Perthshire in central Scotland is a glorious region filled with things to do and explore. Whilst we recommend you visit anytime of the year, it is in autumn that the region comes alive with rich autumnal colours on the trees, with mountain and hillsides coming alive with warm tones and is a fantastic time to travel!
Take in the awe-inspiring landscapes; from expansive lush woodlands, to serene glens, to vast moors and gushing waterfalls. Lochs and mountains. You will find many hidden gems and jaw-dropping locations, read on to find out some of our favourite locations, that we know will be your favourites too- favourite places to immerse yourself in the seasonal display and enjoy autumn in Scotland
THE HERMITAGE- DUNKELD
The Hermitage is a stretch of Perthshire woodlands in the Tay Forest Park that boast towering Douglas Fir trees, which looks spectacular during autumn with a range of rich browns, oranges and yellows, look out for red squirrels as you stroll through the forest as you follow you will be alongside the River Braan which leads to the roaring Black Linn waterfalls and 18th century folly- Ossian’s Hall, be sure to head inside the building to the balcony which will face you right onto the powerful falls. Salmon season is also during August and you may catch sight as the fish leap out of the water making their way upstream
Info: Open daily. Free entry. £2 for car park or free if National trust for Scotland member
Address: Old Military Rd, Dunkeld PH8 0JR, follow brown tourist route signs from the A9
Route: 22 minutes’ drive / 12.4 miles north on A9 from The Hermitage to Pitlochry
Pitlochry is a picturesque Victorian town on the shores of Loch Tummel. This is always a good place to stop for a bit to eat. The high street is bustling with cafés, restaurants and shops. We love Hettie’s Tearooms where there is an extensive menu from breakfast to lunch including seasonal coffee’s such as hazelnut and cinnamon lattes and a wide choice of cakes and treats
Info: Open from 10.30am
Address: Hettie’s Tearooms 93-95 Atholl Road, Pitlochry, PH16 5AB
Route: 13 minutes’ drive / 7.3 miles on A9 from Pitlochry to Blair Castle
Located in the village of Blair Atholl you will find the grand Blair Castle and Gardens. You can visit this 13th century white castle or spot it on your travels as it stands proudly from the forest of trees surrounding it
Info: Castle open end of March to end of October each year. House and gardens admission £13 adults, £8.30 children
Address: Blair Atholl, Pitlochry, PH18 5TL
Route: 7 minutes’ drive / 3.3 miles on B8079 from Blair Castle to House of Bruar
HOUSE OF BRUAR
Attracting more than 1 million visitors each year, the House of Bruar is a thriving independent retailer selling country tweed and Scottish country clothes, as well as a fantastic food hall and an award winning butcher.
Info: Be sure to check out the spectacular Bruar Falls which are located nearby
Address: Pitagowan, Blair Atholl, PH18 5TW
Route: 13 minutes’ drive / 8.3 miles on A9 and B8079 from House of Bruar to Killiecrankie
The densely forested, wooded gorge at the Pass of Killiecrankie is best viewed from the Garry Bridge. This is also a legendary Jacobite site, and this is marked at the Soldiers Leap where an escaping Redcoat is said to have leapt 18ft over the river. You took can take a leap of faith as there is a bungy jump off the Garry bridge! The landscape utterly jaw dropping, this area comes alive in autumn with the thick abundance of colourful trees set against the inky black water of the Garry river. Look out for red squirrels, leaping salmon and birdlife!
