These falls, on the River Stinchar, can be found in the Galloway Forest Park. The falls in the picture aren't the actual Stinchar Falls, which are reached by a walking trail [probably about a 5 mile round trip], but are beside the car park and picnic area at Stinchar Bridge. There is another hike that leaves from this area but I haven't done that one yet.
See the Straiton and Stinchar Walk travelogue*
directions: the Stinchar Bridge car park is just off the main Straiton to Newton Stewart road.
This is my current favourite eating spot locally & somewhere my friends and I go regularly. Its a little more upmarket than my budget usually allows but they have some great mid week offers that make it more affordable. Its a bar & restaurant so you can either eat in the bar area or in the restaurant/terrace. It has a really nice ambience & decor and the terrace is great on a sunny day. Most importantly though, the food is fantastic!
Through the week main courses in the bar area are as reasonable as £3.95 and between 5-6.30pm, Mon-Thurs, certain main meals from the supper menu are just £5.95. Other main courses can be as much as £10-15 so its a great deal.
There is a small car park to the rear I'm a creature of habit and my usual favourite is the traditional Lasagne with garlic bread & chips [which come in a cup, does this make them taste better? its works for me!]. Lately I have been a little more adventurous and have loved the Spaghetti Carbonara and also the burger which was available on the bar menu. It was really tasty, served in ciabatta and with Cajun chips.
Dessert wise I loved the Apple & Pear Crumble which comes in an individual dish and is really chunky and delicious! This doesn't appear on the current dessert menu but this may just be for the summer as its currently featurs mainly Sundaes and ice cream. I recently had the raspberry & strawberry sorbet which was lovely and refreshing.
The woodland walks along the side of the River Ayr especially in autumn but this was springtime. It really makes a nice walk and is very popular with the locals. I just discovered it last year but have now been many times when I wanted a breath of fresh air or me and my friend wanted to have a good gossip but were too skint to go anywhere!!
STRAITON & STINCHAR FALLS WALK
The last village before reaching the Forest Park area -after that its just the odd farmhouse until you reach Glentrool Village to the south. Straiton is a pretty little village and there are a few walks/hikes from the village itself. But a few miles further down the road, in the Galloway Forest park, you come to Stinchar Bridge and the walk to Stinchar Falls
I love waterfalls so when a workmate told me about the Stinchar Falls I decided I had to go and see them since they are just a few miles from my town. It took me a couple of attempts but I finally got there! I originally thought that the falls at the car park were the Stinchar Falls but apparently not!
This is the Stinchar Bridge where the car park is for the walks in this area. There is another walk that I haven't been on and then the walk to the falls which begins beside the bridge on the opposite side of the road from the parking area.
The first stage of the walk is alongside the river Stinchar, in and out of the woods. I'd advise stout shoes/walking boots as the ground is a little boggy in places although the worst bits have wooden walkways.
You eventually come out on a wide forestry road and have to follow that for about 1½ miles. It might seem longer [I actually gave up on a previous visit cos I thought I had missed the turnoff but I just hadn't walked far enough!] but keep going and you will come to a big sign pointing to the falls and then its a steep walk down the hillside to the falls themselves.
Finally I found the actual Stinchar falls. Unfortunately they are in a bit of a gully and you don't get a good angle for taking photos but it is still nice. There is a viewing platform and a bench so you rest your weary legs for a minute & enjoy the view!
"All among the blooming heather.." :) I didn't attempt to go back the way I came since I didn't fancy that climb back up the hill! The path continues along another forestry track. You could keep going that way until it brings you out on the main Straiton-Newton Stewart road or turn off, as I did, where its signposted and walk back along the side of the river. This was taken in early August when the heather was blooming everywhere and it made for a nice walk.