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3rd July 2017 | Regional News

Wild Swimming in Scotland

Scotland is home to some of the most beautiful waters in the world. From rivers and lochs to waterfalls and pools, many of these spots are the perfect place to enjoy some wild swimming.

Although wild swimming can make a great day out, it’s important to do a few safety checks first. It’s recommended not to go wild swimming on your own, especially if you’re not a strong swimmer. Make sure the currents aren’t too strong, check how deep the water is and ensure there aren’t any rocks in the way first. So long as you’re sensible though, a day out wild swimming in Scotland can be fun for all the family.

Here at Parkdean Holidays, we’ve picked some of our favourite lochs, pools and rivers that are perfect for wild swimming, so you can try it out on your next holiday in Scotland.

Linn of Tummel, Perthshire

The Linn of Tummel is in the heart of Perthshire, where the River Garry and Tummel meet. In Gaelic, the word “linn” translates to “deep pool”, and these waters are perfect for wild swimming. Just 30 minutes from Tummel Valley Holiday Park, the waterfall is surrounded by picturesque woodland, so you’ll be able to get close to nature whilst splashing around in the water.

Although the Linn of Tummel looks like it’s been there for thousands of years, the pools were formed in the 1940s. Before then, the site was home to Tummel Falls, a dramatic waterfall which was altered by the hydroelectric scheme that created the Pitlochry Dam and Loch Faskally. This changed the levels of the River Garry and River Tummel, and their meeting point became the deep pools which are there today.

You have a good chance of spotting a range of wildlife around the Linn of Tummel. Keep your eyes peeled for brightly coloured kingfishers diving for fish, and see if you can spot any otters sneaking into the water. Red squirrels regularly dart from tree to tree, and if you look carefully, you might even spot a sneaky pine marten making its way through the undergrowth.

Video sourced from Fiona Christison

Loch Skeen, Dumfries and Galloway

Loch Skeen can be found in a remote part of Dumfries and Galloway, just over an hour from Southerness Holiday Park. What makes this wild swimming location so exciting is its close proximity to Grey Mare’s Tail, a beautiful waterfall which is the fifth highest in the UK. The falls are formed from the water flowing from Loch Skeen, which then cascades into the Moffat River in the valley below.

To reach Loch Skeen you’ll have to walk up a craggy hillside at the side of the falls, which is quite challenging but well worth the trip. The area surrounding the waterfall forms the Grey Mare’s Tail Nature Reserve, which is recognised as a Special Area of Conservation. Wild mountain goats regularly roam around the area, and if you look above the ground you’re likely to see birds such as peregrine falcons, ring ouzels and ravens.

Whatever the weather, be prepared for your dip in Loch Skeen to be a very chilly one. However, it’s sure to be rewarding and extremely peaceful due to how remote the area is. The views from the loch are amazing, and you’ll be able to see fairy-tale glens, dramatic mountains and wild open moorland, stretching out for miles.

Video sourced from SeeScotland

Rob Roy’s Bathtub, Stirling

Rob Roy’s Bathtub is a huge plunge pool which is located under a waterfall at the Falls of Falloch in Stirling. Just over an hour from Wemyss Bay Holiday Park, this affectionally named wild swimming spot is ideal if you like the idea of diving into the water from the rocks at the side. Having the waterfall cascading into the pool makes this experience extra special.

Rob Roy’s Bathtub and the Falls of Falloch are set in a peaceful glen and can be easily accessed by walking through lovely woodland from the nearby car park. They have pride of place in the north part of Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park, and there are plenty of walks around the area for you to enjoy. It’s also a perfect spot for a picnic, so if it’s a nice day you could easily spend a few hours there, relaxing and jumping into the plunge pool.

The Falls of Falloch are renowned for their beauty, despite them not being especially tall. It’s a popular spot for photographers, and even if you’re not a professional you’ll easily be able to take some good snaps for yourself. For an alternative view of the falls, there’s an architectural sculpture called “woven sound”, which is made from steel rods and provides a secure viewpoint.

Video sourced from SKYDRONAUTS

Feshiebridge, Cairngorms

An hour away from Nairn Lochloy Holiday Park, Feshiebridge is located in the heart of the Cairngorms National Park. If you take the B970 South from Aviemore, the road goes over a narrow bridge which crosses the River Feshie itself. Underneath the bridge you’ll find a large river pool, where lovely clear water flows down from the rapids. This pool is ideal for swimming and even has its own shingle beach.

The rocks at the side of the pool have fascinating shapes and patterns, which is due to the water’s force carving into them over time. The word “Feshie” refers to the fish which still thrive here, and you’re likely to find yourself swimming alongside wild salmon and trout.

The pool at Feshiebridge has different parts where you can swim, paddle and jump in from the side, depending on how confident you’re feeling. The river levels and speeds here are very dependent on rainfall, so be careful if it has rained heavily before your visit, as the current could be stronger. Swimming at Feshiebridge is the perfect day out when the sun is shining, and the large Scots pine tree on the bank provides wonderful shade.

Video sourced from cannybloke
Where are your favourite wild swimming spots in Scotland? Let us know on our Facebook or Twitter pages.

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