If you’ve ever met him, you might be surprised to learn that Zab was born in Scotland. He speaks Southern British English and definitely doesn’t have any hint of a Scottish accent. This is because he only lived in Scotland for the first four years of his life, then grew up in the South East of England. Nonetheless, he identifies as Scottish and still feels an affinity with the place.
After eleven years together, it’s surprising that we’d never travelled there together to see the place where he was born and spent the first few years of his life. So, last month, we planned a trip to Troon with his mother to visit the town and some of the surrounding area together.
Troon is a town of 15,000 people in South Ayrshire to the south west of Glasgow on the coast famous for its golf courses and former ferry connection to Northern Ireland. Beyond that, there isn’t much to Troon besides the high street and the beach. Nonetheless, it was fun seeing places that Zab vaguely remembered from his childhood and hearing stories about him from his mother. And the views out over the sea were gorgeous!
We also took a couple of daytrips to other towns nearby, notably Alloway, famous for its prodigal son and nationally revered poet, Robert Burns. The town itself is beautiful, with plenty of well preserved historical buildings and landmarks, perhaps the best known of which is the Brig o’ Doon.
The bridge over the river Doon is notable because it appears in Burns’ narrative poem Tam o’ Shanter as the location where the hero is chased over the bridge on horseback by a group of witches. It was almost demolished twice, but was saved both times thanks to its connection to the poet. The park on the south side of the river Doon is accessible to the public and is a really nice place for a sunset wander with views of the bridge.
We also took an evening stroll along the water at Prestwick with fantastic views over to the Isle of Arran and its peak, Goatfell. This trip definitely left me wanting to go back to the Scottish countryside and climb some of its hills!
Visiting South Ayrshire
This region of Scotland is really beautiful and definitely worth a trip if you’re coming to the country. There is an airport at Prestwick, but it served only very limited destinations. Instead, the international airport at Glasgow is much better connected and is only a 45 minute drive away and also easily accessible to Glasgow city centre by airport transfer in Glasgow.
While you’re here, getting around is quite possible with public transport, as there’s a train connection all the way from Glasgow to Stranraer which stops at Irvine, Troon, Prestwick and Ayr. For smaller places, there are usually bus services, though they may be infrequent. If you’re planning to get out into the sticks, or if you’re travelling in a group of three or four people, renting a car will probably make the most sense.
Have you ever been to Troon? Would you like to visit?