Access and recreation management: technical advice

Land managers and recreation managers can benefit from technical advice on access management from path construction to countryside furniture.

​Paths and tracks

Various publications can guide you through the stages of route planning, material selection, construction techniques and maintenance for paths and tracks.

Find useful practical advice in:

Our Paths and Climate Change report looks at how climate change considerations affect how we should build and manage Scotland’s paths.

Access furniture

View the Outdoor Access Design Guide for advice on the design of gates, steps, boardwalks, seats and other access infrastructure to enable people of all ages and abilities to enjoy the outdoors.

Also useful to ensure accessibility is the Countryside for All Good Practice Guide.


Signage Guidance for Outdoor Access offers detailed advice on what to say, where to say it and how to create signs. It includes standard designs for signage, plus detailed construction specifications and handy installation tips.

Monitoring access

The Visitor Survey Toolkit offers practical advice on developing a visitor monitoring strategy. It looks at how to identify information needs, select tools, design and conduct surveys, and analyse and interpret results.

The Path Benefits Toolkit provides a step-by-step process to assess the social, environmental and economic benefits of a path network.

Guidance on Monitoring Access and Recreation at Sensitive Natural Heritage Sites can support site managers to plan and carry out monitoring at nature reserves and similar sites.

Our Management for People manual has a section on monitoring.

Sharing best practice

The Scottish Access Technical Information Network (SATIN) shares technical access information. Visit the SATIN website to get involved.

The Upland Path Advisory Group (UPAG) is an information sharing network for upland path contractors, hill user groups and others involved in the repair, maintenance and management of upland paths.

We run the LDR Managers’ Forum to enable the managers of Scotland’s long distance routes to share their experience and good practice.

To find out more about UPAG, contact

For more on the LDR Managers’ Forum, contact