We’ve all begged our friends and relatives to come visit St Andrews so they can see for themselves where our obsession comes from. Living here everyday, we are able to appreciate the little things that add up to make this town so wonderful. But you can’t really entertain a visitor for a day by pointing out the great way you see friends wherever you go, the beautiful sunsets, the traditions we love and don’t understand, and the way that everyone can find their niche in this exceptionally multicultural community.
What we do instead is give them the 45-minute tour of the town and all of its ancient spectacles before settling down for one or two or five cups of tea. Although this town does offer some fabulous tea and scones, there is so much more to see and do that we can forget about. Here are a few ways to entertain your guests that will give them a glimpse of the true wonders of St Andrews.
1. Give them that 45 minute tour.
Yes, you’ve had to do it about 50 times, but honestly, the history of this town is amazing. Go to the castle and the cathedral, do a pier walk, show them your favourite shops (maybe get a cup of tea at Bibi’s or Gorgeous) and run along West Sands, Chariots of Fire style. Don’t forget to visit MUSA, the St Andrews Museum and the British Golf Museum. You’ll probably learn some things yourself!
2. Take a walk.
Lade Braes, down past South Street, takes you past Cockshaugh Park and along the trickling Kinnessburn, where you are sure to meet a multitude of lovely locals and their dogs. Further on you will find Hallow Hill, which sports an old archaeological burial site. Continue even further and you will reach Craigtoun Park, a fun spectacle for kids and adults alike. Alternatively, the Fife Coastal Path taken southwards provides stunning views of the sea, and a hidden ruin.
3. If you’re feeling like going a bit farther, visit the nearby Cambo Estate for their annual Snowdrop Spectacular (through 16 March). Take a walk through their beautiful gardens, feed the pigs and check out their sculpture collection! This is perfect for family outings or if you simply enjoy the outdoors. Cambo Estate can be reached by car, taxi or bus.
4. Visit the Balgove.
It’s a short walk past the Old Course and provides a nice change of scene from the stoneladen buildings and streets of the town. The café uses fresh, local produce from the farm shop, and provides a wonderful lunch or afternoon tea.
5. Go to a special event.
St Andrews is literally bursting at the seams with arts and culture. Any given day will be host to numerous society and University events, from musical concerts to art workshops to cultural meals. Show off our diversity!
6. Go mini-golfing at the Himalayas.
We are the home of golf, after all, so give them a chance to say they’ve played St Andrews. Mini-golf is a great time for any size group and all ages, and it only costs £2 per person. That’s a cheap round.
7. Speaking of rounds, go on a pub crawl.
Home to almost 20 pubs, there’s a lot to show off. For the family, the Whey Pat, the West Port and the St Andrews Brewing Company will highlight the diverse pub culture St Andrews has to offer (and some local brews). If your guest is a (thirsty) friend, hit the Central, the Rule, Rascal’s and the Vic. If you have a Friday or Saturday night, embrace the Scottish culture and go to a Forgan’s ceilidh!
There are things to do in every nook and cranny of this town. Pack your day and show your guests what St Andrews has to offer.