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Deeside Way

71 km / 44 miles

Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire
Warning: Parts of the route between Kincardine O'Neil and Aboyne are still under development and may not be passable, so a road alternative is used.

The Deeside Way is nearing completion with only a short missing section east of Aboyne and plans are underway to extend the path from Ballater to Braemar.

The Deeside Way is a path running from near the centre of Aberdeen, oil capital of Europe, to Ballater, in the Cairngorms National Park, famous for itís Victorian Heritage and links to Balmoral Castle. The path is suitable for walkers and cyclists with many sections suitable for horses as well and is Route 135 of the National Cycle Network which is coordinated and promoted by Sustrans.

The route follows the line of the Old Royal Deeside Railway from Aberdeen to Banchory, through woodland and farmland to Kincardine OíNeil and then rejoins the old line from Aboyne to Ballater. Between Banchory and Aboyne the route utilises forest tracks, woodland paths and field margins. This is because the old railway headed north as it left Banchory to Torphins and Lumphanan before returning to the Dee valley at Dess. Aberdeenshire Council is currently trying to identify a satisfactory route to complete this section.

Along the way there are many opportunities to see remains of the old railway infrastructure as well as stunning views over the River Dee with the Cairngorm Mountains as a backdrop. Most of the route is off road with gradual gradients making for easy going particularly suitable for family cycling although there are some short steeper sections giving more of a challenge. Along the way there are opportunities to link into other paths including historic drove roads like The Fungle and Firmounth and local path networks. The Deeside Way offers the opportunity to explore a beautiful area of Aberdeenshire with its changing landscape from sea to mountain and makes the ideal base for a walking holiday or cycling holiday or indeed both.

Route details and maps may be downloaded from the link below.


Path Type
Other Paths
Easy; Former Railway; Cycle Route; Forest/Woodland; Railway
NJ938046 - Duthie Park, Aberdeen
View on StreetMap
NO370959 - Ballater, Aberdeenshire
View on StreetMap
Open Date
Web Sites


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Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2016.
© OpenStreetMap contributors under Open Database Licence.
Rights of way data from selected Local Authorities.
Large scale digital mapping is provided by John Thorn.
At high zoom levels the route is indicative only.
Purchase Ordnance Survey Maps:
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71 Km
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71 Km

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Route Profile:

69.9 Km (43.4 miles)
896 m (2,940 ft) ascent
206 m (676 ft)  maximum height