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Logan Botanic Garden

A winning combination of lush gardens and stunning works of art

Dumfries and Galloway, in the south-western corner of Scotland, is home to some of the country’s most attractive gardens and artists. The artistic highlight of our tour is undoubtedly Dumfries House, whose future has been secured with the support of Prince Charles. One of the Adam brothers’ finest achievements, the stunning interiors showcase a unique collection of Chippendale furniture.

We visit two Charles Jencks creations, the Garden of Cosmic Speculation, with its unique combination of natural features and artificial landscaping inspired by mathematics and science, and Crawick Multiverse, a major land restoration project on the Duke of Buccleuch’s Queensberry Estate. We see an artist’s garden at Broughton House, the restored former home of the famous “Glasgow Boy”, EA Hornel, and Drumlanrig Castle’s extensive gardens and collections.  We also visit Glenwhan, full of rarities and Logan Botanic Garden, stuffed with many exotic plants.

Available departure dates and prices


A winning combination of lush gardens and stunning works of art

Day 1

We depart from your local pick-up point and head for the Crawick Muiltiverse, a hidden gem nested in a bowl of rolling hills in the heart of Dumfries and Galloway (Upper Nithsdale). This major new land restoration project on the Duke of Buccleuch’s Queensberry Estate has transformed a former open cast coal mine into a spectacular artland and public amenity and was designed by Charles Jencks, the celebrated landscape architect and author. The ecology of the site, and the materials found within it, inspired its design which is based around space, astronomy and cosmology. The Northpoint provides a 20-mile, 360 degree panoramic view (on a clear day).

We continue to Dumfries House, near Cumnock in Ayrshire.  Its stunning interiors are home to a world-class collection of furniture by Thomas Chippendale and many late 18th Century cabinet makers, which recently featured on BBC’s Antiques Roadshow. 

After our visit, we will travel to our comfortable accommodation at the Holiday Inn Dumfries.  All rooms are en-suite.

Day 2

This morning after breakfast we visit the Garden of Cosmic Speculation at Holywood, near Dumfries. The head gardener will give an introduction to this fascinating space, which encompasses 40 areas of gardens, landforms and architecture. Created by Charles Jencks and inspired by science and mathematics, themes such as fractals and black holes inform the sculpture and landscaping. Natural features, artificial symmetry and curves combine elegantly to form a truly unique garden with undulating landforms and terraces; lakes and woodland walks with James Stirling’s “Nonsense Building”; a new greenhouse in the geometric Kitchen Garden of the Six Senses; the Universe Cascade and Rail Garden of the Scottish Worthies.

Thereafter we will visit Broughton House - a fascinating 18th Century house and garden which was home to E A Hornel from 1901 until his death in 1933.  During his time he had twice lived inJapan and his experience there influenced many of his paintings. The garden which runs down to the estuary of the Dee also shows the influence of his time inJapan and is always full of colour.

Following this we shall return toDumfriesfor some free time, before dinner is served at the hotel in the evening.

Day 3

Today after breakfast we visit Glenwhan Garden, spread out over a windy hilltop with marvellous views ofLuceBay and the Mull of Galloway. Since 1979 the Knotts have made a very large, interesting and individual garden that is filled with good plants. At its heart is an extensive pool, divided by a grassy causeway and fed by a tumbling stream. The slopes above are lavishly planted with trees and shrubs – almost any gardener will find something unfamiliar here.

We shall then visit the world famous Logan Botanic Garden at Port Logan.  PortLogan lies in the Mull of Galloway, which juts out into the sea in the extreme south-west ofScotland. The garden was started by the McDougall family who lived here for 800 years, and since 1969 it has been in the care of the Royal Botanic Garden at Edinburgh. Logan Botanic Garden is beautifully laid out, particularly in the walled garden with its fine terraces and well planned borders under an avenue of cabbage palms. The climate here is exceptionally mild and several different habitats provide conditions for a huge range of plants.

We return to our hotel in time for dinner.

Day 4

This morning we check out of our hotel and before going home have time to visit the gardens at Drumlanrig Castle.  Surrounded by the 120,000 acre Queensberry Estate, Country Park and grand victorian gardens, Drumlanrig Castle was completed in 1691 by William Douglas, 1st Duke of Queensberry and is one of the first and most important renaissance buildings in the grand manner in Scotland. Drumlanrig hit the headlines in 2003 following the audacious theft of the Leonardo da Vinci painting ‘Madonna with the Yarnwinder’ and it was as a consequence of this that formal guided tours of the castle were introduced. In the course of our tour we will see a world-renowned collection of fine art and furniture, including treasures such as a magnificent pair of French Cabinets, built for thePalace ofVersailles and believed to have been presented by King Louis XIV to King Charles II.

Following our visit we return to our original departure points.

Included in price

  • 3 nights’ dinner, bed and breakfast at Holiday Inn, Dumfries. All rooms have private facilities
  • Comfortable coaching throughout
  • Visits to Crawick Multiverse, Broughton House, Drumlanrig Castle, Dumfries House and the gardens of Cosmic Speculation, Glenwhan and Logan Botanic
  • Services of Brightwater Holidays tour manager


Not Included (per person)

  • Single room supplement         £75.00
  • Insurance                              £18.50 (under 65); £37.00 (65-74); £55.50 (75-90)
  • Rail/air travel and overnight accommodation in Glasgow, Perth or Edinburgh before or after the tour available on request.

Departure points and times:


Depart Return
Aberdeen (Skene Street, opposite Denburn Car Park 0600 1930
Dundee  (Outside Discovery Point) 0730 1800
Perth (Bus stop in canal street at Tay Street end) 0800 1730
Kinross (Moto Services, M90) 0845 1715
Dunfermline  ( Bus-stop layby outside Fife College) 0900 1700
Edinburgh (outside front entrance Marriott Hotel, Glasgow Rd) 0915 1645
Glasgow  (Outside Millennium Hotel) 1030 1530
Hamilton (Bothwell Services, M74) 1100 1500


Please note pick-up points are subject to minimum numbers and all timings are approximate and may be changed. They will be confirmed when the joining instructions are sent out, approximately ten days prior to departure.

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A superb holiday - thanks Trish the Tour Manager was very helpful and knowledgeable - the free day was a great idea.

Mr and Mrs Somerville

We thoroughly enjoyed the archaeological tour to the Outer Hebrides, the driver and guide made the holiday a great success

Mr and Mrs Sutherland, Dundee

Pauline our Tour Manager was a wee star, her personality and knowledge make the Highlands come alive.

Mrs Wilson
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