The Formartine and Buchan Way

Opened in the early 1990s, the Formartine and Buchan Way runs along the former route of the railway that extended from Dyce on the fringes of Aberdeen north to Maud, where it split with branches heading to both Fraserburgh and Peterhead.

The line was a victim of the 1960s Beeching cuts, though it continued to carry freight to Peterhead until 1970 and to Fraserburgh until 1979. The Buchan Countryside Group began the work of reopening the route as a cycleway and footpath in 1987. Today the route offers a peaceful walking route through pleasant, lowland countryside and rich farmland.

Stage descriptions Length Time Done
Dyce to Udny Station 13km 2½-3½ hours
Udny Station to Ellon 8km 2 hours
Ellon to Auchnagatt 12km 2-3 hours
Auchnagatt to Maud 7km 1½ hours
Maud to Strichen 9km 2-2½ hours
Strichen to Fraserburgh 17.5km 2½-3½ hours
Peterhead branch: Maud to Longside 11.5km 2½-3½ hours
Peterhead branch: Longside to Peterhead 10.25km 2½-3 hours


The route is very gently graded and easy to follow. It is also used by cyclists; the surface can be muddy in places and is probably best suited to mountain bikes.


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There is a variety of accommodation along the length of the Formartine and Buchan Way.

Dyce is on the fringes of Aberdeen near the airport and is linked to the city centre by a train service - convenient as the Formartine and Buchan Way starts from Dyce station. As would be expected, Aberdeen offers a vast choice of hotels and other accommodation.

The town of Ellon is the next settlement on the route which offers accommodation, with a choice of three hotels and two bed and breakfasts, as well as a good range of shops.

Maud and Strichen also offer shops, hotel and guest house accommodation.

At the ends of the route, Peterhead and Fraserburgh are both towns offering a wider choice of accommodation, including hotels and guest houses.


Dyce is easily reached by train (or bus) from Aberdeen, whilst Peterhead and Fraserburgh at the ends of the route are both well served by bus back to the city.

There are also buses to all the start and end stages listed above. Udny Station, Ellon, Auchnagatt and Maud all have buses to Aberdeen, whilst Maud and Strichen have buses to Fraserburgh. Longside has a bus to Peterhead, but note that there is no direct bus between Maud and Peterhead.

There are 106 Walkhighlanders who have completed the Formartine and Buchan Way. To record if you have completed the route, you must register and be logged in. Our users have contributed 3 public walk reports for the route. These are ordered below with the most popular ones first.

Title AuthorDate walked Likes
The Formartine & Buchan Way, Aberdeenshire  andrewl7642 12/04/2014  10
Mid-Winter Wild Camping Along The Formartine & Buchan Way  doenaeld 28/01/2018  4
Formantine & Buchan  zhickman 12/08/2012  1

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Walking can be dangerous and all walkers must take personal responsibility for their own safety. You should always carry a backup means of navigation and not rely on a single phone, app or map. Walkhighlands strives to provide accurate information but cannot accept responsibility for changes, errors or omissions.