Shetland's Core Paths
Shetland has over 1000 miles of coastline with scenery that is on par with some of the most beautiful areas in the world, as well as a unique culture and heritage. There has been a traditional freedom of access across the isles with many places suitable to walk, cycle or horse ride, as long as you follow the Scottish Outdoor Access Code. The Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 gives a formal right of non-motorised access to most land and inland water throughout Scotland.
However, people often like some guidance on the best routes to points of interest. It is also useful for land managers to be able to suggest good routes across their land for land management and conservation reasons and so the core paths provide for that.
Core Paths form a basic network of paths across Shetland and linked with other access routes they are often the most popular paths and key routes that link communities and provide access to some of the best scenery. They have been agreed with land managers and local communities and the access is inspected and well maintained by Shetland Islands Council. Whilst each core path may not be suitable for all user groups, the core path system in Shetland as a whole will provide for people of all abilities and is in a constant state of development.
Until a time when core paths and access routes are recorded on Ordnance Survey maps it is recommended that you either print off the routes shown in the above links or transfer that information onto your own ordnance survey maps to help guide you on your walks.
Should you come across any problems whilst using Shetland’s core paths or access routes please feel free to contact Shetland Island Council’s Outdoor Access Officer, Kevin Serginson via email or 01595 744169 with the details and we will happily investigate the issue.