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Visit to The Borders

As part of my upcoming trip to Scotland this August, I would love to visit my great-great-great grandparents' homes of Edrom and Chirnside in The Borders region. I've located them on the map and looked up some helpful information, but I'm unsure of the best way to get to these small villages from Edinburgh. Are there buses available, or will I need to rent a car? Any suggestions are appreciated!

Posted by
4744 posts

To get there from Edinburgh, you would have to get the train to Berwick and then get a bus. This takes c 2 hours and buses do not run on a Sunday by the look of their timetable. Taking a car will take approximately half this time and will give you much more flexibility. Driving in Edinburgh is not too difficult, but best avoided in the rush hour. A satnav would probably help or use your mobile phone. The two villages are about 3 miles apart and the buses run every hour or every 2 hours depending on the day and time, so work out which would work best for you. You do not want to just miss a bus and have a 2 hour wait!

If you drive, the A1 is a good road. Return the car to the same location or else you will pay a one way drop off even if the car is only dropped 2 miles from where you picked it up.

Posted by
1288 posts

It is a pity the Waverley line scheduled reopening from Edinburgh to Galashiels will not be until September.

However the best way of seeing the Borders is by car, it releases you from the bus timetable where the buses are available, but can be seriously limited.

Posted by
5559 posts

I too am going to recommend driving. I did a similar trip to my grandmother's town in the borders to the south, and I was really happy to have the car. It let me explore the countryside a bit more. And, that way you can get off the main roads and see the countryside. BTW have you found Undiscovered Scotland yet? Check out this on the Edrom Arch. They also have this lovely list of things to see in the Borders. I would recommend seeing one of the Abbey's. Jedburgh is probably the most impressive, but they were all interesting to me.

Pam

Posted by
7 posts

Thanks, everyone! I'm a little reluctant to try driving on my own - haven't experienced driving on the other side of the road yet, but being left-handed maybe it won't be too difficult to adapt. I would like the flexibility, though.

Posted by
11 posts

EDI is on the outskirts of the city and very near the beltway that arcs around the city. Departing from that area in a rental car is very easy. On our recent trip we rented through Celtic Legend, who booked with Arnold Clark. The AC location was three minutes from the airport. We had a very good rental experience - our car was a 4-door sedan with automatic transmission (VW Passat).

Posted by
5559 posts

I've driven a lot in the UK. Will you have a navigator? If so, it will be a lot easier. Do get an automatic, unless you drive stick as your norm. The pedals are the same and you do adjust to the shofting. Just remember your mantra, left. Left, left, left....

Pam.

Posted by
453 posts

i want to give you a link to a US web site that i used to rent a car in edinburgh. I'm not really sure I got a great bargin from them but they do have a short "primer" on renting and driving in europe that I found very helpful. give the site a look www.gemut.com for some useful information. be sure to rent the smallest car you can fit into, the roads are narrow! i agree with tam that getting out of EDI is pretty easy and you are quickly on an interstate type roadway. if you get a car at EDI you might give the route you plan to drive a look on google earth or a similar mapping program and then follow on street level the route you plan to travel. it was very helpful to me to view the street level route through roundabouts and for exits off of the interstate.

Posted by
7 posts

Thanks, everyone! Very helpful hints! I'm hoping my left handedness will help me to orient easier to the driving. I'm naturally always thinking "left - left - left" anyway!

Posted by
7 posts

Thanks, everyone! Very helpful hints! I'm hoping my left handedness will help me to orient easier to the driving. I'm naturally always thinking "left - left - left" anyway!

Posted by
1586 posts

"I'm hoping my left handedness will help me to orient easier to the driving." It probably will - my left-handed husband prefers driving in the UK ( 8 trips so far) to driving in the USA.