Sweetheart Abbey is one of the most picturesque ruins I have ever seen in the UK (besides St David’s Cathedral). Built in 1273 the monastery lies a 40 minutes drive west of Gretna Green which is, by the way, known to be famous for its runaway weddings! These „runaway marriages“ began in 1754, when Lord Hardwicke’s Marriage Act prevented minors to marry in England and Wales under certain circumstances. As this law did not apply in Scotland, boys could marry there at 14 and girls at 12 (!) with or without parental consent. All they had to do was cross the border into Scotland. Even today some say the village is one of the world’s most popular wedding destinations, hosting over 5,000 weddings each year. We decided not to give it a try though … And just in case you are wondering, how Sweetheart Abbey got its name: The Lady Dervorguilla of Galloway, named it so in memory of her husband. It is said that after his death she kept his embalmed heart in a casket of ivory and silver. When she died, it was buried alongside her. Oh love!