Spring has finally sprung, so blow off the cobwebs with our map of family walks around the north and north east.
Forvie National Nature Reserve, Aberdeenshire
This very special area is carpeted with primroses in the spring, and little ones will love spotting all the wildlife. There are seals, terns, ducks and fulmars to name a few – but do respect their privacy in springtime breeding season. The signs on the reserve will keep you right.
Dess Waterfall, Aboyne
Enjoy springtime in this pretty woodland near Kincardine O’Neil. Part of the Deeside Way, the area is rich with open fields, burns and wildlife. The spectacular Dess Waterfall is a great family walk. Pack your wellies – it can be muddy in wet weather.
Kincorth Hill, Aberdeen
Get away from the city with this gentle hike through heathland and woodland. There’s a variety of well signposted routes, all of them family friendly. The top of the nature reserve also boasts stunning views of the mountains of Deeside.
Brodie Castle, Forres
How many daffodils can you count? Brodie Castle is carpeted with over 100 varieties of daffodil in the spring. There are lots of nice walks around the estate, pond and shrubbery, while kids will love the Playful Garden in the estate itself.
Cooper Park, Elgin
The famous Cooper Park is a perfect family walk for a spring day. Let the kids run riot in the playpark or lie back and relax on the peaceful boating pond. Green fingered visitors will love seeing the rose garden and Biblical garden coming back to life after a long winter.
Achmelvich Beach, Sutherland
Keep your eyes peeled for porpoises and dolphins playing in the turquoise sea around Achmelvich beach. This 3.7 mile walk takes you along the coast past an old mill and a hidden cove. There’s even a hermit’s ‘castle’ to explore.
Latheronwheel Fairy Glen, Caithness
A true secret gem. Take a picnic to the little harbour at Latheronwheel and carry on up the hill to the woodland. There you will find a hidden village of fairies. The fairies themselves are too shy to venture out, but if you look closely you might spot their tiny houses, wellies and fishing rods.
Marwick Head, Orkney
Discover nature, history and wildlife on this coastal walk around the Marwick Head on the West Mainland. Walk from Marwick Bay and enjoy panoramic views over to the Old Man of Hoy. This is an RSPB reserve so you can also spot a huge variety of seabirds.
Clickimin Broch, Shetland
Immerse yourself in the rich history of the Shetland isles with a wander around Clickimin Loch on Lerwick. There on the shores is a 3,000 year old broch complete with stone passageways, steps and lookouts. Kids will love following in the footsteps of ancient kings.
Falls of Shin, Sutherland
The woodland at the River Shin is a lovely family walk, with a variety of trails with kids’ games along the way. However, the real star of the show is the famous Falls of Shin. Follow the River Shin to an opening in the pine forest, and watch as the Atlantic salmon leap up the waterfalls in an attempt to get back up stream.