Dunure to Ayr

This walk is part of the trek Ayrshire Coastal Path.

This is an incredible walk along one of the most rugged sections of the Ayrshire Coast. You will experience varied terrain including beaches, rocky outcrops, grassy farmland and a disused railway. Prepare yourself for stunning views and a unique sense of remoteness.

Technical sheet
No. 22392390
A South Ayrshire walk posted on 27/05/22 by Gillian's Walks. Update : 30/05/22
Calculated time Calculated time: 3h25[?]
Distance Distance : 6.99mi
Vertical gain Vertical gain : 253ft
Vertical drop Vertical drop : 266ft
Highest point Highest point : 194ft
Lowest point Lowest point : 0ft
Difficult Difficulty : Difficult
Back to starting point Back to starting point : No
Walking Walking
Location Location : South Ayrshire
Starting point Starting point : N 55.406698° / W 4.759287°
Ending point Ending point : N 55.452745° / W 4.644079°
Download : -
Greenan Castle Bracken Bay


(D) Start by walking East then North around Dunure harbour and across the village’s sandy beach.

(1) At the north end of the beach you will see a narrow path going up through a gap in the rocks - follow this to a gate.

Beyond the gate the path leads away from the beach, up onto a grassy embankment and winds in and out of the hillside on a faint footpath across the grassy farmland to arrive at a stile.

(2) Cross the stile then a small footbridge and continue along the path, to the brow of a hill. At the other side of the hill is a gully - follow the path down the gully and onto the rocky coastline.

(3) Pick your way through the rocks and pebbles, enjoying the stunning views as you go. At the far end of the beach the path leads uphill by way of some steps built into the steep Fisherton Gully.

At the top of the gully go through a kissing gate onto a field.

Turn left (North) to follow the field edge around to another kissing gate and into a second field. At the other side of this field is a kissing gate leading onto a disused railway line.

(4) Walk along the disused railway line for 1km, enjoying spectacular views down onto Bracken Bay where you are headed next.

(5) When you reach a caravan park, follow the path East along the edge of a field with a row of caravans on your right-hand side.

On reaching some farm tracks, turn left (North) to follow them between two fields.

(6) Keep left (West) at a fork 200m along, descending onto Bracken Bay.

(7) Turn right (North East) to walk along the beach. As you reach the north end 500m along, you will go around a rocky outcrop called Heads of Ayr.

(8) Follow the coastline for 3km, passing beneath Heads of Ayr Caravan Park and arriving at the foot of Greenan Castle.

(9)1km further along the beach look out for a path on your right-hand side going across the dunes to a car park.

(10) Pass through the car park and cross the footbridge over the River Doon.

After crossing the bridge, continue ahead (North), to follow Ayr esplanade for 1km to reach the car park at Seafield, just opposite Cafe India (A)

Waypoints :
D : mi 0 - alt. 16ft - Dunure Harbour
1 : mi 0.33 - alt. 10ft - Gap in rocks, north end of Dunure Beach
2 : mi 0.85 - alt. 23ft - Stile and small footbridge
3 : mi 1.67 - alt. 98ft - Fisherton Gully steps
4 : mi 2 - alt. 194ft - Disused railway line
5 : mi 2.6 - alt. 128ft - Caravan Park
6 : mi 2.99 - alt. 36ft - Bracken Bay
7 : mi 3.4 - alt. 33ft - Heads of Ayr
8 : mi 5.3 - alt. 10ft - Greenan Castle
9 : mi 5.96 - alt. 7ft - Car Park
10 : mi 6.1 - alt. 10ft - Footbridge over the River Doon
A : mi 6.99 - alt. 0ft - Seafield, Ayr

Useful Information

For more information and a route review visit Gillian's Walks


  • Car park at Kennedy Park, Dunure (chargeable, seasonal) and at Seafield, Ayr
  • Bus services between Dunure and Ayr
  • Train services to/from Ayr


  • Public toilets at Kennedy Park, Dunure (chargeable, seasonal) and at Low green, Ayr (chargeable)
  • Cafe at Dunure Harbour. Cafes, shops and restaurants in Ayr


  • A challenging mixture of grassy paths, sandy beaches, rocky beaches, farm tracks and field crossings. A stile and several kissing gates. One set of steps. A strenuous walk with some steep sections.
  • Note that there is one tidal section with no high tide de-tour. Please check tide times before setting off and leave 1-2hrs either side of a high tide to ensure dry passage.
  • Instead of way markers, this route is marked out by large white circles painted onto the rocks so keep an eye out for those

You can purchase the official Ayrshire Coastal Path guidebook from their website.

Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.

During the walk or to do/see around

  • Kennedy Park, Dunure (kids play area, basketball/football pitch, public toilets)
  • Dunure Castle - once the main fortress of the Kennedy family, a ruin for the past 300 years
  • Dovecot
  • Limekiln
  • Dunure Harbour
  • Fisherton Gully
  • Bracken Bay
  • Heads of Ayr
  • Heads of Ayr Caravan Park
  • Greenan Castle - 16th century tower house
  • River Doon

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The GPS track and description are the property of the author.