This is a easy walk, suitable for walkers of all abilities. The varied route mixes village scenes with good riverbank views; mature pine woodland sections; open parkland with a fine aspect towards Aboyne Castle; and, a captivating outlook over Aboyne Loch from the golf course.
Duration: 2 hours.
Duration: 2 hours.
Transport/Parking: Stagecoach run regular bus services to Aboyne. Check timetables. There is a large car-park opposite the walk start/end point.
Length: 7.610 km / 4.76 mi
Height Gain: 76 meter.
Height Loss: 76 meter.
Max Height: 142 meter.
Min Height: 122 meter.
Surface: Moderate. A mix of hard surfaced paths, rough roads and tarred surfaces.
Child Friendly: Yes, if children are used to walks of this distance.
Dog Friendly: See Aboyne Golf Club link, below. Keep dogs on a short lead on the golf course and near to any livestock.
Refreshments: We can recommend the Corner House Tea-room, near the walk start/end point. Other options in Aboyne.
This is an enjoyable ramble around and about the large Deeside village of Aboyne, offering many opportunities to enjoy views of the pleasant Strathdee countryside. With its large open “green” at the centre, and well-preserved and re-vitalised railway station square, the settlement has a very relaxed ambience, making it particularly popular with summer visitors. After passing the expansive Charlestown Green, the walk heads for the banks of the River Dee, taking a path under the impressive concrete bridge before passing a couple of very scenic “islands in the stream”. Pine woodland and village sections then follow before entering open parkland in the immediate environs of Aboyne Castle. The castle originates from the 13thC when its position provided strategic advantage for the “Mounth” crossings of the Grampian Mountains, particularly important for military purposes and for drovers herding upland “black cattle” to markets in the south of Scotland. The building has been extended and rebuilt at various times, most recently by the current Marquis of Huntly, whose family has owned it since the early 15thC. The walk then crosses the attractive undulating fairways of Aboyne golf course*, before hugging the western bank of the beautiful Loch of Aboyne. A stone and earth dam wall was constructed here around 1834 to retain the loch. At that time it also served as a reservoir for a nearby mill. The loch is now a Site of Special Scientific Interest owing to its aquatic flora and fauna and rich reed-bed and fen vegetation. It is also an important site for butterflies. It provides a valuable habitat for waterfowl, including widgeon, goosander and whooper swans, with osprey regularly seen fishing. Finally, after a section on the old Deeside railway line, now part of the Deeside Way, the route returns to the centre of Aboyne, passing through the old station square.
*Note: Aboyne Golf Club have asked us to emphasise the following”…this is an active golf course and warning signs are situated warning of the dangers…”. More details here: https://t.ly/0LZqG . See also the Scottish Outdoor Access Code guide to walking on golf courses: https://t.ly/KlwYp