Scotland is well known for its windswept vistas, rolling green hills and striking coastlines. Did you know that within just a short distance from Edinburgh there is an awesome 117 mile long path that follows the shore?
The Fife Coastal Path starts north of Edinburgh at the Firth of Forth and ends at the Firth of Tay. You can walk the entire 117 mile distance or just stroll a small portion.
An accessible and beautiful section is from Elie to Crail. This portion of the trail is about 10 miles and can be done over one or several days depending on how motivated you are.
I’d recommend walking in the direction toward Crail, as the winds will typically be at your back. Of course you can walk in the opposite direction as well!
If you have a car you can park it at one end of the path and use the bus as a shuttle to return. Or you can take public transport to any point along the path and walk from there. You may need to walk a few steps further, but the route is pretty well served by local bus. Check the Stagecoach Bus website for detailed information on routes and schedules.
Along this section of the Fife Coastal Path you’ll have amazing views of the lovely sea coast, as well as walking through picturesque villages like St Monans, Pittenweem and Anstruther. You’ll pass several harbors, home to fishing boats and pleasure craft. There are also historic lighthouses, old ruins, and even a series of caves which people have used for centuries!
For detailed information about the trail, check the Fife Coastal Path and the Walk Highlands websites. These sites can give you maps, accurate distances and information about the landmarks you’ll see.
The path is quiet in the off season, with barely any tourists in the area. But come summertime Fife fills with beach going vacationers and folks from Edinburgh escaping the city.
Fife is a gorgeous area and many of the villages have charming cottages for rent. I’d recommend checking into this option so that you can enjoy exploring the area at leisure. In season, perhaps you could schedule a boat trip out to the Isle of May and see the amazing wildlife there.
Have fun exploring Fife!