Perthshire Stories and Tips

A blaze of copper and gold: fall colours in Scotland

Kenmore colours Photo, Perthshire, Scotland

Scotland used to be covered in woodland, but now only small vestiges of that ancient Caledonian Forest remain. Despite that, there are still many spots in Scotland where you can see the glorious foliage of the autumn (or fall, as the Americans would say). There are old hedges, preserved areas of woodland, newly reforested spaces and of course grounds of great country homes,

And what could be a better place to see fall foliage than the Scottish county that rightly calls itself the Big Tree Country, Perthshire.

The county's wood-encrusted glens and tree covered mountainsides get ablaze in a variety of reds and yellows, ochre and rust, copper and gold, all of course on the background of the evergreens of Scottish Pine and many fir trees.

National Trust for Scotland even has a telephone hotline in season to inform about the best places to see the colors: +44(0)1796 472215.

Near Pitlochry, the glory of nature is enchanted by a music and light spectacle under the tile of Enchanted Forest, but if the weather is wet or you don't want to stay after dark, a short stroll or a longer walk in many beauty spots will give you a chance to see the fantastic autumn foliage.

(1) The area around Loch Tay is particularly rich in great spots for capturing fall colors. Drive or take a bus to Kenmore for a walk along Tay's banks. Drummond Hill is covered in woodland and gives a wonderful backdrop to the village and the Castle. In addition to broadleaved trees, there are also larches that go pale golden before dropping their needles.

(2) Near Dunkeld, Craigvinean Forest (which includes the Hermitage) is a fabulous location by a riverside, and beautiful in all seasons, but stunning in the fall.

(3) Killiecrankie and Garry Bridge: from the bridge see up the pass, with woodland-clad hillsides around Carn Liath. There are walks and bike tracks and a visitors' centre as it's a historically famous location too.

(4) Dollar Glen and Glen Devon, in the Ochil Hills in southern Perthshire offer tumbling streams, a grand and gloomy castle (Castle Campbell) and wonderful colours, with rowanberries like jewels on the trees among birches, oaks, hazels and hawthorns.

(5) Scone's Palace has fantastic grounds with beautiful plants all year round, and the autumn displays are particularly good.

(6) Near Blairgowrie there is the famous Meikleour Beech Hedge, the tallest and longest hedge in the world – and in the autumn, an orgy of burnished copper and gold – beech is not a native tree to Britain and thus those particularly wonderful colours are rarely visible in such concentration.

These are just a few ideas: Perthshire is full of woods, and most of them will have enough deciduous trees for charming displays of fall color.

Been to this destination?

Share Your Story or Tip