Top Roads: Scottish Borders

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After some inspiration for 2024? How about the Scottish Boarders…

The Scottish Borders is a haven for bikers. It’s often bypassed by tourists pressing on to get up to the more dramatic Highlands, but they’re missing out on some seriously special scenery and surprisingly quiet twisty roads. What more does any biker need?

Scottish Borders

MOFFAT MAGIC

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The A708 is a brilliant bit of road which runs from Moffat to Selkirk. It’s got a lot going for it, with a rich mix of ups, downs, twists and turns that’ll keep you entertained for over 30 miles. There’s a cracking place called the Glen Café which is the perfect place to stop for a brew and a bite to eat, and the town of Moffat (although technically not in the Borders) has become a bit of a destination for bikers, thanks to the brilliant riding in the area and a top-rate biker-friendly hotel called the Buccleuch Arms, which offers quality digs, good grub, secure packing and route advice.

DIPS AND DROPS

The A68 is a road of two halves. While it’s best known as being the far more scenic option for getting from north to south in a hurry, it’s actually a pretty good riding road in parts. Arguably the best stretch is around Carter Bar, where you cross the England/Scotland border. If you do the stretch below on your way north, you’ll pop out in just the right spot to make the most of the cracking bends and big, open scenery. Just watch out for those hidden dips.

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GRAVEL GOODNESS

The Kielder Forest Park might not actually be in the Scottish Borders, but as it’s a literal stone’s throw away, we thought we could use some artistic licence and include it here. Start in Bellingham and head all the way up to Kielder Castle before swinging a right, snagging a toll ticket and jumping on to the Kielder Forest Drive. For the princely sum of £3, you’ll get to enjoy the largely unpaved road which cuts through the forest and wild, windswept scenery for 12 miles before joining the aforementioned A68 at (the snappily named) Balkehopeburnhaugh. Brilliant.

COASTAL CLASSIC

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This is a nice one to tag on to the Moffat to Selkirk blast. Head for Innerleithan, set the satnav for St. Abbs, and expect to be treated to a joyous amble across the gently rolling Borders countryside before arriving on the coast in the tiny fishing village surrounded by cliffs. Top stuff.


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