The beautiful Rogie Falls in Scotland is a very popular waterfall walk along the magnificent North Coast 500 drive, and just a short distance from Inverness. The intense waters of the Black Water River pour, thunderously, over the edge of craggy rocks. If you’re lucky, you might just spot the odd salmon jumping up the waterfalls, making the tiring journey upstream. The waterfall walks are short and enjoyable. In addition, Rogie Falls makes for the perfect introduction to the highlands of Scotland and the increasingly popular North Coast 500.
In this guide, we’ll provide a GPS map and trail description. We’ll discuss where to find Rogie Falls, what to pack and where to stay. We’ll answer some FAQs and provide some options on other excellent waterfalls to see along the NC500 and Scottish Highlands.
To see footage of the Rogie Falls hike, please watch our NC500 Hikes YouTube production.
For other great waterfalls hikes in Scotland, read our guides on Wailing Widow Falls, Eas a’ Chual Aluinn and Steall Falls hikes. Otherwise, read our Complete Guide to Hikes Along the NC500 post, where we talk about 18 excellent NC500 hikes.
Table of Contents
Where is Rogie Falls?
Rogie Falls can be found nestled in beautiful pine forests within the county of Ross-shire in Scotland. Rogie Falls lie around 3km (2 miles) northwest of the village of Contin. They sit around 35km (22 miles) from the city of Inverness. Typically, if completing the North Coast 500 in a clockwise direction, Rogie Falls will be one of the first attractions you’ll see along the famed route.
Rogie Falls Hiking Preview and Map
- Trail Type: Loop
- Distance: 1.9km
- Time: 30 minutes – 1 hour
- Accumulated elevation gain: 55m
- Difficulty: Easy
- Trailhead: Rogie Falls Car Park
- Map: Wikiloc
Rogie Falls Walk
There are two main walking routes to Rogie Falls; the Salmon Trail and the Riverside Trail. The Salmon Trail is the shorter of the two at 0.5km, taking around 30 minutes to complete. The Riverside Trail covers a slightly larger loop and is the trail we’ll describe below.
Riverside Trail: Rogie Falls
From the car park, firstly head towards the toilets and continue the trail located to the side. We’ll be walking the Riverside Trail to Rogie Falls in an anti-clockwise direction. The walk follows a beautiful woodland trail and heads uphill towards a lovely lookout known as Raven’s Crag. As you exit the thick of the forest and step onto the lookout, you’ll get your first views of Rogie Waterfalls. You’ll also catch sight of the cool suspension bridge that cuts across the Black Water River.
After that, descend the steps and continue the trail to the viewing platform and suspension bridge at the falls.
Upon reaching Rogie Falls, you’ll be hit by the fantastic tumbling cascade of white wash water. It thunders over the jagged rock edges into the Blackwater River below. Nestled within the dense pine forest, Rogie Falls somehow feels like a million miles from civilisation. It’s amazing really, despite its proximity to the nearby road and the short hike taken to reach it.
There is a fantastic purpose-built viewing platform just before accessing the suspension bridge. From here, the views in front, and behind, of the surrounding landscape are simply superb. At the viewing platform, you’ll also find an information board. This details the life cycle of the salmon that frequent the Black Water River. It’s quite a fascinating read.
The suspension bridge is one of the best features of the Rogie Falls walk. From the centre of the bridge, you’ll find unimpeded views. Moreover, if you peer down, you might be lucky enough to spot the Black Water river star attraction – salmon.
Rogie Falls Salmon
If you look to your left from the bridge, you’ll see the human-made salmon ladder. This was built to help salmon and other fish reach the top of the falls during times of low water. It wasn’t long before Dan and I spotted a few having a go and launching out of the water. We were completely transfixed watching the efforts of these fish. We cheered every time one leapt out and willed them to go the distance. In short, it was rather entertaining. I can hardly believe how invested we became in the plight of fish for a good 30 minutes!
You’ll likely spot a few salmon having a go at jumping the main falls too. Although their chances of making that jump are quite unlikely. It’s fascinating to watch and actually a real highlight of this walk.
You can cross to the other side of the suspension bridge at Rogie Falls. From here, you can better explore the views of the salmon ladder, as well as wander a little more upstream.
After enjoying the salmon do their thing, return across the bridge and continue, right, along the trail. From here, the Rogie Falls walk can get a little muddy in sections. This is as you meander the trail alongside the Black Water River. Soon enough, the trail veers left and subsequently cuts back through the beautiful forest again, returning to the Rogie Falls car park.
