Hill tops covered in snow
The Cairngorms National Park is home to Scotland’s highest mountain range and offers outdoor enthusiasts some of the wildest and most beautiful landscapes in the UK.
The park is perfect for walkers and wildlife lovers. As you explore woods, valleys and mountains, you might catch a glimpse of a pine marten, red squirrel or capercaillie. Cairngorms National Park offers an incredible variety of landscapes, from windswept mountains to ancient forests. Canoeing, climbing and skiing are easily accessible. But if you’d prefer to take it easy, you’re in luck. You can enjoy Cairngorms’ spectacular scenery from the comfort of the park’s very own mountain train.
With mile upon mile of unspoilt wilderness, the area has plenty to offer in the way of outdoor activities. A number of companies will help you to get out and make the most of this invigorating environment. Cairngorm Adventure Guides specialises in hill walking, rock climbing and canoe adventures.
CairnGorm Mountain is home to the UK’s highest funicular railway. A remote winding road
The train takes passengers on a twisting, turning ride to the Top Station where the Ptarmigan Restaurant offers hearty meals with views from a height of more than 3,500ft. There is also a viewing terrace, exhibition and the UK’s highest post box.
The Lecht 2090, in the middle of the park, is home to some of the most popular ski and snowboard slopes in the region. The Lecht Activity Centre is perched 2,090 feet above sea level, between Tomintoul and Strathdon. During the winter months, skiers and snowboarders make the most of some of the UK’s best winter sport conditions. There are also plenty of activities to enjoy during the summer months, including mountain-biking and carting.
Whether you want to take a leisurely stroll through a gentle valley or trek to the summit of a snowy mountain, Cairngorms National Park is great for walking. One of many spectacular routes starts in the pretty village of Ballater before winding its way through ancient woodland to the ruins of Knock Castle. On the way, you’ll pass through some of the area’s most beautiful countryside and have the chance to see deer and eagles.
“As you explore the park’s forests, valleys and mountains, you might catch a glimpse of a pine marten, red squirrel or capercaillie.”
There’s no shortage of good places to eat in the Cairngorms region, whether you’re looking for a loch-side pub or a hearty breakfast before a day of exploring. The Druie, in Aviemore, is popular for light lunches, homemade cakes and excellent coffee. For a delicious evening meal overlooking the beautiful Loch Insh, try the Boathouse, a log cabin which was recently voted to have one of the best views of any restaurant in Europe.