Dunfermline Things to Do

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Most Recent Things to Do in Dunfermline

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    The Abbot House / La Casa del Abad

    by elpariente Updated Nov 18, 2013

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    The Abbot's house, the "pink house" is the oldest building in Dunfermline, which has survived fires and the passage of time
    Now is a cultural heritage center where you can review the history of Dunfermline, arrange visits or take something in their coffee shop
    I the garden door they had a splendid "thistle"

    La casa del Abad, la "casa rosa" es el edificio más antiguo de Dunfermline , que ha sobrevivido incendios y el paso del tiempo
    Actualmente es un centro cultural donde se puede repasar la historia de Dunfermline , organizar visitas o reponer fuerzas en su cafetería
    En la puerta tenía un "cardo" espléndido

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    The Abbey - Interior

    by elpariente Updated Nov 18, 2013

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    Andres
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    Inside the Abbey we highlight the grave with the body of Robert the Bruce and the stained glass windows where appear The Bruce and other Scottish heroes
    It is curious that two pillars of the six pillars on both sides, have carved a 'chevron ' and create the optical sensation that columns are of different diameters from top to bottom

    Dentro de la Abadía podemos destacar la tumba del cuerpo de Robert the Bruce y las vidrieras de las ventanas en las que aparece The Bruce y otros héroes escoceses
    Es curioso que en dos pilares de los seis pilares que hay a ambos lados, han tallado una "espiguilla" y crean la sensación óptica que las columnas son de distinto diámetro de arriba y abajo

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    " King Robert the Bruce "

    by elpariente Written Nov 18, 2013
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    In the tower of the Abbey you can see the inscription "King Robert the Bruce" oriented to the four cardinal points of Scotland
    This famous and beloved king, warrior and leader of the Scots has an anecdote of the spider that is interesting and shows us which was his way of living and thinking
    It is said that he was in a cave of an island, when he saw a spider trying to make its web from one side of the roof of the cave to another and whenever she did not get it , she started again until finally got it. From this story came the phrase: "If at first you do not succeed , try, try, try again"
    In fact in his battles he suffered many defeats, but he kept trying, getting increasingly more people support and the final victory

    En la torre de la Abadía se puede ver la inscripción " King Robert the Bruce " orientada a los cuatro puntos cardinales de Escocia
    De este famoso y querido rey , guerrero y líder de los Escoceses podemos contar una anecdota , la de la araña que es interesante, pues nos demuestra cual fue su forma de vivir y de pensar
    Se dice que estaba en la cueva de una isla cuando vio a una araña que intentaba hacer su tela de un lado al otro del techo de la cueva , pero que cada vez que no lo conseguía volvía a empezar hasta que por fin lo consiguió . De aquí surgió la frase : " si la primera vez no lo consigues sigue intentándolo de nuevo "
    De hecho en sus batallas sufrió muchas derrotas, pero lo siguió intentando consiguiendo que cada vez le apoyara más gente y la victoria final

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    The Abbot - La Abadía

    by elpariente Written Nov 18, 2013
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    Dunferlime was the capital of Scotland and birthplace of monarchs, it had seven kings, an empress, a queen and four princes
    From the eleventh century there was a church of the Benedictine Fathers, but it was when David I in century XII made it an Abbey
    In 1560 when the reform began the Abbey was sacked and began to crumble and after the years it has survived with several repairs and renovations and now houses the remains of the Royalty of Scotland, 9 kings , the most famous Robert the Bruce and queens and princesses
    You can walk the Abbey in the outside, which is surrounded by a cemetery, where there are memories of the dead who died by the plague, and you can go around the building admiring its architecture

    Dunferlime fue la capital de Escocia y cuna de Monarcas , en ella nacieron siete Reyes, una emperatriz, una reina y cuatro príncipes
    Desde el siglo XI existió una iglesia de los padres Benedictinos , pero fue en siglo XIl cuando David I la convirtió en Abadía
    En 1560 cuando empezó la reforma saquearon la Abadía y empezó a derruirse, después de los años ha sobrevivido a varios arreglos y renovaciones y hoy alberga los restos de de la realeza de Escocia , 9 Reyes , el más famoso Robert de Bruce y de reinas y princesas
    Se puede pasear por el exterior que está rodeado por un cementerio , donde hay recuerdos a los muertos que fallecieron por la peste , y se puede rodear el edificio admirando su estilo arquitectónico

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    Forth bridges

    by clivedinburgh Updated Aug 21, 2013

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    In-laws cruise ship passing under rail bridge
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    As I've previously mentioned I like architecture and the 2 current crossings show engineering firsts in the 19th & 20th centuries. Not sure if the 3rd bridge that is under construction will match their ambition.

