A gentle amble in the woods can be one of the best ways to escape the chaos of modern life and in Scotland, you will be in some awe-inspiring company.
Be mesmerised by the beauty of Mother Nature, and take to the blossoming woodlands of Reelig Glen, located seven miles west of Inverness. The Forestry Commission Scotland site is home to four of the tallest trees in Britain – one of which has been given the proud title of the tallest conifer in Europe, towering at an incredible 66.4 m.
The tallest tree in Britain previously was the Dughall Mor, also known as the ‘Big Dark Stranger’, only 50 m away.
With fine air and rich soil, the glen has the largest concentration of trees exceeding 55 m and is the perfect habitat for many different species including the Norway spruce, lime tree, larch and ancient conifer. Follow pathways and a series of short walks to admire these majestic trees from many angles. At the top of the main walk, you’ll come across the fairy-like stone bridge and grotto, called Tigh an Aigh.
Elsewhere in Scotland, spring is the perfect time of year to explore the country’s flourishing woodlands where you’re bound to discover some of the world’s most magnificent trees while out on a daunder…
Big Tree Country
Perthshire is a tree hugger’s paradise, with many remarkable trees and forests situated all over the region. Head to Craigvinean, Scotland’s oldest managed forest, which has grown from seeds planted by the nature-loving ‘planting Dukes’ of Atholl in the 18th and 19th centuries. There’s also the Hermitage, a wild ‘tree garden’ where you’ll find the beautiful Falls of Braan and romantic Georgian follies. Plan your next adventure in Big Tree Country and explore iconic woodlands along the region’s many walking routes.
Estimated to be between 1,500 and 3,000 years old, this ancient tree is enjoying its twilight years, after living through a great deal of Scotland’s history. With wide boughs and thick branches, it is believed to be one of the oldest living things in Europe. You’ll find the yew in Fortingall, standing peacefully in the picturesque village’s churchyard.
The Grand Fir, Ardkinglas Estate, Argyll
On the banks of Loch Fyne, yet another 64 m giant stands in the Ardkinglas Woodland Garden and is thought to have been planted by the Callander family in 1875. The gardens are open to visitors all year round and the estate is situated on the hillside overlooking the stunning loch. During spring and early summer, the woodland is bursting with vibrant contrasts, thanks to a carpet of bluebells and an extensive collection of rhododendrons and azaleas.
As well as being home to some of the tallest trees in the UK, Scotland also home to the highest hedge in the world, recognised by the Guinness Book of World Records. Take a scenic drive 4 miles south of Blairgowrie, where you’ll find yourself gazing up at the Beech Hedge, which measures 30 m high and is thought to have been planted by men who were called to fight in the Jacobite Rebellion.
For more information about other remarkable trees in Scotland, check out the Tree Register, an extensive database of the UK’s notable trees.
Wherever you travel, Scottish woodlands are filled with character and our wise and wonderful trees promise to amaze! Tell us about your favourite trees in Scotland in the comments below, and share pictures from your wanders on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or any other platform!