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  • The Precinct House - Scottish Lowlands - 1046834 - photo 1

The Precinct House

(Ref. 1046834)

Whithorn, Ayrshire and Dumfries & Galloway Show on map


Sykes rating

  • 3 Guests

  • 2 Bedrooms

  • 1 Bathroom

  • Pets No


  • Four poster bed
  • Open fire
  • Garden / Patio
  • Cot available
  • Highchair available
  • Pub/shop < 1 mile
  • Broadband / WiFi

Reviews & Ratings

Accuracy of the listing
Facilities and Maintenance
  • All reviews
  • cottage (21)
  • lovely (15)
  • stay (14)
  • house (14)
  • well (14)
  • comfortable (14)

52 Customer Reviews

  • "What a fantastic place."

    We loved the space and the furnishings. It had every thing we needed.

    Reviewed by Dawn5.0Mar 2024

  • "A stunning cosy period property with antique furniture and replica gas/oil lamps with a working peat fire."

    This was easily the best property I've stayed in and I wouldn't hesitate to return or recommend to friends.

    Reviewed by Julian5.0Mar 2024

  • "Lived up to the photos, full of character, warm and welcoming atmosphere, everything you need."

    Only ?s were rather 'firm' seating, and unclear re waste disposal( recycling etc) but would definitely go back. Lovely position in the middle of town, and plenty of information about the town and surrounding area. Well worth a visit.

    Reviewed by Jennifer4.7Feb 2024

  • "We had a very enjoyable and comfortable stay."

    The Precinct House is a little jewel, one of the best cottages we have ever stayed in.

    Reviewed by Uta5.0Feb 2024

  • "The Precinct House is an extremely pleasant cottage located in a very scenic part of Scotland."

    The cottage offers more amenities than listed on the website such as a washing-machine and a dishwasher. It is very warm and has a very well-equipped kitchen. The bed in the main bedroom is exceptionally comfortable. All in all we had a wonderful stay in a delightful little snug.

    Reviewed by Muriel4.7Jan 2024

  • "My family and I had a wonderful experience."

    It was as listed, clean, and we had everything to make our holiday special. I will happily recommend this cosy cottage. There are a lot of nice places around, the local people are very friendly, and the food is amazing. I will recommend to everyone to go and eat locally, especially to try: Railway Inn Pub food; Central Cafe's fish and chips; and Steam Packet Inn food.

    Reviewed by Tiberius Andrei5.0Dec 2023

  • "A fantastic cottage."

    So warm during the cold weather. We had long walks each day in an area new to us. It was stunning. Will return!

    Reviewed by John5.0Nov 2023

  • "Lovely stay."

    Only gripe was the very uncomfortable seating

    Reviewed by Derek4.7Nov 2023

  • "Nice cottage in a very quiet location, it closely matches the description online."

    Would stay at this type of cottage again but unfortunately not in that location which was pretty dead in November. Also there was some misinformation: you listed a nearby pub, there isn’t one. You listed a nearby cafe, it’s open 4 days a week for just 4 hours. You listed many household items we should take with us, but they were provided at the cottage. In short the cottage was fine but the some of the advice quite misleading. I’d strongly recommend that the person writing the Sykes entry actually stay at the cottage for a few days. All that notwithstanding the area was beautiful, the people we met were friendly, the weather was lovely (in November!!!) and we had a great break.

    Reviewed by Neil3.4Nov 2023

  • "We were back to this beautiful house and majestic Scotland and we really enjoyed our stay."

    You go back in time, you are surrounded by great, well thought decor and you feel it's yours for the week you stay. Homely, fire place, flower, biscuits, variety of coffee, tea. Thank you Julia

    Reviewed by David5.0Oct 2023

  • "This excellent old cottage is beautifully presented with a wealth of contemporary furniture as well as a four-poster bed."

    The kitchen is equipped with all necessary items for a comfortable stay. We greatly enjoyed our week in this interesting area, full of fascinating historical places - and some good pubs!

    Reviewed by James5.0Oct 2023

  • "A lovely old house with period character and modern facilities."

    The wifi worked well and we accessed the TV via that on a computer rather than trying the televisions. Hot weather so the secluded garden was well used.

    Reviewed by Angela4.1Sep 2023

  • "The cottage was very good in every way."

