The Dava Way Trail
Finding the start and finish
To help you enjoy walking or cycling the Dava Way we have prepared descriptions of the route. For convenience the trail is split into three sections and printable versions are available as Word or Adobe Acrobat pdf files on our downloads page. Maps to accompany each section have been prepared and can be viewed on our maps page. There are separate maps and instructions to help find your way through the ancient towns of Grantown-on-Spey and Forres. Prefer to purchase commercially published guides? Details here
The Square, Grantown-on-Spey
Grantown-on-Spey is the capital of Strathspey and lies within the Cairngorms National Park. It is a Georgian (18th century) planned town founded in 1765 by the local laird Sir James Grant. The Square is an attractive open area in the centre of the town. From the south-west corner of The Square follow the road past the caravan and camping site to Dulicht Bridge and the the old railway line, a distance of about ½ mile (1 km) from Grantown centre. For more information about Grantown-on-Spey visit the community website or the Undiscovered Scotland website. Use our Grantown street map and instructions to find your way from the The Square in Grantown.
The Tolbooth and
Mercat Cross, Forres
Forres has been a Royal Burgh since 1140 and is one of Scotland's oldest towns, and also one of its most attractive. Grant Park is a vast parkland area at the east end of the High Street. Community woodland to the south and east of Forres has well used paths and is the habitat for a host of wildlife. For more information about Forres visit the community website or the Undiscovered Scotland website. Way markers guide you from Forres town centre to the southern outskirts of the town, a distance of about a 1 mile (2 km) to the old railway line. You can download a Forres streetmap and instructions to assist with this section.
Carn Ruigh from the
southern edge of Dava Moor
Southern section between Grantown-on-Spey and Dava
This is a section of contrasts. You pass through the lush woodlands surrounding Grantown-on-Spey, then on through farmland as you climb up from Strathspey. The railway line seeks out and follows the side of a sheltered gorge until you emerge out onto the open expanse of Dava Moor where you will find the summit marker. For most of the time you are safe from the intrusion of traffic and yet you are never far from the main road. This means that there are several locations where you could choose to shorten your day if you wish. The distance is about 8 miles (13 km).
Central section between Dava and Dunphail
Knock of Braemoray
from near Dava
This is a short, remote, section that takes you around the ‘back’ of the Knock of Braemoray. The railway line provides access to a fine, remote section of this trail that would be almost impossible to access otherwise. You should seriously consider climbing up to the top of the ‘Knock’ to enjoy the fine views. How many of the distant hills to the north and south of you can you identify? This section includes the Divie viaduct that apears on the way markers along the Dava Way. The direct distance is about 6½ miles (10½ km).
Northern section between Forres and Dunphail
Lush farmland near Logie
This northern section takes you through stretches of farmland and woodland as the route descends to near sea level to reach Forres by the Moray Firth. It includes the longest and highest embankment along the route. You pass within a mile of Logie Steading, which is a collection of speciality shops with a magnificent tearoom. Logie Steading lies beside the River Findhorn which has been described as the most beautiful and spectacular river in Scotland. If you are visiting the area make time to explore this magnificent river and experience its many moods. You also pass alongside (quite literally) an historic distillery with the rarest malt whisky in Scotland. The distance is about 8 miles (13 km).