• Ayrshire travel guide


Ayrshire is an area of SW/W Scotland, UK. Ayrshire also incorporates the islands of Arran, Little Cumbrae(although it's only occupied by birds of prey and insects alike) and also Big Cumbrae. Three local authorities; North, South and East Ayrshire exist.

Getting in

Plane: Ayrshire is served by a budget airport at Prestwick, mostly served by Ryanair and WizzAir. A bridge connects this budget airport(used mainly for serving Glasgow) to a railway station. A fast, frequent service runs to and from Ayr and Glasgow Central, as well as less frequent services to Stranraer and Kilmarnock, operated by ScotRail. Bus: Ayrshire's main bus station is at Sandgate, Ayr(the X77 service runs frequently from Buchannan Street bus station in Glasgow) which is also the hub of Stagecoach Western buses. Kilmarnock and Irvine are also well connected to the rest of Ayrshire by bus, and most villages and hamletsin Ayrshire have at least one bus stop. Train: Kilwinning is used to interchange rail services en route to Ayr and Ardrossan Harbour/Largs. Troon is also used as an interchange for rail services en route to Ayr and Kilmarnock(from Stranraer direction). The main rail operator is ScotRail, and their website boasts a journey planner, which is free of charge to use. Ayr railway station has a hotel and a WHSmith on hand, and services beyond Ayr to Girvan and Stranraer can only be carried out by a diesel powered train, electric powered commuter trains from Glasgow Central must terminate at Ayr, and these are becoming more frequent, especially with the new fleet of Class 380 trains. Car: Ayrshire is served by the M77 from Glasgow, which links to the M74 from Carlisle, England. The A71 intersects Kilmarnock and Irvine and can be used for travelling to or from Edinburgh. BP and Shell petrol station exist in Ayrshire, not to mention the petrol stations operated by the popular supermarkets like Morrisons and Tesco, which can also be found around Ayrshire.

The towns

North Ayrshire

Largs: A coastal town, complete with shops, daily sailings to the small town of Millport on Big Cumbrae as well as the ever so popular ice cream shops run by Nardini's.

Ardrossan: A small town served by three railway stations, including one at the harbour used for sailing out to the Isle of Arran. An ASDA is near by for your shopping needs.

Saltcoats: A town complete with shops, two amusement arcades, a cinema, a nightclub called The Metro and a very popular cake shop called The Kandy Bar.

Stevenston: This town doesn't have much in the way of shops and the coast at Ardeer should be avoided when the weather is rough.

Kilwinning: Home of the James Watt College, an important railway station(for interchange reasons) and several shops.

Irvine: This town has a shopping mall called The Rivergate Centre which boasts many high street shops such as Game, New Look, JJB Sports and Greggs. It may also be worth visiting the Magnum leisure centre, which has a decent sized swimming pool.


South Ayrshire

Troon: A popular golfing resort complete with two beaches and several shops. Several high street shops have opened up at Unit 5 on Academy Street and The Walker Hall hosts many events and live acts.

Prestwick: This town has an airport, used as a budget airport for Glasgow, is the birthplace of the Open Golf championship and has several shops.

Ayr: The number one shopping destination in Ayrshire to put it short, especially since Ayr Central had been established. This ultra-modern shopping area boats many shops including Debenhams, HMV and Costa Coffee. Ayr is also famed for it's racecourse and Ayr United play at Somerset football park. Rabbie Burn's cottage can be found at near by Alloway.

Girvan: Not a lot to Girvan these days, however there are still coffee shops and B & Bs in the area. --

East Ayrshire

Kilmarnock: A large landlocked shopping town which was featured on The Scheme. The Burns Mall boats many famous high street shops and the football team, Kilmarnock FC play at Rugby Park.

Stewarton: A small town with several shops.

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