Please be aware that the landowner at St Ninian’s is carrying out site maintenance involving large machinery and significant groundworks. The path is in extremely poor condition and may be impassable. Where possible, please avoid this section of the Fife Pilgrim Way whilst we are working with stakeholders to find a resolution.
The historic town of Dunfermline has been a chief draw for pilgrims to Fife for centuries. Immerse yourself in its history and hospitality before following the route through the beautiful backdrops of Loch Fitty and Blairadam Forest.
‘There was a poor little woman, English by birth and race … who was afflicted for a long time with a very serious ailment … she fell headlong to the ground before the holy altar like a lifeless stone … But soon sadness was turned to joy, the health of her limbs restored to her.’ (Excerpt from the Miracula S. Margarite Scotorum regine [Miracles of St Margaret] 1245-63)
For hundreds of years Dunfermline has provided countless pilgrims with an inspiring destination. Its magnificent abbey is the burial place of many of Scotland’s kings and queens, including King Robert the Bruce and Queen Margaret, who was later made a saint.
Many miracles are recorded as having taken place close to St Margaret’s shrine, and a number of Scottish queens wore her shirt for protection during childbirth. Medieval pilgrims who visited the abbey on her feast day of 16 November were promised a smoother journey to heaven. This made the arduous journey of pilgrimage worthwhile.
A number of other local sites associated with pilgrimage and Saint Margaret may still be visited today. These include the Head Well, Saint Margaret’s Stone and St Margaret’s Cave, where the Queen is said to have rested and prayed respectively.