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Duration
10 days
Activities
  • self guided walk
Accommodation
  • 9 nights in B&Bs
Meals
  • 9 Breakfasts

Price

$1280USD

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Overview

Trip Code: WH1

Trip highlights


  • A Walk to the Foot of Ben Nevis
  • Follow the Shores of Loch Lomond, Britain’s Largest Lake
  • Rannoch Moor and Scotland’s oldest Licensed Inn
  • Walking Through Glencoe and Glen Nevis

This tour follows the 96 mile national long-distance trail of the same name through the south-western part of the Scottish Highlands. It is claimed by some to be the most popular long distance trail in the British Isles. Starting at the village of Milngavie just outside Glasgow, it includes Loch Lomond, valley routes through the mountains round Crianlarich and open heather moorland across the Rannoch Moor wilderness area. It passes close to somber Glencoe, famed for its massacre of the MacDonald Clan, and finishes at Fort William near the foot of Ben Nevis (Britain's highest peak, which can be readily ascended by experienced clients if they choose to spend an extra day). The West Highland Way is a well-established and popular route, containing some landscapes of great beauty. The altitude range is from sea level to 1850 ft (4408 ft if Ben Nevis is climbed).

Trip Grading

moderate

More info about grading system

Traveller Rating

 

Travel to the start point of the walk in Milngavie. Its a short train journey from Glasgow approx 20 mins.

Meals:  Nil

The official start of the walk is at the obelisk in Milngavie. You follow some good paths through beautiful scenery. Glengoyne Distillery is worth a vist. Accommodation: We stay overnight in a guesthouse, where the host will make you more than welcome and has become a favorite with our customers.

Meals:  B

Today you will experience the gentle scenery on the bonny banks of Loch Lomond. Passing highland cattle in the fields the route winds up through forest and across the moors up to Conic Hill, which from the summit gives great views over the loch, and across the islands there. This marks the boundary of the Highland fault and officially the start of the Highlands proper. The way drops down to Balmaha by the water, and then winds its way towards Rowardennan along the Loch shore with tree-framed views. Rowardennan marks the road head, and a convenient place to stay at our pleasant hotel. An extra day here would be advised if you wanted to make an ascent of Ben Lomond. Accommodation: We stay overnight at Rowardennan hotel with bar (not the bunkhouse but the hotel itself). The Inn is practically on the shore of Loch Lomond and beautiful scenery surrounds it including the mass of Ben Lomond. All rooms have ensuite facilities. The restaurant provides carefully selected dishes ensuring that you receive a true taste of Scotland.

Meals:  B

Today you walk in the shadow of Ben Lomond for much of the time, following the Loch edge path. There are no big ascents to make, but a few short steep ups and downs. You can pass by Rob Roy’s prison and cave, where he is said to have held up in times of difficulty and held prisoners at his pleasure. You could perhaps have a drink at the hotel at Inversnaid before walking on to Ardleish, where you can raise a buoy on a pole to attract the attention of the ferryman who will collect you and transfer you to our hotel on the western side of the Loch (approx £4 per person, not included). Or if you fancy the longer option, or the weather is too rough, you need to continue to Beinglas farm or the Inverarnan Drover’s inn to call for a taxi to transfer you to the hotel (not included). Accommodation: Tonight we stay at a 3 star hotel with comfortable rooms on the western side of the Loch. Rooms have TV and tea tray etc. and there are two restaurants, a lounge and public bars.

Meals:  B

An optional transfer (included) to take you to Crianlarich saving about 8 miles, otherwise return across Loch Lomond by ferry to recommence your walk passing through Glen Falloch and its waterfalls with views towards Benn Mor. A short steep ascent takes you over the shoulder of a hill into the pretty valley of Glen Fillan. Crossing the River Fillan, we can visit the remains of a priory known to Robert The Bruce. He was defeated locally in a skirmish with the English in the broken glacial terrrain around Dalrigh which we next pass on the way to Tyndrum, a busy little village which developed from the 1740s from lead mining and now has expoitable Gold and silver reserves nearby. There is the famous 'Green Wellie' shop here for all things Scottish and kitsch. Accommodation: Tonight we will use a number of guesthouses in this small but bustling village.

Meals:  B

A fairly short but picturesque day. The route continues up past the domed hulks of Ben Odhar, Ben Lui and Ben Dorain to the Bridge of Orchy passing the farm of Auch, often with cotton grass streaming in the wind. You may be staying at Bridge of Orchy, otherwise it is time for a quick dram before continuing on to Loch Tulla (Inveroran), a beautifully situated lake surrounded by Scots pines a remnant of the ancient Caledonian forest which covered much of Scotland. In good weather you can walk steeply over Mam Carraigh for beautiful views, otherwise take the quiet loch side road. You will be opposite the Black Mount estate of the Flemming family, famous for Ian and Peter. Infact the James Bond story 'Skyfall' is probably based on this humble pile. Plkenty of deer and bird life normally evident. There is limited accommodation here hence the reason for staying in either village. Accommodation: Stay at the Inveroran Hotel which is 16.5 miles from Crainlarichl, or at the upgraded accommodation - The Bridge of Orchy Hotel approx 14 miles from Crainlarich. Both hotels are set in beautiful surroundings.

