Edinburgh’s 5 best running routes for spring and summer

Edinburgh’s 5 best running routes for spring and summer

The Scottish capital really does have it all, including great routes for keeping fit

Anyone who has ever experienced Edinburgh knows all about the history, retail therapy and iconic sites the city has to offer. However, the Scottish capital is also the perfect place to step into your summer fitness routine with some scenic running routes.

So tie your laces and leave the cobbled streets of the Old Town behind – we’re going off-road to show you some of the best running routes to be found around Edinburgh.

Priestlaw Hill

For a route that really challenges your off-road abilities, try this 7-mile route along the southern boundaries of East Lothian in the heart of the Lammermuir Hills. Start your run on the west banks of the Whiteadder Reservoir and head south along the public path, turning right onto Herring Road.

From here you’ll enjoy jogging along a quiet country path until turning left onto another minor road, running until you reach a sign for Garvald. Follow this track until you reach the peak of Priestlaw Hill, then enjoy descending back to Whiteadder Reservoir.

Flotterstone Circuit

This route includes several steep peaks, but the views are worth it. Start at Flotterstone Inn and head west, following the signs for Scald Law. Then begin the first of the run’s peaks — Turnhouse Hill — and carry on over Carnethy Hill and finally up Scald Law.

Retreat back down and head along to the Loganlee Reservoir. Continue jogging until you reach the Glencorse Reservoir, from where you can head east back to Flotterstone Inn.

Lammer Law

Lammer Law is a flexible running route which allows for both a short and longer run. Start by running south through Blinkbonny Wood as you pass through desolate moorland, stopping every so often to admire the incredible views of the Firth of Forth. Continue through two gates, then turn right and then left until you reach the summit cairn of Lammer Law.

You now have two choices: retrace your steps for a 5-mile round course or continue around Hopes Reservoir and Knock Hill for a 9-mile run. Whichever option you choose, this route is great for giving you a sense of wilderness and isolation despite being close to the city.

Blackford Hill and the Hermitage

This mostly paved, 3-mile route is perfect for runners who don’t feel completely confident with longer, craggier trails.

Starting on Braid Road, run along the Braid Burn through a picturesque tree-lined Hermitage until you reach Hermitage House. Next, ascend left through woodland, turn right then left at a fork in the road, and make your way around Blackford Hill, following a faint path to the peak. You’ll be able to enjoy panoramic views of the city skyline before retreating down the hill and jogging south to Braid Burn. From here, go west until you reach your starting point at Braid Road.

Holyrood Park

There’s a reason Holyrood Park is one of the most well known and popular running routes in and around Edinburgh. The variety of rugged routes and stunning scenery makes for one of the most enjoyable running spots for miles around, and allows you to complete as gentle or as challenging a course as you like.

For a demanding but rewarding 2.5-mile route from Holyrood Park, try Radical Road. Climbing this path will give you beautiful views of the city to the west, then a couple of left turns will take you to the peak of the famous Arthur’s Seat. Make the final scramble to the summit and enjoy the views before racing through the heart of the Park east of Hunter’s Bog.

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