The quiet little town of Gatehouse of Fleet lies 10 miles west of Kirkcudbright, a mile or so north of the A75. Even though the area has been inhabited since 1700s it has existed only after that. The town takes its name from its location near the mouth of the river called the Water of Fleet which empties into Wigtown Bay at Fleet Bay, and its former role as the "Gait House" or "the House on the Road on the River Fleet" or toll booth of the late 18th century stagecoach route from Dumfries to Stranraer, now the A75 road. It was a safe haven along this route.

It's an attractive place on the banks of the Water of Fleet, surrounded by forested hills. The town's Tourist Information Centre is in the car park on the High Street. Info: Mar, Apr and Oct daily 1000-1630; Jun and Sep till 1700; Jul and Aug till 1800. Tel 814212. Nearby is the Mill on the Fleet Museum, housed in a restored 18th-century cotton mill complete with working water wheel. The museum traces the history of the town's cotton industry which lasted from the mid-18th century until the early 19th century. There's also a bookshop and a pleasant café with riverside terrace. Info: Easter-Oct daily 1030-1730. £1.50 (price may change). Tel 814099.

About Gatehouse of Fleet

Much of its development was attributable to the entrepreneur James Murray's decision to build his summer home named as Cally in 1765, it is now converted into a hotel. Later Gatehouse of Fleet developed into an industrial centre, particularly cotton mills. The western approach to the town began to evolve only after imposing Cardoness Castle.

Gatehouse of Fleet is the birthplace of Victorian artist John Faed. The renowned inventor of clockwork mechanisms, Robert Williamson was also known to have set up a workshop in the town in 1778, which burned to the ground and claimed his life in 1794. The settlement of Anwoth is one mile to the east of Gatehouse of Fleet, it being the place where Samuel Rutherford was minister from 1627 to 1636. The gorgeous Murray's Isle in Fleet Bay is located towards North West direction.

This scenic little town has much to offer with its friendly people, lovely coastal area and upland scenery, variety of shops and a wide range of full-fledged accommodation facilities. Hotels and self catering cottages in Gatehouse of Fleet provide all sorts of comfort facilities that would make your stay more pleasant one.

Gatehouse has the unique capability to rise up to the needs of tourist with varied interest. The area has a deep history and is a home to many interesting species of flora and fauna. This town is a haven to many outdoor activities including golf, sailing, mountain biking and fishing. Apart fro this tranquil tourist spot turns out as an excellent place for you to relax and unwind.

The visitors are assured a warm welcome in Gatehouse of Fleet in the middle of a National Scenic Area on the edge of the magnificent Galloway Forest Park in the rural heart of Dumfries and Galloway. This town is capable of entertaining tourists in all time of the year.

In winter you can get to know the local people as you enjoy Christmas and Hogmanay in convivial atmosphere away from the commercialism of the big cities. April, May and June are often the most glorious months with lighter evenings and the countryside full of blossom. Summer has many family entertainments on offer including Gala Week, which commences the last Sunday in July, along with the delights of days on the beach. The changing tints of the autumn bring their own charm. All year round Gatehouse is the ideal place for a short break or longer stay.

Phone code: +44 (0)1557

Local Sights & Activities for Gatehouse of Fleet

Sightseeing

Buy A Pass including Cardoness Castle

There are several pleasant walks in the surrounding countryside, including to Cardoness Castle, about 1€ miles to the south, standing on a hill overlooking the B796 which connects Gatehouse with the main A75. The remarkably well-preserved ruin was the home of the MacCullochs and is a classic example of a 15th-century tower house. There are excellent views across Fleet Bay from the top floor. Info: Apr-Sep daily 0930-1830; Oct-Mar Sat 0930-1630 and Sun 1400-1630. £2.20, concession £1.60. Tel 0131-6688800 (HS). Details of other local walks are given in a leaflet which is on sale at the tourist office. In the grounds of Cally Palace Hotel are Cally Gardens, a specialist nursery and walled garden centre, with around 3,500 varieties of plant. Info: Apr-Sep Tue-Fri 1400-1730, Sat, Sun 1000-1730 £1.50.

About 2 1/2 miles south of town off the A75 is Cream o'Galloway, Rainton Farm, a family business where award-winning ice cream is made. There's a viewing gallery where you can watch the ice cream being made, and a children's woodland play area. Info: Easter-Sep daily 1100-1800, Oct 1100-1700. Charge for adventure playground. Tel 01557-814040, Cream O Galloway

Around Gatehouse

The A75 runs west from Gatehouse to Creetown, standing on the east shore of Wigtown Bay, overlooked by the distinctive bulk of Cairnsmore of Fleet hill (2,330 ft). It's a lovely stretch of road as it hugs the shore, with good views across the bay. In Creetown is the Gem Rock Museum, which has a wide range of precious stones on display. Info: Easter-Sep daily 0930-1800; Oct and Nov daily 1000-1600; Dec-Feb Sat and Sun 1000-1600, £2.90, concession £2.40 Tel 01671-820357, Gem Rock East of Gatehouse, off the A75 at Burnbrae, Twynholm is a museum dedicated to Formula 1 star David Coulthard who was born in the area. The collection includes memorabilia from his go-carting days up to the present. There's a popular tearoom too called The Pit Stop - presumably you have to eat very quickly. Also good bar meals at the Star pub opposite. Info: Apr-Oct Mon-Tue, Thu-Sat 1000-1600, open Wed 1000-1600 in Jun. £2.50, £1.50 concessions. Tel 860050.

Gatehouse of Fleet Hotels & Accommodation

Sleeping

Set in 500 acres of its own grounds is A Cally Palace Hotel, Tel 814341, Cally Palace Hotel A very exclusive Georgian mansion and former home of local laird James Murray who amassed a massive fortune from the cotton industry, it now offers impeccable luxury and top-class facilities. Rather more down-to-earth are the B-C Murray Arms Hotel, on Ann St, Tel 814207. Also serves good bar meals; and E The Bobbin Guest House, at 36 High St, Tel 814229. B&B accommodation is on offer at D-E The Bay Horse, Tel 814073, at 9 Ann St. A little way out of town is the highly recommended D-E High Auchenlarie Farmhouse, Tel 840231, open Mar-Oct.

Self Catering Cottages in Gatehouse of Fleet

 

Self catering Cottages Near Gatehouse of Fleet

Travel Directions to Gatehouse of Fleet

 

Transport

Bus No 500 between Dumfries and Stranraer stops in Gatehouse of Fleet. No 500 and X75 run between Gatehouse of Fleet and Newton Stewart.

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