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    Selected Trips

      Open Canoeing
      Canoeing the Scottish Highlands

      21 review(s)

      Next Trip(s): 29th May | 10th Jul Duration: 7 Days / 6 Nights

      From £1,495 View Prices & Departures

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      Travel Planning and Advice

      Trip Details & Highlights

      Trip created by Stevie Christie
      View Stevie's Profile

      Region: Cairngorms and Central Highlands
      Trip Type: Canoeing
      Comfort: Classic
      Max Group Size: 8
      Confirmed: When 2 Traveller(s) Book
      Deposit From N/A £373.75


      All you need to know about your trip, this essential document is a must for all adventures.

      Download Itinerary

      Trip Details

      Canoe on silver lochs and flowing rivers, relax at charming Highland accommodation and learn new canoe skills in the company of an expert wilderness guide on this fantastic Scottish canoe adventure.

      Suitable for both beginners and intermediate canoeists, you will learn new skills and develop good technique while enjoying classic day trips on Scottish rivers and lochs. Whether it is your first time in a boat or you already know your J-stroke from your Pry, your guides will equip you with all you need to explore some of Scotland’s most beautiful paddling locations. This is a superb way to experience the landscape.

      During the first half of the trip, we will be based in the Cairngorms National Park; we then transfer south and spend the second half in the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National park.

      Trip Highlights

      • Enjoy the best canoe trips in Scotland, returning to a cosy hotel each night.
      • Start on flat water, and paddle up to Grade 2 on classic rivers such as the Spey.
      • Enjoy warm hospitality and great meals in carefully chosen small hotels.

      Day by Day Itinerary

      Day 1 – Arrive and Welcome to the Water

      On our first day we meet at the train station in Aviemore in the Cairngorms National Park. Your guide will give everyone a welcome brief over a coffee before you transfer a short distance to the stunning Loch Morlich, overlooked by the magnificent Cairngorm Mountains. This is the perfect place for an introductory warm up paddle. Afterwards, transfer back to Aviemore and settle in at your accommodation for the next few nights. (L, D)

      Day 2 – The River Spey

      Today we will enjoy a journey on an easy section of the River Spey. Starting from Boat of Garten we take to the river as it meanders gently through the woods and fields of the national park – a relaxing paddle during which we can continue to work on our skills. We will journey as far as the town of Grantown on Spey where we’ll then have the option of doing some coaching on a slightly faster easy rapid to learn the skills to master these enjoyable sections of water. (B, L, D)

      Distance: 13km/ 8 miles

      Day 3 – Loch Insh to Aviemore

      This morning a short drive takes us to beautiful Loch Insh. Here we launch onto a woody section of flat river overlooked by an impressive Osprey nest – keep your eyes peeled for the birds! We’ll first make a circuit of Loch Insh, looking out for some of the many rare bird species that live here such as goldeneye ducks. Then we return to our launch point and continue down the river, paddling all the way back to Aviemore. The river is an easy paddle but there are a couple of very small rapids that will put our steering skills to the test! We arrive back at Aviemore conveniently outside one of the best pubs in the Highlands. (B, L, D)

      Distance: 14km/ 8.5 miles

      Day 4 – Loch Rannoch

      This morning we depart the Cairngorms and transfer south for the second half of our trip. We’ll break up the journey with a paddle on Loch Rannoch – a quiet loch in the heart of the Highlands surrounded by hills and woods. Afterwards we continue south enjoying the great views of lochs and mountains before arriving at our accommodation in the valley of Stathyre. (B, L, D)

      Day 5 – Loch Tay to Aberfeldy

      A true classic river journey for today’s outing. Starting in the stunning bay of Kenmore with views of Ben Lawers we paddle into the entrance of the River Tay and head downstream. There are several bouncy fun and bouncy rapids between here and our destination for the day – the village of Aberfeldy. On arrival, we can look forward to tucking into some great cake in one of central Scotland’s best cafes before heading back to Strathyre. (B, L, D)

      Day 6 – The River Teith

      Today a short transfer takes us to the town of Callander, and along the way we’ll maybe stop to have a look at the impressive Falls of Leny – but we won’t be paddling it! In Callander we set out on the River Teith and paddle to the village of Doune, where we will have a late lunch and then spend the afternoon exploring Doune Castle. (B, L, D)

      Day 7 – Loch Voil and Depart

      On our last morning we will enjoy a last paddle together with an easy journey on Loch Voil, surrounded by hills and finishing in the village of Balquhidder. Here we also find the grave of the famous Rob Roy MacGregor which we’ll visit before finishing the trip. After loading the boats one last time we transfer to the town of Stirling where the trip will finish at the train station. (B, L)

      Download Detailed Itinerary

      Canoeing the Scottish Highlands

      To download a PDF copy of our Trip Itinerary, containing full details about this holiday, please complete the form below:

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      What's Included

      Accommodation - Accommodation in carefully selected guest houses and hotels Read More


      This trip is based at a two comfortable small hotels, where you can be sure of a warm Highland welcome. We will spend the first 3 nights based in the village of Aviemore in the Cairngorms National Park and then 3 nights in Stathyre in the Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park. Accommodation is in a choice of double or twin rooms with ensuite bathroom.


