Cairngorms National Park Extension

Nature Hikes in Britain's Largest National Park


Extend your adventure in Scotland with a visit to Cairngorms National Park, the largest national park in Britain. The park is home to five of the six highest mountains in Scotland, some of the oldest forests, and is one of Scotland’s wildlife hotspots. It also includes Speyside—the most famous whisky distilling region in the world! Explore this beautiful corner of Scotland, enjoying some lovely hikes and a taste of the local whisky, before continuing to Edinburgh at trip’s end.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1
Inverness / Cairngorms National Park

After meeting your guide in Inverness this morning, drive through stunning scenery to the heart of Cairngorms National Park. This region of Scotland is home to famous Balmoral Castle, the late Queen Elizabeth’s Scottish home where she spent every summer. After visiting a favorite whisky shop (lots of rare malts and a chance to sample), enjoy a hike on the King’s estate. You’ll experience beautiful old forests, mountain views, and pass various elaborate cairns that the royal family erected to commemorate certain events. One of the most magnificent cairns is a huge stone pyramid that marks the death of Prince Albert in 1861 and has a beautiful inscription from Queen Victoria carved into the stone. Your accommodation this evening is in the charming town of Ballater, staying in a beautiful hotel that has been in the same family for over 60 years. Overnight at Darroch Learg Hotel...L
Hiking Details: 6 miles, 3 hours, 1,217 feet ascent

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Day 2
Hiking in Cairngorms National Park

Today we’ll hike around the majestic Loch Muick and up past a waterfall onto the heather-clad lower flanks of Lochnagar, an iconic mountain that dominates this area of the national park. Our route takes us on a good trail, following the south bank of the loch (look out for red deer!) until reaching Glas-Allt Sheil, a grand house in the mountains, built by Queen Victoria after the death of her beloved Prince Albert. From here, we climb up a winding trail, passing the impressive waterfalls of Glas-Allt, which cascades 165 feet down a rocky ravine. Above the falls, we contour across the heathery mountainside to link up with a trail that leads back to our start point, completing our circumnavigation of the loch. An easier hiking option is available: a simple circumnavigation of the loch rather than including the climb past the waterfalls (8 miles and just 500 feet ascent). Return to the hotel for dinner on your own and overnight...BL
Hiking Details: 10 miles, 3.5 hours, 1,500 feet ascent

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Day 3
Transfer to Edinburgh Airport

After breakfast, transfer to Edinburgh Airport (approx 2.5 hours) for departure on homeward-bound flights. You can also be dropped off at a hotel in Edinburgh on request...B


Length: 3 days
Cost From: $3295  
Arrive: Inverness, Scotland
Depart: Edinburgh, Scotland
Lodging: 2 nights hotel
Meals: All meals included except 2 dinners
Activity: Cultural Adventures, Walking, Hiking / Trekking
Trip Level:

Easy hiking, walking tours, and cultural explorations