Go Forth Guided Tours

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Walking tours around North Berwick
Descended from an old local fishing family, Dave grew up in the town, breathing in its long history and its brisk sea breezes. After leaving North Berwick High School to gain a degree in Physics from Edinburgh University, he pursued a career in computers for 30 years, which took him from London to Germany and California. Two decades ago, realising that home is where the heart is, he returned to the place he loves best. He became heavily involved in civic activities, becoming a local councillor, historian and guide. Don't ask him any questions about his hometown—unless you have an hour or two to spare…

Walk the "Toun"

(90 minutes* easy)

Walk through 2000 years of North Berwick history. Learn how this jewel of a town, with unparalleled coastal and offshore views, has reinvented itself again and again: beginning as an ancient ferry port, then a busy fishing and commercial hub, a fashionable Victorian holiday resort, and finally the delightful town of today.

Our circular route around North Berwick begins and ends at the harbour, where you will learn about the town's origins as a ferry port for pilgrims traveling to St. Andrews. You will hear how the harbour later became a thriving centre for trade with the Hanseatic ports and Low Countries. We will visit the ruins of the Auld Kirk, and you will enjoy stunning views of the offshore islands of Fidra, The Lamb, Craigleith, the spectacular Bass Rock and across to the coast of Fife

From the promontory between the town's East and West beaches, you’ll be treated to the oft-photographed panoramic view of the whole town. Next we'll walk along West Beach to what was once the edge of town, and follow part of the trail of famous golfers through the Victorian town centre. We'll stop at the old Market Place and pass by a variety of small shops and cafes along the High Street. You will surely want to come back to visit on your own.

Now we will make our way to the Lodge and through the Lodge Grounds - the former residence and town estate of the local Laird. Finally, we'll stop by the local museum and East Beach before returning to our harbour starting point.


(90 minutes** moderate)

Enjoy spectacular coastal and sea views from the best spots and wander through parkland and a secluded glen in and around North Berwick. The town's unique geography -seaside location, parks and meadows- will allow you a pleasant escape into the natural world.

Our walk begins at the harbour where you'll be treated to views of Bass Rock, home to one of the largest gannet colonies in the world. We will amble along East Beach, beachcombing along the way, passing by Coast Guard cottages and the home of writer Robert Louis Stevenson, who spent many summers here. Soon arriving at Jacob's Ladder, we will climb to the top of the escarpment, where you will enjoy stunning panoramic views of North Berwick and the harbour, as well as the islands of Fidra and The Lamb, and the Firth of Forth beyond. From here, we will drop down to The Glen, a tree-lined valley and stream, where you will see remnants of the medieval Mills of Kintreath. Wildlife and birdsong will make the town seem very far away.

Next, continuing along the Greenheads to Castle Hill, former medieval fortress of the Lauder family, you will again appreciate the panoramas. Finally, passing by impressive seaside villas, you will enjoy the parkland of Lodge Grounds and return through the centre of the town, ending our walk where we started, at the harbour.

Architectural Tour

(90 minutes** moderate)

Visit grand neighbourhoods of the Victorian era where gentry and nobility built lavish homes and spent their summers by the sea in high style. North Berwick was known in its heyday as "The Biarritz of the North", and you will see fashionable mansions designed for the wealthy by leading architects of the day and hear stories of the privileged life enjoyed here.

Walking along West Beach to the fashionable West End, you will learn how construction of direct railway lines to North Berwick in the mid 19th-century led to an explosion of visitors to the town, taking advantage of the health benefits of a seaside holiday in the area's mostly sunny summer weather. Wealthy families soon constructed large mansions, some made of the distinctive golden stone from local Rattlebags Quarry. Prime Minister Balfour was a frequent visitor, bringing his cabinet with him. He enjoyed playing golf on the West Links. We will wander the impressive neighborhoods to view houses like Westerdunes, Carlekemp, Hyndford and Tusculum, where you will see the opulent Victorian and Edwardian lifestyles. As with all of our tours, we will begin and end at the harbour.

North Berwick Law

(90 to 120 minutes*** difficult)

Walk to the best views of North Berwick, the Firth of Forth and East Lothian countryside. A climb halfway up Berwick Law, a 614-foot conical volcanic plug, will reward you with a 360-degree birds-eye view of the area, and a possible meeting with the small herd of Exmoor ponies that live there.

We start our walk at the harbour and travel along East Beach, passing a number of grand Victorian-era houses. We will make our way to our first destination in The Glen. In this secluded place, we will explore the ruins of the three Mills of Kintreath and their mill lade, which dates to the 1300s. From here, we will make our way up the Heugh and along the tail of The Law itself. You will hear the fascinating history of this landmark, including stories of strategic military use during the Napoleonic Wars and both World Wars.

You'll have the choice to extend your tour to the top (an extra 30 minutes) where you will be treated to even more spectacular views across to Fife, east to Tantallon Castle, south to the Lammermuirs and towards Edinburgh. On a clear day, you may be able to see as far as the Forth bridges.

Tantallon Castle

(3 Hours** moderate)

A longer cliff top and road walk that includes Milsey Bay, Partan Craig, The Leithies, Canty Bay and Gin Head. Plus a guided tour of the Douglas stronghold of Tantallon. May include a bus ride, if schedules permit.

Dirleton Castle

(3 Hours*** difficult)

A longer beach and road walk that includes West Bay, Point Garry, Eil Burn, Broadsands, Yellowcraig and Dirleton village. Plus a guided tour of the De Vaux stronghold of Dirleton. May include a bus ride, if schedules permit.

Edinburgh Old and New Town

(3 hours** moderate)

Train journey from North Berwick to Edinburgh Waverley. Includes Castle Esplanade, Lawnmarket, Victoria Street, Parliament Square, St. Giles, The Tron and World’s End.

With pre-booking and a supplementary charge, we can arrange visits to:

  • Lennoxlove House
  • Glenkinchie Distillery
  • National Air Museum
  • Gosford House
  • Saltcoats Castle
  • Seacliff Stables
  • Foxlake Adventures
  • Myreton Motor Museum
  • Appin Stables
  • Saltire Flag Heritage Centre
  • Yellowcraigs Beach
  • Hailes Castle
  • Seacliff Beach
  • Scottish Ornithology Club

Our tour meeting place is in the harbour area on the path to the Scottish Seabird Centre at the benches by the statue of The Watcher and the Old Kirk porch

Please phone or email us for tour times.