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Culross Travel Guide - Scotland

Visit a living museum when you decide to make Culross the destination for your next vacation. The name of the town comes from two Gaelic words "Cuileann Ros", which mean the place where the holly grows. The known history of the town dates back to the 5th century, with the monastery founded by St, Serf. It is also the birthplace of St. Mungo.

Throughout the centuries, Culross was a very busy seaport, important for the exporting of coal and salt. However, it was granted burgh status due to the influence of Sir George Bruce, a merchant and coal miner of the town, today, the home of this man is known as the Palace and is a popular tourist destination. Built between 1597 and 1611, the interior design and woodwork along with the gardens provide a great look into how the wealthy of the town lived in the past.

Street in Culross Some of the other attractions you need to have on your itinerary include Culross Abbey. This structure was built as a monastery in 1217 and a tall tower was added in 1500. Here you will see the alabaster tomb of Sir George and his family. The Flemish influence in architecture is evident in the Town House, built in 1625. The interiors certainly display the typical features of a 16th century home. Another example of fine architecture is the Study of Bishop Leighton of Dunblane. Here you will see the original panelling from 1633 and the painted ceilings common in the 17th century. The Butcher's House shows the tools used to practice this trade in the past and the Sea Captain's House has a window with a Greek inscription.

Fans of "Kidnapped" will delight in seeing some of the places featured in the movie. Many scenes for this movie were shot in Culross, such as the building adjacent to the Mercat Cross. This cross dates from 1588, but the head is not original having been replaced in 1902.

As you stroll through the streets of the town, try to imagine yourself living there at the time depicted in the movie. Almost all of the homes have the same pan–tiled roofs and crow–step gables making it a very picturesque town to visit. The narrow cobbled streets exude an atmosphere of timelessness that leaves you wanting to stay.


A backlit shot of the town square in the medieval Scottish burgh of Culross, Fife
Ruins of the thirteenth century Cistercian monastery at Culross.