    Reviewed by Martin5.0Aug 2023

  • "A very beautiful period house with Georgian decor yet modern facilities including underfloor heating."

    Perhaps the most beautiful building we have stayed in and so convenient for access to many of the areas attractions. My only gripe is that there were 3 of us but only two comfortable seats for evening relaxing the settee was fine and looked the part but the wing chair definitely needs re-upholstering. But this is nitpicking and we would definitely reccommend the place with 5 stars.

    Reviewed by Brian5.0Apr 2023

  • "Lovely quirky little cottage, very peaceful location enjoyed my time there."

    Reviewed by Martin5.0Apr 2023

  • "This is one of the nicest places I have stayed."

    The house is cosy and comfortable and full of character and perfectly equipped for a stay of any length. This is our third stay and we hope to be back again!

    Reviewed by Rebecca5.0Mar 2023

  • "The property is very good ,however there are evidence of damp in main bedroom ,there isn’t any heating upstairs radiators not working ,and sockets are in areas that don’t support needs ."

    The beds are supper comfy but a thicker duvet in the cooler season may be better however there were blankets provided in an ottoman in bedroom . The underfloor heating downstairs very good but the radiator in bathroom doesn’t work so towels still damp when needed next . The T V didn’t work . The settee and chair are very firm although they are in keeping with the furnishing in the room they are not very comfortable. Everything else is beautiful ,quirky and inviting when you arrive . There was fresh milk and beverage for you when arrived . Kitchen very well equipped . The actual area was disappointing as we were just out of season and everything was shut and even travelling to other areas which is a while away it was bleak. Also the mood of residents and business staff were not welcoming just sad . This is a place I won’t be going to again as it’s facility’s are very limited . This is just my opinion .

    Reviewed by Judith E4.1Mar 2023

  • "Exceeded expectations."

    I was concerned when I went to bed. The mattress was VERY firm, but it provided me with the best sleep I've had in months (ruptured disc in my neck). I will be ordering a similar one, now that I have returned home. That said, I will agree with those who have mentioned the lounge furniture. Restuffing the seat cushions would not come amiss. The villagers were warm and welcoming and the proximity to so many areas of interest and beauty ensures a return visit.

    Reviewed by Kathleen5.0Mar 2023

  • "Brilliant place."

    The house has been renovated really well and feels quite special to stay in. It was warm and comfortable and we had a great time. There are some good walks and places to see locally and the Railway pub does some good value meals and has some nice local beers.

    Reviewed by Nick5.0Feb 2023

  • "Lovely home feel like a small castle"

    Reviewed by Wieslaw4.7Jan 2023

  • "Utterly gorgeous cottage."

    Wonderful village. Lovely people.

    Reviewed by Lynne5.0Nov 2022

  • "The cottage was lovely, location quiet and filled with lovely walks and nature."

    The cottage was clean and well equipped, warm and we loved the open fire (thank you for the milk and welcome tray) The bed was comfy, the shower was lovely, the only issue we had was the sofa and the chair were both uncomfortable.

    Reviewed by Joanne4.7Oct 2022

  • "MY friend and I had a lovely holiday in Precint House."

    In fact I have already recommended it to some friends. My only issue would be the second bedroom regarding the height of the bed. I totally understand it is in keeping with everything else in the house. However may I suggest a small stepping stool for getting in and out. I will admit that this is a bit selfish because I used that bed (which was really comfortable and wonderful duvet). However I have some physical health issues, now I managed to ve careful getting in and out of bed. However in one night in the middle of the night I dropped my pillow accidentally on to the floor leaned down to thr floor to pick it up without thinking and of course I couldn't push myself back up so tried to slide onto the floor and we'll it didn't work and I bashed my forehead. Thankfully apart from a bump and headaches was fine. Please do not not take this as a complaint but just A suggestion. Whithorn was such a friendly place to be and you never had very far to travel to different places in thr surrounding area. Loved thr Musem and Roundhouse. From thr moment we opened thr front door we were just overjoyed and were grateful for thr lovely flowers reas and biscuits that awaited us. Thank you for providing such a special holiday home. Angie Shannon. Ps WE were of course really sad to have to leave on Thursday morning due to illness in my friends family

    Reviewed by Angela4.7Oct 2022

  • "Quaint little cottage in middle of Whithorn."