Meals:  B

Continue to loch Tulla if necessary. We then head up on the old military road across the wilds and the heather clad wastes of Rannoch Moor, past Ba Bridge, claimed to be the remotest part of the route. The scenery become ever more expansive with views into great corries once filled with glaciers. Often you can see deer and there is great interplay between land, lake, mountain and sky. The military road winds down to the old drovers Inn near the Gateway to Glencoe. This is in the shadow of perhaps the most impressive looking mountain of the tour- Buachaille Etive Mor - the shepherd of Etive Mor. Accommodation: Important note Kings House (day 7) only accepts 2 night stays if your booking falls on a Saturday. The alternative is to stay at the Glencoe Mountain resort on a room only accommodation in the form of Microlodges (1 x double bed and 2 x single beds). There are shower and toilet blocks and a café open from 9am to 8.30pm (hot food until 7.30pm). You need to provide your own sleepig bag, liner, towel.

Meals:  B

From the Kings House Hotel the way passes beside Buchaille Etive Mor and then proceeds up the Devil's staircase to 1850 ft: not as bad as it seems, a well graded section of the Way. You can try to imagine the army bringing artillery pieces up here. This offers spectacular views back from whence you came. Then it is a long descent to sea level at the head of Loch Leven with views of the Blackwater damn, Loch Leven and The Pap of Glencoe. Kinlochleven was a place for hydroelectric power smelting bauxite for aluminium. There is a new climbing centre in one of the old smelters offering ice climbing. More sedentary activity can be had by walking to the Grey Mares Tail waterfall on the edge of town. Accommodation: In Kinlochleven we stay in a guesthouse, which has become popular with our clients and a warm welcome awaits.

Meals:  B

A steep climb up under the steep slopes of the Mamore hills at the beginning of the day follows old Victorian hunting tracks and then you are back on the old military road and over the Lairigmor Pass and through dense coniferous forest to Glen Nevis past the foot of Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest peak (4408ft). The West Highland Way continues into Fort William on the side of Loch Linnhe, where it ends right in the centre and close to handy pubs for a deserved celebration. Fort William is a Mecca for climbers, mountain bikers and train enthusiasts. The town was built as a garrison against the Jacobite threat. A few remains of the fort are to be seen by the loch side. Accommodation: We use many different bed & breakfast and guesthouses in Fort William as it is a busy town.

Meals:  B

The tour ends after breakfast but why not stay an extra night to climb Ben Nevis and take the evening sleeper out of Fort William?

Meals:  B


Inclusions

  • 9 breakfasts
  • 8 nights B&B and 1 night room only accommodation on a twin share basis with ensuite facilities where available.
  • Important note Kings House (day 7) only accepts 2 night stays if your booking falls on a Saturday. The alternative is to stay at the Glencoe Mountain resort on a room only accommodation in the form of Microlodges (1 x double bed and 2 x single beds). There are shower and toilet blocks and a café open from 9am to 8.30pm (hot food until 7.30pm). The resort can offer rental of a sleeping bag plus liner for £5pp however there is no pre-booking service and they are hired on arrival.
  • One piece of luggage per person transferred from Inn to Inn, not exceeding 20kg
  • Transfer from Ardlui/Inveraran to Crianlarich if required at start of Day 5
  • Information pack including route notes & maps
  • Emergency hotline

  • Lunch, Dinner and drinks
  • Entrance fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Travel to the start and from the end point of the trip
  • Personal expenses such as laundry and phone calls
  • Unscheduled transfers required during the trip

Grading

moderate  

The walk is graded as moderate. The terrain is hilly with some steep slopes, boggy areas and narrow trails in places with tree roots. There are also gravel type roads and there is some tarmac walking.


Departure dates

Daily from 21 Mar to 11Oct

Notes

DN1
8 day version available

Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Total Priceper person from

$1280USD

Options & Supplements*
  • Single SupplementUSD$570
*Prices listed are per person

Trip reviews


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We offer different levels of accommodation and comfort so that even the most budget conscious can treat themselves to active holidays on Europe's most celebrated tracks and trails. Our trips are great value for money because you only pay for what you want.  

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Our wide range of self-guided itineraries embody the UTracks philosophy of exploring Europe your way. We handle the logistics so all that's left for you to do is enjoy exploring Europe at your own pace. Most depart daily with a minimum of two people, meaning maximum flexibility.

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