Plan your trip
Turn to Walks 21 and 22 in this issue for guides to your weekend routes.
Turn off the M6, or the A74(M) if coming from the north, at Dumfries and pick up the A75, which heads west and brings you straight into Newton Stewart.
WHERE TO STAY
With its residents’ lounge and conservatory dining room, Stables Guest House in Newton Stewart (01671 402157, www.stablesguesthouse.com) offers a homely stay for £45-£80 per night, while the Blackhorse Hotel (01671 403302, www.blackhorsenewtonstewart. co.uk, £55-£75 per night) has the advantage of an attached restaurant and bar.
WHERE TO EAT
It would be a shame to miss
The House O’Hill Hotel (01671 840243, www.houseohill.co.uk), being both convenient (just a stone’s throw from Merrick) and delicious. In Newton Stewart head for Riverbank Restaurant (01671 403330) for excellent value meals and fresh home baking.
For walking in the hills, look up www.scotland.forestry.gov.uk, and for the coast, head to www.mull-of-galloway.co.uk and www.rspb.org.uk.