The Right To Roam

In Scotland, you can go on to most land to enjoy the outdoors – as long as you behave responsibly and as with any ‘right’, there are limitations and restrictions. Landscape and outdoor access is detailed here and is governed by the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003

Scottish access rights and are different to the position in England and Wales. When you are enjoying the outdoors, you must follow the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.

Scottish access rights apply, for example, to hills and moors, forests and woods, beaches and the coast, rivers and lochs, parks and some types of farmland. Access rights include things like walking, cycling, climbing, horse-riding, kayaking, swimming and watching wildlife, but do not include things like shooting, fishing or access with motor vehicles.

There are some common-sense exceptions, including houses and gardens, other buildings and their yards or compounds, school grounds and places which charge for entry. You can't freely wander in these areas.

For more information about where you can go and what you can do, see Part 2 of the Code.

However, be aware that although you have a legal right to access, it doesn't always mean that the Landowners enjoy having people exercising this right. If challenged, Smile, be polite and say that you're "Exercising my Right to Roam under the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003".

Scottish Outdoor Access Code ebook

Download the PDF if you're on a desktop computer or tablet or the EPUB to get the ebook from your phone (you will need to use a reader to view this file e.g. Apple Books for iphone or Google Play Books for Android).

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