Friday, May 31, 2013

FIve Scenic Walks in Scotland

With such a diverse landscape of moors, woodlands, lochs, glens, sandy beaches and rugged peaks, Scotland presents walkers with a medley of options, from multi-day, rigorous treks to more leisurely strolls of just a few hours duration. But no matter the level of exertion, you'll be enveloped in this country's sublime beauty if you choose any of the five walks below:


1. The four-day Great Glen Way will bring you to Leitirfearn Nature Reserve with its myriad wildflowers and the ruins of Invergarry Castle. Of course, Loch Ness is the most iconic sight. But those who are obsessed with canals, like myself, will be able to inspect various features along the route that parallels the Caledonian Canal with the eight locks of Neptune's Staircase.



2. West Highland Way is, without a doubt, the country's most popular walking route. There's plenty of woodland stretches along this almost 100-mile route, which typically takes a week to traverse. You'll wander along Lock Lomond,  explore Rannoch Moor, a wild bogland, and climb the aptly named Devil's Staircase to some 1,800 feet.


3. On Orkney Island, a six-mile walk along the West Westray Coast
from Kirbest to Noup Headon will bring you to the 19th century Noup Head Lighthouse that stands over dramatic cliffs noted for their seabirds. In fact, this walk will delight birders. Arctic terns, puffins, guillemots are a few of the species you are likely to spot along the way, including in the Cliffs Nature Reserve.
Climbing to the top of Fitty Hills will provide panoramic views of the entire island



4.  Beinn Eighe Mountain Trail is an almost three-mile loop that brings you to the Beinn Eighe National Nature Reserve with its clutch of ancient pines.The mountain, as opposed to the woodland, trail affords 360° views, but it also requires negotiating steep rocky slopes with cairns marking the way.
The payoff: views of Loch Maree, the Beinn Eighe Massif and the Torridon Mountains.



5. Walking the scenic route from the hamlet of Blairmore to the Cape Wrath Lighthouse, you'll encounter few other people along a stretch of pristine coast
and the cream-colored beach of Sandwood Bay. Along the 14-mile trek, you'll climb across steep slopes, meander along cliff tops and cross several waterways. One of the most curious features of this journey is the stacks of boulders that resemble human faces

14 comments:

Sheryl said...

What lovely photos. A walk can be so relaxing and inspiring, especially with such physical beauty surrounding it.

Brette said...

Scotland is so beautiful. Any of these walks would make me happy!

Roxanne said...

Incredible options. A friend just got back from Scotland and loved it.

Jeanine Barone said...

Hi Sheryl, I always find walking or hiking to really put me in a better frame of mind.

Jeanine Barone said...

Hi Brette, I love walking and hiking so much that almost any trail can be inspiring. But these are pretty phenomenal.

Jeanine Barone said...

Hi Roxanne, I'm glad your friend had a good time.

Kerry Dexter said...

Jeanine,
I've walked in most of these areas, and other fine places in Scotland as well. always glad when an accomplihsed travelre such as yourself speaks well of Scotland. your timing is appropriate too, as 2013 is being celebrated as the Year of Natural Scotland

merr said...

I love walking to sightsee. You get such a wonderful feel for the place.

Jeanine Barone said...

Hi Kerry, I didn't realize that. Thanks for the heads up.

Jeanine Barone said...

Hi merr, Absolutely. Traveling the slow way, whether biking, hiking, Nordic skiing, or kayaking, is definitely a great way to connect with the land and its people.

Jane Louise Boursaw said...

My goodness, it looks so mystical and magical there. And such diverse geographical elements. Gorgeous.

Jeanine Barone said...

Hi Jane Louise, It is amazing how Scotland has so much scenic variety.

Kris Bordessa said...

Love that lighthouse. We're talking about a trip to England; maybe I should add Scotland to the mix!

Jeanine Barone said...

Hi Kris, Definitely add Scotland to your UK trip.