We’re approaching Sanquhar now, a place more easily said—“SANK-er”— than spelled, a royal burgh from centuries past, when the crown bestowed such honors, elevating a village to market-town status.

~ My Heart’s in the Lowlands


The setting is idyllic, nestled among fertile fields, green pastures, and softly folded hills.

~ My Heart’s in the Lowlands

St. John's Town of Dairy

The houses here are trimmed in distinctive, even bold, colors. Deep purple. Snappy blue. Bright-as-sunshine yellow. Flowers festoon every cottage, whether hanging, climbing, or growing in a tiny front garden.

~ My Heart’s in the Lowlands

Newton Stewart

Newton Stewart is across the way, a busy market town founded in the seventeenth century by William Stewart, the second Earl of Galloway; hence the name “New Town of Stewart.”

~ My Heart’s in the Lowlands

New Abbey

The village proper consisted mostly of single-story cottages made of whinstone or granite. On both sides of the street doors were shut tight.

~ Fair Is the Rose


A cluster of gray-roofed white cottages lining the village square, a forgotten hamlet at road’s end.

~ My Heart’s in the Lowlands

New Galloway

Jamie crested the hill and approached the outskirts of the prosperous village, a stopping place for drovers herding cattle to Dumfries and travelers riding northeast to Edinburgh.

~ Thorn in My Heart


Picturesque, historic, charming, and several other words also suit this burgh of barony, included in “The Most Beautiful Villages of Scotland”. The main route through Moniaive is not only narrow but also curvy.

~ My Heart’s in the Lowlands