Have you noticed that all of a sudden it’s not quite so warm the second you step out of the sun? Have you seen a couple of leaves starting their journey from the sky to the gutter? The summer madness is over and now it’s clear that Autumn is making its way into our lives. Here at Edinburgh Editor HQ though we believe that there’s no point in crying over spilt leaves or summers that never were – we are getting out and about, tying up our laces and slipping on the boots, attempting to get in some exercise after festival excesses before the day light evades us.
In celebration of all the beautiful places you can go for a stroll in Edinburgh we thought we’d start with 8 walks you should do this Autumn:
1. Arthur’s Seat
You can of course do this walk all year round, but there are very few places that you can see the city changing so dramatically as you can from the lofty peak of Arthur’s Seat. Whether you go right to the top or simply go along the crags, it’s worth taking time to stop and look across our fair city and much further beyond.
2. The Water of Leith
Having lived near its banks in a couple of locations we can heartily recommend the Water of Leith as somewhere to walk. You can go all the way from Balerno to Leith, or simply pick and choose sections along the way. Each area is different, and the stories that unfold as you move in and out of each area will leave you hungry for more.
3. Cramond Island/River Almond
Going to the west of the city? Why not explore the River Almond and/or Cramond Island. You can walk all the way from Cramond Village to Kirkliston along the banks of the river, or go the other way and explore the remains of Cramond Island’s World War II gun emplacements (remember to check the tides and stay safe – the causeway is submerged by high tide).
4. Royal Botanic Gardens
If you want to take a break from the city but not really leave it behind, take a stroll down to the Botanics. Whether it’s a peaceful stroll around the Chinese Hillside or a clamber in the Rock Garden, the RBGE (or just ‘the Botanics’) is one of the most peaceful places to walk in the city.
5. Dalmeny Estate
We don’t tend to think of country estates being within city limits, but between Barnton and South Queensferry there are two. The Dalmeny Estate covers the coastal side and you can enter by the Cramond Brig, South Queensferry, or several points in between. It’s got woodland, solid paths, a beach, and more besides, well worth exploring.
6. Union Canal
The snake of water that links Edinburgh to Glasgow (via a little aerial acrobatics in Falkirk) is another great hidden gem of the city. You can join it at the canal basin in Fountainbridge, or anywhere along its banks. We suggest taking a walk out to Ratho if you’re feeling energetic, it’s about 8 miles.
7. Blackford Hill
One of the seven hills of Edinburgh, Blackford Hill is home to the Royal Observatory but also offers brilliant panoramic views of the city. If you want to turn it into a longer walk, why not add in sections of the Hermitage of Braid walk along with it?