St Andrews holds a special place in Scotland's history. It takes its name from the Apostle whose relics, legend tells us, were brought to this place in antiquity by St Rule. Scotland later adopted St Andrew as her patron saint and took his saltire cross for her flag. Before the Reformation, the town was the centre of religious life in medieval Scotland, with the bishops wielding great influence over both church and state. St Andrews is also famous as a place of learning. The university, founded in 1410-11, is the third oldest in Britain.
St Andrews day is celebrated on the 30th November. Every year the St Andrews Bay Hotel put on a spectacular light and fireworks show. This is normally followed by an open invite for free hot drinks.
For many visitors, though, it's a game that draws them here, for St Andrews is the home of golf, the sport having been played here for some 600 years. The Old Course is arguably the most famous golf course in the world, and the Royal and Ancient Golf Club is still the ruling body for the rules of golf. Fittingly, the Old Course hosted the Open during the millennium year and did so again in 2005.
St Andrews is a town meant for exploring. The medieval layout of the town centre remains intact, with the main shopping areas concentrated in Market Street and South Street, with Bell Street and Church Street connecting the two principal streets. Take time to explore - on foot - and take pleasure at the surprises and delights you will find.
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