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  • Writer's picturePeter

Ayr Mount - Hillsborough, NC


You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you. And by “you” we mean Ayr Mount.

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A property straight out of a Jane Austen novel, Ayr Mount was built in approximately 1815 by William Kirkland, who original hailed from Ayr, Scotland. While the house is not currently open for tours due to COVID-19, the grounds are more than enough to explore.

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One highlight is the “Poet’s Walk,” a 1-mile loop around the property. Even though this loop is not paved, this is an easy walk that alternates between gravel, grass, and mulch. The Poet’s Walk goes by a pond on the property, but there is also a longer optional path that will take you down along the Eno River. (Occoneechee Speeday is directly across the Eno, and maps there indicate that a crossing over the river will eventually be built to connect the 2.) While there are plenty of trees on the property, there is also a good amount of unshaded area - we’d say it is about a 50/50 mix.

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Now is a perfect time to visit Ayr Mount because the butterflies are out in force. Make sure to stop by the plants at the the back of the house and sit in an Adirondack chair to watch them float around and snack on some flowers.

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A beautiful, small cemetery with at least a dozen graves of Kirkland family members sits between the parking lot and the house, and is another must-visit feature.

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Speaking of parking, there is a fair amount in the gravel lot with good shade. We found that the center spots get the best shade coverage.

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Last, don’t miss the small Free Library along the gravel path close to the parking lot. It is made of beautiful wood in the shape of a house and Peter adored it. We took and left a book.

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Have you been to Ayr Mount? Let us know in the comments!


(Note: We're currently working on updating our website with our reviews. This review was originally posted on Instagram and Facebook on August 31, 2020.)

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