With over 11,000km of dramatic coastline, numerous lonely islands, majestic jagged mountain peaks and meandering rivers and lochs nestled in quiet valleys, Scotland’s impressive topography offers picturesque landscapes and stunning natural sites to explore. Scotland’s nature and geography will take your breath away at every turn so it’s understandable why the Scots are such outdoor enthusiasts.
While housesitting during the winter months in the city of Dunfermline located in the district of Fife, our first introduction to a well-loved Scottish walk was along the Fife Coastal Path north and then east of Edinburgh. This is a 190 km path that begins in the town of Kincardine and follows quaint historic seaside towns and long stretches of secluded Scottish coastline before ending in Newburgh.
We followed a small section of the John Muir Way from Queensferry toward North Berwick but this path actually stretches 215 km across the centre of Scotland between Helensburgh in the west to Dunbar, east of Edinburgh.
We quickly realized there are literally hundreds of well-loved walks in each district, let alone the extraordinary treks through areas such as The Munros, Trossachs or Cairngorms.
Since we were housesitting during winter, we had to stick to stretches that were easily accessible from Dunfermline and much tamer given the season.
Here are 5 of our favourite walks near Edinburgh. Lists of websites for other hikes/walks in Scotland are listed afterwards.
Fife Coastal Path
Queensferry to Dalmeny
Cramond to Leith
Dean Village and the Water of Leith Walkway
Arthur’s Seat and the village of Duddingston
Websites for other walking/hiking areas in Scotland:
Mary Queen of Scots Way Scotland’s Great Trails
Fife Coastal Path Rob Roy Way
West Highland Way John Muir Way
Scottish National Trail National Coastal Path
North Sea Trail Scotland’s Pilgrim Journeys
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