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Things to do around Dalry
Dalry, North Ayrshire is situated on raised ground between two tributaries of the Garnock, the Caaf and the Rye. The town is on the main A737 north of Kilwinning. This is a busy route and most visitors pass through the town without stopping to enjoy its surroundings and history on the way to Largs or further afield. The views from higher ground provide panoramic aspects of the Ayrshire coast and beyond. While having fewer activities than the more tourist-focused coastal towns, Dalry provides an ideal introduction to rural Ayrshire with a range of outdoor pursuits for the whole family.
As well as the paths mentioned on the website there are a number of nearby walks you can enjoy. The Blair Estate just to the south-east of Dalry is regularly open to the public and is a popular location for a stroll through the grounds. No cars, dogs or bikes are allowed. Some of the rougher tracks can be muddy.
There are also a number of routes from the Dalgarven Mill area and a leaflet is available at the Mill detailing the paths. Note that some of these additional routes follow public roads and care should be taken.
For serious cycle enthusiasts there is a long and challenging circular route from Ardrossan to Dalry and then over the hills to Portencross, returning past Seamill.
A more leisurely route leaves Eglinton Park at Kilwinning and follows the back roads towards Dalry, stopping off at Dalgarven Mill. It is recommended that you pick up the ‘Cycle Ayrshire’ leaflet at a local bike shop or tourist board before embarking on these routes. Check out the Garnock Valley Cycle map.
As well as local routes the National Cycle Route 7 passes near to Dalry. The route from Kilwinning to Kilbirnie crosses the A737 a mile east of Dalry. See the National Cycle Route map for the section near Dalry.
Watch out for vehicles on narrow tracks and blind corners with high hedgerows.
Kilbirnie Angling Club has fishing on the River Garnock and the nearby Kilbirnie Loch where brown and rainbow trout can be caught.) They also have brown trout fishing on Camphill Reservoir. Permits are available – check with the local library for contact information.
East of Dalry off the B707 is the Dalry community woodland and surrounding area where you may find Kestrel, Sparrowhawk, Warblers, Chiffchaff and Lapwing.
At Lynn Glen and Caaf Water (see map) you may be lucky enough to spot a Kingfisher. Other birds in the area include Flycatchers, Tawny Owls and Wagtails. At the other rivers around Dalry you may see Heron, Dipper, Sandpipers and Swallows. In Blair Estate there are Treecreepers and Woodpeckers. To find out more about birding in the area and across Ayrshire click here for details.
Dalgarven Mill (see HISTORY section) is located just off the A737 road between Kilwinning and Dalry. The River Garnock flows over a 6 meter water wheel that drives a millstone once used to produce flour. The mill has been lovingly restored and well worth a visit. There is a tearoom and information leaflets on alternative walks in the area. Further information on Dalgarven Mill can be found at www.dalgarvenmill.org.uk.
A few miles south of Dalry is Kilwinning where you can visit the remains of Kilwinning Abbey. Founded in the 12th century the Abbey was built by Freemasons and the town has connections with the Order to this day. Further information can be found at www.kilwinning.org.
For a real taste of Ayrshire, Swinlees Farm in Dalry produce Drumkain, a hand-produced Scottish hard cheese made from the milk of three selected herds of Ayrshire cows. Further information on the Hand Made Cheese Company can be obtained from (01294) 832479.
Go to the Ayrshire and Arran Tourist Board website to search for accommodation.