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Beginning in 2014 you'll be able travel by train to the Borders from Edinburgh. The new rail line from Edinburgh's Waverley Station to Tweedbank, in the heart of the Borders, will help to open up a fascinating region that until now has too often been seen as a corridor for travelers en route to the capital.
If you're driving north along the A1 toward Edinburgh, take a tour around the prosperous Borders towns. Turn onto the A698 at Berwick-upon-Tweed, which will take you along the Scottish–English border toward Coldstream, and from there to Kelso, Jedburgh, Dryburgh, and Melrose. It's 36 miles from Jedburgh to Peebles, a good place to stay overnight. Another day might begin with a visit to Walter Scott’s lovely Abbotsford House, and then some shopping in any of these prosperous towns.
To the west, Dumfries and Galloway beckon. Travel east on the A708 to Moffat and across the A74 toward Dumfries. Two days would give you time to explore Burns sites and more in Dumfries. From Dumfries you can visit Sweetheart Abbey (8 miles away), Caerlaverock Castle (9 miles away), and Threave Gardens (20 miles away). Castle Douglas is a good place to stop for lunch. The A710 and A711 take you along the dramatic coastline of the Solway Firth. Farther west along the A75 are the towns of Newton Stewart, Portpatrick, and Glen Trool.