Muir of Dinnet National Nature Reserve

Local Access Guidance for Water Users

Loch Kinord: Do not take water-borne access (paddleboarding, kayaking, canoeing, inflatables) on Loch Kinord between 1 March and 31 August.  

Loch Davan: Please do not take any water access onto the loch is too small to access without disturbing wildlife.

For more information on responsible outdoor access in Scotland, see


A magical mosaic

Lying within the Cairngorms National Park, Muir of Dinnet National Nature Reserve (NNR) is a mosaic of wetlands, woods and moors. It’s a great place for wildlife and has a wealth of connections to Scotland’s past.

Although the last glaciers melted more than 10,000 years ago, the marks they gouged in the landscape survive today. One of these is the Vat Gorge, where the Burn O’Vat still flows. The Vat itself is a cauldron-shaped pothole. It was gouged out by rocks tumbling along in a stream beneath a glacier.

Today you can make your way into the Vat through a narrow crack in the rock. Stand in this atmospheric cavern, and listen to the strange echoes of water that seems to pour out of the rocks.

You can also stroll through the woodland, looking out for birds, animals and delicate woodland wild flowers. You may also spot breeding and wintering birds on Loch Kinord.

The visitor centre at the Burn O’Vat explores the natural and cultural heritage of the reserve. From here there are lovely walks through the woodland and around Loch Kinord. Or take the path to the Burn O’Vat and on to a viewpoint with sweeping views across Loch Kinord and beyond.

Find out more about visiting Muir of Dinnet NNR.

View a video of Muir of Dinnet NNR.

Muir of Dinnet NNR
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A seasonal look at the wildlife and landscapes of Muir of Dinnet National Nature Reserve.

Top attractions

  • Explore the Vat – one of Scotland’s natural wonders.
  • Enjoy our trails through peaceful woodlands and around the lochs.
  • In spring, look for wildflowers and listen for calling birds.
  • In summer, watch dancing dragonflies and damselflies.

Find out more about the reserve and its natural history.

What’s on?

Visit our Events page to see what upcoming events you can get involved in at this reserve.


Reserve manager: Simon Ritchie

Burn O’Vat Visitor Centre
AB34 5NB

Telephone: 01339 881667
Email: [email protected]

Further information

Follow us on Facebook or read the Muir of Dinnet blog to keep up to date with news from the reserve.

Follow Scotland's NNR on Facebook  for up-to-date information on reserves across Scotland.

Find out more about our partners at Muir of Dinnet – Cairngorms National Park Authority.

Our visitor centre is rated Gold under the GTBS (Green Tourism Business Scheme).

Muir of Dinnet NNR is a member of VisitScotland.

Enjoyed your visit?

  • Make a donation to support nature and visitor facilities on our NNRs.
  • Let us know what you thought on TripAdvisor.

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