    Great views to be had from both North & South Queensferry although the later is slightly better as the bridges taper in towards the North. You can walk over the road bridge with the Queensferry Hotel being a good finish point where you can grab an afternoon tea.

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    • Architecture

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    Fife Leisure Park

    by clivedinburgh Written Aug 13, 2013

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    I'm almost reluctant to add this as a tourist tip but appreciate that people will enjoy the facilities on offer here. There is primarily an Odeon cinema with Costa inside, Bowlplex, Bingo and Bannatynes Health Club which are the supported by an increasing array of restaurants such as:

    Eastern Buffet - good value chinese
    Chiquitos - mexican that's really nice
    Frankie & Bennies - Al Pacino doesn't cook here
    Crooked Glen - Brewers Fayre pub that has a inside large soft play area
    Pizza Hut - great for GF pizza nowadays
    Nandos - crazy hot portugese chicken
    McDonalds & KFC - :(
    Toni Macaroni - not been
    Papa Joes - not been
    Mayas - very nice curry according to stepson

    There is also a Dobbies garden centre that has a good cafe and of course Aventure Island crazy golf!

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    Pittencrief Park

    by clivedinburgh Written Aug 13, 2013

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    Park info board
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    The park was yet another gift from Andrew Carnegie who purchased the Pittencrief estate and turned it into a park for the common good. I've lived in Dunfermline for years and still haven't made it through the various paths down by the stream that runs through the eastern edge.

    The locals also only refer to this place as the Glen.

    There is a free car park off Pittencrief Street which does get busy but there are more spaces by the pavillion which is accessed from the car park in the SW corner. If walking then access is easiest from the bottom of the High Street but there is a nice but steep path that runs down from opposite the abbey past King Malcolm's tower (take a bag of nuts for the squirrels).

    There are two kids play areas, a cafe, the pavilion, a museum in Pittencrief House and a formal garden and greenhouse.

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    Bruce Festival

    by clivedinburgh Written Jul 31, 2013

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    Entrance of knights into the jousting arena
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    The Bruce Festival takes place in August each year and has increased in size over the last few years.

    Last year the venue was moved to a larger space in the SW corner of Pittencrief Park and we managed to enjoy watching some jousting before the King Robert defeated the english yet again in a playfull fun fight. Then the rain started, we managed to sprint to Abbot House and took shelter in the excellent basement cafe.

    The Hog Roast was an excellent snack but the queue moved very slowly and Rubens usually has some guest ales on offer too.

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    Alhambra

    by clivedinburgh Written Jul 28, 2013

    The Alhambra has undergone a great transformation in recent years and now also has the Green Room cafe open as well. Plenty of diverse acts on throughout the year but best book before you travel as many sell out.

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    LIMEKILNS

    by davidjo Updated Jul 7, 2013

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    village on the Forth

    Take a short trip of a few miles from Dunfermline to this picturesque little village that lies on the banks of the Firth of Forth. The village dates back to the mid 14th century when it was a fishing village but now i is just a laid back place to be. There is a small park by an old pier where you can sit and enjoy the view of the Forth, or if it's chilly pop in to the local pub, not far from the car park by the old pier.

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    CULROSS

    by davidjo Updated Jul 7, 2013

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    The Mercat Cross

    Culross (pronounced Coo-ross) is a historical village that had its hay-day 400 years ago as an important trading center on the Firth of Forth. Nowadays it is a sleepy village visited by quite a few tourists on Sundays who wander around the cobbled stone narrow streets. Mercat Cross is at the center, from which you can stroll up the hill to the old Abbey Church Ruins. You can also visit the 400 year old Townhouse which is now a visitors center for the Scottish National Trust. Don't forget to visit the Palace and garden too.

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    The only survivor.

    by planxty Written Jun 13, 2013

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    Abbot House, Dunfermline, UK.
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    The Abbot House in Dunfermline is a tremendous old building and is probably the only surviving structure in the town from the Great Fire of 1624. Despite the obvious attractions of the building itself, which reflects architectural styles from many centuries, the place has various functions now all under the umbrella title of "Heritage Centre".

    There are guided tours available although regrettably I did not have time to take one. Instead, I popped into the lovely little coffeeshop / restaurant for a quick coffee after exploring the Palace, Abbey and Nave (see seperate tips). There is also a giftshop here with a tie-in to a local art gallery and various events are held in the building.

