TWO spectacular walking routes in Scotland have been named among the most "stunning" ancient pathways to traverse in the UK.

Introducing the places listed, The Guardian newspaper said these will allow walkers and hikers the "chance to soak up myths and legends."

A number of routes were featured on the list, including The Hadrian’s Wall Pilgrims’ Way in Northern England and Old Stones Way in the Peak District.

See the two Scottish walking routes named among the most 'stunning' ancient pathways in the UK

The National: St Ninian's Cave Pilgrimage starts from the old chapelSt Ninian's Cave Pilgrimage starts from the old chapel (Image: Tripadvisor)

St Ninian’s Cave Pilgrimage in Dumfries and Galloway and Iona of the East in Fife were the two Scottish walking routes named among the most "stunning" ancient pathways in the UK.

Discussing St Ninian's Cave Pilgrimage, which starts from  St Ninian’s Chapel, The Guardian said: "Isle of Whithorn village is home to the ruins of the chapel of the fourth-century Saint Ninian, said to have converted many Celts and southern Picts to Christianity.

"In the 12th century, pilgrims would arrive by water and rest, before continuing on to Whithorn and its priory, in honour of the eponymous saint.

"Green signs marked “Core path 356” (a coastal network set up by the local council) lead you along sea cliffs to the cave where the saint would seek solitude. Names on the map are foreboding – Rock of Providence, Devil’s Footsteps – and this coastline is also where the infamous final burning-effigy scene of the 1973 classic The Wicker Man was shot.

"Look out for birds, especially cormorants, perched above the turquoise water and spy multiple caves once used by smugglers until you reach Port Castle Bay and St Ninian’s Cave, where 18 medieval stone crosses were discovered."

The chapel ruins, from which the route starts, have been praised by visitors on Tripadvisor with users giving it a 4/5 out of 46 reviews.

The National: The route leads walkers along nearby sea cliffs to the cave where Saint Ninian would seek solitudeThe route leads walkers along nearby sea cliffs to the cave where Saint Ninian would seek solitude (Image: Tripadvisor)

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Iona of the East was equally praised with the publication telling readers: "Waymarked as the longer Fife Coastal Path, this stroll passes through a part of Scotland that back in the height of ecclesiastical journeys would have been teeming with pilgrims. So much so that in the 11th century Queen Margaret, later canonised as a saint, established a ferry there to help bring people across the water (hence the name Queensferry) so they could reach the famous St Andrews further up the coast.

"The walk takes in the many bays and coves, as well as tree-lined tracks and the fishing village of Aberdour with its 13th‑century castle (thought to be one of Scotland’s oldest standing specimens), and offers views over to Inchcolm, AKA Iona of the East, where the ruins of a 12th-century abbey can be spied.

"Perhaps even more impressive, though, is the proliferation of beaches en route for a restorative open-water swim surrounded by fulmars and seals."