    Unique features in oldie worldie cottage but needs some updates. Sofa and main chair in front room requires re-upholstering as they cause back pain and are generally uncomfortable, we’re also convinced we were getting bitten by some form of insect whilst on sofa. Main bedroom needs electrical point near a main mirror for hair drying etc. Property quite dark even with all blinds / curtains open. Had to keep lights on in certain rooms. On the plus side, very central for exploring this part of Scotland. Accommodation has pretty much all the facilities you need for a comfortable stay. The Railway Pub (5 minute walk away), is a nice place to have your evening meals if you can’t be bothered to cook with the ample cooking equipment in the kitchen. Just needs a few little tweaks to make this a 5 star property instead of a 4.

    Reviewed by Justin3.8Sep 2022

  • "Superbly converted Georgian house with everything in place."

    Beng right in the centre of Whithorn makes it ideal for the Priory, the Whithorn Story etc. Very comfortable four-poster bed. Inevitably it's somewhat dark for reading.

    Reviewed by John4.7Sep 2022

  • "We were very happy with the property very clean well equipped with everything we needed."

    Reviewed by Margaret5.0Jul 2022

  • "A well equipped house with everything you need for a holiday."

    Reviewed by Alexander5.0Jul 2022

  • "Everything you need in an historic building."

    Including fridge & a freezer not mentioned in listing and not shown in photos. Sofa is needing replaced soon but still OK. Sleeps 3 upstairs but take note toilet and shower is downstairs.

    Reviewed by Robert4.4Jun 2022

  • "Satisfied returning residents."

    Reviewed by David4.7Jun 2022

  • "We were very pleased with the cottage which excelled our expectations."

    It was superbly equipped and it was delightful to find the conveniences of a dishwasher and washing machine tucked behind period features. It is in a wonderful location for a quiet and relaxing break.

    Reviewed by Sue5.0Jun 2022

  • "Lovely cottage, really quirky it was like stepping back in time but with all the modern day comforts."

    Location is great for visiting the Galloway national park which is absolutely stunning.

    Reviewed by Gail5.0Jun 2022

  • "Adorable cosy cottage."

    We loved our stay in Whithorn and in this cottage. Highly to recommend.

    Reviewed by Sabine5.0May 2022

  • "Lovely, individual house, extremely cosy, comfortable and well appointed."

    Really enjoyed our stay.

    Reviewed by Sandra5.0Apr 2022

  • "Absolutely stunning house we really enjoyed our stay I was nervous coming away ..."

    Absolutely stunning house we really enjoyed our stay I was nervous coming away with a six week old but baby Angus loved it too my dad has a house in Whithorn so we are frequent visitors we would definitely stay here again just gorgeous thankyou

    Reviewed by Lara5.0Apr 2022

  • "Such an interesting place."

    Stepping back in time but with all the mod cons carefully hidden. Warm and comfortable.

    Reviewed by Anthony5.0Apr 2022

  • "This is a truly unique property that combines sympathetic, period, high quality refurbishment with excellent (concealed) modern facilities."

    It is surprisingly spacious for a couple or for a couple plus one, and warm. It is well placed for the shops within historic Whithorn and an ideal base for exploring the Machars. Highly recommended.

    Reviewed by Mark5.0Mar 2022

  • "A lovely traditional cottage, we really loved the rooms and the location."

    Reviewed by Andrew5.0Jan 2022

  • "A stunning cottage in a cheerful and friendly village."

    Lots to do close by. The cottage was very clean and all steps had been taken to make it COVID safe. I would highly recommend.

    Reviewed by Jennifer5.0Jan 2022

  • "Excellent facilities, loved the underfloor heating."

    Like stepping back in time to our childhoods (we are both OAPs)… Managed a few walks between showers and wind. St Ninian’s cave especially memorable. We hope to come back in the future, hopefully when the museum and local attractions are open again… Jane Grieve

    Reviewed by Jane5.0Nov 2021

  • "The welcome pack provided, was greatly appreciated."

    The information folder on the accommodation and the local bus timetable, was accurate and very useful. The warmth and ambience of Precinct House, added to the enjoyment of our holiday. A greatful thank you to the caretaker and the National Trust, for this property and preservation of an excellent place of heritage.

