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48 Hours in Levenmouth

Plan your perfect weekend by rail to Levenmouth

03 March 24

Things to do

By Graeme Johncock, Scotland's Stories

There’s no doubt in my mind that Levenmouth is one of Fife’s most underrated treasures. With sweeping beaches, fascinating history and incredible food, there’s so much on offer in this wee coastal corner.

With the new rail link opening in June 2024, this often-overlooked area will soon be opened up to all, just a short train ride from Edinburgh. It’s time to start planning how to make the most of your next trip to Levenmouth, using this 2-day itinerary as a guide.

Day 1 – Spend A Day In The Great Outdoors

Begin Your Adventure At Silverburn Park

Start your trip around Levenmouth the peaceful way by exploring Silverburn Park. Once part of the Russell Family estate, Silverburn was gifted to the town council on the condition that it was maintained as a quiet area for locals to enjoy nature.

Fifty years later, that ethos is still evident with meditation areas in the walled garden and a wildlife hide by the pond. It’s the perfect space to enjoy the best scones in Fife, available from the Cottage Window Café!

Soon, the old Flax Mill, once the centre of a thriving local industry, will be given a new lease of life as it undergoes restoration. Converted into an amazing community space, there will be artists' studios, a new restaurant and even a hostel to supplement the already popular campsite.

Take A Stroll Through Leafy Letham Glen

If there’s one thing that Levenmouth has in abundance, then it’s outdoor space. In a corner of Leven, you’ll find Letham Glen an ideal place to escape the hustle and bustle of the town.

Take a stroll through the sunken garden, once a busy, outdoor swimming pool or entertain the kids in the nearby playground. For those who have the time, delve deeper into Letham Glen to enjoy the short woodland walk alongside the river.

Grab a Midmorning Snack At Colliers Coffee Roasters

If you need a boost after all that outdoor activity, there’s no better place in Levenmouth for a midmorning snack than Colliers Coffee Roasters. This is a place that takes its coffee seriously and my perfectly poured flat white proved that.

With all syrups made in-house and a wide selection of cakes to accompany your brew, it’s no surprise Colliers has become a favourite amongst locals.

Head Down To Leven Beach

After a stroll along the promenade, past Postie the Scottie Dog Sculpture, you’ll come to arguably Levenmouth’s top attraction. The huge swathe of sand that makes up Leven Beach instantly takes me back to childhood trips to the seaside. That nostalgic feeling doesn’t end there as keen art lovers might recognise this scene from Jack Vettriano’s Singing Butler.

When the railway originally came to Leven in the 1850s, the town quickly became a tourist resort thanks to its beautiful beach. With regular trains soon arriving in the area, it’s only a matter of time before this sandy stretch draws in plenty of holidaymakers once again.

Whether you’re looking for a family day out, a relaxing place to walk or somewhere to run the dog, Leven Beach has enough space for everybody. If you’re thinking of getting into the water yourself then the Fife Dippers regularly welcome newcomers to take that plunge with the safety of numbers.

Stretch Your Legs On The Fife Coastal Path

Keep walking along Leven Beach and you’re following one of the most picturesque stretches of the Fife Coastal Path. Utilising the signposted path means that arriving in Levenmouth by train doesn’t have to limit the things you can see.

The entire Fife Coastal Path stretches for 117 miles but it’s just a short distance between Leven and Lundin Links. It’s a pleasant walk along the sandy beach although during very high tides you may have to divert to higher ground.

Explore Ancient History At The Standing Stones of Lundin

While Lundin Links is famous for its golf courses, there’s more than just bunkers and fairways to find there. Hidden away on Lundin Ladies Golf Course is an incredible example of Levenmouth’s earliest history. Three of Scotland’s largest standing stones form fascinating, 4000-year-old golf hazards.

Originally part of a larger circle of at least four, they were once believed to mark the graves of Danish generals killed by Macbeth. We now know that they’re far older, dating to the Bronze Age and possibly used as a form of lunar calendar. We may never know much about their original use, but that only makes the Standing Stones of Lundin even more alluring.

Ask at the starter’s hut on the golf course and you’ll be given an information sheet and directed towards the stones. Once you’re there, you can’t help but be in awe of the enormous monoliths standing between 14 and 18 feet high! Just keep an eye out for any flying golf balls!

Sit Down To Lunch At Lundin Coffee Co

Ponder over the true purpose of the standing stones while enjoying lunch at Lundin Coffee Co. With delicious soup, hearty sandwiches and expertly crafted coffee, it’s an ideal midday stop.

