(001) Stonehaven-Dunnottar Castle Circular (Aberdeenshire)

Route Summary
An easy but hugely satisfying walk through a variety of environments – harbour, old town, woodland, farmland, and coastal. Points of interest along the way include the old harbour, an architectural folly, a historic cliff-top castle, and unusual and striking war memorial.

Duration: 2.5 hours

 

Route Overview
Duration: 2.5 hours.
Transport/Parking: Bus and rail services to Stonehaven. Parking at the harbour in Stonehaven, or on-street nearby.
Length: 6.240 km / 3.90 mi
Height Gain: 160 meter
Height Loss: 160 meter
Max Height: 160 meter
Min Height: 5 meter
Surface: Mostly smooth. A mix of paved surfaces, good woodland and clifftop paths.
Child Friendly: Yes, but only if children are used to hikes of this distance and overall ascent.
Difficulty: Easy.
Dog Friendly: Yes. On lead in built-up areas and public roads.
Refreshments: A number of options at Stonehaven harbour and elsewhere in the town.

Description
This a gentle walk through a variety of pleasant and interesting environments. Starting and finishing at the picturesque harbour and old town area of Stonehaven, the route progresses through mature broadleaf woodland, then on a country lane through mixed farmland, with the final section on a cliff-top path with wonderful coastal views. The focal point of the walk, in the mid-section is, of course, the spectacular views of Dunnottar Castle, a world-wide attraction evidenced by the many foreign visitors. Walkers on this route may, optionally, visit the castle (website link: https://www.dunnottarcastle.co.uk/). In the woodland section, the route passes an odd and interesting architectural curiosity – the Shell House, provided as an amusement for the children of the landowner, 200 years ago. In the later stage of the cliff-top section, the route takes you to the top of Black Hill and the Stonehaven War Memorial. This is a unique and particularly thought-provoking structure in the form of a ruined or unfinished temple (see the information board for background) that sits on a striking location overlooking the bay and the town in one direction and the rolling farmland, hills and forests of the Mearns on the other.

Links:
Photos from walk
Download Route Guide  (PDF with illustrated Waypoints)
Download GPX file  (GPS Exchange Format)
Access Walk on Viewranger
Access Walk on Wikiloc  

 

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