    Don't forget to have a look round the very pleasant herb garden originally planted (probably not personally!) by Lady Anne Halkett in the 17th century. Recent archaelogical excavations in the garden have provided some very interesting finds including a large dog that stands an impressive 86 centimetres at the shoulder.

    Abbot House is run to a great extent by volunteers and is worthy of support, it is a lovely place.

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    The Abbey Nave.

    by planxty Written Jun 13, 2013
    Abbey Nave, Dunfermline, UK.
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    Although part of the Abbey Church, I am dealing with the Nave in a seperate tip primarily as it is administered by Hostoric Scotland and there is an admission charge whilst the main Church is free to enter. I should point out that you can easily walk into the Nave from the main Abbey Church which I did quite innocently not knowing I needed a ticket. I only found out later and did actually buy the ticket as I also wanted to visit the Palace and it is a joint admission.

    The Abbey site dates back to the 11th century when it started as a fairly unprepossessing priory founded by Queen Margaret (later made a Saint) and containing Benedictine monks from Canterbury. Early in the 12th century that King David I (Queen Margaret's son) elevated the priory to the status of Abbey and from then it never looked back. All went well until 1303 when the place was effectively laid waste by King Edward I in one of the many wars that were to be fought over the centuries between the Scots and the English, after which it was rebuilt by the famous King Robert the Bruce. The Bruce, as he is known hereabouts, is interred in the adjacent Church.

    The Nave you see today is all that remains of the original Abbey Church, the Church you see now is a 19th century structure. This portion of the building, however, dates all the way back to 1174 and it really is impressive. It is believed that the masons employed on the project were brought from Durham where they had built the Cathedral and it is very similar architecturally. Coincidentally, I was to visit Durham Cathedral three days later which was a nice piece of travel symmetery.

    For those with an interest in Freemasonry there is the interesting grave of William Schaw (c.1550 - 1602). Schaw, in addition to being the Master of Works for King James VI was also credited with introducing the organisation to Scotland and also codifying many of the practices of working masons in his "Schaw Statutes". He is held in high regard by the organisation and I have included images of his memorial here.

    I do have to say a quick word about the extremely helpful and friendly lady at the ticket office. It is always nice when staff in such a place are more than merely ticket issuers and this lady certainly gave us a hearty Scottish welcome.

    The images attached hopefully give some idea of what you can expect if you visit.

    Here are the logistics, taken from the excellent website.

    Opening hours.

    Summer
    1 April - 30 September, Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun, 9.30 am to 5.30 pm (last entry 5.00pm)

    October
    1 October - 31 October, Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun, 9.30 am to 4.30 pm (last entry 4.00pm)

    Winter
    1 November - 31 March, Mon Tue Wed Sat Sun, 9.30 am to 4.30 pm (closed Thursday and Friday)
    Admission prices

    All year
    Adult £4.50, Child £2.70, Concession £3.60

    Note that the ticket price includes also entry to the Palace and members of Historic Scotland get free entry.

    The Nave is accessible to mobility impaired travellers although it may pay to let them know in advance you are coming and they can arrange for someone to meet you. There is no on-site parking although visitors can be dropped off fairly close. and the nearest accessible toilets are 350 metres away in a department store. One other matter of note is that the site may be closed at lunchtime so it may pay to check ahead.

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    • Historical Travel
    • Religious Travel

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    A huge amount of history.

    by planxty Updated Jun 13, 2013

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    Palace, Dunfermline, UK.
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    Although all in the same location I shall deal with Dunfemline Abbey Church, the Nave and the Palace in three seperate tips and this one deals with the Palace. As the title suggests, this place really does have a huge amount of history behind it.

    The Abbey site dates back to the 11th century when it started as a fairly unprepossessing priory founded by Queen Margaret (later made a Saint) and containing Benedictine monks from Canterbury. Early in the 12th century that King David I (Queen Margaret's son) elevated the priory to the status of Abbey and from then it never looked back. All went well until 1303 when the place was effectively laid waste by King Edward I in one of the many wars that were to be fought over the centuries between the Scots and the English, after which it was rebuilt by the famous King Robert the Bruce. The Bruce, as he is known hereabouts, is interred in the adjacent Church.

    With Dunfermline having been once the capital of Scotland, it seems likely that there was always some sort of royal residence here and it would have been in or around the Abbey. What you mainly see now is the remains of the post-Reformation Palace and you can visit the old kitchen, refectory and several other rooms. There is a decent collection of stonework on display although it is not really a Museum as such, it is the building remains that are what you come here to see.

