Cradle of Christianity Tour
(This tour can accommodate up to six passengers)
St Ninian landed in Galloway at the end of the 4th Century and changed the religious map of the Nation. This tour will look at how Dumfries and Galloway played a crucial role in the spread of Christianity.
Highlights of the Tour:
- Pick up from location of your choice.
- Whithorn Priory Museum
- St Ninains Chapel
- Isle of Whithorn
- St Ninians Cave
- Martyrs Stake
- Drop off at chosen location
The tour will start by travelling to Whithorn in the Machars area of Wigtownshire. Here we will visit the Whithorn Priory and Museum including the Latinus Stone which is the oldest Christian monument in Scotland. Whithorn is home to St Ninian’s “Candida Casa” the first Christian Church in Scotland. The site of “Candida Casa” has been excavated in recent years. Whithorn was a shrine to many pilgrims including Robert the Bruce who came to worship. After spending a few hours in Whithorn we will travel to the picturesque harbour village of the Isle of Whithorn to visit St Ninian’s Chapel before having lunch in the Steam Packet Inn renowned for its fresh seafood. After Lunch we will go to St Ninian’s Cave which is traditionally believed to have been used as a place of personal retreat and prayer by St Ninian. As a result it is today a place of pilgrimage for those coming to the area on the trail of Ninian. Seven small crosses inscribed on the western face of the rock forming the cave and its entrance are believed to have been carved by pilgrims in the 700s and 800s. St Ninian’s Cave was excavated in the 1880s. This brought to light a number of stones bearing carved crosses, as well as pillar stones and an Anglian headstone bearing a runic inscription. The eleven stones recovered from the cave are now on view in the Whithorn Priory and Museum. After leaving the Cave we will visit the Martyrs Stake at Wigtown which is the site that two Covenanters Margaret Wilson and Margaret MacLauchlan were drowned in the Solway Firth at Wigtown for attending conventicles.