We had an area of footpath filled in with chipped bark, which always looks dark and goes even darker in the rain - and we get plenty of that in Galloway. The birds fling it about in their search for food, and it treads into the house on shoes. So we decided to do away with it and go for gravel. As with the paths around the house, we used the same local builder who has, we think, done a good job.
The gravel used is called "Golden Flint". It looks very pale when laid because it is dusty, but a shower of rain washes that away and the colours of the individual stones begin to appear.
Note that in the photo above, the darker gravel nearest the camera is wet from the sack . . .
Then it rains . . .
. . . and you begin to get the finished effect.