Walk from Gorebridge to Borthwick Castle
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When visiting Edinburgh, it is very easy to quickly fill up your itinerary and never leave such a historic, magical city. However, if you are looking to get out of town for a full or half a day, explore the countryside for a big walk and get some fresh air, then take a walk from Gorebridge station to Borthwick Village and Castle.
How to get there?
As with most places, there are several ways to get there. The easiest and quickest is a 20 minute drive or taxi ride from Edinburgh city centre. If you are catching public transport from Edinburgh, there are a couple of options: catch the Scotrail train from Edinburgh, Waverley to Gorebridge (30 minutes), alternatively you can catch the number 29 Lothian bus from Edinburgh, Frederick Street (1 hour).
A country walk from Gorebridge station to Borthwick village and castle.
As road signs are not abundant at the start of the walk, it is recommended you take a phone with GPS navigation so you can easily guide yourself towards Borthwick Castle. Signage increases significantly about half way to the castle. This easy (two-hour return) country side walk will take you through windy paths, countless vibrant thistles, family farms, traditional stone cottages, cows, horses and sheep quietly pasturing in the distance, tree dense valleys and the greenest hills you may ever see.
About three quarters of the way into the walk, you will see Borthwick Castle
in the distance. The closer you get, the more imposing and impressive it becomes. Although the walk is fairly easy, it does have some small hills and sections of dirt road, so prepare yourself with suitable footwear and of course, weatherproof clothing. There are no facilities during the walk, so you may want to plan accordingly.
About Borthwick Castle
The fortification is one of Scotland's largest and best-preserved medieval castles. Built in 1430 for Sir William Borthwick, the building has witnessed much history. Mary Queen of Scots visited the castle in 1563 and 1566 and was besieged with her husband the 4th Earl of Bothwell. In 1650, the castle was attacked with cannons by Oliver Cromwell's army - some of the damage to the outer wall can still be observed today.
After a long period of being abandoned the castle was restored and used during World War II to store and protect national treasures from enemy forces. Since then, Borthwick Castle
has undergone major renovations in 1973 and 2013 to convert it into an exclusive accommodation and event venue.
The design of the castle is slightly unusual featuring two very high and robust towers in a "u shape", surrounded by protective walls and a steep incline leading to a small stream and the adjacent dense forest. You may walk the main path leading all the way to the castle's main gate, so you can get a closer look at the building itself. Unfortunately, the castle is closed to the public and only available to enter by guests staying the night or those hosting a special event. Click here
to book a stay or a special occasion in this luxurious property.
Just outside of Borthwick castle, you can visit the ancient town church and graveyard. A short uphill walk from the castle you may notice many stone cottages (some offering accommodation).
The way back to Edinburgh
You can trace your steps back through the countryside walk and return to Edinburgh on a Scotrail train. Alternatively, you can keep walking past Borthwick Village through Borthwick Castle Road and keep going through North Middleton to find the A7 (major freeway), where you can catch a bus back to Gorebridge train station or a "Borders operated bus service" X95 back to Edinburgh South Bridge.
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