Are you stressed because your dead car just ruined your Aviemore trip? Or are you worried because you don’t have a car of your own or looking for some budget-friendly no-car itinerary ideas since you don’t want to spend your bucks on unnecessarily expensive car rentals- and now you desperately need a guide on the- things to do in Aviemore without a car?
Well then, congratulations because you’ve just reached your stress buster as we’ve come up to the rescue to take you out of the car depression situation!
Nothing beats the simplicity and serenity of the town of Aviemore, but there might be times when your wallet might not lend a hand to you for expensive car rentals, or sometimes your car might not own a good condition.
There can be a lot of cases that might be an obstacle between you and your Aviemore itinerary. But we won’t let that happen! So let’s go with us and keep reading the article to make your without-car Aviemore trip as exciting as ever!
Things to Do in Aviemore Without A Car
1. Make The Public Transports Your Savior
The panoramic Aviemore allows you to escape from the busy roads of your tight, scheduled life, but when you’re on a without-car venture, the local transport can be your saving grace.
And it’s one of the first and foremost things to do in Aviemore without a car because these alternative transports will help you wander about Aviemore.
From Stagecoach North Scotland you can get these alternatives as they offer a wide range of transport services in the Aviemore area (it might sound weird but they even provide planes)! As per your budget and convenience, you can take up the following:
2. Regular bikes
If you’re heading from Inverness, reaching Aviemore will take 40 minutes. Caledonian Sleeper Train and Megabus franchise are our picks for you on that.
But watch out as bus schedules might not be flexible to you, so be doubly sure about the bus timings beforehand and try to be there 15 minutes before the scheduled time so that you don’t face any mismatch during your itinerary.
And there might be times when buses might not notify you about the stops every time, so our pro tip would be to track your route with Google Maps so that you can catch your desired stop.
As for the accommodation, if you’re looking for a shorter trip within an affordable range, you can go for the High Range Lodge Hotel. Another one is the 3-star Cairngorm Hotel which offers a price range starting from $72.
But wait, are you an adventurous backpacker? Then head to the Rothiemurcus Campsite and vibe with the gentle yet funky Aviemore tents.
You can visit the Tourist Information Centre if you are not sure about any route. They’ll help you with real-time trail information and maps. Along this road, you’ll also see some surreal stone sculptures.
2. Give A Treat To Yourself From The Cairngorm Brewery
How on earth is it possible that you end your without-car Aviemore trip without giving a go to its lip-smacking distilleries?
This award-winning brewery has a vast collection of beers from Nessie’s Monster Mash and Scottish Milk Stout to the Cairngorm Gold and Stag, and as we know, Scotland is the empire of whisky and beers, so this place is a must-visit for you.
The beer tasting will cost you about $7 per person. The icing on the cake is the brewery’s gift shop, so you can also buy some premium gifts. If you are heading from Dalnabay, it’ll take you about 13 minutes walking distance to reach the brewery.
3. Get An Adventurous Climb At Ben Macdui
If you’re looking for adventurous yet cheap things to do in Aviemore, it is the place to be! It is one of the tallest and most challenging Mountains to hike in Aviemore.
It’ll give you a two-in-one hike feeling because before you climb to Ben Macdui, you first need to climb up Cairngorm Mountain!
The peak journey will take about 5-6 hours to complete, but the top’s divine views will surely give the travel fanatics a heaven-like feeling. Remember to take up your sunscreens and hike boots along. And the exciting part?
The place is famous for its haunted side! As per the locals, there’s a ghost of Old Grey Man, so yay, a great thriller awaits you!
But if you aren’t an avid hiker, you should not go alone to the Ben Macdui venture. Instead, consider taking a guide with you.
4. Reminisce The Moment with Rothiemurchus Estate
Located at the edge of Aviemore, this lush green Rothiemurchus forest can be your stop for an ultimate Aviemore-style walking trip.
Walk through the woods, and as your eyes witness the beauty of nature, you’d feel that eyes are windows to the heart.
This estate has many trail routes, perfect for your without-car itinerary.
From kayaking down the river, watching the River Spey, tubing, clay pigeon shooting, fishing, rafting, tree swinging adventures, pony trekking, or just watching the variety of wildlife like the stunning red squirrel or the slaying deer, this site has got a lot for you.
But remember to bring your hiking boots because it will make your walking experience even more convenient. Quad bikes and segways are also available in this place, so you can go for them if you tire while discovering the forest by walking.
Camping in this property will surely hit you differently as it is right amidst the scenic forest. It will cost you about $20 per night. It is a highly recommended activity per the locals, so yes, camping here is one of our pro-tip on the things to do in Aviemore without a car.
Oh, remember to have a mini picnic out there. It’s worth having! There are also farm shops and a cafe called the Varn Cafe to help you energize with delicious delicacies.
So, to enjoy all these precious views you don’t need a car for sure as the place is explored best by walking. And you can easily reach the site by bus.
5. Visit The Craigellachie National Nature Reserve
Now this magical beauty holds a lot of unique things for you, especially when you don’t have a car, as it owns four immensely serene walking trails with stunning green oases around.
It will give you a hint of adventure because its Viewpoint Trail requires you to climb up a hill, with the picturesque surrounding of Spey Valley, Loch Puladdern, Cairngorm Mountains, and the reservoir. They also provide maps to help you wander about the oasis.
