Scotland's National Parks

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Still from the Cairngorms National Park video
Cairngorms National Park

Discover the outstanding Cairngorms National Park, home to a rich variety of wildlife

There has never been a better time than the Year of Homecoming 2014 to discover Scotland’s two beautiful National Parks. Uncover stunning scenery, fascinating wildlife and a variety of outdoor activities in the Cairngorms and Loch Lomond & The Trossachs.

Cairngorms National Park logo

At the heart of the UK’s largest National Park, the Cairngorms National Park, is the astonishing Cairngorms plateau. During the last Ice Age, 10,000 years ago, this landscape was scraped, carved and gouged by ice to create deep high altitude valleys and corries in this vast wilderness. At over 1,000 m high, this is the largest and most extensive range of sub-arctic mountainous landscape anywhere in the British Isles.

The Cairngorms National Park, which celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2013, and visitors can find everything from castles, historic sites, breweries and distilleries and great family attractions and adventure sports including mountain biking and white water rafting.

Remember to bring your binoculars and camera as this striking area is home to 25 percent of the UK’s threatened species. Look out for majestic ospreys, red squirrels, the Scottish wildcat, pine martens, the Scottish crossbill, Cairngorms reindeer and beautiful tundra and arctic plants like twinflowers and the lesser butterfly orchids.

Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National ParkFurther south, near Glasgow, lies Scotland’s first National Park, Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park. It is an ideal destination for all the family. A focal point of this charming area is the stunning Loch Lomond, the largest inland expanse of freshwater in Britain and one of the most popular destinations for windsurfing in Scotland.

The picturesque loch also offers excellent sailing, canoeing, waterskiing and a number of companies offer cruises across the loch and around its many islands. Back on dry land relax amongst the gorgeous flora and fauna of Queen Elizabeth Forest Park, Go Ape! or spot red squirrels at The Lodge Forest Visitor Centre at Aberfoyle.Take in the amazing scenery from one of 40 summits over 2,500 feet or enjoy gentle forest walks and coastal trails. Keep your eyes and ears open to see if you can catch a glimpse of otters, capercaillie, water vole and red deer.

  • Looking towards Blair Castle on a summer's evening, the seat of the Dukes and Earls of Atholl, north west of Blair Atholl
    Blair Castle, dating from the 13th century and the seat of the Dukes and Earls of Atholl, north west of Blair Atholl
  • The main path to Ben Arthur, 'the Cobbler' near Arrochar in the National Park
    Ben Arthur, 'the Cobbler' near Arrochar in the National Park
A group trek on horseback through the Alvie Estate within the Cairngorm National Park with views to the mountains beyond

Cairngorms National Park overview

Explore Scotland's largest National Park where you will find a fascinating landscape and diverse range of wildlife.

Loch Morlich from the watersports Centre, Glenmore Forest Park, Cairngorm National Park

Cairngorms National Park activities

Find lots of exciting things to see and do in Cairngorms National Park

Waterfall on River Feshie

Cairngorms National Park itinerary

Discover the beauty and great attractions of Cairngorms National Park by following the four-day itinerary

An aerial view of Loch Lomond

Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park overview

Discover the beauty of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park.

Looking over Loch Lomond to Ben Lomond

Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park itinerary

Follow this four-day itinerary and be inspired by the natural beauty of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park.

An aerial view over Inchmurrin island in Loch Lomond

Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park

Find lots of exciting things to see and do in Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park

The John Muir Way, near Dunbar, East Lothian

John Muir

Follow in the footsteps of one of Scotland’s most famous and influential conservationists, The 'father of National Parks', and discover where to enjoy his influence in Scotland's landscapes and historic attractions.