Looking for some stunning winter walks? We’ve pulled together our Top 5 favourite walks to enjoy this festive season. From leisurley strolls to work off that extra Christmas portion, to more advanced hikes – in Scotland there are a variety of walks to suit all ages and abilities. In New Lanark we’re very lucky to have the stunning Falls of Clyde on our doorstep as well as a variety of other top walking spots including Lanark Loch / Racecourse, Tinto Hill, Cartland Craigs and Strathclyde Loch.
These magnificent waterfalls on the River Clyde have been impressing visitors for centuries – from Wordsworth to Coleridge, and J. M. W. Turner to Sir Walter Scott. The four linn (Scots: waterfalls) compromise of the upper falls of Bonnington Linn, Corra Linn, Dundaff Linn, and the lower falls of Stonebyres Linn. Corra Linn is the highest, with a fall of 84 feet. Bonnington Linn (fall of 30 feet), Corra Linn and Dundaff Linn (fall of 10 feet) are above New Lanark and located within the Falls of Clyde Reserve managed by the Scottish Wildlife Trust, a national nature conservation charity. Stonebyres Linn is located several miles downstream from the reserve and New Lanark.
Visitors can enjoy walks within the native woodlands, spotting wildlife and wondering at the flora & fauna all around them. Look our for kingfishers, otters, deer and badgers!
Dundaff Linn can be seen from the far end of New Lanark village. From there it is around a 20-30 minute walk along the river boardwalk until you arrive at Corra Linn. It is then another 20-30 minutes before you arrive at Bonnington Linn. (in total this route is 3 miles)
2. Calton Hill, Edinburgh
Traditionally a place of recreation for Edinburgh residents, Calton Hill, with its numerous monuments and buildings is popular as a fine viewpoint over the city. 1 miles – 1.5 hours. View more about the walk here.
3. Cardrona Forest
If walking over remote moorland and through peaceful forest appeals to you, then this route in the Scottish Borders is perfect. 9 miles. View more about the walk here.
4. Ben Lomond
Ben Lomond is one of the most popular Munros, rewarding the 30,000 people who make it to the top with fantastic views of the length of Loch Lomond and far into the hills to the north and the Trossachs to the east. The route has been well made, however the optional return down the Ptarmigan ridge can be muddy and is rocky in places making the going more difficult in poor visibility. 7.5 miles. 4-5 hours. View more about the walk here.
5. Castle Fraser, Aberdeen
Castle Fraser is an atmospheric baronial castle dating back to the 15th century and was the ancestral home of the Fraser family. As you venture through the castle and up to the round tower, with its panoramic views of the gardens and estate beyond, you get a sense of life from the medieval to the Victorian period. The estate has two easily followed trails taking you through a mixture of parkland, farmland and woodland, opening out to give views of Bennachie.View more about the walks here.
Well that’s certainly got us inspired to bundle up and enjoy the great outdoors this weekend. Let us know if you have any other ideas for winter walks in Scotland. Merry Christmas!
Melissa – New Lanark Marketing and PR Officer