There are so many totally amazing and loads of the best hikes in Scotland; there’s no denying it! Some of the best parts of Scotland are its beautiful, wild and rugged countryside, especially in the iconic Highlands, too. It’s a part of the country that’s totally stunning to visit, especially as part of a longer trip. 

Truth be told, you’ll likely be visiting Scotland not just for the hikes, but also for the amazing history like its iconic castles, stunning cities like Edinburgh and Glasgow, too. It’s a totally great country and such an incredible place to explore. 

Now, while a lot of this can be explored by road (and indeed by rail), some of the best gems here are best explored on foot.

There also aren’t really any wild animals to be scared of in Scotland so this is also the perfect place to totally get lost in nature and really enjoy the dramatic and unspoilt beauty of Scotland. 

Though, as with any hike, always take precautions, listen to local advice and go with a guide if you’re not experienced. No one likes a careless hiker. 

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With that in mind, take a look at some of the best hikes in Scotland to try, which I hope you’ll love. 

1.) Old Man of Storr, Isle of Skye

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Perched on the Isle of Skye, the Old Man of Storr is probably one of the best hikes in Scotland for some epic views. Now, this is a relatively easy hike, especially as it takes around 45-minutes after arriving at the car parking spot.

Though be warned, it fills up fast, especially at busier times of the year.

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It’s best to give around 2-3 hours to fully get to the Old Man of Storr and you can follow the guidance of the island, via their website.

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Just make sure to go early or later in the afternoon if you want to avoid the crowds. As I said, this does get busy. 

Read more: What to see in the Highlands of Scotland

2.) Ben Nevis

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This is one of the biggest hikes In Scotland. With Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis needing no introduction.

At over 4,000 feet,  a hike to the summit of Ben Nevis is not for the faint of heart, and usually attracts more serious hikers and mountain climbers. So, make sure your prepared and don’t just venture out thinking you can conquer this, especially in the colder winter months. 

This area of Scotland can be blasted by icy snaps and you don’t want to risk a hike during that time. That being said, It has got to be one of the best hikes In Scotland if you want to scale the biggest mountain in the UK.

3.) Iona

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The island of Iona is known as a totally gorgeous place to ramble, with a heap of the best hikes in Scotland.

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Many people come here to take in that famed rugged Scottish coastline along with the pretty little church, Iona Abbey, at the same time. It’s totally stunning and a great way to see a little snapshot of old Scotland that still stands proudly to this day. 

Read more: Best castles in Scotland to see

4.) Sandwood Bay

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This remote beach is perfect for a shorter, but easily one of the best hikes in Scotland, especially if you don’t like crowds.

A place of historical significance, the Spanish Armada would have travelled past the beach in these waters in the days of old. Though you don’t have to worry about canon fire now, it’s a totally stunning spot to spend a few days chilling out and rambling the coastline. 

5.) Dun da Lamh

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This hike ends at a stunning hill fort that dates back to the Iron Age and, at an elevation of 500 metres, is less taxing than many other walks in the area. Just make sure to pack a raincoat and waterproof boots here. The groundwater can be pretty soggy! 

From the hill fort, you can look down over Loch Spey which is totally beautiful and easily one of the best hikes in Scotland.

Read more: What to see in the Highlands of Scotland

6.) Quinag

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Overlooking Assynt in Sutherland, Quinag is a snowy peak that leads to a spineback ridge for hikers to follow.

When you reach the top some of the most stunning views in Scotland await you as a prize for your hard work. We love this area of Scotland, especially when we visited in September.

Though, you do get nats (little flies) which can be a right pain! 

Read more: Best castles in Scotland to see

7.) Beinn Alligin

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Beinn Alligin offers walkers not one but two hills that rise over 3,000 feet high.

It is possible to climb both in a day if you are an experienced hiker – even if you’re not, it’s still worth giving the second one a try (depending on how you feel of course).

It really is one of the best hikes in Scotland with absolutely spectacular view.

8.) Loch Carriagean Cairn

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A series of cairns that are said to be 4,000 years old lie at Loch Carriagean Cairn. Hiking in the heathland around here is a popular pastime due to the idyllic scenery.

9.) Portmahomack

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If you enjoy coastal hiking then a trip to Portmahomack fishing village is the place for you. Now, it’s likely you won’t spend too long in the area here but it’s well worth a little stop as part of a wider road trip around Scotland. 

As you hike along the shore make sure to look out for views of neighbouring Firth.

Read more: Best castles in Scotland to see

10.) Lairig Ghru

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If you are an experienced hiker and looking for a 22-mile hike then Lairig Ghru will certainly deliver.

Expect icy valleys and granite cliffs here, as well as the black waters from the Pools of Dee. This all means you should take precautions and only hike when it’s safe to do so. 

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Possibly, one of the most dramatic and best hikes in Scotland.

Read more: What to see in the Highlands of Scotland

11.) Arthur’s Seat

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Come here if you want to climb a 250-metre volcanic plug that’s relatively easy and can be accessed right from Edinburgh itself. 

You see, Arthur’s Seat is just outside of Edinburgh’s city centre so you can actually hike from the city centre all the way to the summit in just a couple of hours.

Over the years, I’ve done this hike quite a few times and it never gets old, especially for the views across the Firth of Forth and Edinburgh itself. 

Read more: What to see in the Highlands of Scotland

Your Essential Scottish Highlands Trip Itinerary



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