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Some visitor centres are open – check individual web pages for more information. Our trails, toilets and car parks remain open. Plan ahead and enjoy your visit safely.

Falls of Shin

Where we are

COVID-19 update

Some FLS visitor centres are offering a reduced service, with walking and mountain bike trails remaining open, as are most toilets and car parks. Please check below for local updates on any closures.

We want to ensure your visit is an enjoyable and safe one.

Make sure you follow the Scottish Government’s FACTS advice – helping to protect yourself, your family and your local community, and follow the Scottish Outdoor Access Code helping to keep Scotland beautiful.

Latest forest information

  • Update 19 March 2021: The forest walks and part of the car park at Falls of Shin are closed for repairs and improvements. We aim to reopen these in early April (weather, and contractors, permitting). Apologies for any inconvenience.

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.

Guide map to forests of the Far North (PDF 6MB)

Walking trails


Riverside Trail

A trail notice is in effect

  • Update 19 March 2021: The Riverside Trail is closed due to a fallen tree in the power line works exclusion zone. We have informed the National Grid and requested that they remove it safely. Once this has been completed we will re-open the trail as soon as possible.

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.

Moderate trail grade icon
½ miles / 1.0 km

½ hour

More information

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 forest walk play areas.

Uneven gravel and grassy surface throughout. Moderate slopes with some short steeper sections.

Moderate trail grade icon
¾ miles / 1.3 km

½ hour


Woodland Trail

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.

Moderate trail grade icon
1 ¼ miles / 2.0 km

¾ hour

More information

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

Parking icon
Cafe or refreshments
Cafe or refreshments
Play area
Play area
Picnic area
Picnic area


There is a cafe on site run by Mac & Wild. Opening times, menu and more available at their website.

Life's essentials

You'll find public toilets and more places to eat in Bonar Bridge and Lairg.


Getting here

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.

Using SatNav?

Nearest postcode: IV27 4EE

Public transport

An infrequent bus service between Tain and Lairg stops at the Falls of Shin. See Traveline Scotland for details.

Get directions

Get in touch

Have a question or suggestion for improvement?

0300 067 6100 (option 2)
More contact information

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