The word ‘Ness’ comes from the old Norse language for nose, referring to a nose of land in this case the eastern most headland of Fife on the coast of what is known as the ‘East Neuk of Fife’. In days gone by this area was also called ‘Muckross’ describing a promontory or headland of pigs, as the area was not only historically abundant with wild boar but the geographic nose could be conveniently compared to a boar’s snout. Early settlement of this unique geographic area has been evidenced by early Danish and Pictish remains. Balcomie Castle which still stands at the Ness and dates back to the 16th century, once played host to Mary de Guise in 1705 while she was waiting to be married to James V. Although wild boar and Royalty are now no longer present at Fife Ness, it remains a cherished home and stop-off for an abundance of wildlife and most notably birds. Over 150 species of birds have been catalogued in modern times including rare and migratory species.
Out and About in Fife
As well as the neighbouring and historic Crail golf links, Kalliope B&B is on Fife’s golden golf coast with Kingsbarns links, St. Andrews Bay links, Castle Course Links, and St. Andrews Old Course all in easy distance. In keeping with the Scottish fancy for a tipple, the newly opened Kingsbarns Whisky Distillery is just up the road and award winning Eden Brewery just outside of St. Andrews are both open to visitors seeking tips on the fine art of liquid refreshment! For the thrill seekers Fife’s coast has much to offer including open sea kayaking (classes and guided trips are available at Cellerdyke Harbour), para-karting/kiting at West Sands beach, and drag racing or go carting available on selected dates at Crail airfield. There are several horse-riding clubs in the surrounding areas and guided beach rides can be arranged. Fife’s coast and rivers are also popular fishing grounds and in season pheasant shoots are run nearby. Weather abiding boat trips to the Isle of May bird sanctuary and visitor centre can be booked and taken from nearby Anstruther harbour. And last but by no means least, if award winning fish and chips and a local brew takes your fancy Crail, Anstruther , and St. Andrews all boast some of the Country’s best freshly prepared fish and seafood.
'Birding' at Kalliope House, Crail
As the late great creator of Scrooge McDuck, Carl Barks, might have said: bird lovers of the world unite! Here at Kalliope House room and board is provided to feathered and un-feathered friends alike! Whilst the indoor swimming pool, sauna and dining facilities cater to our paying guests, our large pond, bird-feeders and berry bushes are free of charge to those paying a flying visit. Our unique geographic location at the Ness attracts: coastal, estuarine, moorland, farmland and woodland birds including rare and migratory species. Whist spring, summer and autumn are arguably the best times of year to witness the bird life, at Fife Ness our feathered friends are never far away. Whether you prefer the comfort of your room, at Kalliope House, or to sit on the sun terrace overlooking the coastal farmland and sea, or take a stroll around the pond and orchard, the bird life and wildlife are all around to enjoy at any time of year. From frolicking pheasants, murmuring starlings, and glimpsing gold-crests to beautiful buzzards, lovely lapwings and the great grey heron, you’re bound to bump into one of our other regular visitors!