7 Amazing Day Trips From Perth

Once Scotland's ancient capital, Perth is a city with plenty of character, culture and history. The city itself is packed with things to do, but you have a wealth of options when it comes to travelling from Perth too, with nearby attractions only a short ride away on public transport. Here are some ideas on how to have a momentous day out from 'The Fair City'.

  1. Dunkeld and Birnam Dunkeld

    Dunkeld village sits on the banks of the River Tay. Seen here is the Atholl Memorial Fountain. The fountain was built in 1866 from public subscription

    © VisitScotland / Kenny Lam

    Travel: Perth to Birnam

    • Via train – 25 minutes
    • Via car – 25 minutes

    The towns of Dunkeld and Birnam are located a short distance north of Perth and are the perfect places to explore countryside walks in the ‘Big Tree Country’. The Hermitage boasts stunning trails through magical Perthshire woodland that leads to Black Linn Falls and the picturesque Ossian Hall, which overlooks the crashing waterfall. The Birnam Oak is also an intriguing site to stop by. This iconic tree featured in Shakespeare’s Macbeth and alongside its neighbour, the Birnam Sycamore, both are thought to be the sole surviving trees of the great forest that once thrived here.

    If it’s a rainy day, head inside to the Beatrix Potter Exhibition at the Birnam Arts Centre. The kids will love discovering the Tales of Peter Rabbit with a gift shop, garden, gallery and café onsite to enjoy too. Dunkeld Cathedral is recognised as one of Scotland’s most romantic cathedrals. Wander among the ruins and through the grounds to take a step back in time. Feeling peckish? Stop by Aran Bakery for a spot of lunch or coffee and cake.

  2. Crieff Crieff

    Macrosty Park in Crieff.

    © VisitScotland / Crieff Succeeds / Damian Shields

    Travel: Perth to Crieff

    • Via bus – 45 minutes
    • Via car – 35 minutes

    Head west from Perth to the town of Crieff where you and the family can enjoy a day out at Crieff Hydro. Get outdoors with a range of exciting activities from alpaca trekking, treetop adventures, archery, axe-throwing, golf, horse riding, Highland safaris and much more. If you’d rather have a more relaxed day out, head to the spa for rejuvenating treatments or stay longer for a one or two night spa break.

    Enjoy walking routes around Comrie, get outdoors with biking and hiking experiences at Comrie Croft, or try a dram or two on a guided tour of Glenturret Distillery.

  3. St Andrews St Andrews

    The East Beach in St Andrews

    Travel: Perth to St Andrews

    • Via bus – 1hr 15 minutes
    • Via car – 55 minutes 

    Enjoy a day trip out to one of the most prestigious and historic towns in Scotland, St Andrews. Golfers are in for a treat at Scotland’s Home of Golf with 10 courses in and around the area catering to all abilities and budgets. Make sure you stop by the R&A World Golf Museum to learn more about the history of golf and pick up some memorabilia too.

    St Andrews also boasts a rich history, with St Andrews Cathedral, the ruins of St Andrews Castle, and Wardlaw Museum offering a trip back in time, as well as the rustic streets and buildings adding character to the town. If you fancy putting your watersport skills to the test, head to West Sands Beach where you can try landyachting, kayaking, stand up paddleboarding and more with Blown Away.

  4. Pitlochry and Blair Atholl Perthshire

    Falls of Bruar, Blair Atholl

    Travel: Perth to Pitlochry

    • Via bus – 40 minutes
    • Via car – 45 minutes

    A short journey north of Perth you’ll find the picturesque town of Pitlochry and nearby Blair Atholl. Bordering the Cairngorms National Park, you’ll find a variety of walking trails and routes to discover here, with Faskally Forest and Tay Forest Park just a stone’s throw away. Head to the Falls of Bruar, located just behind House of Bruar, for a short but strenuous walk amongst stunning surroundings with beautiful views of the falls. Make sure you stop by the House of Bruar for a bite to eat and a shopping treat afterwards.

    If you’re in need of a little adrenaline why not experience the Highland Fling Bungee Jump? Located on Garry Bridge you can take a leap of faith whilst surrounded by iconic Perthshire landscapes. If you’d prefer an afternoon learning about the area’s history and heritage, head to Blair Castle & Gardens which has been the home of the Atholl family for more than seven centuries.

  5. Cairngorms National Park (via Aviemore) Scottish Highlands

    Wild Swimming at Loch Morlich

    © VisitScotland / Airborne Lens

    Travel: Perth to Aviemore

    • Via train – 1hr 30 minutes
    • Via car – 1hr 50 minutes

    Spend the day in one of Scotland’s most iconic national parks. The Cairngorms is a vast expanse of mountains, valleys and lochs that are home to more wildlife and outdoor activities than you can imagine. If you’re looking for a day on the water learning all sorts of watersports, head to Loch Morlich or Loch Insch. If you’re an avid Munro bagger, you’ve got plenty of options here to tick off your list. If you’d prefer to relax or treat yourself to spa treatments, you can enjoy a day at the MacDonald Aviemore Resort.

    You also don’t need to venture far to see stunning panoramic views of the area. Craigellachie National Nature Reserve is located to the back of Aviemore, behind Aviemore Youth Hostel, and offers a short but steep climb to the top where you can stop at the viewpoint for mesmerising views. If you want to quickly grab a couple of photo opportunities before you go, take the drive up past Loch Morlich to the Cairngorm Mountain car park where you can admire your surroundings.

  6. Nae Limits, near Ballinluig Pitlochry

    Family Canyoning adventures in the Falls of Bruar

    Travel: Perth to Nae Limits

    • Via train/bus – 1hr
    • Via car – 40 minutes

    Add some adventure to your trip with a day out at Nae Limits. Located north of Perth, not far from Pitlochry, you can dive into a range of thrilling outdoor activities. From canyoning and gorge walking, to quad biking, river tubing and much more, the whole family can make a splash. Just make sure to bring a dry change of clothes with you.

    Key facilities
    • Accessible Parking Or Drop-off Point
    • Accessible toilets
  7. The Scottish Crannog Centre Perthshire

    Restoration at the Scottish Crannog Centre, Perthshire

    © Scottish Crannog Centre

    Travel: Perth to The Scottish Crannog Centre

    • Via bus – 2hr 15 minutes
    • Via car – 1hr

    The Scottish Crannog Centre is back and better than ever after suffering a devastating fire in 2021.  Now with a new look, The Scottish Crannog Centre is located on the banks of LochTay and has reopened to the public. This intricate Iron-Age dwelling replica is a real sight to see, with guided tours, history exhibitions, arts & crafts, music demonstrations and more to get involved in.

    You can even get hands on with exciting events, such as Midsummer Music, Scottish Storytelling Sunday, Celts Are Coming, Samhain, and much more that let you and family dive deeper into Scotland’s history, culture and traditions.

    Key facilities
    • Parking
    • On Public Transport Route
    • Pets Welcome
    • Accessible Parking Or Drop-off Point
    • Accessible toilets
    • WiFi

Other things you might like