In short, we found the Rogie Falls Riverside Trail to be a very enjoyable short walk. Although there are some sections where the trail can be a little muddy, steep and with protruding tree branches.
It was the perfect introduction to the North Coast 500.
How to Get to Rogie Falls
If you’ve set off on the beautiful NC500 and are travelling in a clockwise direction (like us), you’ll likely be heading there straight from Inverness. Certainly, the easiest way to complete the North Coast 500 in Scotland and visit Rogie Falls is with your own set of wheels.
The nearest postcode to get you to the Rogie Falls car park is IV14 9EQ. From this point, the car park is just another few kilometres along the road, with a right-hand turn into the car park. Alternatively, you can search Rogie Falls using Google Maps and get there very easily following directions that way.
If you don’t have access to your own car/motorbike/camper, then we really recommend hiring something. If hiring a car on a trip, we always get the ball rolling with a search on RentalCars.com. Booking a car with Rentalcars.com is easy and stress-free, plus they offer an unbeatable free cancellation policy too.
Inverness To Rogie Falls
Inverness to Rogie Falls is around a 40-minute drive along the A835 road and is very straightforward to find.
Rogie Falls Car Park
Once you reach Rogie Falls car park, you’ll find it’s a decent size with plenty of parking, which is free. You’ll also find public toilets for your convenience and it’s possible to camp overnight in a motor home.
If you’re completing the NC500 by public transport, or are simply just visiting for the day from Inverness, you can take a bus. Stagecoach Scotland runs bus #27 from Inverness bus station to Contin, Tor View. The cost is around £6.30 ($7.30USD) and takes 1 hour and 15 minutes. Once you alight at Contin, you can either arrange a taxi to take you to Rogie Falls, or you can walk. There are some lovely trails from Contin heading to Rogie Falls, so it’s not a bad option. It just means even more time hiking along this beautiful part of the NC500, which sounds like a win to me.
Alternatively, you can alight the same bus earlier at Strathpeffer, Park Avenue. The cost is the same, but the journey time is a little less at 1 hour. Similarly to arriving in Contin, you should either arrange a taxi or walk from town. There are many charming forest routes to choose from.
Inverness bus station is located at 1 Farraline Park, IV1 1NH and you can view it here.
Scottish Citylink also runs a bus from Inverness to Ullapool, from where you should get off at Contin.
Where to Stay For Rogie Falls
The closest accommodation options for visiting Rogie Falls in Scotland are to stay in either Contin or Strathpeffer. Alternatively, it’s just as easy to stay in Inverness and travel from there. Of course, many of you guys travelling the NC500 will be looking to camp too. So, we’ll take a look at a range of options below.
Rogie Falls Camping
- Riverside Chalets, Caravan & Camping: situated in nearby Contin, Riverside is one of the closest camp spots to Rogie Falls. It’s situated on the Blackwater River and surrounded by mountainous views. It’s also not uncommon to see otters and herons during your stay. At Riverside, it’s also possible to book Holiday Home Lochness here too, if camping isn’t for you.
- Rogie Falls Car Park: if you have a campervan, you can park in Rogie Falls car park overnight. The toilets here are open from April to October and there’s actually plenty of space. Be mindful though, the car park is not set up like a normal campsite. So, try to limit the number of nights you stay. It’s merely a convenience provided as a quick stopover en route the NC500.
Rogie Falls Hotel Options
Not everyone’s a camper, I understand. So, below we’ll detail a few hotel options in the villages of Contin, Strathpeffer and Muir of Ord. All within excellent proximity to Rogie Falls along the North Coast 500 in Scotland.
- Budget – Muir Bank: the highly rated but reasonably priced Muir Bank sits in the small town of Muir of Ord, around 13km (8 miles) from Rogie Falls. Rooms are spacious and clean, and there’s also free parking to enjoy.
- Mid-range – White Lodge B&B: located in the centre of the village of Strathpeffer, guests love the charm of this 18th-century building. White Lodge B&B also does a fabulous brekkie. Certainly, that’s great before a walk to Rogie Falls.
- Luxury – Coul House Hotel: for a true taste of luxury in the highlands, Coul House Hotel in Contin ticks all the boxes. Rooms are beautifully decorated and have period features. Outdoors, you’ll find a pitch and putt golf course and stellar mountain views. The perfect place to unwind after a trip to Rogie Falls, which can be walked directly from the hotel.
