Rothiemurchus has been welcoming visitors to the Scottish Highlands since the late 18th Century and continues to give those who come today the same fantastic Highland Welcome. At the beginning of the 19th Century the typical visitor to Rothiemurchus was a sportsman, from whom a great deal of money could be made. Colonel Thomas Thornton’s “Sporting Tour” of the Highlands led to a published journal, which tells of the beauty of Loch an Eilein and his opinion of Rothiemurchus as “the finest estate in the world”.
During the 19th Century the area became much less isolated with easier access by road and saw the development of a new railway in 1860. From this time onwards the travel writer became a predominant feature of Rothiemurchus tourism. These explorers sought out such information as the customs, culture and landscapes that awaited them in Rothiemurchus. Again the beauty of Loch an Eilein was particularly noted and became popular with visitors as a result of its nesting pair of ospreys.
Since this time, the popularity of Rothiemurchus with tourists has only grown, welcoming specialist naturalists, climbers and holidaymakers. Loch an Eilein has remained a hotspot for tourists and after the creation of a nature trail around the loch in 1965 and the opening of the visitor centre in 1972, the area became a “honeypot”. In an effort to build a more active approach to visitor management the Rothiemurchus Ranger Service was developed in 1975, along with a Guided Walks programme, a popular Farm Tour and the first Visitor Guide a few years later.
Today, we welcome visitors to come and take part in our wide range of activities or simply explore our well-maintained footpaths and cycle trails, and enjoy the fun, challenge and adventure that Rothiemurchus has to offer. To help everyone take pleasure in this special place we simply ask that you behave in a responsible manner and follow the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.