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Destination South Ayrshire


The pretty village of Kirkoswald is more than just a stop on the way to Turnberry or Girvan. With links to Robert the Bruce and Robert Burns, the village is a conservation area, centered around an ancient church that was built by monks in 1244. 

These impressive ruins are still worth visiting and contain the baptismal font of Robert the Bruce. The ‘new’ church was built in 1777, to a design by Robert Adam, the celebrity architect responsible for Culzean Castle’s grandeur. 

Robert Burns’ maternal ancestors came from Kirkoswald, and many of his characters were based on ordinary village folk, such as Tam O’Shanter and Souter Johnnie – you can even visit the home of the cobbler who was made famous in the poem.  

The parish of Kirkoswald also includes the village of Maidens, Turnberry Castle, Thomaston Castle and the imposing ruins of Crossraguel Abbey.

Find out more


See and Do

Statues of Tam o Shanter and Souter Johnnie

Souter Johnnie's Cottage

The character of Souter Johnnie became famous worldwide thanks to his appearance in just a few lines of the famous poem by Robert Burns, ‘Tam o’ Shanter’. We get a real insight into his character from the lines, ‘and at his elbow Souter Johnnie his anci...
Entrance to the whisky experience

A.D. Rattray Whisky Shop

A. D. Rattray are an independent whisky company with over 150 years of experience in selecting and maturing Scotch whisky. Discover more about our story, our history and our whiskies when you visit our Whisky Shop. Located in the heart of Ayrshire, y...

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