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Photo of St Andrews

About St Andrews

Before 'the golf', St. Andrews was famous for being Scotland's oldest university town. Before that it was a religious centre. During the medieval period St. Andrews Cathedral was Scotland's most important church. Now of course it's best known for the famous courses and links, especially the Old Course. As you'd expect many of the best places to stay in St Andrews have fantastic views over the iconic fairways.

The famous cathedral is now partly ruined, as is the castle, but they are very beautiful ruins. Some of the lovely sandstone buildings in town date from this period. The castle especially. It was founded in 1200 and once home to the bishops. The ruins have wonderful views over the coastline's famed white sands and onto several golf courses. If you follow the coast westwards from the castle you'll hit the first tee of the Old Course then St. Andrews' Aquarium, which is a great place to visit if you are visiting with your kids.

If you want to find out more about the town then the St. Andrews' Museum is a good stop off. As is the British Golf Museum. You may also want to consider one of the many historic tours on offer - lots of them impressively staffed and lead by students at the university.

On a sunny day you might like to take a stroll along one of St. Andrews' beaches or along the harbour. Of course you're possibly just fitting the rest of your visit in around the golf games you have booked tee times for. There's actually a lot to do here for golfing widows as well. If you haven't managed to qualify for a booking on the Old Course then remember it is closed for play on Sundays and everyone is welcome to stroll the fairways.

The university was only the third in the English speaking world when it was founded in 1410 and is still a major force in St. Andrews. During term time students number about a third of the whole population of St. Andrews.

What not to miss:

  • Play a round of golf on the iconic 'Old Course St Andrews'.
  • Visit the picturesque ruins of the cathedral and castle.
  • Make a stop at the St. Andrews' Museum and learn the fascinating history of the town.
  • Take a blustery, yet scenic, coastal walk.

With so much on offer many of the best places to stay in St Andrews are quickly snapped up. To be sure of your booking do plan ahead and book early.

For traditional stays

  • Rufflets is a haven of comfort and kind service. It was once thought a bit stuffy but these days it feels fresh and luxurious. A great place to come to be looked after. Set amongst ten acres of award-winning gardens.

For foodies

  • The Peat Inn's Michelin starred restaurant makes it one of the best places to eat in St. Andrews as well as one of the best places to stay. It's out of town in a charming 300 year old building, worth the journey for the luxury, peace and food.
  • The award winning restaurant at Rufflets uses only seasonal produce and is worthy of a visit alone.

For seaside views

  • The well positioned Hotel du Vin offers superlative views, easy access to the golf course and a lively bar.

For golfers

  • The luxury property, The Old Course Hotel, boasts an 11 hole course as well as a fabulous spa to return to after completing a round.

For an apartment or cottage

  • If you've decided that a self catering property would be more suitable for your holiday, then we recommend you visit our online booking partner Booking.com where they have a wide selection for all tastes and budgets.

Travel information

  • The nearest major international airport to St Andrews is Edinburgh (82km from St Andrews). Take a train to Leuchars (10km away) as it is served by trains from Edinburgh and Dundee / Aberdeen. There are also some direct trains from London.
  • Best time to visit - St Andrews is a year round destination with each season offering its own charm however the warmest weather comes in the summer months of May - August where temperatures average around 16?.
  • If you plan to hire a car, we recommend you visit our online partner Rentalcars for the best prices.

    Still not sure?

    Best Hotels in St Andrews

    • Rufflets 24 rooms from $175

      St Andrews

      A historic property set within ten acres of pretty gardens in St Andrews. Individually styled light and contemporary rooms and an award winning restaurant, using only local seasonal produce much of which comes from the garden. Stunning property for events or simply a country escape.

      Country Escape  -  A stunning 1924 turreted country property set within beautiful fragrant gardens, rolling onto the gentle countryside of Fife.
      Great walks  -  Grab a packed lunch and make the most of the stunning coastal walks and trails throught the Fife landscape.
      Sights nearby  -  Situated just three kms from St Andrew's Castle, a must see for any visit to this area.
      Traditional
      Recommended by  -  Good Hotel Guide
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    • Hotel du Vin 37 rooms from $143

      St Andrews

      With beautiful views over St. Andrews Bay and superlative golf on the doorstep, it's the perfect place for this excellent hotel. Both charming and comfortable in equal measure, Hotel du Vin offers luxurious rooms, a lively bar and a great French restaurant. A seaside gem.

      Sights nearby  -  Visit St. Andrews crumbling old Cathedral.
      Great walks  -  Beautiful walking along St Andrews bay.
      Views  -  Great views from hotel
      Seaside  -  Ideal for a seaside holiday.
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    • The Old Course Hotel 144 rooms from $443

      St Andrews

      A luxury hotel overlooking the West Sands Beach with elegant and contemporary decor. A 11 hole golf course, a world class spa, casual and formal restaurants and bars and a rooftop hot tub. A great location with stunning views.

      Local exploring  -  A short stroll away from the historic university town of St. Andrews
      Back to Nature  -  Has 135 kilometres of stunning coastline
      Local markets  -  Several family run shops and businesses to choose from
      Fishing  -  Fly fishing in the rivers of St. Andrews is a must
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