Kingdom of Fife is home to some of the Scotland’s biggest tourist attractions. East Neuk of Fife is no exception; towns and villages that lay on East Coast close to St Andrews are extraordinarily beautiful and have something to offer for everyone.
From quiet, rural villages with vivid historic harbours like Crail to the busy coast of Anstruther that’s filled with tourists to the brim. There’s more than enough to get you excited.
We start off with St Monans, a quiet fishing village named after legendary St Monan - allegedly killed by Danish invaders around 875AD. The village is filled with 17th to early 19th-century fishing cottages. The town has its own motto which is “Mare Vivimus” which means “From the sea we have life”. Here you can find there the most photographed pier in Scotland and try amazing smoked seafood from East Pier Smokehouse set in a stunningly scenic location. On the outskirts of town are the ruins of Newark Castle and the 18th-century windmill used to pump seawater up to a row of salt pans.
Anstruther is definitely the biggest and most popular village of the bunch. You will find here the Scottish Fisheries Museum which portrays life in the old fishing villages and at sea.
From the centre of the harbour you can board a boat that will take you to Isle of May, a nature reserve for seal and seabirds, with the remains of a 12th century monastery and Scotland’s first lighthouse
While visiting make sure to visit the local chip shop, Anstruther Fish Bar, which won loads of awards including UK fish and chip shop of the year. You can’t miss it, it’s massive and busy there are people coming in and out with takeaways constantly.
Sitting in will cost you a bit more and why would you even want to sit in, when you can take our food outside and admire the beautiful Scottish coast whilst having an amazing meal?
Crail is such a change after busy Anstruther. So quiet, peaceful and very picturesque. The silence of the place is enough to you in the tranquil mood, perfect for exploring the historic harbour where you can go for a little walk.
The harbour is small but the aged cottages around add to its charm. Great getaway destination from the busy fast life in the big city. In the Markergate sits the Crail Museum and the Heritage Centre, which traces the history of the town and its industries. The museum offers guided walks around the town during the summer months.
Last but not least, on our list is Pittenweem. Its name means “The place of the cave” and the cave in question is St Fillan’s Cave in Cave Wynd.
This place offers a nice walk along the easy-going section of the Fife Coastal Path that links three of the celebrated East Neuk fishing villages: from St Monans to Pittenweem. It slowly goes uphill and after ten minutes you can enjoy a lovely panoramic view over the whole village.