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Trail Facts

Total distance: 132.5 miles (212 km)
Duration: 6 nights, 5 days running
Minimum daily distance: 24 miles (38 km)
Maximum daily distance: 29 miles (46 km)
Code: R-JMW2

Grade: Challenging
Season: 1st March - 31st October
Start of holiday: Helensburgh
End of holiday: Dunbar


Day 1: Travel to Helensburgh where your first nights accommodation has been booked

Day 2: Helensburgh to Strathblane. 27.5 miles (44km)

Day 3: Strathblane to Falkirk. 25.5 miles (41km)

Day 4: Falkirk to South Queensferry. 24 miles (38km)

Day 5: South Queensferry to Cockenzie. 27 miles (43km)

Day 6: Cockenzie to Dunbar. 29 miles (46km)

Day 7: Depart from Dunbar after breakfast

The itinerary above shows our preferred overnight stops, but if accommodation is not available at any one of these locations, we may alter the itinerary slightly.

Extra nights / rest days

The John Muir Way passes through a collection of fantastic towns, villages and cities on its journey from coast to coast, with a vast range of sights and attractions to explore. If you would like to stay in a particular location a little longer, adding extra nights into your holiday will allow you to do so.

To add a touch of the seaside to your run, consider a rest day at the start of the trail in Helensburgh. With beautiful views from its placement on the River Clyde, Helensburgh plays host to Hill House, designed by the architect Charles Rennie Mackintosh, and the fragrant Geilston Garden for those looking for a picturesque stroll. This handsome Victorian resort has all the necessary amenities available, ensuring a worry-free and peaceful location in which to prepare for your run.

Falkirk, too, offers excellent sites to explore, including a French ch?teau set in the Scottish countryside at Callendar House and plenty of fantastic modern architecture, including the famous Kelpies and The Falkirk Wheel. The town is also home to The Helix, an exciting parkland offering activities such as cycling, water sports and much more for those looking for more active pursuits. As well as all of this, Falkirk has a range of shops and eateries to enjoy, as well as sports outlets and health spas if you need to refresh either your kit or yourself before continuing with your run.

Many people also like to celebrate the completion of their trail running holiday by spending an extra day in Dunbar, the birthplace of John Muir himself. This town offers all the usual amenities of a seaside resort, combining historic buildings, spectacular landscapes and various shopping facilities and activities to suit everyone. Enjoy the sandy beaches or visit the ruin of Dunbar Castle, before taking your pick of the wonderful eateries available and reflecting on your fantastic achievement.

What's included?

  • 6 nights accommodation in en-suite rooms with private bathrooms (where available) in selected hotels, inns and guesthouses along the trail.
  • Breakfast each day.
  • Door to door luggage transfer.
  • Maps with the route marked on and a guidebook describing the trail.
  • An information pack containing an itinerary, instructions on how to find your accommodation each night, town plans, information about facilities and places of interest along the trail and a kit list.
  • Detailed travel instructions on how to get to the start of your holiday and back from the end of it.
  • Emergency assistance.

Travel Information


The most convenient international airports to the start of the trail are Glasgow Airport and Glasgow Prestwick Airport.


There are two railway stations at Helensburgh: Helensburgh Upper and Helensburgh Central. There is a railway station at the end of the trail (Dunbar).


For advice on driving to the start of the trail, please visit which has a very useful route planner.

Returning to the start

The easiest way to return to the start of the trail from Dunbar is to catch a train to Helensburgh.

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