, these tracks link into the national walking route, the Southern Upland Way. The low light pollution also allows for star gazing in the spring, autumn and winter.



Thirlestane Caravan Park guests can receive 20% off guided castle tours during their stay. Discover fascinating collections and stories about the castle’s interesting history, including connections to Bonnie Prince Charlie and Mary Queen of Scots. Marvel at some of the finest plasterwork ceilings in Europe and one of the most extensive family portrait collections in the country.


Whats On

Each year, Thirlestane Castle hosts an exciting programme of events, including open-air theatre shows, activity camps, art exhibitions and the much-loved BVAC Classic.

Within Walking Distance


Thirlestane Caravan Park has a private walking route into Lauder – a market town where you will find a great selection of amenities such as shops, tennis courts, a soft play area and golf course. There are also annual festivals and activities to enjoy, including the traditional Common Riding.


The local town of Lauder isn’t short of good food. The Black Bull is highly recommended for a fantastic evening meal or Sunday Roast, The Spotty Dog serves up a delicious lunch, and the Flat Cat Gallery displays local art as well as baking scrumptious scones!


You will find a well a well-stocked Costcutter, as well as a green grocer, butcher, baker and delicatessen in Lauder. Additionally, there is a post office, fuel station and pharmacy conveniently located on the high street.

Borders and Beyond


The Borders has an abundance of amazing places to eat, including restaurants such as The Hoebridge and Provender in Melrose and Cobbles in Kelso. For a tasty lunch or afternoon snack, we recommend Apples for Jam, Twelve Triangles, The Terrace Cafe at Floors Castle and Ochiltrees at Abbotsford House.

Historic Houses

Of course, Thirlestane Castle is located on your doorstep, but the Borders is packed full of historical houses and castles which are within a short drive. Melrose Abbey, The Great Tapestry of Scotland, Mellerstain, Paxton House, Abbotsford House, Floors Castle are all fascinating places to visit and many have special events and activities for children too.

Water Sports and Coasts

St Mary’s Loch is the largest natural loch in the Scottish Borders. It is popular for wild swimming, and paddle boards can be rented from the local café. Within an hour’s drive, you can enjoy the gorgeous east coast beaches, including Coldingham Bay, which is well known for its sandy beaches and surf school, and St Abbs, which boasts rib boat rides and dramatic cliff walking routes that have been the location for famous films such as the Avengers.

Mountain Biking

The Scottish Borders boasts world-class mountain biking.  The Glentress trails are just 25 miles from Thirlestane. It has challenging trails for the experts, as well as easy routes for beginners. For more those who love BMX biking head to Innerleithen (18 miles), renowned for its four downhill trails, all of them orange-graded Bike Park Extreme. There’s also some serious cross-country action on the red-graded Innerleithen XC trail.

Go Ape

If you have a head for heights, you will love the local Go Ape course with its 325-metre-long zip wire across a valley that’s a whopping 160ft high! See the adventure unfold while you traverse the huge Douglas fir trees and zip over the mountain bike trails and open water. Go Ape Glentress Forest is a hidden gem and the perfect activity for a day out, located just 25 miles away in Peebles.

Distilling & Milling

Discover the award-winning Borders Distillery on one of their fascinating tours. You will be guided by their very own distillers, who will show you the workings of the first Scotch Whisky distillery in the Scottish Borders, opened in 1837.

Lochcarron Mill, located outside Selkirk, has been weaving cloth for over 75 years and they recently welcomed HRH King Charles III and HRH Queen Camilla. They offer a wonderful tour to discover the weaving technique and history of tartan.

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