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The Galloway & Southern Ayrshire
UNESCO Biosphere


We are incredibly lucky to be located right in the heart of the beautiful Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Unesco Biosphere - a UNESCO designated area where we value and protect the world class environment we live in.  We love to tell our guests all about what makes this place so special and magical!

We are proud to have been awarded the Biosphere Certification Mark, which recognises exemplars in local sustainable enterprise. Biospheres are the only internationally recognised "badge" for demonstrating excellence in sustainable development.


What is a Biosphere?

A Biosphere is a special designation awarded by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).  It means that Galloway and Southern Ayrshire UNESCO Biosphere has been recognised internationally as a world class environment for people and nature.

The UNESCO Biosphere designation recognises the fantastic array of landscapes, wildlife, cultural heritage and learning opportunities that our area offers for communities, businesses and visitors to experience and celebrate in a sustainable way.

Our Biosphere

The Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere embraces diverse countryside surrounding the Galloway Hills.  Covering an area of 5268 square kilometres, the Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere is a status given in recognition of its special natural qualities. It is home to 95,000 people who want to make life better while caring for the natural environment.

How It Works

All Biospheres around the world share the same goals:

1)      Conservation: promoting the preservation of wildlife, habitats and landscape.

2)      Learning: supporting a better understanding of nature and global issues.

3)      Development: fostering a sustainable economy and society.

We make a difference by piloting new ideas, new ways of working and promoting a more integrated approach to land use that benefits the rural economy, biodiversity, climate change and our local population.

By working with local communities, businesses and schools, we can help them realise the benefits that the UNESCO Biosphere designation can bring to them, through branding the region, local produce and services, marketing towns and villages and promoting a more sustainable way of living.

Our simple, yet powerful, vision for Galloway and Southern Ayrshire is to make life in the Biosphere better for people and nature.

Around the World

Galloway and Southern Ayrshire Biosphere was the first Biosphere in Scotland.  It joins an international network of over 700 Biospheres around the world. The global Biosphere network encourages sharing of experiences and knowledge to help us take better care of our surroundings locally, nationally and internationally.



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