Hunt For Gold On Largo Law

If you’re feeling energetic, there aren’t many better ways to expend that than to climb to the top of Largo Law. It’s a short, steep climb to the top but the views across Levenmouth are exceptional. Keep your eyes open while you’re up there for signs of a fascinating local legend.

The story goes that there’s a hoard of gold hidden somewhere in Largo Law, protected by a ghostly guardian. One young shepherd boy tried to approach the spirit and find the treasure only to be scuppered at the last moment. Ever since, the guardian has remained as hidden as Largo Law’s legendary gold!

Learn About Local History In Largo

Wander the picturesque streets of Lower Largo to the statue of Alexander Selkirk. This was the man whose life inspired the story of Robinson Crusoe. Abandoned on an island off the coast of Chile, Selkirk survived alone for four years and four months until his rescue.

A short distance away in Upper Largo Kirk, you can find the Selkirk family grave. With Alexander being buried at sea, it was the next best place for admirers to leave shells as mementoes which now surround the headstone.

Elsewhere in the kirkyard, the incredible Largo Pictish Stone stands protected by a cage. Carved around 1300 years ago, one side portrays a badly eroded hunting scene while the other shows a cross with entwined Pictish beasts. Amazing to think that half of this was once used as a drain cover!

Enjoy A Well-Earned Dinner At Upper Largo Hotel

After a busy day exploring Levenmouth’s great outdoors, it’s time to refuel properly at the Upper Largo Hotel & Restaurant. There’s a large menu packed with local produce and I can highly recommend the haggis fritters followed by fish & chips!

Day 2 – Take Things Slower To Fully Enjoy Levenmouth

Tour The Ancient Wemyss Caves

It might seem difficult to top that first day of exploring Levenmouth, but there are few places in Scotland more fascinating than the Wemyss Caves. A few miles south along the coastal path brings you to this incredible collection of coastal caves. While anybody can pick up keys to access the caves from local shops, it’s far better to join one of the guided tours run by the Save Wemyss Ancient Caves Society.

Inside, you’ll discover the largest collection of Pictish carvings found anywhere. There are early examples of classic Pictish symbols like the Z-rod and double disc along with a much more peculiar figure holding what appears to be a spear. Mysterious Pictish Beasts are carved alongside more easily identified fish, opposite possibly the earliest depiction of a ship in Scotland.

As well as learning about the history of the Wemyss Caves and those who once used them, the tour takes in MacDuff’s Castle. This historic ruin was built by the Wemyss family, on the site of an earlier home of the powerful Earls of Fife. With the help of old photographs, you can see how vast this fortress once was, as well as the devastating impact coastal erosion is having on the caves down below.

Visit The Animals At Wellsgreen Farm

After a morning identifying ancient carved animals, it’s time to see the real thing up close. Wellsgreen Farm offers “meet the animals” sessions and farm walks where families can come face to face with goats, alpacas, sheep and more. As well as these regular encounters, there are special seasonal events like bottle-feeding lambs during April.

Wellsgreen is more than just a tourist attraction though, it’s a working farm and that allows visitors to shop sustainably. In the newly converted farm shop, pick up local produce with the fewest possible food miles, including delicious ready meals.

If you’re a fan of golf, then enjoy working up an appetite on the driving range before sitting down in the Standing Stane Restaurant for lunch with local produce once again on the menu.

Pick Up A New Skill At Wemyss School Of Needlework

Not every interesting thing to do around Levenmouth involves the outdoors. It’s time to warm up at Wemyss School of Needlework. The school has been going since 1877 when Dora Wemyss realised that young girls in the area had little prospect of employment.

These weren't bored, aristocratic ladies but the daughters of local miners. After a change in the law banned them from working in mines, this opportunity gave them the chance to stand on their own feet. A visit to the small museum in the school takes you through that amazing bit of social history.

Today, the school is still going strong, with regular classes for anybody to attend and learn the art of needlework. It’s a thriving hub for local enthusiasts and I can personally attest to the warm welcome given to all visitors.

Enjoy A Seafood Dinner At The Crusoe

There’s no better way to finish two days making memories by the sea than enjoying a seafood dinner. The Crusoe in Lower Largo serves up delicious food with friendly service in a historic building. It’s the perfect combination to end a perfect couple of days in Levenmouth.

This content is part of a project funded by the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

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