Nature in the focus at Cairngorms family weekend

Wildlife will be in focus at the Cairngorms National Park

Scots are being encouraged to get into the great outdoors and enjoy fun for all the family at the Cairngorms Nature Big Weekend.

Running from 11-13 May, it will be a park-wide celebration where people can get first-hand experience of some of the outstanding wildlife that lives and grows in the Cairngorms National Park.

There will be dozens of events and activities taking place for all ages and abilities from Fairy May-hem and wand making in Boat of Garten to a Spey decent by canoe.

Those who have never been nature watching before can book onto one of the free guided tours taking place across the Park such as the Tomintoul Wildlife Guided Tour, where they can go pond dipping and visit the red squirrel hide.

The weekend kicks off on Friday, 11 May, with a new event for 2018. Laggan Wolftrax will host a hands-on Rural Skills Day which will be a unique opportunity for anyone with an interest in a career in woodlands or forestry from sustainable timber processing to green woodworking and bushcraft skills.

Friday evening will see a lively and informative discussion take place at Boat of Garten Hall entitled Re-Wildling and Re-Peopling: the place of people in the landscape. There will be a panel of experts discussing the unique issues at play and an opportunity for the audience to ask questions.

There will be a special guest in Deeside this year, Marra the Sea Eagle, who has featured on Springwatch and Countryfile. She will put on a spectacular aerial display over Braemar and visitors will be able to meet Marra and friends while they are on the ground at the Braemar Hub.

There will also be a range of family workshops and hands on activities taking place in Braemar from crafts to poetry and butterflies to tree folklore.

The more energetic can spend few hours volunteering amongst the woodlands of the iconic Mar Lodge Estate or join an off-road bike tour to Derry Lodge. The evenings are not to be missed either with a film night and a family ceilidh planned.

Judith Webb, Cairngorms National Park Authority Board member said: ‘It is fantastic to see such a packed weekend planned for this year, there is truly something for everyone. If you love nature then come along, bring your friends and family and experience the unique wildlife of the Cairngorms first hand.’

The Cairngorms Nature Big Weekend promises to be a weekend of fun for all the family, many of the events are free of charge, but some require booking in advance. Events fill up fast so book places early to avoid disappointment.

To book places, get more information and find a list of all the events happening throughout the weekend click HERE.