Accommodation in Inverness
Dan and I visited Rogie Falls after spending the night in Inverness, Scotland. Since Rogie Falls is not that far from Inverness, it seemed like a great choice and opportunity to find some reasonably priced accommodation. As a result, these are our picks of the best budget, mid-range and luxury accommodation options.
- Budget – Bazpackers: for the budget conscious of us, Bazpackers offers incredible accommodation in the heart of Inverness. With a shared kitchen and hammocks in the garden to enjoy, it’s a sociable place. Plus, we hear there are pretty stellar views out to Inverness Castle.
- Mid-range – Drumdale Bed & Breakfast: great location, clean rooms, tasty breakfast and friendly hosts. In short, Drumdale Bed & Breakfast is one of the best places to stay in Inverness.
- Luxury – Ness Walk: if you’re looking for the ultimate in luxury to kick off your North Coast 500 tour and a trip to Rogie Falls, then look no further than Ness Walk. Located centrally, the hotel classes Inverness Castle as a nearby neighbour. The rooms are stylishly decorated and include a private bathroom and individual terrace.
Here, we’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions about Rogie Falls.
When to See Salmon at Rogie Falls, Inverness?
July to September. These months are the best times to see the Atlantic salmon swimming upstream, and making use of the salmon ladder. Certainly, it’s quite the spectacle.
Is Rogie Falls Free?
Rogie Falls in Scotland is free to visit and the car park and toilets are free to use.
How Far is Rogie Falls From Inverness?
Rogie Falls lies 22 miles (35km) northwest of Inverness. The drive time is around 35–40 minutes.
How Long is the Walk at Rogie Falls?
The shorter Salmon Trail is 1km long and the slightly longer Riverside Trail is around 2km.
How Far is Rogie Falls From the Car Park?
Depending on the direction you walk either of the Riverside or Salmon Trails, you can reach Rogie Falls on the North Coast 500 in approx. 0.5km and in around 15 minutes.
Are There Any Other Waterfalls Near Rogie Falls?
A little further along the A835 brings you to the Black Water Falls. An impressive set of cascades with a lovely stone arched bridge that thoughtfully crosses over.
Other Waterfalls in Scotland
Rogie Falls is a wonderful set of cascades. But, there are countless other beautiful waterfalls in Scotland, many situated along the North Coast 500 itself. These are our pick of some of the best (guides coming soon):
- Wailing Widow Falls: an easy stop along the NC500 circuit.
- Eas a’ Chual Aluinn: Britain’s highest waterfall!
- Steall Falls: stunning waterfall in the shadow of Ben Nevis.
- Falls of Glomach: a spectacular waterfall that’s a little more off-the-beaten-track.
- Falls of Measach: nicknamed the ‘ugly hollow’, this waterfall sits within the fantastic Corrieshalloch Gorge.
- Fairy Glen Falls: a set of two lovely waterfalls. Children used to decorate the pool next to the spring with flowers. This was to ensure that fairies kept the water supply clean.
Five Hiking Essentials For Rogie Falls Walk
These are our five hiking gear essentials for the Rogie Falls walk in Scotland! For a more extensive hiking gear list, check out our 66 Travel Accessories That You Must Travel With. Alternatively, for a general summary of everything you’d need for a trip to Scotland and the North Coast 500, visit our Ultimate Packing Checklist.
- Merrell Moab Mid Gore-Tex Hiking Boots: these hiking boots are super comfortable and lightweight.
- The North Face Venture Jacket: a fantastic windproof/waterproof jacket.
- Osprey Skarab 30L Day Backpack: a great backpack for hiking, which has plenty of space to store your gear.
- The North Face TKA Glacier Fleece Jacket: an excellent warmth:weight ratio fleece jacket that’ll help keep you warm.
- Columbia Convertible Trousers: a value for money pair of water-resistant convertible trousers.
- Arrive early: as with most popular attractions, arriving early inevitably means you’ll beat the crowds. Subsequently, Dan and I set off on this trail at around 8am and were the only two, despite the few campervans that were parked up in the car park.
- Suspension bridge limits: the bridge is 5 person max. at a time. If you’re wanting to spend time taking photographs, or enjoying the salmon, then again, arrive early or late in the day to avoid crowds.
- Enjoy Inverness: given Rogie Falls’ proximity to Inverness, why not spend some time exploring the surrounding area? Although not technically part of the NC500, Lock Ness is worth a visit. As is Inverness Castle, Urquhart Castle, Culloden Battlefield and Clava Cairns. In short, all make the perfect addition to any NC500 route.