A historical gem nestled in the Kingdom of Fife, the mediaeval town of St Andrews is a charming coastal focal point of Scotland, with a cosy-community feel and a delightful, traditional town centre with plenty of shopping opportunities.
Featuring a friendly community and a host of brilliant attractions, from family-friendly picnic spots to historic wonders, St Andrews is famed for its stunning beaches and brilliant, bracing coastal walks, making it the perfect location for families. As well as being home to one of the oldest universities in Scotland, St Andrews features three primary schools, one secondary school and one private school.
Situated on the peninsula between the mouths of rivers Tay and Forth, getting around the town itself is easy, with St Andrews Bus Station running a regular bus service in the area and around Fife, and the beach of West Sands is a mere 15-minute stroll away. St Andrews is easily reached in around an hour from Edinburgh Airport, and around 2 hours from Glasgow or Aberdeen Airport. Its nearest train station is 15 minutes away in Leuchars and provides regular services to Dundee, Edinburgh and Aberdeen.
With winding alleyways and beautiful Georgian housing lining the streets, St Andrews has a rich history steeped in mediaeval narrative. Top of your places to visit should include St Andrews Cathedral, which was once the largest church in Scotland, and St Andrews Castle, the 13th-century monument that overlooks the small beach of Castle Sands, complete with dungeons and maintained by Historic Environment Scotland. The Scottish Fisheries Museum, which chronicles the proud history of fishing in Scotland, is also well worth a visit for anyone who loves to spend their weekends on rivers or out at sea.
St Andrew’s bread and butter is golf, with 10 courses and regular tournaments held throughout the golfing season. It’s a great base for those who love to regularly play, with courses offering stunning views across the Scottish coastline and beyond. As well as the world-famous Old Course, you can enjoy a round at the 13th oldest golf club in the world, Scotscraig, or find out what it’s like to play links golf on a beautiful modern course at Kingsbarns. Just remember to book in advance, as especially during the summer months, the courses get very busy.
If you prefer to hit the shops, then head to St. Andrews town centre, which features speciality shops, bakeries, cafes and pubs. There are also plenty of options for eating out, with cosy pubs and restaurants featuring cuisines from around the world. Check out St Andrew’s Bar and Grill, which overlooks St Andrew’s Bay and a few scenic golf courses or head to Playfair’s Restaurant and Steakhouse, a family-run business which specialises in serving up quality Scottish food and ingredients.