The gently rolling, seemingly empty landscape of the Lowther hills makes a tranquil contrast to the busy towns in the north, their prosperity built on textiles and mines. Yet each has its own fascination. While Clydesdale is a rich valley devoted to growing fruit and vegetables, New Lanark is the site of one of the most exciting ventures in Scotland's industrial history.
Wild stretch of high moorland where government troops defeated Covenanters in 1680, and leader of the Covenanters -- Richard Cameron -- was killed. The Cameron Stone monument marks battle site.
Remains of a well-preserved Iron Age fort crown hill on east bank of River Clyde; walled enclosure lies inside ramparts and ditches.
Two local 18th-century personalities are commemorated in parish church museum with portraits and mementos: James Boswell, biographer and friend of Dr Johnson; and gas-lighting pioneer William Murdoch. Boswell is buried in the family mausoleum next to church.
Barons Haugh Nature Reserve
Mixed woodland, parkland and freshwater marsh; haunt of dabbling ducks and peregrine falcons. Hides give splendid views of waders.
Remains of Lanarkshire's largest Iron Age fort, with Bronze Age cairn on summit. Fine views over the Isle of Arran and hills around Loch Lomond.
Industrial town and birthplace of explorer Dr David Livingstone; born 1813 in an 18th-century weaver s house in Shuttle Row. Now restored as The Livingstone National Memorial with mementos, including journals, surgical instruments and relics from Africa.
Calderglen Country Park
Over 300 acres of wooded gorge and parkland with nature trails, woodland, and river with water-falls. Natural history displays at the Visitor Centre. Children's zoo and adventure playground.
Old village surrounds village green in rich farming country. Rare 15th-century crucifixion stone preserved in vestibule of church, dating from 1794. Wild moorland was invaded by the Caledonian Railway in 1845, and a new village sprang up to house station workers.
Precipitous cliffs overhang rocky chasm, through which Mouse Water river plunges. Impressive three-arched bridge spans gorge; one of highest road bridges in Scotland, built by engineer Thomas Telford in 1823.
Chatelherault Country Park
Ten miles of woodland and country walks on the edge of Glasgow, where ancient breed of white cattle grazes parkland. Handsome 18th-century lodge, designed by William Adam, once belonged to Dukes of Hamilton.
Fine example of 16th-century military architecture, in picturesque setting above small River Nethan. Stronghold of the Hamiltons, supporters of Mary, Queen of Scots; partly dismantled by her opponents in 1579.
Quiet village overlooking grazing land on a bend in the Clyde. Site of Roman fort. Fragment of 16th-century castle lies opposite village across the Clyde.
Little township at foot of 1400ft Mountherrick Hill. Countryside of grassy hills, described by Dorothy Wordsworth as being 'inhabited solitude' in 1803. Countryside was favourite hunting ground of James V.
Industrial, market town on Lugar Water. Bust of James Keir Hardie, a founder of the Labour Party, stands outside town hall. Local history displays at Baird Institute Museum. Snuff box collection at Dumfries House, 2 miles west, built by William Adam in 1757 for the 4th Earl of Dumfries.
Wild pass, 114Oft high over Lowther Hills from Crawford to Durisdeer; one of the finest view-points in the Lowlands.
Coal-mining town with fragment of 18th-century castle; model for Sir Walter Scott's Castle Dangerous. A coal seam, opened beneath it in the 1940s, reduced into ruins. Earlier castle on site was stronghold for the warlike Douglas family; clan warriors buried in St Bride's Church.
Falls of Clyde
Scottish Wildlife Reserve on both banks of River Clyde, with spectacular falls and woodland walks. Bonnington Linn is most famous fall; beloved of poets and romantic painters. Visitor Centre in the old dyeworks, beside river in New Lanark. Look for badger, roe deer and red squirrel. Kestrels nest safely on gorge ledges and wood-land birds include great spotted woodpecker and willow tits.
Rare example of attractive industrial town. Octagonal church (1732) designed by William Adam, with Covenanters' monument in churchyard. Hamilton District Museum, housed in 17th-century inn, retains original stables and Assembly Rooms dating from 18th century.
Small Clydesdale village, transformed in 19th century from a place of 'rotting peat-roofed hovels' into a charming 'new town' by Alexander Baillie-Cochrane. Robert Burns visited church, with Norman doorway dated 1647. Ruined Lamington Tower carries date of 1589.
Peaceful market town, declared a royal burgh when David I built 12th-century castle, now vanished. Ruins of 12th-century Church of St Kentigern survive. People's hero William Wallace said to have lived and raised his forces here for Wars of Independence. His statue stands in 1777 parish church.
Lanark Moor Country Park
Boating and fishing on the loch, picnic areas and golf on shore, good walks through woods.
Situated 1350ft above sea level, surrounded by bare hills that yielded lead for centuries. Allan Ramasy Library has records and maps of mining ventures. Hill-top graveyard has memorial to John Taylor, who died aged 137, after a century of working in mines. Longevity attributed to fresh uplands air.
Small town on edge of moorland, also known as Abbey Green. Priory, founded by Benedictine monks in 1144, no longer stands.
Quiet hills, frequented by sheep and grouse, overlook the Elvan Water, the Glengonnar, the Wan-lock and the Mennock. Once rich in mineral wealth; gold and lead attracted miners for centuries.
Cotton-mill village of austere buildings, preserved as living museum and memorial to social reform. Village founded 1785 by Glasgow merchant David Dale, and the inventor of a spinning frame, Richard Arkwright. In 1800, Robert Owen (Dale's son-in-law) managed and improved working conditions, providing schools and homes for workers. Local history exhibits on display in visitor centre.
Town post office, opened in 1763, survives as Britain's oldest post office. Granite monument pays tribute to two declarations made by the Covenanters -- in 1680 and 1685-- renouncing their allegiance first to Charles II and then to James VII of Scotland.
Silk-weaving town in the Middle Ages. Some weavers' cottages still line older streets. Powmillon Burn flows through three public parks. Gorge dominated by 15th-century castle ruin, below which Old Town Mill is an arts centre.
Strathclyde Country Park
Mao-made loch, nature trails, fun park and sandy beaches. Extravagant Hamilton Mausoleum, built in the 1840s by 10th Duke of Ham-ilton. Huge bronze doors and multicoloured marble inside. Make a noise and listen for remarkable echo.
Famous landmark, rising 2335ft. Long climb to summit for views over Lake District and coast of Northern Ireland.
Lonely moorland village, 1380ft above sea level, where gold was once panned from neighbouring streams. Beam pump is a relic of lead-mining days. Disused mine is now part of Scottish lead-mining museum.