The Best Walks in the Cairngorms for Beginners
The Cairngorms National Park that surrounds Hilton Coylumbridge Hotel is the home to dozens of beautiful walks, ranging from easy 1-hour walks to demanding 13-hour treks and several day long hikes.
Cairn Gorm (meaning Blue or Green Hill) that overlooks the town of Aviemore is the sixth highest mountain in the United Kingdom and the most prominent one of the mountains in the area. It provides an excellent backdrop to the numerous walks in the region, and a challenge for more advanced hikers and climbers.
Particularly Aviemore with surroundings and the Northern Cairngorms are some of the most popular areas for outdoor activities in Scotland and one of the best places to watch wildlife, such as the adorable red squirrel and the shy Capercaillie. It is also an excellent area for beginner-level forest walks – and here are a few of the best ones.
Lower Glen Feshie & the Sculpture Trail
This is a diverse and easy 2.75 mile-long walk that is perfect for keeping the kids entertained too. The track passes through the banks of River Feshie and a forestry section from where you get good views of the surrounding mountains, as well as wood and stone sculpture park by Frank Bruce. The children will love to keep a look out for these large sculptures that all have their own titles.
All in all, the terrain is good and the walk is easy with great views over River Feshie, the countryside and the surrounding mountains. There are also picnic tables where you can sit down for a nice meal outdoors if peckish.
See a full description of the track here.
This is a very popular and flat walk around beautiful Loch Morlich and its beaches. The loch is surrounded by forests and stunning peaks; snow-clad ones if you’re visiting at the right time. The trail is 3.75 miles long and takes around 1.5-2 hours to finish.
The walk starts at the car park signed Loch Morlich watersports where several trails begin. The Loch Morlich one is marked by deep red marker posts. The track more or less follows the shore, with several places where you can get down to the edge of the water and many sandy beaches perfect for a picnic. If the day is clear and calm enough you’ll be able to snap photos of distant mountains mirrored in the water.
Read the whole Loch Morlich walk description here.
Slochd to Carrbridge via Sluggan Bridge
Being very straightforward and difficult to go wrong on combined with the easy terrain makes this 5.5 mile-long walk suitable for beginners. Some parts of the track can, however, get muddy after wet weather, so make sure you’ve got the right footgear.
This pretty path starts near Slochd Mhor Lodge and passes through pine and birch woods and moorland as well as provides great views of the Monadliath mountains. One of the highlights of the walk is the charming stone bridge at Sluggan that was built in the 1830s. The walk finishes at the village of Carrbridge where you’ll be able to grab a bite to eat and drink if you like.
See the walk description here.
Stay at Hilton Coylumbridge during Your Cairngorms Visit
Hilton Coylumbridge in Aviemore is conveniently located within the National Park, and therefore an excellent base for exploring the area and trying out the walks we’ve described and many more. If you’re planning on a visit between September and December we have an excellent Autumn Break Hotel Offerthat includes a two-night midweek stay, dinner and the famous Hilton breakfast on both days as well as a bottle of bubbly per room. All this from only £79!