Cramond from Craigleith (approx. 9½ miles)

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Maps: Sheet 350: Edinburgh, Musselburgh & Queensferry.
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Start: Either:
  • NT224743 - Craigleith at Esso bus stop. If travelling to the start by bus - start the walk from this bus stop

  • or
  • NT225745 - Craigleith Retail Park. If you are travelling by car, park at the Craigleith Retail Park.
Route: Most of the walk follows cycle paths and footpaths, but short sections of the walk are alongside roads. The route is fairly level other than short lengths by the River Almond. The route passes Lauriston Castle - well worth exploring the grounds and timing your walk so that you can visit when the Castle is open (we didn't, so returned the next day for a guided tour of the building). Another addition (which we didn't manage because of the tides) is to extend the walk to Cramond Island - this is on our "to do" list!
More info:
  • Cramond Falls Café - where we enjoyed splendid refreshments
  • Cramond Gallery Bistro
  • Cramond Inn
I usedto add a tool from Transport Direct in this space - but it is no longer available. If you are travelling by bus, go to Lothian Bus website and enter "Craigleith at Esso" as your destination.
Craigleith Crescent Go straight to the third section if you have parked at Craigleith Retail Park.
If you have arrived at the start by bus, continue walking along Queensferry Road away from Edinburgh city centre. Turn first left into Craigleith Crescent, then left again to go through the gap in the railings (shown in the photograph).
Steps down to Blackhall Path Descend the steps and turn left onto the disused railway track.

Continue to junction of tracks (skipping the next section which gives directions to those starting the walk from the retail park).
Path from Craigleith Retail Park If you park on the retail car park, walk towards the Sainsbury's petrol station, then take the footpath to the right, walking past a small playground.
junction of Blackhall & Telford Paths This is the view you will see if you started from the bus stop. Those joining from the retail park will come in from the path on the right.
graffiti under Telford Road Bridge Follow the Blackhall Path under a couple of bridges - the picture shows the graffiti under the first of these (is it art or is it vandalism?).
Leaving the Blackhall Path to go under Silverknowles Road Where the main track bears right, take the narrower fork to the left, walking under the bridge shown in the photograph.
Tesco car park This emerges onto a Tesco car park. Stay to the right of the building and turn right onto Cramond Road South.
Cramond Road South If you don't have time to explore the grounds of Lauriston Castle, then cross at the road here and turn left into Barnton Avenue.

But to visit Lauriston Castle don't cross the road, just continue ahead - it really is worth visiting the castle grounds which are attractively laid out and provide excellent views over the estuary.
Lauriston Castle Turn right to follow the drive down to the castle. There is a Japanese garden to the left of the castle entrance, and views down to the Firth of Forth from the back of the castle.
Barnton Park When you leave the castle grounds, cross the road and follow Barnton Park, which curves round to the left. Turn right at the junction with Barnton Avenue which winds between some rather expensive housing to …
Cycle path, Barnton Avenue … become a traffic free path leading down …
Barnton Avenue West … to emerge on Barnton Avenue West. Continue along the pavement ahead ...
Whitehouse Road … to traffic lights where you cross Whitehouse Road and walk down Brae Park Road.
Brae Park Road Take the left hand fork, continuing along Brae Park Road.
junction of Brae Park Road and Dowie's Mill Lane At the bottom of the hill, just before Cycle Route 1 crosses the river, turn right, following the sign for River Almond Walk to Cramond.
River Almond Walkway Continue along the east bank of the river …
River Almond Walkway … through pleasant woodland ...
River Almond Walkway … up a flight of steps and then down the other side.
River Almond Walkway In the 18th century the valley was quite industrialised - from this picture it's hard to imagine - but the weirs and ruins that you pass provide clues to the industrial past.
School Brae The path emerges on School Brae, next to the very welcoming Cramond Falls Café where we stopped for refreshment.
River Almond Walkway The path continues close to the river …
confluence of Rivers Almond and Forth … past the sailing club …
Cramond Village ... and on to Cramond Village.
Cramond Island It was close to high tide when we were in Cramond - so it wasn't possible to go along the walkway to the Island. Instead …
the beach at Cramond … we walked along the beach.
the Cramond Fish This sculpture, the Cramond Fish, has been positioned at the eastern end of the beach since 2009. We left the beach at this point …
Silverknowles Esplanade … to continue on the pavement along Silverknowles Esplanade.
Silverknowles Esplanade We continued following this broad, traffic-free path …
Silverknowles Esplanade ... eventually bearing to the right, away from the river.
West Shore Road Turn left when the path meets West Shore Road. On the right is the site of Granton Gasworks, with the one remaining gasometer (now a listed building). Cross the road and look out for …
West Shore Road … a path on the right (as the area is being redeveloped, the appearance may change).
path between West Shore Road and Caroline Park Follow the path up a slight incline and round to the left.
Caroline Park It emerges close to Caroline Park, another listed building.
Granton gasometer Follow the pavement alongside Caroline Park Avenue and the gasometer. Cross the road where the road turns sharply to the right and continue ahead on the path alongside the Scottish Gas HQ.
Waterfront Avenue Turn right onto Waterfront Avenue, cross this road at the traffic lights and turn left onto …
Waterfront Broadway … the cycle path alongside Waterfront Broadway.
Waterfront Broadway Cross West Granton Road and continue to follow the cycle path alongside the road, under the bridge pictured and …
Waterfront Broadway ... carry on along the cycle path to join the Telford Path across the bridge shown in the photograph.
Telford Path close to the junction with the Blackhall Path Continue along the Telford Path until you return to the junction with the Blackhall Path. Now retrace your original route until ...
path towards Craigleith Retail Park and South Groathill Avenue ... you reach the path leading to the retail park. Turn left towards the back of the Sainsbury's petrol station. If you parked at the retail park, cross the road and return to the car park. If you used the bus, turn right along South Groathill Avenue, then right on to Queensferry Road to the bus stop.

Other walks near here:

  • A linear walk from Blackness to North Queensferry - 8 miles

  • All text and images ©Graham Dean, February 2014.

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