Ardrossan is a historic port town on the coast, 25 minutes from Prestwick Airport and 40 minutes from Glasgow. There is easy access by road or train. It offers stunning views over the Firth of Clyde. There is plenty to see and do nearby:
- Arran: Edenmore Guesthouse is conveniently located just 1.4 miles from the Arran ferry. Arran is an incredible island with mountains, forests, beaches and glens. It is popular for both walking, cycling and golf. There are also two castles on the island – Brodick Castle, and Lochranza Castle which has an underground prison, ‘the pit’. Arran is also popular for the local cheese, beer and whisky. Click here to view the ferry times and book tickets (advance booking recommended, especially with a car)
- Beaches: Ardrossan has two beaches – South Beach and North Shore. The sandy South Beach is popular, located near the town’s shops and cafes. There’s a large grassy area here that’s ideal for picnics. North Shore gives you fantastic views of Arran.
- Castles: Ardrossan has its own castle with a fascinating history although it is just a ruin now. There are many other castles and ruins in the area – Eglinton Castle and Country Park (approx. 11 minutes drive), Kelburn Castle (approx. 20 minutes drive), Dundonald Castle (approx. 22 minutes drive) and Dean Castle and Country Park (approx. 29 minutes drive) are all popular.
- Cycling: The Three Shores cycle route is an easy and popular route which takes you past Adrossan shorefront. It takes just over an hour and covers some breathtaking scenery. Click here to find out more.
- Dining: There are some great restaurants in this area to choose from. Cecchini’s Italian Bar, Bistro and Restaurant is close to the ferry and offers fantastic views to enjoy whilst you dine. Garfield’s Tapas and Wine Bar is also very popular, combining traditional Spanish recipes with the finest Scottish ingredients (vegetarian options available). If you’re a fan of Indian cuisine, you’ll want to try Jaipur’s for good value quality Indian food. If you’d rather grab a light bite or want to eat in, Cafe Palazzo is just around the corner, offering breakfasts, lunches, pizza, chips – and plenty of sweets.
- Family: If you’re travelling with kids, it’s good to know there’s plenty of places close by to keep them entertained, aside from the miles of countryside and picturesque beaches to explore. Magnum Leisure Centre is 5 miles away in Irvine, offering a pool, ice rink and soft play. ‘Creepie crawlies‘ is 6 miles away in Irvine, offering an indoor multi level soft play area. Vikingar! is a visitor attraction in Largs, approx. 11 miles away which is themed around the viking raids. There’s a swimming pool and soft play area there too. There’s also Kidz Indoor Play in Prestwick (12 miles away), and ‘The Garage‘ 13 miles away in Kilmarknock which offers tenpin bowling, go-karts and amusements. Jungle Madness is another play area in Kilmarnock that the kids will enjoy.
- Golf: If you’re a golf fan, there are a number of courses close by including Auchenharvie, West Kilbride, Irvine/Bogside and Ardeer. If the weather is poor, visit Studio Golf Ayrshire – a 3,000 square feet Indoor Golf Facility at Stevenston Industrial Estate.
- Horse riding: Book with the Ayrshire Equitation Centre for a scenic ride or tuition – they cater for literally all ages and abilities.
- Sailing: Cruise the Clyde with a competent instructor. Click here to find out more.
- Towns and villages: There are many quaint towns and villages to visit besides Ardrossan itself. West Kilbride, Scotland’s first accredited Craft Town and winner of a Creative Place Award in 2012, is a popular destination. There are independent retailers and designer shops which complement its major cultural attractions, The Barony Centre and Craft Studios.
- Ayr: A visit to North Ayrshire wouldn’t be complete without visiting Ayr itself – a popular seaside resort with a charming sea front. The fantastic esplanade and long sandy beach are perfect for walking. There are plenty of places to park on either side of the main road that runs parallel with the beach. If you’re visiting with kids, you might want to check out Pirate Pete’s Playcentre, LA Bowl and Laserzone, and Heads of Ayr Park.
The Visit Scotland website has more helpful suggestions on things to do near Ardrossan – click here.