East Lothian electric Bike rental tour

Scotland’s Prettiest County? We think so. . .

Magnificent beaches, magical forests, rolling countryside and spectacular landmarks: East Lothian might be billed as ‘Edinburgh’s Coast and Countryside’ but it can more than hold its own when it comes to glorious scenery. And it’s not just the landscape that captivates both visitors and locals. East Lothian is home to some particularly picturesque villages and hamlets, dotted amongst the fields, woodland and meadows right across our beautiful county.

Rich in history, our conservation villages create the perfect stop off points especially if you’re on foot or bike. While the terrain is mostly agreeably flat, hiring an electric bike from North Berwick-based EZ Riders means you can go further, taking in seaside as well as inland communities. East Lothian is relatively compact as a county, so over the course of a single day you can cover a fair bit of ground while enjoying everything from a glimpse of a seal and diving gannets to splendid castles and rustic pubs.

Situated around the main towns of North Berwick and Haddington, East Lothian’s villages range from the small to the substantial, but all have their own character and are well worth wandering through. Take Garvald, a real hidden gem of unspoilt period cottages built from local rose-coloured stone; a charming parish church and a welcoming pub where the fire’s always lit. Whitekirk also features a stretch of lovely cottages and its own church along with beautiful views, while further inland, the farming village of Stenton unsurprisingly gets Outstanding Conservation status. The village is centred round its traditional green, with red sandstone cottages with terracotta pantile roofs framing the Gothic parish church (complete with superb stained glass windows). Gifford has its own centre too, this time it’s the village square, flanked by a beautiful white church, with the Adam-designed Yester House the starting point for some lovely woodland walks. Closer to the coast lies tiny Tyninghame, home to what is surely the prettiest village hall in Scotland and a tempting tea room, the former smithy. Here the suntrap of a courtyard is a haven for weary cyclists and a popular stop on our e-bike tours.

East Linton is one of the larger villages but it’s no less attractive, with a high street featuring Georgian houses and another excellent pub along with arguably the county’s finest butcher. The Tyne River runs along the boundary and is spanned by a 16th century bridge and you can visit the quirky Preston Mill, one of Scotland’s last working water mills and now famed for its location role in Outlander.

You’ll find another village green in Dirleton, this one bordered by chocolate box cottages many with gardens to match, while the recently-reopened Dirleton Castle is a must-see. Heading towards Edinburgh, Aberlady makes a good pitstop with its attractive main street village shop and pub, though it’s perhaps Aberlady Bay and nature reserve (a mecca for wading birds) that make this spot so special.

We’ve mentioned just a handful of places here, to show how East Lothian is so much more than beaches and golf. You can discover its treasures for yourself by hiring an e-bike and going a little off piste. There’s a myriad of forest tracks, woodland trails and quiet countryside lanes criss-crossing the county, and if you want to be more energetic, challenge yourself by going inland, where rolling fields meet the majestic Lammermuir Hills, the natural divide between East Lothian and the Scottish Borders.

For those who prefer a gentle cycle through some of East Lothian’s most beautiful coast and countryside without the bother of maps or sat nav, book one of our guided tours and let EZ Riders experts lead the way. Because in our view, there’s no prettier place.

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