Autumn is gracing us with her presence and we are finally witnessing the season of vibrant leaves, bright berries and crisp days. If you’re hoping for a weekend away this autumn, then there’s simply no better choice than a self-catering break to the Cairngorms National Park. With so much to do, see and love, you may even find you don’t want to leave. Here is your guide to a getaway to the Cairngorms National Park.
Why should I go in Autumn?
Autumn is one of the most beautiful times of the year with stunning foliage, brisk yet comfortable temperatures, no midges and fewer tourists, but it’s also one of the best times of year to spot Scotland’s rich and varied wildlife.
What can I do in Cairngorms National Park?
We think the question should be, what can’t you do? There is so much on offer for your trip away. To help you out, we’ve broken it down into two categories, so you can choose depending on what you like to do.
Walking and hiking routes in Cairngorms National Park
The national park is graced with the second-highest mountain in the UK and it has got more than 4,528 square kilometres to cover. It’s waiting to be explored via foot, so pop on your walking boots and try one of these great walking routes on offer.
The Pass of Ryvoan
The Pass of Ryvoan takes you on a beautiful trip through pine Caledonian woodland and treats you to some beautiful views of the national park. This walk requires climbing up to 380-feet and will last around 4-5 hours depending on your ability. This is a 9-mile hike that’s suitable for confident adults armed with walking boots and waterproof clothing. Take a packed lunch and snacks with you or alternatively stop at a local cafe on your way. There’s a chance you’ll spot some of the local wildlife.
Ben Macdui and Cairngorm
You can’t take a trip to the Cairngorms National Park without attempting to reach the summit of the two most iconic peaks in the whole region. The second-highest peak in the UK is Ben Macdui. It’s just behind Ben Nevis, and its truly incredible views at the top makes those hours spent trekking worth it. Another highlight and a key feature of the park is the Cairngorm mountain. All the ascents take around six to eight hours depending on ability and experience, and the whole journey will cover almost 11 miles.
This trail is popularly signposted throughout the national park and covers a total of 63-miles in one large loop. You will go on a wonderful route of high to low, then back again! The section that takes place from Alyth to Blairgowrie is challenging but it takes in the Bridge of Cally which makes the 15-mile walk worth it. The trail should take around 6-7 hours to finish.
Cycling routes in Cairngorms National Park
If walking and hiking isn’t your thing, then perhaps a good bike ride is! There are plenty of challenging routes available that take in jumps and forest surfaces to the more relaxing trails suitable for casual cyclists. So whatever your fitness level, there’s something to suit you. Here are our top cycling route suggestions.
Ballater to Aboyne
If you find yourself as happy on the road as you are off it, then this is the route for you. This 36km route takes around 3 hours to complete and it’s a perfect route for families or those with some cycling experience. It takes in tarmac surfaces along the main road and forest trails, so you need to ensure you have protective equipment.
The Speyside Way: Nethybridge to Boat of Garten
This is a popular route for cyclists as it offers a glance at some of the most picturesque sections of the Cairngorms National Park. It lasts 5 miles and from a mountain biking perspective, the route offers a range of terrains and gradients to test your off-road skills.
After all that adventure and walking, you’ll definitely need somewhere great to stay and get some rest. Look no further than a self-catering cottage right in the heart of the action. We have a range of luxury self-catering homes available for your adventure break to the Cairngorms National Park. Get in touch today to book your trip!