Scottish forests and woodlands

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  • Looking across the Caledonian pine trees at Coire Loch in Glen Affric, Highlands © FC Library
    Caledonian pine trees at Coire Loch in Glen Affric, Highlands © FC Library
  • Loch Trool, near Newton Stewart, in the Galloway Forest Park
    Loch Trool, near Newton Stewart, in the Galloway Forest Park
  • Looking through trees to Victoria Falls in the Slattadale Forest near Loch Maree, Highlands
    Victoria Falls in the Slattadale Forest near Loch Maree, Highlands
  • The wildlife hide at Sunart Oakwoods on the shore of Loch Sunart, Highlands © FC Library
    The wildlife hide at Sunart Oakwoods on the shore of Loch Sunart, Highlands © FC Library

Scotland is home to several stunning oak woodlands. Often referred to as ‘Celtic rainforests’, these dense oak forests are home to abundant flora and are carpeted in soft layers of mosses, liverworts and lichens.

The oak tree has deep roots in Scottish natural history and is believed to have grown in Scotland for thousands of years. Oak trees tend to live up to 500 years but there are some Scottish oak trees thought to be even older.

You will find oak woods in Taynish National Nature Reserve, Sunart Oakwoods in Argyll and the Wood of Cree in Dumfries & Galloway.

There is a reason why Perthshire is known as ‘Big Tree Country’ as you will find some of the most remarkable trees here, from the world's highest hedge and Europe's oldest tree to the widest conifer in Britain and the sole survivor from Shakespeare's Birnam Wood. There are some stunning woodland trails near Killiekrankie and Dunkeld.

Thousands of years ago, vast swathes of the Scottish Highlands were covered in ancient pinewood forest known as the Caledonian Forest. Today only one percent of the original ancient forest remains in pockets across the region. These forest segments are made up of Scots pine, birch, aspen, rowan, oak and juniper and provide a rich ecosystem that supports a variety of rare and wonderful flora and fauna.

You can get a glimpse of what the Highlands looked like thousands of years ago by visiting the remains of this ancient forest at Mar Lodge, Loch Garten and Rothiemurchus in the Cairngorms or National Nature Reserves such as Glen Affric and Loch Maree in the western Highlands.

You will find other wonderful woodlands in Glenmore Forest Park in the heart of the Cairngorms, Yair Forest in the Scottish Borders, Galloway Forest Park in Dumfries & Galloway and Knapdale Forest in Argyll.

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91 results, currently showing 11 to 20
  1. Learnie Red Rocks

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    Cromarty

    Learnie Red Road is one of the best kept secrets of Scottish mountain biking offering some of the most amazing views of the Moray Firth.

  2. Meikleour Beech Hedge

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    Meikleour

    The Meikleour Beech Hedge, four miles south of Blairgowrie is the longest hedge in Britain and the highest of its kind in the world.

  3. Knapdale

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    Lochgilphead

    Knapdale Forest is surrounded by a National Scenic Area and is partially bordered by the Crinan Canal and the Sound of Jura and Loch Sween.

  4. Eppie Callum's Oak

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    Crieff

    Eppie Callum’s Oak is an ancient oak tree in Crieff which is said to have once sheltered notorious outlaw Rob Roy MacGregor from his enemies.

  5. Newcastleton

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    Newcastleton

    Newcastleton forest is situated in the valley of Liddesdale, next to the border with England.

  6. Kilsture Forest Walks

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    Wigtown

    Set in a beautiful forest in the Machars area these two marked trails offer fantastic walking throughout the year.

  7. Drummond Hill

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    Kenmore

    Drummond Hill lies six miles west of Aberfeldy, forms part of Tay Forest Park, and is thought to be the site of Scotland’s first managed forest.

  8. Cademuir Forest

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    Peebles

    Located beside Peebles, Cademuir Forest is the smallest and arguably the most peaceful forest in the area, making it ideal for spotting wildlife..

  9. Queen's View

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    Pitlochry

    The Queen’s View in Highland Perthshire overlooks Loch Tummel and is said to have been named after Queen Victoria, following her visit to the area in 1866.

  10. Clatteringshaws Visitor Centre

    Type

    Forests & Woodlands

    Gradings

    New Galloway

    Kirroughtree Visitor Centre is the southern gateway to this Galloway Forest Park.

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