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Known for its outdoor pursuits, Scotland – and Dundee in particular – is a great destination for those looking for scenic walking opportunities. From Iron Age forts to sweeping beaches, serene woodland and charming cityscapes, the area around Dundee has plenty in the way of special scenery. That’s why, with the help of our local guides, we’ve put together a list of some of the most beautiful walks to take on your next trip to the city of discovery.
Found just outside Dundee city centre, Baldragon Wood is an excellent woodland area for taking a relaxed walk. With extra trees planted and ponds throughout, the woods are home to a wide variety of wildlife, including the endangered native red squirrel. The route through the woods is an easy one, so suitable for all ages, and the nearby Clatto Moor has some recreational areas, perfect for a picnic or a quick spot of lunch.
Lining the back of Dundee, the Sidlaw Hills are a natural wall separating the urban sprawl from the countryside. On one side, the views from some of the peaks offer a great view of the city below, with some impressive cityscapes. On the other, a serene look down at the woodland surrounding the quiet Loch Ledcrieff offers a more relaxing stroll. For those looking for a slightly more difficult route, the rocky outcrops of the nearby Lundie Craigs provide a more challenging hike.
Lying along the River Esk and spanning just over 1,730 acres (700ha), the Montrose Basin is positively teeming with wildlife. Home to hundreds of birds, with everything from oystercatchers to elder ducks being spotted enjoying the pristine waters, the basin is a must-visit for any bird-spotting enthusiasts. Twice a day, the basin fills with the tide coming in, giving guests a beautiful look over the untouched waters. The walk down the estuary is a relatively easy one and suitable for all skill levels.
Popular with local walkers, the Blackmuir Woods are just a short trip out of Dundee and offer a relaxing stroll through calm woodland. Partly managed by the Woodland Trust, the woods are filled with a mixture of flora including silver birch, scots pine and syracuse and have a variety of animals in residence, including roe deer and jays. Following the trail will lead you onto The Logan, a historic right-of-way that runs through Angus.
A short drive north of Dundee will bring you to Lunan Bay, probably one of the best beaches on the east coast of Scotland. A magnet for surfers, the bay is a calmer experience than the surrounding beaches due to its low cliffs and sandy dunes. Walking along the bay will bring you to the ruins of Red Castle, a 12th-century fortification overlooking the bay and originally built to ward off Viking invaders.
Additional reporting by Nicholas Grantham.