Despite its relatively small size (less than fifty miles at its widest point), the Kingdom of Fife boasts some of Scotland’s richest history, spectacular scenic landscapes and world-famous amenities – including some of the most sought-after golf courses. But with so many towns and cities in Fife, which one should you hang your hat?
Join us as we explore some of the best places to live in Fife, discussing what draws buyers in, the local amenities and how much you can expect to pay for a property there.
Set on the east coast of Fife, St Andrews is a lively little town with a lot to offer. With a history going back to 1200 AD, residents enjoy the gorgeous Georgian architecture, bustling student population and friendly, welcoming environment – not to mention the plethora of breathtaking walks, green spaces and activities for those who like to get up and go on their weekends. With a mix of big-name and independent eateries, a modern retail scene and a variety of bars and pubs to whet your whistle, St Andrews is a popular place to settle down.
Known as the ‘home of golf’, St Andrews boasts a number of prestigious courses for residents to enjoy, with some dating back to the 1700s. Swathes of tourists from around the globe travel to putt in the world-famous Old Course of St Andrews Links, which often hosts The Open Championship – the oldest of golf’s four major championships.
If golf isn’t your cup of tea, spend your days exploring the great outdoors. West Sands beach is a short 15-minute walk from the town centre and features a two-mile stretch of golden sand, stunning sea views and a backdrop of dramatic dunes. Spot the yachts, paddle boarders and speed boaters and suit up to take a dip yourself when the water warms in the summer months. Locals can also enjoy the awe-inspiring scenes of the Fife Coastal Path, a 117-mile route running from the Firth of Forth to the Firth of Tay – a popular haunt for runners, cyclists and dog walkers.
Buyers can expect to find a range of properties in St Andrews, all for a substantial price. The oldest areas of the town are home to many beautiful 16th- and 17th-century cottages, Georgian stone townhouses and Victorian terraced properties. While to the southwest, large detached houses and smaller townhouses are ample. At the time of writing, the average price for a property in St. Andrews is £555,015.
Situated in the heart of Fife, Glenrothes is a popular place for buyers of all ages, with excellent transport links to the capital city and across Scotland’s Central Belt. The town is the administrative centre of Fife and boasts fantastic retail, leisure and entertainment amenities, as well as several national parks, estates and green spaces for when you need a breath of fresh air.
Glenrothes locals enjoy its two golf courses, lush Rivergreen Park and the many cycle and walking paths running alongside the picturesque River Leven, which winds its way through the town’s centre. There are also plenty of mod cons, with a large indoor shopping centre housing big brands and small boutiques, popular chain restaurants and independent eateries, and a spacious cinema to catch all the latest flicks. For cosy pubs, relaxed bars or fine dining, the town centre is well stocked with something to please everyone.
Buyers can expect modern detached and semi-detached family homes, traditional-style cottages and ex-council housing in the town centre. However, a number of large-scale developments mean those looking for a new build will be spoilt for choice. At the same time, a strong demand for equestrian facilities sees a lot of property with land for sale. At the time of writing, the average price of a property in Glenrothes is £141,365.
Dunfermline is Scotland’s eighth (and newest) city, bestowed city status in 2022 as part of Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations. Nicknamed the ‘auld grey toun’, this former Royal Burgh was once the nation’s capital, between the 11th and 13th centuries, and is the final resting place of many Scottish kings and queens. Bursting with history, stunning medieval architecture and plenty of award-winning cultural exhibits (not to mention acres of green space and retail amenities), Dunfermline is a great place to call home.
The beating heart of Scottish history, Dunfermline’s monastic past dominates the city. Marvel at the elegant beauty of the royal palace, a 12th-century abbey (and the final resting place of Robert the Bruce and eleven other Scottish kings and queens), or admire the restored 15th-century Abbot House, which features a heritage centre dedicated to the city’s rich past.
While history buffs get their noses stuck into the myriad museums, galleries and buildings on offer, adrenaline chasers and those wanting to stretch their legs on the weekends can head to Pittencrieff Park (locally known as ‘The Glen), a 76-acre landscape with three family-friendly play areas, captivating gardens and even a flock of resident peacocks. Or, join the locals in languishing at Townhill Country Park, located at Town Loch and home to year-round watersports and activities. For retail therapy, day-to-day groceries and rainy-day activities, Dunfermline has a massive range of shopping opportunities, eateries and watering holes to keep you and the family occupied during your free time.
Buyers can expect to find plenty of new build properties on the market in Dunfermline, alongside stunning Victorian and Edwardian-era homes near the city centre. At the time of writing, the average price of a home in Dunfermline is £183,303.
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