      There is no supplement charged to solo travellers, however, you will be required to share a room with another person of the same sex. If you request a double room for single occupancy, a supplement of £200 is charged.

      Due to the nature of the accommodations we use, single supplements are limited and are allocated on a first come first served basis.

      Meals - Meals Info (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner) Read More

      On this trip, we generally eat dinner as a group however if you would like to make alternative arrangements you are free to do so. Your guide will have an evening off during this trip where they do not eat with the group. They will recommend options for dinner that evening and will help you make any necessary reservations.

      Travel - All transport throughout the trip Read More

      You will be met by your Wilderness Scotland Guide at Aviemore Railway Station at 10:30am on Day 1 of your trip. The trip will finish and you will be dropped off at Stirling Railway Station for 2:00pm on the final day of the trip.

      For advice on getting to and from Scotland please our travel advice page on our website: www.wildernessscotland.com/faq/travel-to-scotland/

      Trip Dates & Prices

      Trip Dates for 2021 Availability Status Price Book
      29th May - 4th Jun 2021 6 place(s) left CONFIRMED £1,495 Book Now
      10th Jul - 16th Jul 2021 8 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED £1,495 Book Now
      4th Sep - 10th Sep 2021 8 place(s) left UNCONFIRMED £1,495 Book Now

      Make This Trip Private

      Sometimes it's nice to get family and friends together and travel privately for some quality time. This means you benefit from all the features of the group departure, including hand-picked accommodation and expert local guides and we'll take care of it all. Then you can make your choice of departures dates and we'll get back to you to finalise the details.

      Speak to an Expert

      As an avid adventurer, Stevie has life-long experience in Scotland’s outdoors. He’s Co-Owner and Head of Adventure with Wilderness and been with us for over 15 years in a variety of roles, with innovative trip design being both a passion and a speciality. In his spare time, Stevie runs the Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival, bringing the world’s most inspiring adventure filmmakers and athletes to an audience of over 1,500 each year. His love for adventure and knowledge of Scotland inspired him to design this exciting canoe trip.

      - Stevie Christie

      Ask Stevie a Question

      Meet Your Guide

      Difficulty Grades Explained

      Green Graded Open Canoeing Holidays 1-3

      This Green graded canoeing trip is suitable for those with little or no previous canoeing experience. There is an emphasis on instruction and developing your skills while enjoying the surroundings of some superb locations. You will be able to progress your skills and experience throughout the trip.

      You should have a reasonable level of fitness and you can expect up to 6 hours of canoeing each day, with breaks to stretch your legs. You will also be asked to assist with carrying the boats to and from the water, working as a team.

      Compare open canoeing grades

      Trip Reviews

      Rated 4.90 out of 5 based on 21 review(s) of Open Canoeing – Canoeing the Scottish Highlands



      Every client receives a feedback survey when they return from their guided, self guided or tailor made holiday with us. Once completed the review is published on our website just as soon as our database updates. The little touches and details are important to us and where issues are raised we make positive changes to our trips to improve your experience.

      That’s why we read each of our client’s reviews and although we don’t respond to all of them, if it’s glowing feedback then we get the satisfaction of helping to make your holidays truly memorable.


      Caroline Taylor

      Reviewed on 16/09/2019

      Age: 80 - 90
      Country: United Kingdom
      Trip Date: 07/09/2019
      Trips Taken: 10

      The Bottom Line

      The Bottom Line

      It was a great trip which I booked with much trepidation, but thoroughly enjoyed. As this was my 13th or 14th trip, I think you can say I like Wilderness Scotland's way of doing things.


      Diana Herriott

      Reviewed on 16/09/2019

      Age: 60 - 70
      Country: USA
      Trip Date: 07/09/2019
      Trips Taken: 1

      The Bottom Line

      The Bottom Line

      We felt the materials we were sent prior to the trip were realistic as to what happened on our trip. The kit list was very valuable, helping us be prepared for varying weather conditions. We would highly recommend this trip to others!


      Marisa Gunn

      Reviewed on 21/07/2019

      Age: 60 - 70
      Country: United Kingdom
      Trip Date: 13/07/2019
      Trips Taken: 3

      The Bottom Line

      The Bottom Line

      Great guides, great locations to canoe, first class experience and holiday , I will definitely go on a Wilderness Scotland trip again

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