Kelso - Floors Castle,and their garden centre is in the old walled garden with lovely herbaceous borders and coffee shop.
Nicest place for coffee and cake is Woodside, near Ancrum, about 3 miles north of Jedburgh. i go there when I'm feeling frazzled and it's lovely, serene and calming. They have loads of bird feeders and the comings and goings of the birds is fascinating.
also, Main Street Trading Company in St Boswells - brilliant independent bookshop with cafe and they've recent,y opened a deli too.
If they're in Galashiels, The Salmon Inn is nice for pub food, and T42 tea shop does excellent cakes and the staff are great.
Melrose is nice for a couple of hours mooching round the shops (all small independents), the abbey and Harmony gardens.
DH maintains I should write a book entitled 'A Comprehensive Guide to the tea shops of the Scottish Borders'!
Well in that case I really couldn't recommend Kailzie highly enough. Their pistachio chocolate tart thing is second only to the plum frangipane. Made each day on the premises I'm told! Tell them to watch out for unexpected horses on the road though. It's quite twisty and there's a stables nearby.
Sorry, just seen that you've booked. They do drive? Because Walkerburn itself is a v small village with only a small shop and it's not particularly pretty. The hotel/pub shut down a while ago and is lying empty. Closest places are Innerleithen (Traquair House worth a visit), Galashiels or Selkirk the other way (small towns) or Peebles (bigger, some nice shops and a gentle walk along the Tweed). Just outside Peebles on the way 'home' is Kailzie Gardens which has a great little courtyard/converted stables restaurant/cafe that does really nice lunches and really lovely home-made cake and coffee.
They live in South Lakes, and my dad can't drive very far (they're 80), so I'm thinking somewhere in the bottom third.
So firstly, any particularly scenic areas? and secondly, any high end hotels anyone can recommend? preferably small, friendly ones rather than chains as they're so old and it would be nice to have genuinely caring staff.