Spey Bay

Spey Bay is a beautiful coastal reserve with the largest shingle beach in Scotland. Constant changes caused by the river create a succession of habitats, from bare shingle to coastal grasslands, brackish saltmarsh and wet woodland. 

In summer, breeding terns fill the skies and bottlenose dolphins are regularly spotted at the mouth of the estuary.

There is an enjoyable 2.5-mile circular walk which leads along the coast and back through the woodland and grassland. 

The Speyside Way and the National Cycle Network pass close to the reserve.

Small blue © Billy Lindblom

Why visit?

  • Large numbers of wildfowl offshore
  • Wildflowers & butterflies
  • Breeding terns at river mouth

Best time to visit?

  • Spring to summer for butterflies
  • Winter for ducks and divers
  • All year for dolphins

Visit for:

  • Archaeology
  • Mammals
  • Scenery
  • Geology
  • Coasts
  • Wildflowers
  • Grasslands
  • Woodlands
  • Birdwatching


Spey Bay lies 8 miles north east of Elgin, at the end of the B9015 (Kingston) or the B9014 (Tugnet).

Getting onto the reserve

Access can be gained from the car parks at Tugnet or Kingston.

Getting round this reserve

The track is unsurfaced but the walk is relatively flat.


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