    Reviewed by Elizabeth4.7Oct 2021

  • "Because of your booking mistake my daughter had to leave a day early so lm out 110 pounds its,was extremely stressful especially as l sent her away to for a break after loosing her baby."

    ..l will not use or recommend your site again and wish for a l tried to phone it took me 40 minutes to get through...

    Reviewed by Samantha3.8Oct 2021

  • "The property not only looked beautiful it was also very well equipped."

    And what a privilege to be able to park in front of the front door! There was just one glitch on arrival. The heating did not appear to be working, nor did the lights in the kitchen. We immediately called the owner who, just as immediately, came to the rescue. She and my husband checked the fusebox and corrected the problem.The lack of underfloor heating seemed to be due to a well-meaning person turning the thermostat too low.

    Reviewed by Isabel5.0Oct 2021

  • "We had a lovely fortnight at The Precinct House in September 21."

    Amazing history in the area and the museum is an absolute must. This is a lovely cottage and we enjoyed our stay however, I do think you need to update the sofa and chair. They look wonderful in the photos but really are not very comfortable or practical. We stayed 2wks and it really tainted our stay in the end as they were so uncomfortable. Other than this, it's a lovely place to stay. Would I recommend? Absolutely, I would!

    Reviewed by Dawn4.1Sep 2021

  • "A beautifully appointed cottage in the centre of a great community."

    There were fresh flowers and a welcome tray for arrival, with little luxuries like coffee bags and grounds too, and a peat fire all made up - very thoughtful. The style and furnishings in the cottage are really something special - we loved it. The only things to change are in the listing - we didn't know that there was a DVD player, plus a washer/dryer available in the cottage! Unexpected bonuses.

    Reviewed by Gillian4.1Aug 2021

  • "Great cottage, great setting."

    Loved every minute of our stay. Couldn't fault it.

    Reviewed by Hazel5.0Jul 2021

  • "A beautifully maintained characterful cottage."

    Well equipped and spotlessly clean. We enjoyed staying in Whithorn and loved the surrounding area: great coastal walks, interesting history and good places to eat.

    Reviewed by Cyril4.7Jul 2021

  • "The property was as listed but did not mention that there was a dishwasher and washing machine/- both a bonus."

    Some lovely beaches and scenic drives on quiet roads. The sunshine was another bonus.

    Reviewed by Robert4.7Jul 2021

  • "This cottage is so unique and quirky."

    Loved it. All mod cons and the cleanest most welcoming accommodation. The staff who look after it should be warmly thanked. They do a brilliant role. Cafe next door do fab baking too. Would we come back ….you bet we would.

    Reviewed by Isabella4.4Jun 2021

  • "Really well appointed holiday let and although it is in a small village and there is no garden as such there is a pleasant yard with plants and a pergola to sit in good weather."

    Whithorn sadly lacks a pub or a restaurant but does have a good fish and chip shop and it also sells home made ice cream, situated just a few doors away. The surrounding area is beautiful and careful research indicates some nice places to eat. A highlight was the stylish Cafe Melba at Bladnoch Distillery on the outskirts of Wigtown. The Crafty Distillery at Newton Stewart is also worth a visit. The Pheasant at Sorbie is very good and much better than the overrated Steam Packet Inn at Isle of Whithorn where the waiting staff were rather unwelcoming and the food did not live to to its description, although it is beautifully situated.

    Reviewed by Jessica5.0Jun 2021

  • "All mod cons within a beautifully restored Georgian setting."

    A lovely peaceful hideaway on the Machar peninsular. There was plenty to see and do and the weather was beautiful.

    Reviewed by S J4.7May 2021

  • "Quaint and warm property."

    Bed comfy. Kitchen and shower-room fine. One reasonably comfortable armchair, but chaise-longue very low and difficult to get up from. All other chairs wooden and not comfy at all. With the exception of the sun-room when the sun did shine, I found it very dark with no decent lights making it difficult to read/do crossword.

