Ben Rinnes is the highest peak in the Speyside region and if you are travelling the area and enjoy a good view, we highly recommend you climb up it. 

There are multiple distilleries in this part of Scotland and Ben Rinnes towers over the top of them with the melt from the snow providing them with water.

On a clear day, the views are fantastic from the top of Ben Rinnes stretching across to the Cairngorms in the south and the Moray Firth and North Sea are visable to the north and north west.

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Complete Guide to Hiking Ben Rinnes - A Beginner Hike in Aberdeenshire

Hiking in Scotland is a fantastic way to get in amongst nature and see some amazing views. In this guide, we will discuss the best time to go travel to this part of Scotland as well as the following

  • What is Ben Rinnes?
  • How to get to Ben Rinnes?
  • Where to start the hike up Ben Rinnes?
  • Why Should I hike Ben Rinnes?
  • Preparing for your trip to the NE250
couple at the top of ben rinnes

What is Ben Rinnes?

Ben Rinnes is the tallest peak in the Speyside region near Aberdeenshire. Sitting at 840 metres, this hill is officially a corbett as it sits 300 metres shorter than a munro. This corbett may not be a munro however it is not for the faint hearted as it is hard under foot with some steep elevation.

There is a clear path to the top, making it easy to follow, however it is always good practice to carry a map to avoid getting lost. We would recommend wearing a good pair of hiking boots though as the path is laid with loose stones and there are some parts that are require climbing up rocks. 

girl standing on ben rinnes

How to get to Ben Rinnes?

Ben Rinnes is located 8km south west of Dufftown in Banffshire. To get to the the start of the hike, you will drive down a small unnamed road that branches off from the B9009 near Glenrinnes. 

The road is very narrow with a few passing places. You will see the car park first on your left and then see a small gate. Please remember to close this when you pass through.

drone photo driving to ben rinnes

Where to Start the Hike up Ben Rinnes?

There are many tracks to walk up Ben Rinnes, however the most popular is on the east side of the mountain. This is an out and back route, however there are plenty of options to make this a longer hike if you want.

There is a small car park so we recommend you get there early if you want to get a space. The coordinates of the car park are N57 24′ 29.52′ W3 11′ 31.45.

man walking up ben rinnes

Why Should I hike Ben Rinnes?

Being the tallest mountain in the Moray region, the hike up Ben Rinnes will allow you to see some of the most beautiful views in the area. This is a 7.5km round trip hike that takes around 2-3 hours depending on your fitness levels.

Prepare for a number of summits that will constantly make you feel like you have reached the top.

Round Hill is the first summit at 410m, the second is Roys Hill at 534m before reaching the summit of Ben Rinnes at 840m.

There is a brass plaque at the summit that will show you where all the sights are below. 

campbell at the top of ben rinnes

Before You Leave on the North East 250

Before you head off on your trip around the NE250, there are certain things you will need to get organised to ensure a smooth trip. 

These include how to get around the route, including being aware of single track roads, etc., what to pack for Scotland, where to stay along the route and what travel insurance to book.


How Do I Get Around the NE250?

Given the reasonably remote location of the NE250 and the majority of the sights along the route, the best way to get around this road trip is by driving. There are of course other methods that are still popular, such as cycling and hiking, however, if you have a short amount of time on the route, neither of these are very suitable.

As for public transport, this isn’t completely impossible, it is just a lot more difficult.

If you are looking to rent a cosy, reliable and luxurious campervan for your trip around the NE250, we highly recommend hiring through Bunk Campers. We toured with these guys around the up-and-coming Heart 200 road trip in Scotland’s central highlands and could not believe the comfort and customer service we experienced with their vans.

Browse the full range of vehicles on offer at Bunk Campers over here.

ben rinnes

What Should I Pack for the NE250?

When it comes to packing for a trip along the NE250 there is one item of clothing that you are going to need all year round: a waterproof. It rains in Scotland on average 250 days a year, meaning that during your 7-day NE250 road trip you will probably experience at least a drizzle of rain. Due to this, the number one item on any Scotland packing list is a good waterproof jacket.

As for the rest of the year, the temperature in Scotland and the central heartlands is reasonably mild for most of the year. During the winter months, you will most likely experience snow, however, temperatures usually sit around freezing, so it is not too cold. For your reference, the average temperatures in Scotland are listed below during each season.

Spring (March, April, May) – 5-10 degrees C

Summer (June, July, August) – 15 degrees C

Autumn (September, October, November) – 5-10 degrees C

Winter (December, January, February) – 0-5 degrees C

As you can see, the weather never really gets above the teens, with anything over 25 degrees C considered a heatwave. The best way to pack for your trip to the highlands is with layers that can be added and removed as you need them. You will definitely need a hat and gloves during the colder months and will most likely need sunscreen to protect you on the long days in the open.

For our full list of items that we pack no matter where we go in the world, check out our full packing guides over here.

Given the beautiful sights and scenery that you are no doubt going to see around Scotland, we highly recommend packing a good camera for your trip. If you want to read more about the cameras we use and why we love them, check out the link below.

You can read what else we keep in our camera bag over here.

Photography Equipment

Main Photography Camera – Sony A7iii Mirrorless Camera

Main Lens – Sony FE 16-35 mm f/2.8 GM 

Zoom Lens – Tamron 70-180mm f/2.8

Camera Stand – Neewer Portable 177cm

Vlogging Camera – Sony HX90v

Action Camera – GoPro Hero 8 Black

Drone Camera – DJI Mavic Pro 2

Camera Bag – Lowepro Flipside 300 AW


Where Should I Stay in Aberdeen?

LuxuryResidence Inn by Marriott Aberdeen is a luxury hotel in the city of Aberdeen. It is within 20 minutes walk of the beach front and has free wifi, a gym and laundry facilities on site. The best things about this hotel might just be that it was rated highly for the comfort of the beds!

Book your stay at Residence Inn by Marriott Aberdeen here.

Mid-range – The Jurys Inn Aberdeen is located a stones throw away from the city centre shops, bars and restaurants. All rooms have air conditioning, a TV, hairdryer and most importantly, a comfortable bed.

Book your stay at the Jurys Inn Aberdeen here.

BudgetThe Station Hotel sits opposite the train station in Aberdeen and is a fantastic budget option for your trip to the city. Each room is equipped with a TV and tea/coffee making facilities as well as having it’s own private bathroom.

Book your stay at The Station Hotel here.

drone photo ben rinnes

What is the Best Travel Insurance?

No matter what type of adventure you are heading on, whether it is a mountain adventure or a relaxing beach destination, one thing we all need to be aware of is that accidents can happen. The last thing you want is for an unexpected medical emergency to ruin your trip of a lifetime. Luckily, that is what travel insurance is for.

Whenever we travel abroad, we get covered with World Nomad’s Travel Insurance, a reliable, friendly and extremely affordable method of covering yourself on any adventure. With years of experience working for backpackers around the globe, the service they provide is perfect for whatever type of trip you have planned.

Get covered for your next trip and get a quote from World Nomad’s right here.

So there you have it, a guide to hiking Ben Rinnes. If you have visited the NE250 recently, let us know what you thought of the it. Did you hike Ben Rinnes or visit any of the local distilleries? Let us know in the comments below.

As always, sharing is caring so make sure to share this guide with your family and friends and inspire them to head off on their own adventure. If you are planning the trip for yourself, make sure you have a look at the rest of our Scotland content for more inspiration to our beautiful home country.

When you set off on your own adventure, be sure to tag us in your photos on Instagram and we will share them with the rest of our community. In the meantime, why not follow us over there to see what we are currently up to and keep up with us on our Instagram Stories.

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