Loch Morlich

Relax on the sandy beach or go for a scenic hike around this beautiful freshwater loch in the shadow of CairnGorm Mountain.

Loch Morlich is a picturesque lake in Glenmore Forest Park. Overlooked by the peaks of the northern Cairngorms and surrounded by forests, the loch is a popular spot for nature walks. Rent a canoe and paddle over the shimmering waters. Feed Britain’s only free-ranging herd of reindeer at the nearby reindeer center or simply stretch out on the shore and feel the sand between your toes.

Stop at the Glenmore Forest Park Visitor Centre on your way to the loch. Enjoy a slice of homemade cake at the café and plan your itinerary for the day.

Walk along the 1-mile (1.9-kilometer) wheelchair-accessible Beach Trail, a path lined with towering old pine trees, which leads to Loch Morlich’s beach. Relax on this sandy beach, enjoying the panoramic views of the Cairngorms and the surrounding forest of pine and spruce trees. Watch windsurfers gliding across the loch, build a sandcastle and enjoy the sun.

Rent a kayak, rowboat, paddleboard, sailboat or wetsuit from Loch Morlich Watersports and spend a few hours on the waters. Head to the balcony of the center’s boathouse to see lovely views over the loch.

Don’t miss the Loch Morlich Trail, which winds through the Rothiemurchus estate forests and forestry commission land, offering stunning views of the loch from different perspectives. Look for herons, dippers and wagtails, among other birds and wildlife as you walk along this 3.8-mile (6-kilometer) trail.

Visit the nearby Cairngorm Reindeer Centre to see the only herd of free-ranging reindeer in Britain. A herder will take you on a guided walk to pet and feed the reindeer and provide first-hand reindeer education.

Loch Morlich is 6 miles (10 kilometers) east of Aviemore. On-site parking is available for a fee. Buses between Aviemore and the CairnGorm Mountain Funiculary Railway include stops near the loch. Cycle to the loch from Aviemore by following the pleasant Old Logging Way trail. Experience an active day or lounge on the sands while admiring the views at Loch Morlich.

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