    I do have to say a quick word about the extremely helpful and friendly lady at the ticket office. It is always nice when staff in such a place are more than merely ticket issuers and this lady certainly gave us a hearty Scottish welcome.

    The images attached hopefully give some idea of what you can expect if you visit.

    Here are the logistics, taken from the excellent website.

    Opening hours.

    Summer
    1 April - 30 September, Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun, 9.30 am to 5.30 pm (last entry 5.00pm)

    October
    1 October - 31 October, Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun, 9.30 am to 4.30 pm (last entry 4.00pm)

    Winter
    1 November - 31 March, Mon Tue Wed Sat Sun, 9.30 am to 4.30 pm (closed Thursday and Friday)
    Admission prices

    All year
    Adult £4.50, Child £2.70, Concession £3.60

    Note that the ticket price includes also entry to the Nave of the main Church and members of Historic Scotland get free entry.

    Regrettably because of the age and nature of the building, much of it will be inaccessible to mobility impaired visitors. There is no on-site parking and the nearest accessible toilets are 350 metres away in a department store. One other matter of note is that the site may be closed at lunchtime so it may pay to check ahead.

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    • Architecture
    • Castles and Palaces
    • Historical Travel

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    Jewel in the Crown.

    by planxty Updated Jun 13, 2013

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    Abbey Church, Dunfermline, UK.
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    No visit to Dunfermline would be complete without a visit to the Palace (in the old Abbey) and the Abbey Church. I shall deal with the two places in seperate tips and this one deals with the Church, a magnificent place on a commanding site and with a huge history.

    Approaching from the High Street, and taking a first sight of the place, the visitor may allow his / her eye to wander to the top of the tower where they will see the word "Robert" in stone letters. If they then wander round the different aspects of the building, they will see that the letters on the four sides spell out the phrase "King Robert the Bruce". Rober tthe Bruce is a hugely significant man in Scottish history and with a huge association to Dunfermline not least that he is buried there, hence the "advertisment" on the tower, lest anyone be in any doubt where they are.

    I say "the Bruce" as he is known hereabouts is buried here but for many years that was in doubt and even how much of him may be buried here is a matter of debate amongst historians. I should warn the reader that this is a slightly gruesome story. The man died on 7th June 1329 and, as was his wish, his heart was removed from the corpse. This was subsequently placed in a casket around the neck of a nobleman called Douglas who subsequently went on a crusade against the Moors in Spain, with the heart still on him and where he was killed. The "remaining remains" of "the Bruce" were taken to Dunfermline and buried in what then was then the Abbey. The body of Douglas and the embalmed heart were brought back to Scotland where the heart was interred on Melrose Abbey in accordance with the late King's wishes. I know many such "legends" arise all over the world but in this case it appears to be somewhat supported by archaeological evidence.

    Apart from the Bruce connection, the Abbey Church really is worthy of a look. I hope the images do it some justice. Be aware of one thing, though. If you walk to the "back" of the Abbey, you can easily walk through into another area and there is nobody there to check you. This second area is subject to an admission charge but you have to go to the Abbey to get a ticket allowing you admission. I genuinely innocently wandered in there and it is worth seeing (unfortunately, photography not allowed) although I should say that I subsequently visited the Abbey and bought a ticket so I was not "pulling a fast one".

    There is so much to see in the Church that I suggest you allow at least an hour for it and the grounds even if you do not visit the original Abbey, which I suggest you do. That in itself will take a minimmum of another hour.

    The graveyard surrounding the Abbey Church is also worth a look. As regular readers of my pages will know I love graveyards as being representative of local social history and this one is no exception. Again, apologies for the images as I use a compact camera mostly nowadays and the Scottish weather was being, well, Scottish weather.

    If you are in Dunfermline and have any interest in Scottish history, you really have to visit. It is free to enter but obviously donations to the upkeep of the building are much appreciated. For mobility impaired visitors, it is a mixed picture. Relatively easy access can be arranged (it is a very old building) but there is no disabled parking nearby. Full details here.

    Opening hours (from the website) are as follows.

    From Monday 25th March 2013 until Friday 25th October 2013 the Abbey Church is open as follows:-
    Daily: 10.00am - 4.30pm
    except Sundays: 2.00pm - 4.30pm
    (Closed during wedding and funeral services).

    You really should see this place.

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    • Religious Travel
    • Historical Travel

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