Falls of Shin
Falls of Shin Forest Notices
COVID-19 has changed lots of things we do. And as we re-open the majority of our facilities and welcome more of you back in Phase 3, we need your help to do it safely. Please check what’s open before you travel; enjoy your visit safely by following NHS and Scottish Government guidance; take your litter home with you; and follow the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.
At this location:
- The car park is open and normal charges (if any) now apply.
- Toilets are closed while we work to make them safe for you to use. A phased reopening of our public toilet facilities began on Monday, 20 July 2020. For now, please “go before you go” and check helpful apps or websites to find toilets that are open nearby.
Ancient woodland, Atlantic salmon and thundering falls
Follow the winding road through Achany Glen to a forest clearing where salmon leap and children play. You've reached the Falls of Shin, a wonderful starting point for a range of trails through beautiful mixed woodland and along the rocky banks of the Shin. It's a great place to get out and enjoy the forest whatever your ability – there are natural play areas here and easy trails suitable for all users.
Wander through native woodlands along the River Shin and look out for the shimmering of the aspen trees.
Firm gravel surface throughout. Some slightly uneven and overgrown grassy sections. Includes a number of short fairly steep slopes and two road crossings.
Allow ½ hour
This is one of only 14 places in the UK where the endangered aspen hoverfly survives. It relies on a constant supply of decaying aspen so we try to leave dead wood where it falls.
Pond and Play Trail
Search for colourful dragonflies and hidden wildlife carvings. Let your imagination run wild in the natural play areas.
Uneven gravel and grassy surface throughout. Moderate slopes with some short steeper sections.
Allow ½ hour
Climb up through larch, fir and pine forest for great views across Achany Glen. Look and listen for buzzards and woodpeckers.
Uneven gravel and grassy path. Long moderate slopes for up to 600m with several short steeper sections.
Allow ¾ hour
Lose yourself in towering conifer trees and shady glades where small birds forage for food. There are rugged natural play areas along the way, tremendous fun for children and adults. If you want to explore further by bike or on foot there's access to the forest road network here.
Facilities & access
There is a cafe on site run by Mac & Wild. Opening times, menu and more available at their website.
You'll find public toilets and more places to eat in Bonar Bridge and Lairg.
From Bonar Bridge take the A836 north west for 4 miles (6.4 km), turning left onto the A837 towards Lochinver. After ¾ mile (800 metres) turn right onto the B864; the car park is on your left after 1¼ miles (2 km).
From Lairg follow the A839 south west for ¾ mile (1.2 km) and turn left onto the B864. The Falls of Shin car park is on your right after 4 miles (6.4 km).
The car park is at grid reference NH 576 993.
Nearest postcode: IV27 4EE
An infrequent bus service between Tain and Lairg stops at the Falls of Shin. See Traveline Scotland for details.
Get in touch
Have a question or suggestion for improvement?