Stage 13: Wick to Keiss

Sinclair Girnigoe Castle

12.5 miles | 20.0 km

This stage starts in the centre of Wick and goes along roads for 3 km before setting out along the cliff tops again. You’ll soon come to Noss Head lighthouse, then Sinclair Girnigoe Castle, and then the lovely hotel called Ackergill Tower. After that you’ll walk along a ridge of sand dunes, cross a large river, and then walk more dunes before arriving at Keiss.

 Green  (marked). All fences and walls have gates or stiles. The dunes by Wick Golf Club at Reiss are marked but steep and sandy, and it may be easier to walk on the beach except at high tide. (Please do not walk along the golf course.) The River of Wester north of the golf course is usually fordable, but not always. It can be as much as 3 ft deep or more at high tide, but is usually much less. In winter it has been reported to be much deeper on occasion due to erosion of the beach. Under these conditions it may be waist or chest deep or more and should not be crossed; walk to the A9 bridge instead.

Risk of drowning in River of Wester or being swept out to sea at exceptional high tide and/or river in spate. There is a risk of death from falling off cliffs along some of this stage. Please also note that like much of rural Scotland, ticks may be an issue in areas of long vegetation.

Stage End Information
Keiss is on the A99 north of Wick. Numerous bus routes stop there, connecting to John O’Groats, Wick, and Inverness. From Keiss, walk down the high street to where it curves left to follow the cliff top. Keiss has the Sinclair Bay Hotel (seasonal) and several nearby B&Bs.

More information:


The Lighthouse Keeper’s Cottage
Tel: 07733 443037