Why visit Kirkennan, South West Scotland in Winter?

21st December - 19th March

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At Kirkennan

  • Rates are at their lowest and are all inclusive (no hidden costs like ‘winter heating supplements’).
  • All the holiday accommodation has full central heating and is cozy and warm.
  • Garden birds are active on the feeders, red squirrels are frequently seen in Kirkennan gardens and the Urr river plays host to a variety of water birds.
  • All holiday accommodation has either an open fire or a wood burning stove with an initial supply of fuel provided - and the long dark evenings are a great excuse to snuggle down by a real fire to read a book or watch a movie.
  • There is little light pollution and the night sky is dramatic, and the early nightfall means you don't have to stay up late to enjoy it.
  • The trees have lost their leaves and show the beauty of their branches.
  • From mid to late January onwards the flowers start to arrive and Kirkennan’s gardens are full of snowdrops, winter aconites, crocuses and then daffodils.
  • The 3 Kirkennan fields are empty of stock from 1st December to 28th February and guests are welcome to walk across them and use them to exercise dogs.

In South West Scotland

  • Beaches, walks, attractions and historic sites are quiet – you may well have them to yourselves.
  • It is a great time for birdwatching as Dumfries and Galloway, South West Scotland plays host to internationally important populations of over-wintering birdlife:
    • Barnacle Geese arrive from Svalbard and are particularly dramatic during their dawn and dusk flights between feeding and roosting grounds at RSPB Mersehead and WWT Caerlaverock.
    • Whooper Swans mass at WWT Caerlaverock where they are fed twice daily.
    • Starling murmurations can be seen. Gretna Green is reknown as a key location to see this amazing site, but in 2016 there were also reports of murmurations in Castle Douglas, RSPB Mersehead and Kirkudbright.
    • Greenland Whitefronts can often be found at Threave, Ken-Dee Marshes and Loch Ken and the Castle Kennedy area.
    • Waders can be seen at Southerness, Carsethorn, Powfoot, Newbie, Annan and Wigtown Bay.
  • There are organised star gazing opportunities in The Galloway Dark Sky Park. Check out Viridian Skies or Freelance Ranger for upcoming sessions.
  • Big Burns Supper – the world’s biggest Burns’ Night celebration takes place in Dumfries in January (20-28th January in 2017).
  • A number of local gardens open for Scotland’s Snowdrop Festival (end January – Mid March): Castle Kennedy (weekends 4th Feb – 26th March 2017); Barjang Tower (23-26th Feb 2017); Craig (19th Feb 2017).
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