St Andrews

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St Andrews is a town on the east coast of Scotland 53 miles north of Edinburgh, 14 miles south of Dundee. The town is popular for its Golf Courses, British Golf Museum, St Andrews Museum, Cathedral, Castle, historic Colleges with Museums, and Shopping Streets with picturesque old buildings.

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See also a large Click On Map for the area Top Attractions.

The image top is of the Swilken Bridge on the Old Course at St Andrews. After 7 in the evening is the best time to get photos of the bridge, or you on the bridge, after the golf has finished and the sun is round. This is the most famous golf course in the world, said to be where golf began in the 1400s.

The image second top is of the British Golf Museum opened in 1990 next to the famous Golf Club. The Museum covers the history of golf giving information on how golf clubs and balls changed over the centuries.

The Martyrs Monument is by the Museum. This is in honour of four Protestant men from St Andrews that were burned to death in the 1500s for their religious beliefs. Many people in Scotland were converting from Catholic to Protestant at the time.

St Andrews Aquarium is next to the Monument with a wide variety of fish, reptiles, snakes, penguins, and mercat. Website. Next to the Aquarium is the Seafood Ristorante with views over the West Sands Beach.

St Andrews Cathedral is situated by the harbour on the east side of the town, a short walk from the Golf Club. The Cathedral was built from the 1150s. This was the most important Medieval Catholic Church in Scotland, and huge at 390 feet/119m long. You can explore the Cathedral remains, take a tour of the museum, and climb the 156 narrow steps to the top of St Rule's Tower for fantastic views over the town.

St Andrews Castle is next to the Cathedral. The Castle was built from the 1180s to house Bishops from the Cathedral. It was fought over during the Wars of Scottish Independence in the 1300s, and was the scene of murders between Catholics and Protestants during the Reformation in the 1500s.

The free Museum of the University of St Andrews is situated by the Castle on The Scores. The University was founded between 1410 and 1414 with its museum holding its ancient treasures. This is the oldest University in Scotland.

Market Street runs west from the Cathedral, one of a few scenic streets for shopping and dining.

South Street also runs west from Cathedral with a number of historic building, such as Citizen Building, Town Hall, Holy Trinity Church, Blackfriars Chapel Ruins, and St Mary's College with the free Bell Pettigrew Zoology Museum. St Mary's was founded in 1538.

St Andrews Museum is situated on Doubledykes Road a 10 minute walk west along Market Street and St Mary's Place. The Museum is in Kinburn House built in the 1870s. The Museum with a Cafe opened in 1991 covering the history of St Andrews. Map.

St Andrews History

The town would have grown around the harbour with fishing and farming.

747 - there was a high ranking church at St Andrews sitting just above the Harbour, where the ruins of the small Chapel of St Mary on the Rock can be seen today.

1120s - St Rule's Church is built next to the Chapel by St Andrews Harbour with a 100ft/33m high tower.

1158 - building of St Andrews Cathedral begins next to St Rule's Church. This would become the largest and most important medieval church in Scotland at 391ft / 119m long.

1180s - St Andrews Castle is built for the Bishops of St Andrews Cathedral.

The Cathedral, Castle and Town Walls would have been an impressive and secure place for the time.

1300s - St Andrews Castle is fought over by the Scots and English during the Wars of Scottish Independence. The castle was eventually destroyed by the Scots to prevent English forces from capturing it again.

1400 - St Andrews Castle was rebuild for Bishop Walter Trail. The castle was then used as a notorious prison, holding local criminals and some important people of the time.

1400s early - Golf is played at St Andrews on common ground. The Old Course built on that ground became known as the home of golf.

1410 - the University of St Andrews is founded as the first University in Scotland, only Cambridge and Oxford in England are older in the UK.

1520 - 1550s - a number of people with Protestant beliefs were burned at the stake in St Andrews.

1538 - St Mary's College is founded at St Andrews to preserve the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church. Changing from Catholic to Protestant had began in Europe from 1517. Henry VIII of England adopted Protestantism in 1529.

St Mary's College has the Bell Pettigrew Zoology Museum.

1559 - the reformation to prevent Catholic preaching spread throughout Scotland with a Protestant mob destroying the interior of St Andrews Cathedral that year.

1561 - St Andrews Cathedral was abandoned with much of its stonework taken for buildings in the town.

1754 - the Royal and Ancient Club was founded at St Andrews to govern Golf and the rules.

1800s - St Andrews becomes a popular holiday destination, especially with golfers.

1873 - the Old Course at St Andrews holds its first Open Championship. The first 12 Opens were held at Prestwick Golf Club in Ayrshire that had been established in 1851. St Andrews has held the Open about 26 times now with Tiger Woods winning in 2000 and 2005.

1892 - the first Women students were accepted at St Andrews University.

1990 - the British Golf Museum is opened at St Andrews next to the Old Course.

1991 - St Andrews Museum is opened in Kinburn House.

2001 - Prince William enrolled at St Andrews University.

2003 - Prince William began dating Kate Middleton at the University, they married in 2011.

2005 - Price William graduated at St Andrews University.

2008 - the Museum of the University of St Andrews MUSA opens with a display of the University ancient relics.

Today - St Andrews has about 7,000 students each year and a large teaching staff that make up about half the towns population of 17,000.

There are vast numbers of golfers visiting the town, they play about 230,000 rounds each year on the 7 courses at St Andrews, with 45,000 rounds being on the Old Course.

Tourism for the historic buildings and history adds many more visitors. Many oversees visitors to Scotland, book coach tours that visit St Andrews.

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