This page contains information on the Semple Trail as a walking route. For the full information on the Semple Trail Heritage Project, completed in 2016, see this page.
Start/Finish: Castle Semple Visitor Centre
Grid Reference: NS 358 590
OS Map: Landranger 63
Distance: 12.5km (7.8 miles)
Time: Give yourself a full day
Terrain: Quiet rural roads, farmland, pavement and small part of route, on road/no pavement.
This circular route offers loch side views, historic features, access to woodland, riverside walks (Black Cart) and through agricultural farmland.
Please note that there may be grazing cattle or sheep on the farmland at any time of year. Care should always be taken around farm animals as they can be unpredictable. Please keep your dog under control and take all litter home.
The Route: Starting at the Castle Semple Visitor Centre at Lochwinnoch, follow the loch side path until reaching the Blackditch burn, then head north up through Parkhill Wood. Join the cycle path NCR7 briefly, then head south-west skirting around the Temple Kenmure Hill. Head eastwards from Fancy Bridge towards and through Howwood
Points of Interest: Historic landscape features of the former Castle Semple Estate. Good for bikes, buggies and wheelchairs. Seasonal bike hire at Castle Semple.
RSPB Nature Reserve, Parkhill Woods (Access to woodland trails)
Historic Features: Courtshaw Maze, Kenmure Temple Hill, remains of the Collegiate Church
Birds: Keep a look out for birds such as great crested grebe, great spotted woodpecker, buzzard and skylark which are likely to be spotted.
Vegetation: Dogs mercury, yellow tansy, white ox eye daisy, rosebay willowherb.
Mammals: Badgers, otters, roe deer, foxes and many other species live along the trail. Watch out for weasels on the cycle track.
For more information on the Semple Trail you can download the leaflet here.