    Reviewed by Ian3.8May 2021

  • "The cottage was quaint and cosy had a fabulous time loved the open fire and four poster bed will definitely be back"

    Reviewed by Kathy5.0Dec 2020

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  • 2 bedrooms: 1 x king-size double, 1 x single
  • Ground-floor bathroom with walk-in shower, basin and WC
  • Kitchen/diner
  • Sitting room with woodburning stove
  • Sun room
  • Oil fired central heating with underfloor heating and woodburning stove
  • Electric oven and hob, microwave, radio, TV and WiFi
  • Fuel and power inc. in rent
  • Bed linen and towels inc. in rent
  • Cot and highchair available
  • Free roadside parking
  • Enclosed rear garden with a patio and furniture
  • Sorry, no pets and no smoking
  • Shop and pub within 0.1 miles
  • Please note: There is no facility to charge cars at the property but there is an EV charging point within 100 yards for public use

The property

This Georgian-style property can be found in the centre of the former Royal burgh of Whithorn in Dumfries and Galloway.

The Precinct House is a National Trust for Scotland property in an excellent, central location for a couple or small family to discover the Machars, nearby coast and Galloway Forest Park.

Enter the property to find it has been lovingly restored, whilst maintaining much of its character and history, with underfloor heating throughout helping to retain a cosy feel.

The sitting room is complete with a bay window, woodburning stove and a choice of Georgian furniture to settle down onto.

The lovely sun room has a glass ceiling and exposed stone walls, and provides a wonderful space to relax with a good back and enjoy some quiet time, while the kitchen/diner has attractive oak beams, a Belfast sink that looks out onto the sun room and a dining table to gather around to enjoy home-cooked meals.

The shower room provides a place for you to get ready each morning, while upstairs are the two bedrooms, a single and a fantastic master bedroom with king-size four-poster bed.

Outside there is roadside parking available, plus a rear enclosed garden with a patio and furniture, ideal for enjoying a morning coffee or an alfresco dinner.

The Priory next door to the property once housed the relics of St Ninian, who died around 431AD, while Whithorn itself is an Outstanding Conservation Area and one of Scotland's oldest settlements, home to Scotland's first Christian church, built by St Ninian in 397 AD.

Visit Whithorn Priory and follow the route taken by many medieval pilgrims who would visit St Ninian’s shrine, which can be found at the east end of the church, as well as carved stone displays and the Whithorn Story Visitor Centre and head to St Ninian's Cave on the coast, an isolated cave that was thought to be a hideaway for the saint.

There are shops and pubs within a mile of the property, while the Galloway House Gardens botanical garden is within easy reach.

Explore The Machars peninsula, packed with quaint villages, stunning coastal walks amidst rugged coastline, idyllic harbours and lovely sandy beaches.

Head to Wigtown, the national book town of Scotland, filled with French-style architecture, quirky shops, bookshops and tearooms, holding many festivals throughout the year.

Venture north towards the Galloway Forest Park, and enjoy scenic walking and cycling trails through the largest forest in the UK and Scotland's first Dark Sky Park, which also makes it one of the best places to stargaze in Europe.

A fantastic, historical property well-placed for discovering this fascinating part of Scotland.

Note: This property can be booked with Refs. 1046834 & 1044477, together sleeping 12 guests.

EPC Rating: Band E

Short-term Holiday Let Licence No: DG-00050-F

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About the location


Castlewigg 2 miles; Wigtown 10.5 miles; Newton Stewart 17 miles.

The former Royal Burgh of Whithorn on the Machars Peninsula in Dumfries and Galloway is renowned for having the first recorded Christian church is Scotland. Built by St Ninian around 397, the site of the Candida Casa, or White/Shining House, is now home to the parish church. The area of Whithorn is rich in history and is also home to a medieval priory and an archaeological site. The distinctive shape of Whithorn, with its spacious central area and narrow entrance-ways of elegant Georgian houses, displays its medieval heritage. The Machars and Rhins of Galloway are also home to spectacular gardens, a result of the Gulf Stream and mild climate. Logan Botanic Gardens, the Aldouran Wetland and the spectacular gardens of Castle Kennedy are all a must see. To the north of the Machars are the Galloway Hills, offering walking to all levels as well as world class mountain biking. Golf, fishing and wildlife spotting are well catered for and the sandy beaches of Monrieth, Garlieston, and along the whole of Luce Bay will delight any visitor.

This property offers the following short breaks:

  • Winter
  • Off-season
  • Last minute
  • Christmas