Solo Travel Destination: St. Andrews, Scotland

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This was the view from my room at the Kinburn Guest House. You know a town is small when you can see the fields from your window and walk out the front door to the town’s high street in five minutes.

Solo travel rating: 1 (1 is easiest, 4 is most difficult.)

Languages spoken: English

Reasons to go: Golf. Yes, that’s the number one reason that people go to St. Andrews for a holiday.

But I don’t golf.

Why did I go? Why do I recommend that you go? Because it is a small university town on the sea. It is naturally quaint. It hasn’t been made so for tourists but just is that way for the people who live there. The locals have been vigilant about maintaining the town’s personality by keeping major fast food chains and the like out.

St. Andrew’s is a quiet place and that’s exactly what I was looking for. I went for a weekend break from London where I was attending a conference. A five hour train ride (long by UK standards but nothing for a North American) took me there.

It may be quiet but there are things to do. On the Saturday I went to the local market which is held on the first Saturday of the month. From there I walked across town, maybe one kilometer, to St. Andrews Cathedral ruin and grave yard. Through the graveyard and to the East Sands (beach) I had a sit for a while just looking at the sea. Then back along the short to theĀ Museum of the University of St Andrews. Finally, I did a little shopping on the high streets – Market Street, South Street, Bell Street and Church Street. For dinner, I went to a pub.

On the Sunday, I took it even slower. I first went to the “Old” golf course. This is the course where golf originated and, because it is public property, it is open to everyone on Sundays. I walked the course to the far end and then down to the West Sands to make my way back. The buses that run between the seaside towns is located between the “Old” and my B&B so I hopped onto the bus and went to Anstruther where I had dinner at Anstruther Fish Bar and Restaurant, winner of the UK Fish & Chip Shop of the Year award.

There was plenty for me to do at a leisurely pace on a weekend in St. Andrews. It was just what this non-golfer needed.

The remains of St. Andrew’s Cathedral

View of St. Andrews from the pier.

The famous bridge on the “Old”.

West Sands, St. Andrews.

Another personality of the West Sands at St. Andrews.

Anstruther is known for the best fish and chips in the UK.

Thank you to the people from St. Andrews, Scotland who invited me on this trip.

  • http://solotravelerblog.com Janice Waugh

    Now that’s a story to dine out on! How fantastic.

  • www.joeicarlton.com

    My husband was a golfer. He put his name on a list and hoped to be allowed to play at St. Andrews. A small group was missing their 4th player and when they learned that Paul was an avid golfer and from Canada they asked him to join the group. The group of three were the organizers of the British Open and at the end of the game they found Paul a jacket and tie so he could have a beer at the Royal and Ancient. Paul relived that game almost every day of his life…….. Joei at http://www.joeicarlton.com