For this walk you will need to catch the 10.10 train from Glasgow Queen Street to Dunkeld There’s a return train at 19.18. The ‘Dunkeld Path Network Map’, obtainable from the Tourist Office in Dunkeld, or downloadable from the website, would be useful on this walk.
Begin your walk by crossing the railway line by the bridge and then turning left (with your backs to the station) going to the end of the platform and down the steps. You come to a road where you turn left, taking the off-road path above the road. Go straight on following the ORANGE, INCHEWAN path alongside the Inchewan Burn which is on your right. This part is absolutely beautiful.
All too soon, you reach the junction with a path to the left, but go a little further on and, on your right and just in sight, is a rustic bridge across the Inchewan Burn itself. Once across, you leave the Orange Inchewan Path, which goes off to the left, and take a forestry route, marked with purple dashes on the Dunkeld Path Network map, across the Ladywell Plantation.
You come to the GREEN BRAAN path at a curious junction where you turn right. It’s sign-posted to the Hermitage which you’re making for. The Braan path goes down to cross a country road, past a car park on your left, then underneath the railway line, then over the River Braan and into Inver. You then emerge on to a fenced off-road path alongside the A9 but quickly reach The Heritage car park. If you’re lucky there will be a kiosk selling cakes, crisps, hot drinks and ice-creams (but no sandwiches or hot food).
Hug the River Braan for a beautiful walk along the river bank to the spectacular waterfalls and Ossian’s Hall at The Hermitage. This justly famous and exceedingly picturesque spot is good for lunch.
After visiting The Folly, (both doors will be open – push hard) continue on up to Ossian’s Cave, but here leave the Green Braan path for the PALE PURPLE INVER route. After the beauty of the deciduous woods, this stretch along a LRT is less attractive but there are good views across the river to the hills beyond. The Inver Route winds down to the river where you should ignore the path along a stream and under the road and railway, but turn right to emerge on a noisy, horrible bit along the A9. There is a very wide, safe, pavement, and the views up the river to Pitlochry are good. Fortunately, you soon reach the cycle track on your left which curves down and back under the bridge to continue on the other side of the river on the PALE GREEN FIDLER’S path.
You now have an easy walk along the River Tay, initially above the river, but just beside it as you begin to get nearer to Dunkeld. The last stretch is lovely as the cathedral comes into view. Keep to the river until you are guided past the cathedral (now on your right) to turn suddenly sharp right. Now you walk along the far side of the cathedral, go through the Heritage Scotland entrance (free) to the front of the cathedral where you’ll want to stop to take photographs and explore a little. Then turn left through the main gates and into the little town. If you don’t know Dunkeld, the white-washed houses, Mercat Cross and triangle are exceedingly picturesque. At the main road, turn right to cross the magnificent Thomas Telford bridge.
Once across the bridge continue for a couple of hundred yards to Little Dunkeld. A sign-post points left across a grassy triangle to the road to Birnam and you follow this to the Birnam and Dunkeld Hotel.
Now take the Orange Inchewan Burn path, opposite the Hotel and on the right of the Beatrix Potter Garden and the left of the Inchewan Burn. This brings you back to the steps going up to the platform and the train for Glasgow.