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The route from Banff to Turriff is quite short at 12.9 miles, with total climbing of 919 feet. As with most of Aberdeenshire the route is lumpy, but there are no major hills and so has a difficulty rating of 5.
Banff was first mentioned in royal charter in 1163 . It was considered a trading town for many centuries – despite its location, the harbour was only built in 1775. Banff has a beautifully preserved townscape with many historic buildings, including a museum that was gifted by Andrew Carnegie. There are some lovely beach and cliff walks to both the east and west.
Starting on the seafront in Banff, you cycle through the east side of the town before crossing the River Deveron into neighbouring Macduff via a magnificent seven arch bridge built in 1779. You then cycle around the edge of town before heading south into the countryside. The biggest question for you at this point is: I am only one mile in to this cycle – can I justify having a dram at Macduff Distillery?
The road goes steadily uphill from the start, and you reach the high point of 282 feet above sea level after 3.9 miles. Whilst there are no specific tourist attractions to mention, the route is very pretty, taking you through farm and woodland, with the River Deveron a constant companion on your right. You will then steadily roll downhill before taking on the toughest section of the cycle from mile 6.8 to 8.7. The remaining 4.2 miles is up and down, but there is nothing overly challenging. You come into Turriff on the west side before the final mile that takes you in to the town centre.
Turriff is an ancient place, with links to the Knights Templar. Known locally as Turra, the town hosts a two-day agricultural show each August which is the largest in Scotland and has been running for 156 years. Somewhat strangely, the most famous former-resident is bovine rather than human. In 1913, sheriff officers confiscated a farmer’s cow after he (the farmer, not the cow!) refused to pay the newly introduced National Insurance. However, officers couldn’t sell the cow locally due to sympathy for the farmer, and the subsequent auction was disrupted by protesters and the cow escaped. Now an emblem of the town, a statue of the Turra Coo was erected in the town centre in 2010.
By clicking on the ‘play’ symbol on the graphic below you can see route map. The elevation profile of the ride can be seen via the Hills tab with files for use with a GPS device also available for download. If you take any photos of the route that you’d like to share, please submit to email@example.com
Onward rides from Turriff can be found here