This 10 mile route between Milngavie and Partick feels surprisingly rural when walked from North to South, with the hustle and bustle of the city becoming more apparent the further along you go. Rather poorly way-marked for the first half, signage is then very easy to follow for the remainder of the route down to the Riverside Museum, where the Kelvin meets the Clyde. Expect a mixture of earth paths, pavements, cycle tracks and some mud!
Download a map of the route to your mobile phone HERE (Viewranger app required)
Car parking at Milngavie Train Station (free) and Riverside Museum (chargeable, max 4hrs). Good public transport links between Milngavie and Partick Train Stations.
Route: From Milngavie Station Car Park turn right to walk around the outside of the station and once at the opposite side of the tracks follow them along past a parking area and into some trees. This leads you down a set of steps then across a bridge after which you should turn left along Keystone Avenue. On reaching A81/Glasgow Road turn left to cross the railway bridge, looking out for the continuation of the route on your right at the other side of the road. The path now closely follows the Allander Water for 1.4 miles until it reaches the B8049/Boclair Road. Turn left here and walk along the road, again looking out for the continuation of the route on your right a short distance along. After a mile the Allander Water joins with the Kelvin to become the River Kelvin which you now follow for 0.7 miles to reach a large bridge onto A879/Balmore Road. The walk continues at the opposite side of the road and runs alongside the Kelvin for 1.7 miles until you come to a crossroads where the river veers off to your left but the trail continues straight ahead to cross a stream. Where the path ends turn right which gradually takes you out of the trees and into a built up area. Continue along Acre Road, turning left at a roundabout to reach a larger roundabout on A81/Maryhill Road. Turn left here and follow the road along, crossing over when safe. Just after a bus stop the Kelvin Walkway continues on the right, signposted ‘West of Scotland Science Park’. At the crossroads turn left across some cobbles and onto a wide surfaced path through a corridor of trees. At the bottom of the hill turn right to enter Dawsholm Park. Keeping the river on your right, follow the now way-marked path along for 2.2 miles, passing through several impressive road and rail bridges as you go. On reaching the ruins of North Woodside Flint Mill, use the footbridge to cross the Kelvin and enjoy the last section of woodland walking. After passing beneath the cast iron Kelvinbridge, the path once again crosses the Kelvin. Stick to the paths closest to the river at all times (without crossing it) until reaching the Kelvingrove Park Play Area at which point turn right to cross the bridge. Turn left after the bridge and cross Kelvin Way to pick up the path at the other side of the road. There are numerous footpaths all over this area but stick to the one closest to the river and you will reach Snow Bridge after 0.3 miles. Cross the bridge then turn right to cross over Argyle Street onto Burnhouse Road. Turn right on Old Dumbarton Road, following signs from here all the way to the Riverside Museum, the end point of the Kelvin Walkway.
WALK REPORT: 6th August 2017
Sneaking down a woodland path during a family visit to the Botanic Gardens one weekend, my youngest son and I found ourselves next to a beautiful iron bridge across the River Kelvin. A natural adventurer, I was drawn to the way-markers for a closer look. “Kelvin Walkway” one indicated. “Interesting“, I thought, and after taking a few photos we rushed back up the hill before my husband and eldest son could miss us. “It’s amazing down there….” I recalled, “….so peaceful, its like going into another world!” Compared to the buzz of people around the gardens it had been surreal to take a few steps off the main path and suddenly find myself in such a beautiful, tranquil spot. The river was almost glass-like, everything was silent. I was going to HAVE to research this Kelvin Walkway!
And so it was that a couple of months later I made the 1 hour drive to Milngavie Train Station with my mum to meet Gaynor, Celline, Gerry, Vicki and Geoff to get started! The lack of signage became immediately apparent and I was forced to follow the little ‘Viewranger‘ arrow on my phone to get us moving in the right direction. In fact, the first proper way marker didn’t appear until around the point of crossing the Forth & Clyde Canal Towpath, approx 2/3 of the way in to the trail!! I even took a photo of it to mark the occasion. Moral of the story: plot the route out in advance and use a GPS device/mobile phone to follow it once there (or just download the free route I have already prepared for you on Viewranger 🙂 )
All in all, we had a fantastic morning walking this trail and in particular the first half really surprised me. I couldn’t believe how quickly we were out in the countryside; I had expected a far more urban feel to the walk. It was a strange feeling, a relief actually! Having said that, it was clearly also the less-used section of the route with much of it unfortunately very overgrown. Having only met the majority of my co-walkers that morning, I worried what they would be making of it all. Perhaps not quite what they had signed up for…. I needn’t have worried: they fought through the overgrown vegetation upfront, shrieks and screams of laughter filling the air! Even a fall in the mud and the constant drizzle didn’t seem to dampen their enthusiasm 💚
As we neared the Maryhill area, the route started to take on a completely different feel, with wide surfaced footpaths being the order of the day. This was the point where the Kelvin Walkway joined the NCN756 cycle track. We passed beneath a variety of road bridges, each one seemingly more impressive than the one prior. Amazing feats of architecture and engineering!
With official way-markers now visible at every turn, and all of us soaked to the skin, we marched on through Kelvingrove Park and down towards the Riverside Museum. Having left the car back in Milngavie, mum and I headed over to Partick train station to start our journey home. The benefit of city walks is not having to leave a car at each end! On that note, the car park at the Riverside Museum is only £1 for a max of 4hrs so it would be possible, if you are a speedy walker, to start the walk at the southern end and take a train back from Milngavie to Partick, only 1 mile from the Riverside Museum.
Check out my other walks in the Glasgow area >> Glasgow Walks