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The Out About Scotland complete guide to The Enchanted Forest
Category: Event, Forest or woodland
Suitable for ages: 5 to 10 years, 11 to 18 years, 18+ years, 65+ years
Ideal for: Couples, Families, Groups, Solo travellers
I rate it: 9 out of 10
About The Enchanted Forest
Set in the beautiful Faskally Wood just north of Pitlochry, the Enchanted Forest is a spectacular outdoor experience that uses the dramatic background of the autumnal woods as the backdrop to an incredible light and sound extravaganza.
The event takes you on a walk through one of Forestry Commission Scotland’s nicest Highland woodlands where you’ll be dazzled by an array of dancing lights that play out across the trees with music and sounds accompanying the constantly changing scenes.
Faskally Wood is worth visiting at any time of the year and this expansive woodland in Tay Forest Park offers exceptional walks on easy-access paths that run alongside Loch Dunmore.
On an autumn day with the sun reflecting the colours of the leaves onto the loch it has to be one of the most picturesque locations in Scotland – but the colours go into overdrive when The Enchanted Forest begins in October.
This multi-award winning event has been running for 17 years and is renowned for being one of Scotland’s most elaborate artistic shows, with elements of coloured lights, classical music, and water combining to produce a real feast for the senses. It’s a brilliant family occasion too as it’s an event that anyone of any age can enjoy, from toddlers to pensioners.
If you’re looking for a unique experience that can be enjoyed by family members of all ages I think you’re going to love The Enchanted Forest.
Things to do at The Enchanted Forest
You might think a walk through the woods with a few lights flashing about sounds a bit lame, but you honestly can’t appreciate what a spectacle it is until you actually attend it for yourself.
As you leave the tour bus that drops you at the edge of the woods you initially hear classical melodies played over a series of loudspeakers which adds to the drama of what you think might be around the corner. But it’s only on entering the woodland that you truly get a feel for the scale of the artwork.
Faskally wood is centred around Loch Dunmore, and paths running around the loch let you watch light shows playing out across the water as well as surrounding you on all sides.
As you walk around the pathways you’re thrown into a world of timed lights and musical soundscapes projected against the forest, with each year showcasing a new theme so that no two visits are ever the same.
The Enchanted Forest has been designed for all age groups to enjoy and mums and dads will have a great time just as much as the wee ones. My recommendation is to take the time to walk around the site both clockwise and anti-clockwise as there’s so much going on you’ll likely miss something on your first route.
And for another top tip – try to book a twilight show as you’ll get the opportunity to see the spectacle both in the evening light and the dark of night, which are two totally different experiences.
I have to admit I didn’t know what to expect before my visit and I wasn’t sure why it was so busy, but the show has proved incredibly popular over the last 17 years, with 2018 culminating in an incredible 80,000 visitors coming to enjoy the experience. I guess that means people think the event is worth visiting – and I totally agree with them.
The organisers have included plenty of activities to keep the kids entertained too, with a storytelling yurt that tells tales of ancient folklore, and outdoor catering vans selling delicious hot chocolate and mulled wine.
There are beefburgers and hotdogs available in case the cold night air starts making you feel a little peckish, and at the end of the show you can take in the pubs and restaurants of Pitlochry. It really is a magical night out.
What I liked about this event
- It’s a real spectacle
- Both adults and kids will enjoy it
- There’s loads to see during your visit
My top tips
- I recommend booking one of the twilight tickets so you can see Faskally Wood in both light and dark
- The on-site food and drink are a bit pricey so if you want to save money eat in Pitlochry before you go
Address and directions map
Access for private vehicles is allowed for disabled visitors only. All other visitors must travel to the event on the bus shuttle service.
There’s no car parking available at the Enchanted Forest site, so it’s recommended to use the car parks in Pitlochry town. It’s also not possible to take a taxi to the site, with the exception of blue badge holders who will be given specific instructions upon booking.
However, note that your ticket includes transfer to and from the centre of Pitlochry to Forestry Commission Scotland’s Faskally Wood by bus.
Prices and opening times
Ticket prices include your shuttle bus to and from the forest from Fishers Hotel in the centre of Pitlochry. Everyone MUST have a ticket, even children aged under 3.
2019 ticket prices are:
- Child Under 3: Free
- Child 3 – 15: £10
- Adult: £20
- Family Ticket: £55
The Enchanted Forest runs for one month annually. Provisional dates are 3rd October – 3rd November. Please check their website for further details.
Getting there: Bus stop nearby (the event can only be visited via authorised coaches from Pitlochry). At other times Faskally wood can be visited by car (car park on-site).
Getting around: Disabled access, Easy-access paths, Pushchair access
On-site conveniences: Gift shop, Hot drinks, Restaurant or cafe, Snacks, Toilets