Adventurous visitors to Scotland will enjoy a plethora of adrenaline-pumping activities. Long hours of daylight make summer the perfect season to get out and about, but the great Scottish outdoors is open all year round. The winter sports season lasts from December until April.
t Hiker walking The Cape Wrath Trail in Torridon as sunset descends upon the valley
Scotland has a vast network of long-distance walking routes, and almost nowhere is out of bounds. The West Highland Way and the hills and glens of the Cairngorms National Park are favourites among keen hikers.
Scotland’s coastal waters offer endless possibilities for water-based adventures, from sea kayaking to deepsea diving. Qualified scuba divers can discover vast underwater kelp forests and ghostly shipwrecks such as Scapa Flow in Orkney.
Scotland’s many rivers and stunning lochs offer plenty opportunities for thrilling whitewater kayaking, rafting and canoeing through breathtaking scenery. More easy-going activities are available on calm stretches of water – ideal for young families and novices. Aberfeldy, on the upper reaches of the River Tay, and Aviemore are hubs for river experiences of all kinds. For a day out on calm waters, sailing dinghies can be hired on inland lochs.
Pony trekking is another great way to experience moorland and mountains, from day trips in the Pentlands, the Cairngorms and the hills of Skye to longer trekking holidays.
Networks of well-surfaced bike paths abound in Edinburgh and other cities, often along former railway lines. More energetic riders will find off-road trails in Galloway Forest Park, the Trossachs and, outside winter sports season, Nevis Range and the Lecht. Off-road and urban bikes rental is widely available.
DISCOVER Scotland Your Way
Home to some 19 miles (30 km) of pistes and cross-country trails.
Pistes for all levels at 2,900 ft (645 m).
Glenshee Ski Centre
Britain’s largest ski area with 36 slopes.
Scotland’s steepest ski run with views of Buachaille Etive Mor and Rannoch Moor.
A huge network of slopes and back-country routes within sight of Ben Nevis.