6. Visit The Mysterious Loch An Eilien
If you’re someone who loves thrilling and chilling at the same time, then this place is the right choice for you.
Bordered by the beauty of classical pine trees and heavenly mountains, this place offers super walkable low, leveled walkways and classic kayaking, just the perfect one for adrenaline rush seekers.
And the thrilling part? You’ll see an ancient 13th-century ruined castle at the center of this beautiful loch water, so remember to have some snaps over there. It also facilitates mesmerizing Woodland sceneries and wild swimming.
And if you are an Instagram fanatic, we recommend you get a waterproof phone case to capture your memories underwater.
If you’re coming from the Visitor Centre trail, it’ll cost you a mere $2 per head to reach the loch.
7. Go cycling
Why go for cars? When cycling is beside you, peers! Aviemore has a lot of places that foster some fantastic cycling.
Some cycle path areas among them are Glenmore forest park, village roads, Fort Augustus, Rothiemurchus Estate, and Loch Morlich.
Oh! And if you are at Loch Morlich, remember to have a break from cycling and go for a circular walk around it to witness a stunning view. As for the bike rentals, you can go for the Aviemore Bikes.
8. Remove The Nature Curtains With Cairngorm Mountains
Now this Scottish beauty is something that you can’t afford to say bye to! Around these mountains, there’s a hidden gem called the Cairngorms National Park which has hundreds of rail routes, so you don’t need to worry even if you’ve no car with you.
The beauty of this place hits its peak during the winters because of the enormous range of snow activities like dogsledding, skiing, and snowboarding. Don’t worry if you aren’t an avid skier, as there’s a center where they provide ski lessons.
Summers are also pleasant because this place is like a playground where you’ll get multiple outdoor activities, including horseback riding. But wait, won’t you get hungry while exploring the mountains?
Hey, chill! There’s an incredible restaurant at the top of the Mountain called Ptarmigan, so no worries about the food supremacy.
Also, the night sky view of the mountains is something you shouldn’t miss. It’s indeed one of the beauty spots Aviemore owns for a perfect family gateway.
9. Enjoy The Divine Strathspey Railway
Are you looking for relaxing things to do in Aviemore without a car? Then give this steam train a go. The train follows insanely beautiful routes, so you don’t need to regret it even if you aren’t stopping at any stops.
The steam engine itself is alluring. The steam whistle can take you back to the nostalgic era, so why would anyone want to miss this view?
You can also halt at the stops, take a short walk at the nearby scenic walkways, casually visit the shops, or even get something to eat.
It covers the entire beauty of the Cairngorm National Park and River Spey. And yes, this 19 Mile trip isn’t boring for you as you have many options for drinks, lunch buffets, and wines that will complement the scenic view.
This train takes you to historical stops such as the Broomhill and Boat of Garten (mind you, it’s a picture-perfect village that fulfills the travel urge of backpackers!).
You can also enjoy some amazing events here throughout the year. Notable ones are the Santa Express and Mother’s Day special events. Check out the Railway timetable from their website as it doesn’t provide service 24/7.
10. Witness The Panaromas At Green Loch
Did you ever imagine how it would feel to be surrounded by soul-healing, pristine green water? Visiting this spot is one of the best relaxing things to do in Aviemore without a car.
The healing green water’s beauty perfectly complements the phenomenal ‘Angel’s Peak’ Mountain and the rhythmic pine trees. It also offers wild swimming options, so don’t forget to take a dip if you’re heading during summer.
The place can be simply enjoyed, even with a small stroll, picnic, or cycling. And the best part of loches is there’s Happy Haggis to serve you affordable fish and chips!
11. Get The Ultimate Luxury At Macdonald Aviemore Resort
No car, but wanna impress your loved teddy bear? Then, head off to this place, as it is one of the best things to do in Aviemore for couples so far.
This place offers all the amenities, from displaying the latest cinema releases to an ethereal gym, restaurant, and swimming pool.
They also have a shopping chain at the Spey Valley Shopping Centre where you can get various high-end gifts and goodies, just the perfect one to charm your loved ones. You can easily access this resort if you are coming with rails or bikes.
12. Pay A Visit To The Classic Highland Folk Museum
Are you looking for classic yet free things to do in Aviemore? Then it is the place to be! You can reach here by taking a ScotRail followed by a half an hour’s walk.
This place will take you back to the 1700s and give you a subtle idea of how Highland life used to be. But this FREE open-air site remains closed from October to April in the off-season. It has 25 ancient buildings that portray the lifestyle of the highlanders.
So if you are a nostalgia admirer, congratulations, you don’t need a Time Machine now as you have this museum!
And guess what! You can see a small village at this museum with rustic thatched roofs, so remember to take a camera along. It also facilitates artistic and traditional crafts and a lot of collections that signify sports, agriculture, and architecture of the old era.
So hey! Out of the above ones, what are your favorite things to do in Aviemore without a car? Do let us know your thoughts!
Aviemore offers you a lot even when you show up without a car, from the free scenic walking trails to hiking the majestic mountains, viewing the Scottish pride, the ultimate watersports in the lochs, and wildlife and bird watching.
Whether it is the January winter or the summer, you’ll get a lot of unique activities in Aviemore; while some activities are seasonal, like their annual music festival and dogsledding carts, some take place throughout the entire year.
But yes, if you plan to discover this town resort, Aviemore, further beyond, you should consider taking cars to avoid inconveniences.