The Speyside Way: 13 stunning images of one of Scotland's best long distance walks
The route provides a gentle way through the Highlands; starting on the coast with small quaint fishing villages, following the route of the River Spey through rural farmland and ancient forest, and ends with dramatic views of the mountains in the Cairngorms National Park.
By Group Reporter
Friday, 18th October 2019, 12:40 pm
Text and Images: Cory Jones, Michelle Green and Issie Inglis. Taken from The Speyside Way: an interactive guide. Available soon as an iPhone app, a book for iPad and a Kindle Book, all published by World Adventure Guides.
By following the River Spey from its mouth to its source, you can explore all the way from the coast, through the heart of Speyside malt whisky country, as far as Kingussie.
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This route can be done during most times of the year - although obviously the winter months can get very cold. Accommodation can be limited during the winter.
The Speyside Way is a week-long journey of around 80 miles, that will be hugely memorable and let you sample the highlights of the country. The route follows waymarked footpaths on good trails and disused railway tracks.
A first day of gentle walking takes you through Portgordon and Spey Bay, home to the Scottish Dolphin Centre.
A climb out of Fochabers will reward you with fine views of the Spey Valley. On to Boat o' Brig, and from there to Craigellachie, a small village perched above the confluence of the Spey and the Fiddich.
From Craigellachie, the trail continues through the villages of Aberlour and Knockando to Ballindalloch following the old disused Strathspey railway line. This makes for easy walking.
This is probably the hardest days walking on the Speyside Way. Some real moorland sections. The Tomintoul Spur contains two climbs, up to over 550m. Today you really experience wild Scotland.
Plenty of undulations today on your route plus some fine native Caledonian woodland. You will also find the distilleries of Cragganmore and Tormore, and pass the boundary stone for the Cairngorm National Park.
After Nethy bridge, the route continues on into the Abernethy Nature Reserve and its iconic Caledonian Pine Forest. Make sure you make a detour of a mile to visit the RSPB Osprey Centre on the shore of Loch Garten.
The mountain views are great as you head towards Aviemore, and for the whole day you follow the route of the Strathspey Steam Railway that was brought back to life in 1978.
The Speyside Way now shadows the railway line on a well-made path for most of its length, with amazing views west to the Cairngorm Mountains.
We leave you with the most incredible sky, as the sun goes down on an autumn evening in the Spey valley.