Ayr audio tour: Honest Men and Bonnie Lassies: A Stroll through Historical Ayr

Honest Men and Bonnie Lassies: A Stroll through Historical Ayr

Walking Tour

40 mins

About the Tour

Trace the history of Ayr from a fortress 800 years ago to a county town, royal burgh, garrison, and the administrative centre of Scotland today.

The Ayr you see today is a bustling shopping centre, but if you scrape back just a few layers you’ll discover reminders of years gone by. On this walking tour, you’ll travel back in time to explore some of the town’s amazing architecture, as well as its murky underbelly.

Along the way, you’ll hear stories about the town’s past and the people that shaped it, including:

• Robert Burns, the bard
• The betrayal and torture of Cornelius Anderson
• Maggie Osborne and her witchcraft
• Why John Loudon McAdam isn’t really the father of the tar road
• The ingenious method devised to thwart body snatchers in the 1800s

There’s much more than meets the eye on these quaint streets, so let’s get stuck in and see what we can find!

Tour Producer


Kris McCulloch

Hi, I'm Kris, a resident of Ayr since birth. I've long since been fascinated with the history and tales of this historic royal burgh.

As well as being enchanted by the history of Ayr, I am also an avid genealogist and father of three.

Major Landmarks

  • Auld Kirk of Ayr

  • St Johns Tower

  • Loudon Hall

Directions to Starting Point

Our tour starts at Carnegie Library at 12 Main Street. This is within walking distance of the town centre and is well signposted throughout the town.

Show Directions
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Places to stop along the way

Auld Kirk of Ayr, St Johns Tower, Loudon Hall

Best time of day

This tour is ideal for an afternoon or early evening walk.


Some of the roadways are uneven on this walk. Please ensure you are wearing sensible shoes.


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Honest Men and Bonnie Lassies: A Stroll through Historical Ayr