Introducing East Ayrshire
In Kilmarnock, where Johnnie Walker whisky was blended from 1820 to 2012, is Dean Castle, a 15-minute walk from the bus and train stations. The castle, restored in the first half of the 20th century, has a virtually windowless keep (dating from 1350) and an adjacent palace (1468) with a superb collection of medieval arms, armour, tapestries and musical instruments. The huge grounds are a good place for a stroll or a picnic, or you can eat at the visitor centre's tearoom, where snacks and light meals cost around £5. From Ayr there are frequent buses throughout the day.