New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking

Trip Details & Highlights

Trip Details

Experience the Scottish highlands in its full winter glory. With icy streams, snow-capped mountains, cosy pubs with open fires, fresh clean mountain air and unspoilt walking routes on this New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking Trip.

This New Year winter walking adventure has us based in the vibrant village of Aviemore, known as the outdoor centre of the Cairngorms.

It’s a perfect place for our stay with its close proximity to secluded lochs, ancient Caledonian forest, fantastic mountain trails and great cosy pubs with open fires and local music as well as friendly Scottish Hogmanay (New Year’s Eve) celebrations.

Our accommodation is in good quality B&Bs and we can book dinner for you each day in one of the many bars/restaurants in and around the village.

What`s included

  • 6 days guiding with a fully qualified mountain guide
  • 7 nights accommodation in a good quality B&B (trip also available without accommodation)
  • Breakfast each day
  • Dinner on arrival evening
  • Dinner on New Years Eve
  • Hogmanay celebrations
  • The teaching of basic navigation and mountain safety (if requested)
  • Insight into the history and flora and fauna of the Cairngorms
  • Transfer from Edinburgh to the Cairngorms and back
  • All transfers within trip in comfortable 9 seater van

What`s not included

  • Meals other than specified
  • Travel Insurance (highly recommended)
  • 27/12/2023 – 03/01/2024
  • B&B/Hotel: £1099 pp excluding dinner (2 dinners still included)
  • Single Supplement: £220 pp
  • Group size: 4 – 7
  • 6 days walking
  • Difficulty:
  • Deposit: 20 % of the full amount
  • Start & Finish: Edinburgh
  • Extension possible

Day by Day Itinerary

New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking - Day 1

Day 1 – Welcome to the Highlands

You will be greeted by your guide in Edinburgh. From there we embark on our journey north to the Highlands with lovely vistas on route and a couple of short stops to stretch the legs.

On arrival in Aviemore, we will check you into your B&B and once you’re all settled in, we have a short introduction to the week ahead before we head out to dinner in one of the friendly local bars/restaurants and everyone has a chance get to know each other.

Walk details: Arrival day

New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking - Day 2
Day 2 – Loch an Eilein and Ord Ban, Rothiemurchas

We offer a lovely lower level walk today around the stunning Loch an Eilan within Rothiemurchas estate with its beautifully positioned ruined castle and we also take in the small summit of the lesser know hill, Ord Ban which sits beside the loch.

This little hill offers wonderful views and this day is a great introduction to our winter Cairngorm trip.

Walk details: 9 km/ 5.5 miles | approx. 3 – 4 hours |  320 m/1049 ft |  320 m/1049 ft

New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking - Day 3

Day 3 – Glen Feshie & Ruigh Aiteachain bothy

Today after a short drive, we begin our lovely walk down into the magical wild Glen Feshie with some magnificent Scots Pinewoods. This is an out and back route but the scenery is stunning in all directions.

We visit the recently renovated Ruigh Aiteacahin bothy which is perfect for our lunch stop, before retracing our steps back to the start point. It’s a stunning walk, particularly when there is a crunch of snow underfoot.

Walk details: 11 km/ 6.8 miles | approx. 4 hours |  240 m/787 ft |  240 m/787ft

New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking - Day 4

Day 4 – Loch Muick Circuit and Ballater village

Today we have a beautiful drive to begin our circuit of wonderful Loch Muick on the Balmoral estate. This circuit offers superb views of the surrounding hills.

The walk takes us past Glas-Allt Shiel house which was built by Queen Victoria. We finish our day with some time to explore the lovely village of Ballater.

Walk details: 12.5 km/ 7.75 miles | approx. 4 hours | ↗ 170 m/557 ft | ↘ 170 m/557 ft

New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking - Day 5

Day 5 – Meall a’ Bhuachaille circuit

We ascend this fantastic Corbett (Scottish hill between 2500 and 3000 feet) from Glenmore forest park via a forest track followed by a lovely path through ancient Caledonian pines down to delightful Lochan Uaine (the Green Lochan) and then continue to Ryvoan Bothy before a steep pull up to eventually reach the summit of The Meall a’ Bhuachaille with extensive views.

We continue on a fairly straight forward meandering descent path down to the start and enjoy a refreshment in the renowned Pine Marten Bar. If time allows we can take a short walk along Loch Morlich with its fantastic beach and views.

We then return to Aviemore to get ready for our Hogmanay dinner and celebrate bringing in the New Year with a dram or two!

Walk details: 8.5 km/ 5.25 miles | approx. 3.5 – 5 hours |  543 m/1781 ft |  543 m/1781 ft

New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking - Day 6

Day 6 – Craigellachie Nature reserve

After a relaxing morning with some time to recover from the Hogmanay celebrations, we offer an optional walk directly from our B&B into the beautiful nature reserve of Craigellachie (meaning crag of the rocky place), which is home to Peregrine Falcons.

The summit cairn at our high point offers stunning views over Aviemore and Strathspey.

Walk details: min. 5 km/ 3 miles | approx. 2.5 – 3 hours |  302 m/990 ft |  302 m/990 ft

New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking - Day 7

Day 7 – Creag Meagaidh Nature Reserve

Our final walk of this tour offers some unexpected highlights commencing with a regenerative forest landscape, leading us into a broad valley with steep dramatic rock faces.

Together with the neighbouring mountain ranges, these form a huge geographic shell that was carved into the landscape by glaciers millions of years ago. With snow on the hills its as pretty as a picture and a fitting end to our winter hiking week

Walk details: 14 km/ 8.7 miles | approx. 5 hours | ↗ 430 m/1410 ft | ↘ 430 m/1410 ft

New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking - Day 8
Day 8 – Return to Edinburgh

Today it is time to say our goodbyes to the fine Scottish highland hospitality, the memorable experiences we have shared, but above all to the enchanting Cairngorm National park that exudes charm in any season.

We drive you back to Edinburgh with a couple of leg stretchers on route to arrive back early afternoon and then wish you well on your onward journey with the hope we will see you again on another of our adventures

Gallery New Year Cairngorms Winter Walking