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Forsinard Nature Reserve

The RSPB Forsinard Visitor Centre And Nature Reserve lies in the heart of the internationally important flows of north Scotland.

The rolling landscape of bogland, studded with thousands of pools is home to a wide range of rare and unusual birds, animals and plants.  Here greenshanks, golden plovers, dunlin, merlin and hen harrier breed.  they share the peatlands with millions of insect eating sundew plants, dragonflies and red deer.

Visitor Centre

Open Daily 9.00am to 6.00pm - 1st April to end of October (Disabled Access and toilets).
Displays on the peatlands, and wildlife.  Plenty for children.  Live "Hen Harrier" nest watch in June.

Dubh Lochan Trail

One mile (1.5km) long with self-guided leaflet.  Visits a cluster of ancient bog pools.  Allow one to two hours (no wheelchair access).

Guided Walks
Check the RSPB Events page

Things To Look Out For

The A897 public road follows Strath Halladale and runs through the centre of the reserve.  Many of the birds breeding on the bogs visit the fields a mile north of the visitor centre or the sides of the river to feed and can be seen from the roadside.  between April and July look for small flocks of Golden Plovers, Dunlins and Greylag Geese in the fields, and listen for curlews, lapwings, oystercatchers and even greenshanks calling on the on the moorland along the river.
Otters frequent the river when they are not searching the bog pools for frogs and newts; they are shy but you never know your luck!  herds of red deer are often seen close to the Helmsdale road in the spring.  In winter they often sit in hundreds near the railway tracks.

How to find us

On the A897 road in north Sutherland.  From Helmsdale turn inland and follow the A897 for 26 miles.  From the north coast road turn inland two miles east of Melvich and follow the A897 for 14 miles.  The Inverness to Wick train stops outside the visitor centre.  There is no bus service away from the coast road.   Food is available locally.  Click here for a road map of the area.

From the Train  - For information on trains Tel 0345 484950

The excellent rail journey from Inverness takes you over saltmarsh, along miles of sandy beaches and mudflats, through woodlands and mountains before finally crossing the bogs to Forsinard.  The best view of the bogs is from the train between Forsinard and Thurso to the north.
Out on the open bog watch for Hen Harriers, short eared owls, herds of red deer and possibly a golden eagle if you are lucky.

Tel: 01641 571225
Tourist info: 01955 602596
E-mail: forsinard@rspb.org.uk
Grid reference: NC885453

The Royal Society For The Protection of Birds North of Scotland Office is at
Etive house, Beechwood Park, Inverness, IV2 3BW Tel 01463 715000 Fax 01463 715315