Published: 18th MARCH 2024

Discover Scotland’s hidden gems: Round the Inner Forth

Whether you're a history buff or nature lover, a cycling adventure awaits you around the Inner Forth Estuary. Sustrans has joined forces with Climate FORTH to unveil Round the Inner Forth, a new initiative to encourage more people to explore the area by cycle.

South Queensferry, Forth Bridge along Route 76 of the National Cycle Network. Credit: Tony Marsh

Why cycle Round the Inner Forth? 

Cycling isn't just good for the environment but also for your health. Getting out on a cycle burns calories, gets your heart pumping, and boosts your overall well-being. 

Plus, exploring the Inner Forth by cycling allows you to immerse yourself in Scotland's fascinating history in places unreachable by car.  

With new signage, a two-day tour, and a meticulously crafted itinerary for six-day trips accompanied by maps, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

Cosmo Blake, Principal Network Development Manager for Sustrans Scotland, explained:

“We are delighted to launch Round the Inner Forth in partnership with Climate FORTH.

“As well as creating a new brand identity, we hope the six new cycling day trips and directional signage will encourage more people to make sustainable choices when exploring the Inner Forth estuary."

Two-day tour  

This 70-mile circular trail which follows National Cycle Network Route 76, promises breathtaking landscapes and a healthy and environmentally friendly way to explore the region. 

Day One: Inverkeithing to Stirling 

Length: 31 miles 
Time: Between four and six hours 

Begin your journey from Inverkeithing to Stirling, where you'll encounter coastal settlements like Charleston and Limekilns, showcasing the area's trading and industrial significance.  

Pass through the historic Royal Burgh of Culross and marvel at the Tower houses of Alloa and Clackmannanshire, reminders of Stirling's historic importance as Scotland's 'Seat of Power'.

Download a GPS map here.


Day Two: Exploring the South Shore 

Length: 39.3 miles 
Time: Between five and seven hours

On the second day, explore the industrial landscape along the south shore of the Inner Forth Estuary. Pass by former coal mines, the Grangemouth Oil Refinery, and the harbour railway of Bo'ness.  

Discover attractions like Dunmore Pineapple at Airth, Blackness Castle, and Hopetoun House while witnessing the area's regeneration with feats of engineering like the Kelpies and the Falkirk Wheel. 

Download a GPS map here.

Cycling Round the Inner Forth. Credit: Climate Forth and Andy McCandlish

Shorter day trips 

If you're looking for shorter excursions suitable for the whole family, we have also created six day trips with detailed itineraries and maps.  

1. Historic Alloa to the Ochil Fault

Level: Introductory
Length: 14.4 - 19.6 miles
Time: Between two and three hours

Explore history and nature starting from Alloa station, passing ruins like Sauchie Tower and enjoying panoramic views of the Ochil Hills.

Download the route map and itinerary here.


2. Dunfermline to Culross Loop

Level: Intermediate
Length: 21.3 miles
Time: Between two and three hours

Cycle through Dunfermline's historic sites and enjoy coastal views at Culross Palace and Hanging Gardens.

Download the route map and itinerary here.


3. Beneath the Three Bridges

Level: Intermediate
Length: 17.4 miles
Time: Between two and three hours

Pass under historic landmarks like Dundas Castle and Blackness Castle while enjoying scenic views of the Forth Bridges.

Download the route map and itinerary here.  


4. Linlithgow, Bo'ness & Blackness Loop

Level: Intermediate
Length: 15 miles
Time: Between two and three hours

Explore Linlithgow Palace and enjoy panoramic views of Blackness Castle.

Download the route map and itinerary here.


5. History & Heritage of the Upper Forth Estuary

Level: Challenging
Length: 38.4 miles
Time: 4.5 – 5 hours

Discover Scottish history and wildlife sanctuaries around the Upper Forth Estuary.

Download the route map and itinerary here.


6. The Falkirk Wheel from the Kelpies

Level: Introductory
Length: 10 miles
Time: Between two and two and a half hours

Start your journey at the iconic Kelpies and explore Falkirk's industrial past, ending with a visit to the Falkirk Wheel.

Download the route map and itinerary here.


People walking and cycling along a canal with a narrowboat on the water.

We've put together a list of shorter day trips for people who may want to wheel or cycle for shorter periods of time. Credit: Lesley Martin

Plan your journey

Explore the beauty and history of the Inner Forth Estuary through these routes, brought to you in partnership with Climate FORTH, Sustrans, and VisitScotland 

Start your adventure today by downloading the route maps, planning your journey, and sharing this exciting opportunity with friends and family.  


Keep your eyes peeled for the new Round the Inner Forth logo and signs located along the route.

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