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  • Jackie Gleave

East Linton to Hailes Castle

Updated: 4 days ago


Location: East Linton to Hailes castle and return

Date: 4 May 24

Length: 3 miles

Level: Easy

Fave Coffee: Hometown


So. Very often, our walks are determined by where we can grab a good coffee-to-go and this walk is no exception. Stop off for coffee at Hometown Mindful coffee roasters at The Mart which is just outside East Linton and a few minutes drive from the start of the walk.


The Mart is a really interesting place to spend some time and the Mart Trading Ground is home to a number of small, independent businesses such as Hometown coffee, the Yoga Den, Wok 'n' Go Noodle Bar Bus and a farm shop which doubles up as the local post office for East Linton!

The Mart itself is an incredibly striking hexagonal timber building dating back to 1850 and is the last structure of its kind remaining in Scotland.


Coffee in hand, or safely in your car drink holder (!) make your way towards Station road on the edge of East Linton just before the railway bridge.

Parking is free!  


With the railway bridge behind you, you will see a lane on your left with signs guiding you towards Hailes castle and which will take you down to the River Tyne.  

The lane has a row of cute cottages on the right.  I would say it’s a pretty private lane and although public access is allowed keep dogs on the lead until you reach the river and take time to take in the wonderful sights that these little cottages have to offer.


The last cottage before joining the riverside path has a rather spectacular hare sculpture in the garden - see if you can spot it! It is one of ten hares that were part of the Big Hare Trail in 2021 and which were auctioned off raising funds in aid of Leuchie House,


Following the river upstream the path will shortly take you under the A1 bridge


You'll then be completely at one with nature and there is nothing better than birdsong and wildflowers to ground the soul.

sweet cicely forget-me-nots wild garlic and leeks


check out the gorse

Follow the country path and you may be lucky enough to see a wet dog emerge from the river.....


You'll soon come to wooden steps which take you up, then eventually back down to the river...


...and soon you'll arrive at a sign to Hailes castle where there is a footbridge to take you across the river. At this point, if you like, you can extend the walk and follow the river which will take you to Haddington and beyond.


After you cross the bridge follow the path up the hill and the castle is nestled beyond the woods. You can either follow the main path up to the road, hang a right and head to the castle, or there is a more interesting path running parallel to the river where you can cling on to the comfrey and hope you don't fall to the goblins below.

Either way, you'll soon spot the castle nestled amongst the woodland, which although is a ruin is one of the very few stone castles which have survived the 1200's, pretty amazing, huh?

The castle's banks used to be the perfect picnic spot as you sat transporting yourself back to sieges of afore...however, the castle and it's area are now closed off to the public...although some of us didn't take this too seriously...


To return you can follow the road back to East Linton, but I prefer to retrace steps back along the river - even if it's not a loop you see different things along the way as long as you don't turn your head on the inward journey!


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