Info: Pop into the visitor centre which is open end of March to 24th December each year and is free admission. Here there is also another bridge to walk across
Address: Visitor centre, Killiecrankie, Pitlochry, PH16 5LG
Route: 10 minutes’ drive / 3.9 miles on B8019 from Killiecrankie to Queen’s View
Overlooking the magnificent Loch Tummel in Tay Forest Park is Queen’s View, named after King Robert the Bruce's wife, Isabella but also said to have been named after Queen Victoria who visited the area and fell in love with the view. From the Queen’s View the road continues alongside Loch Tummel, where the views are splendid
Info: £2 car park charge and café on site
Address: Pitlochry, PH16 5NR
Route: 29 minutes’ drive / 13.8 miles via B8019 and B846 from Queen’s View to Kinloch Rannoch
From Loch Tummel head towards the little village of Kinloch Rannoch. The village is picturesque with rows of houses, and two churches set against the backdrop of mountains. Drive to the end of the village to view Loch Rannoch, and on the way out of the village heading towards Kenmore with surrounding views of the Tay Forest Park you will come across an unassuming hill, unless you are an Outlander fan as this is the infamous site of Craigh na Dun; whilst there are no standing stones to transport us back to the 18th century, the prominent hill and views will make you feel quite mystical. Even for those that haven’t (yet) watched Outlander (you definitely should by the way) this site which you will note with a metal barrier and cattle grid on the left side of the road is worth a visit as the views are stunning
Address: PH16 5PN
Route: 41 minutes’ drive / 17.7 miles via B846 from Kinloch Rannoch to Kenmore
Located 6 miles from Aberfeldy (which we didn’t manage to make on this trip, but it comes with high recommendations) is the pretty village of Kenmore which lies on the banks of Loch Tay. Take a stroll to the water’s edge and marvel at the imposing woodlands surrounding the village or have a drink in Scotland’s oldest inn the Kenmore Hotel
Info: Pop round the back of the Kenmore Hotel for amazing shots of the landscape like this
Address: The Square, Kenmore, Aberfeldy PH15 2NU
Route: 41 minutes’ drive / 17.7 miles via B846 Loch Rannoch to Kenmore
FALLS OF DOCHART- KILLIN
After following Loch Tay, you will approach the village of Killin you will pass over the Bridge of Dochart and below and to your right you will see the magical cascading Falls of Dochart
Info: We were too busy admiring the views that we forgot (somehow) to take photographs but trust us it was stunning
Address: Main Street, Killin FK21 8TP
Route: 27 minutes’ drive / 16.3 miles via A827 Loch Rannoch to Kenmore
Where is Perthshire?
Perthshire is a region located in the geographic centre of mainland Scotland. The city of Perth is the main hub of the region with many other villages and small towns dotted around.
Located 1 and half hours from Edinburgh you will pass through Stirling on your 60 mile journey north.
If travelling from Glasgow it is also around 1 and half hours’ drive at around 70 miles, you could drive straight to The Hermitage or the city of Perth and take the route via Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park on the way back to Glasgow.
Why is Autumn the best season?
Autumn is arguably the best time to visit Perthshire due to the autumnal colours and the way the mountains and hills come alive in the sunshine. The woodland walks are magical with the colourful trees and falling leaves. Also, it is generally quitter than the summer months as there is less overseas tourists. We have also visited in Winter and it can look very picturesque but just be careful of the driving conditions if snowing or icy
Any other notable Perthshire destinations?
Gleneagles Luxury Hotel, Spa and Golf Resort
Gleneagles 5 star luxury hotel which opened its doors in 1924 has an award winning spa, restaurant with two Michelin stars and a rather famous 63 holed golf course which has hosted the 2014 Ryder Cup and 2019 Solheim Cup all set on extensive 850 acre grounds. Book in for an indulgent afternoon tea and enjoy the surroundings of the hotel grounds and the Ochil Hills whilst tasting the mouth-watering selection of pastries, cakes and finger sandwiches
Info: Gleneagles afternoon tea is £45 per person, expensive, but this is afternoon tea at its finest in one of the most renowned hotels in Scotland
Address: The Gleneagles Hotel, Auchterarder PH3 1NF
Drummond Castle and Gardens
Whilst the castle is not open to the public, the gardens at Drummond Castle is one of the finest gardens in Europe, the extraordinary layout of the gardens are a sight to see and totally worth viewing. Also, for those Outlander fans the gardens were used as the gardens at the Palace of Versailles in season 2
Info: Open 1st May to 31st October each year£6 per adult and £2 per child
Address: Muthill, Crieff PH7 4HZ
Autumn seems to be our favourite time of year... What is yours?