A campaign to encourage more people to enjoy nature close to home comes to Dundee next week.
The Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) 'Simple pleasures, easily found' campaign hopes to inspire local people to make more use of a series of green places in the heart of the city taking in woodland, parks, waterways and even a hill.
To help people get started, SNH has produced a new, free leaflet with details of where to go. To launch the leaflet, Dundee's countryside rangers will be running three fun, free guided walks at Den O'Mains in Caird Park, on 23, 24 and 25 August.
The leaflet, Simple pleasures, easily found in Dundee' recommends four easy-to-follow routes in the city at Baxter Park, Den O'Mains, Stobsmuir Park and Dundee Law. It gives ideas for simple, free activities to enjoy along the way, like looking for cones and berries on the trees, flying a kite, spotting foxes and feeding the ducks.
Ewen Cameron, SNH's operations manager said: "People often think enjoying the outdoors means a trek deep into the countryside, but that just isn't true. This colourful guide introduces some of the best places for nature in the heart of Dundee and the good thing is you don't have to go very far from your own front door. There's plenty to see throughout the year. Whether it's looking for conkers or getting your wellies on and splashing through puddles, we hope the leaflet will inspire you to explore somewhere new and have fun rediscovering some of your childhood pastimes. Apart from the fun, some outdoor exercise is good for your health and it's all for free. After these "tasters", we hope people will explore further on their own and maybe even produce a guide to walks in their area."
The publication is part of a national campaign encouraging people to get outdoors more often to enjoy nature, particularly in Scotland's urban areas. The campaign was launched after research showed that 52% of adults in Scotland visit the outdoors less than once a week.
Alison Cairnie, a countryside ranger with Dundee City Council, who will be leading the guided walks said: "We are very fortunate in Dundee to have so many easy-to-reach parks and green places, so come along on one of our walks and get to know them better. You'll be able to pick up a copy of the new leaflet and a fantastic outdoor activity book to dangle from your bag, which has lots of ideas of things to do when you're out and about."