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Storm Clean-up: Many of our forests, especially in the east and south of Scotland, remain closed. Please plan ahead and check online before visiting.

Countesswells

Where we are

Latest forest information

Forests all across Scotland have been seriously affected by recent storms. We are doing everything we can to make our forests safe for visitors, communities, forest businesses and our staff. However, many of our forests remain closed while others have significant diversions and access restrictions for the foreseeable future. Please keep safe and follow all closure notices and safety signage.

Take care on or around open water. Find out more on our Water Safety page.

Update 16 December - Car park & site closure: The significant windblow and damage in Countesswells means that the car park and site are still closed and likely to remain so for some time to come. We are opening other car parks and sites as quickly as we can - Nearby Foggieton is now open again.

About

Wide forest paths with views over Aberdeenshire

The wide forest trails at Countesswells give gentle views over Aberdeenshire farmland and towards the city of Aberdeen. They can be combined into a longer circular route passing through the whole length of the forest.

These attractive woods were once part of the Countesswells estate. The huge conifers create a cathedral-like atmosphere near the entrance, whilst colourful beech, larch and pine make up the rest of the woodland.

Countesswells route card (PDF)

Walking trails

Walking

Beech Tree Trail

A short stroll through the huge conifers and colourful beech trees that line the route.

Mostly firm gravel surface. Section of uneven earthy path with exposed tree roots and muddy areas. Fairly steep slopes.

Moderate trail grade icon
1 ¼ miles / 2.1 km

Allow
¾ hour

More information

The trail goes through groves of smooth grey-barked beech trees. In spring the leaves are vivid green, turning darker in summer before blazing into autumnal oranges and browns. The beech is deciduous which means that it loses its foliage every year, creating a wonderful carpet of crunchy leaves to kick through!

The trail is through trees so can be muddy after rain but is surfaced in places.

Walking

The Big Tree Trail

Wander through giant Sitka spruce and majestic Douglas fir on this short jaunt through the forest.

Firm gravel surface with some uneven sections. Moderate slopes. Some parts may be muddy after rain.

Moderate trail grade icon
1 ½ miles / 2.5 km

Allow
1 hour

More information

This is a great trail for getting a quick blast of fresh air and exercise at any time of day. There are viewpoints over farmland and out to Kingshill Wood.

Walking

Gairn Hill Trail

A fine circuit of Gairn Hill Wood, which is home to a variety of trees and some good views across Aberdeenshire.

Firm gravel surface throughout, with some rocky, rooty and muddy parts. Long moderate slopes with some short steeper ramps.

Moderate trail grade icon
2 ¾ miles / 4.4 km

Allow
1½ hours

Facilities and access

Walking
Walking
Mountain biking
Mountain biking
Parking (charge)
Parking (charge)
Horse riding
Horse riding

The nearest public toilets are in Cults or Kingswells.

Car parking information

The charges to park at Countesswells are:

Payment options: Coin or Card

  • £1 for up to 1 hour
  • £1.50 for up to 3 hours
  • £2 for all day
  • £8 for minibus or coach all day 

We recommend you bring both coins and cards with you in case our machine is having an off-day. Please park with care and consideration. In particular please park in designated parking areas only and do not block entrances or gates. Nearby car parks with free parking can be found in our local forest list without the £ symbol. 

Annual parking pass available:

Blue badge holders park free. Please display your Blue Badge clearly.

More parking info

Getting here

The entrance and car park for Countesswells wood is on the west side of an unclassified road, 1 mile south of Kingswells. From the Kingswells roundabout on the A944, follow the turning for Cults. If heading from Cults or Countesswells Road, follow signs for Kingswells.

Using SatNav?

AB15 8QD is the closest postcode.

Get directions

Nearby forests

A man walking down a path in a green jacket with trees and grass around.

Countesswells' smaller and quieter neighbour

Facilities and activities
Walking
Walking
Parking (charge)
Parking (charge)
Distance from 'Countesswells': 0.39 miles
Light streaming through a mixed woodland with ferns, Tyrebagger, Aberdeenshire and Moray District,

Family-friendly trails through towering trees

Facilities and activities
Walking
Walking
Parking icon
Parking
Distance from 'Countesswells': 4.21 miles
Tall green trees on a hillside with view beyond to mixed fields and hills under blue sky.

Walk, run or cycle to the Tappie Tower

Facilities and activities
Walking
Walking
Mountain biking
Mountain biking
Parking icon
Parking
Viewpoint
Viewpoint
Distance from 'Countesswells': 4.32 miles

Get in touch

Have a question or suggestion for improvement?

Phone
0300 067 6380 (option 2)
More contact information

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