Little Sparta opens to visitors 24 May
Although it is not possible to visit Ian Hamilton Finlay's unique
garden during the winter months, we hope you will enjoy looking at the
images on our site as you plan your trip for next summer.
Read on for information about how to visit Little Sparta in summer 2013.
Page updated 4th April 2013
Sparta is a place for contemplation, intellectual receptiveness and
enjoyment. The garden as a whole discloses to the viewer who walks
round it many complexities of meaning, sentiment and wit. It is also a
fragile place, easily damaged by the northern climate and constantly
requiring careful conservation.
reason visits to the garden are on Wednesday, Friday and
Sunday afternoons, 2:30-5pm, from 24th May to 29th September. There is
no need to make an appointment unless you are organising a visit
for a group of 10 or more, in which case, please call Laura Robertson
on 07826 495677 or contact her by e-mail.
The fee for visiting the garden is £10.
garden is not suitable for young children (under the age of 10 years)
and there are no concessionary rates. Dogs are not allowed in the
parking is about half a mile (700 metres) from the garden and strong
footwear is recommended for the track leading up from the car park to
Sparta in its entirety is protected by
copyright. On payment of a £5
fee, visitors may take photographs or
video for their own private use or study. However,
no images of Little Sparta may be published or broadcast without
explicit prior permission from Wild Hawthorn
Press (telephone +44 (0)1899
Driving Directions - SatNav Warning
Sparta is reached from Edinburgh by following the A702 as far as
Dolphinton, where there is a
right turn to Dunsyre. About a mile after passing through Dunsyre,
Little Sparta's car park is on the right hand side.
Glasgow leave the M8 at junction 6 for the A73, then the A721 at
Carluke; continue to Newbigging where there is a left turn to Dunsyre.
After about 3 miles, and before you reach Dunsyre, Little Sparta's car park is on the left.
users, the postcode is ML11 8NG, but be sure to turn in at our car park
and not one of the neighbouring farms. SatNav will direct you to turn
off the road near a dilapidated phone box: do NOT follow this
instruction. Our carpark is about half a mile closer to Dunsyre,
directly adjacent to the road. If you don't see a sign saying Little Sparta, you are in the wrong place.
Transport from Edinburgh
There will be a minibus service to Little Sparta on five Friday afternoons during August: 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd & 30th.
package includes return transport from central Edinburgh, admission to
the garden and a choice of a guidebook or photography pass, for £30 per
person. To book online go to our partner ticketing service, Eventbrite.
Page updated 4th April 2013
Public Transport and Accommodation
to Little Sparta by public transport is a challenge. One option is to
travel by bus from Edinburgh and then either walk 4 miles from the Dunsyre road
end, or arrange to meet a pre-booked local taxi. You can see the timetable for the Edinburgh-Dumfries bus service 100/101/102 at TravelineScotland.
There are several accommodation options available locally including bed & breakfast and self-catering.