Get up and glow: wrap up and discover the Edinburgh winter walks and adventures waiting on your doorstep

Fight the urge to hibernate and head out to explore our stunning surroundings this winter with our handy guide.
Fight the urge to hibernate and get out and explore. Picture – supplied.Fight the urge to hibernate and get out and explore. Picture – supplied.
Fight the urge to hibernate and get out and explore. Picture – supplied.

Our amazing city offers so much, from outdoor activities and walks for nature enthusiasts to the chance to discover more of the beautiful Scottish landscape.

Braving the cold for a wintry walk will reward you with a walk or adventure to remember: the changed landscape means you can take in a new perspective, plus it’s easier to spot wildlife on a still afternoon.

Then you can reward yourself with a fireside drink and a well-earned chance to get cosy!

Take it to the top

We are all familiar with the sight of Arthur's Seat, but have you climbed it? This extinct volcano in the heart of Edinburgh offers several walking trails with varying degrees of difficulty: choose a leisurely stroll around the base or challenge yourself with a hike to the summit to check out the panoramic views of the city. Elsewhere in Holyrood Park, there are other walking paths that also take in the spectacular basalt cliff of Salisbury Crags.

Think rolling hills and reservoirs

Just a short drive to the south-west lie the Pentland Hills with a network of walking trails for all levels of outings. Boasting 10,000 hectares of countryside and 100km of paths, this regional park is a great spot for cycling, horse riding, fishing and orienteering as well as walking – plus you could spot grouse, roe deer, otters, badgers, lapwings, golden plovers and meadow pipits.

If you're into mountain biking, nearby Glentress Forest in the Scottish Borders also offers excellent trails and facilities.

Walk or cycle coast to coast

For a more challenging long-distance route, head for the John Muir Way which stretches from Dunbar east of Edinburgh to Helensburgh on the west coast. Named after the famous naturalist and environmentalist John Muir, this 134-mile trail created less than a decade ago passes through diverse landscapes including coastal areas, farmland, and woodlands as it crosses coast to coast.

Let it flow

For a calming waterside walk, try the Water of Leith walkway, a 12-mile-long path through Edinburgh that’s a great way to get away from the hustle and bustle. Well suited to families, the walkway takes you through picturesque neighbourhoods, parks, and green spaces for a peaceful and scenic urban escape.

Blow away the cobwebs

Edinburgh has several beautiful beaches nearby, including the award-winning sandy shores at Portobello Beach, hidden gem Cramond Beach, and the cove of Yellowcraig Beach with its spectacular views over to the 1885 lighthouse on Fidra Island. These are great places for leisurely walks along the shoreline, picnicking, or enjoying the coastal scenery.

Want more wildlife in your life?

Scotland has a well-deserved reputation for its diverse wildlife and you can make the most of it by birdwatching at the Scottish Seabird Centre in North Berwick, or exploring local nature reserves like Loch Leven which is brimming with history and wildlife and RSPB Black Devon Wetlands, with paths suitable for wheelchair users.

Be prepared

Before embarking on any outdoor activity or walk, it's important to check local conditions, especially in more remote areas. Make sure you are adequately prepared, dress appropriately for the weather, and carry essentials like water, maps, and a charged mobile phone for safety.

Take your power with you

Founded in 2012 in California, USA, Jackery, launched the world's first outdoor portable power stations and, two years later, developed the world's first portable solar panels. Having introduced solar generators to the great outdoors, Jackery fulfils the power needs of every nature-lover, inspiring them to explore further and seek more extraordinary experiences than before.

Jackery is kicking off this year’s Black Friday extravaganza with selected power stations and solar generators up to half-price, from today (Friday, 17 November). One of the largest Black Friday deals include the Explorer 500 which has a discount of 46 per cent and is available for just £299 (RRP £556.99) from both Amazon and Jackery direct.

Amazon Black Friday offers are valid until 27 November 2023 while Jackery is offering an additional one-day promotion for purchases directly from the Jackery UK online shop until 28 November 2023.

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