Saints Journeys: Scottish Borders Abbeys

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This journey takes in the four famous Scottish Borders Abbeys of Kelso, Jedburgh, Dryburgh, and Melrose plus the area of Mailros Abbey (Old Melrose), the site of the abbey that St. Cuthbert joined in 651 A.D.

Sites to be Visited

Kelso Abbey
Jedburgh Abbey
Dryburgh Abbey
Mailros Abbey (Old Melrose)
Melrose Abbey

Journey to the Scottish Border Abbeys

The four abbeys plus the area of Mailros Abbey (Old Melrose) may be easily visited in one day as the entire journey is only 33 miles (53.1 km) long.

Our journey starts in Kelso, a market town that lies where the rivers Tweed and Teviot have their confluence. Kelso Abbey, located at NGR NT7271333818, was founded by the Tironensian Order of monks in 1128 A.D.

Our second destination is Jedburgh Abbey, founded by the Augustinians ca.1138 A.D. The Abbey is 11.4 miles (18.4 km) from Kelso Abbey and is located at NGR NT6503820448.
Detailed Driving Directions Map

Our journey's next destination is Dryburgh Abbey, founded by the Premonstratensians in 1150 A.D. It is 12.4 miles (20 km) from Jedburgh Abbey and is located at NGR NT5905831683.
Detailed Driving Directions Map.

After visiting Dryburgh Abbey, we venture up the road a bit to where Mailros Abbey (Old Melrose) was located and where you can walk to the area in which St. Cuthbert once walked in the early 7th Century A.D. It is roughly 6.21 miles (9.9km) from Dryburgh Abbey and is located roughly at NGR NT588340. From the parking area near the Tea House at Old Melrose, walk to the the area overlooking the River Tweed where there is a small building that houses the Interpretation Center for Mailros Abbey (Old Melrose). Walking back to the tea house, you can see several earthern vallums which some have claimed may have enclosed the monastic buildings at Mailros Abbey. Note: the Tea House at Old Melrose is highly recommended.
Detailed Driving Directions Map.

The last stop on this journey is Melrose Abbey, founded in 1136 A.D. by Cistercian monks and built about two miles from from the original monastery at Old Melrose. It is 3 miles (4.8 km) from Old Melrose and located at NGR NT5477634152.
Detailed Driving Directions Map.

Visitors Information

Visitors information on the Scottish Borders Abbeys may be found at the Undiscovered Scotland website. General tourist information may be found at the Scottish Borders Tourism website.


As of the date of this posting, road directions and conditions are correct. Please check local road conditions, however, for possible changes prior to venturing forth on this journey. A helpful resource for road changes and possible trip interruptions if you are travelling in England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland is the AA-UK Route Planner. Another map source that this website uses and that may be useful to you on your journeys is Streemap UK.

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