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Link to Area Info Page containing local information and links, contacts & tourist advice







Mackay's Holidays: Holiday Cottages Throughout Scotland
Holiday 
Cottages all over Scotland in beautiful locations
Traditional Holiday Cottages
all over Scotland in stunning locations
The Maid of the Loch, Loch Lomond
The Maid of the Loch, Loch Lomond
Lochearnhead
Lochearnhead
Inchmahome Priory
Inchmahome Priory

Loch Lomond & The Trossachs Main Page

Our Loch Lomond & The Trossachs area follows the boundaries of the Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park. It includes a large part of the west and north of Stirling & Central Scotland together with parts of Mid Argyll, Kintyre, Cowal & Bute, and part of Glasgow & Clyde Valley lying in West Dunbartonshire. Everything within our Loch Lomond & The Trossachs area is also mirrored in these other areas: the purpose of having an additional area bringing Loch Lomond & The Trossachs together is to assist visitors who might be planning a visit and who would otherwise find the information fragmented. See the map below for an outline of the area and links to surrounding and underlying areas. The National Park boundaries exclude Dumbarton and Helensburgh, as well as the Rosneath Peninsula, so we have not included them in this area.

Loch Lomond is Scotland's largest loch by surface area. Its accessibility makes it a popular choice for day visitors and for weekends away from the city. Balloch, at the southern end of the loch is only a half hour drive from the centre of Glasgow and its Castle Country Park is open all year. Balloch pier is also home to the paddle steamer, Maid of the Loch, currently undergoing restoration, while nearby is the Loch Lomond Shores shopping and leisure development.

Luss is to be found off the A82 on the west side of Loch Lomond. A popular tourist halt, its pretty cottages are part of the estate village built by the Colquhouns. At its northern end, Loch Lomond narrows considerably, with Tarbet on the west shore and Inversnaid on the less accessible east shore. Nearby Arrochar looks across the head of Loch Long to the Arrochar Alps.

On the eastern side of the loch the B837 leads to Balmaha. Sitting directly behind it is Conic Hill, a humpy mound standing on the geological line where the Highlands begin. This is a busy place in summer, being the stopping off point for boat excursions round Loch Lomond's islands. At the end of the road up the east side of the loch is Rowardennan, a favoured starting point for the ascent of Ben Lomond, Scotland's most southerly Munro. A track also continues eastwards from here forming part of the West Highland Way. This is the 95 mile long distance footpath from Milngavie, near Glasgow, to Fort William.

South east of Loch Lomond, on the hills overlooking Endrick Water, is the village of Drymen. Drymen lies on the route of the West Highland Way and is also the start point for the Rob Roy Way unofficial long distance footpath to Pitlochry.

Further to the east of Loch Lomond lie The Trossachs. These are often portrayed as a "Scotland in miniature", an area of lower mountains and lakes extending as far east as Callander and Aberfoyle, and interestingly reminiscent of the English Lake District. Whether the Trossachs would have achieved their fame without the influence of Sir Walter Scott is debatable; but while for some they are just the foothills of the real Highlands, for others they remain the most attractive part of Scotland. An especially pleasing but short climb is up the peaky summit of Ben A'an.

Loch Lomond & The Trossachs, Showing Surrounding and Underlying Areas
Loch Lomond & The Trossachs, Showing Surrounding and Underlying Areas

Between Callander and Aberfoyle the road passes Brig o' Turk and then south through the Achray Forest along the Duke's Pass. The David Marshall Lodge Visitor Centre is well worth a visit en route. Aberfoyle provides a good base for walking and cycling holidays. East of Aberfoyle and south of Callander is the village of Thornhill. Between Thornhill and Aberfoyle is the Lake of Menteith, home to Inchmahome Priory.

Callander itself forms one of the main gateways to both the Trossachs and the Highlands. It sits at the eastern end of the Trossachs and at the southern end of the Pass of Leny, and is an ideal base for those wishing to explore the area. Sir Walter Scott and William Wordsworth and his sister Dorothy all favoured Callander, and it lays claim to Rob Roy, Scotland's answer to Robin Hood. Callander is home to the Rob Roy and Trossachs Visitor Centre, situated in the town square. The centre houses a display and multimedia presentations. Rob Roy is also remembered in the Rob Roy Way.

A short walk east from the town is pretty Bracklinn Falls which can be visited en-route to Callander Crags. To the west are the Falls of Leny. Longer and more strenuous walks, like that to the summit of Ben Ledi, are also possible when using Callander as a base. The scenic Callander to Strathyre Cycleway is to be found north of the town leading, as the name suggests, to the village of Strathyre which sits astride the A84. The cycleway forms part of the National Cycle Network and this stretch is six miles long.

Loch Lomond at Balmaha
Loch Lomond at Balmaha
West Highland Way at Tyndrum
West Highland Way at Tyndrum

A little further north is the village of Balquhidder, which stands near the eastern end of Balquhidder Glen. Balquhidder Kirkyard is home to Rob Roy's grave. For those enjoying water sports, Lochearnhead, at the western end of Loch Earn, is a popular choice: as is St Fillans at its eastern end, where you also find the excellent Four Seasons Hotel. This part of the area is also crossed by the Coast to Coast Walk from Oban to St Andrews.

Killin is a pretty place set against a backdrop of the spectacular mountains of Breadalbane. The River Dochart tumbles through the town and the Falls of Dochart provide a popular tourist attraction. Other points of interest in Killin include the town church which houses an ancient font and, one mile from Killin, Moirlanich Longhouse, a restored mid-1800s byre. A minor road from the north end of the village to the west end of Loch Tay passes the ruins of Finlarig Castle.

Further west, Tyndrum and nearby Crianlarich between them form a major crossroads in the Highlands. From here, main roads head west to Oban, north to Fort William, east to Stirling, and south to Glasgow. The two villages also mark a key point on the public transport networks, with Tyndrum boasting two railway stations to Crianlarich's one. And there are daily bus services on all the main routes through the villages. There is plenty of accommodation on offer in the area (as you can see here), including the excellent Crianlarich Hotel.

The area offers some excellent walking with the West Highland Way entering Crianlarich from the south and departing Tyndrum to the north en route to Bridge of Orchy. It is also crossed by the route of the Coast to Coast Walk from Oban to St Andrews.

The western side of the Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park extends out into the northern part of the Cowal peninsula, stopping just short of Dunoon. It does however include the magnificent Benmore Botanic Garden, a mountainous garden that forms one of Cowal's major visitor attractions. It also includes the coastal settlements along the western shore of Loch Long which include the pretty village of Ardentinny.

In the northern part of the Cowal peninsula is Lochgoilhead, the resort village lying, as the name suggests, at the head of Loch Goil, an arm of Loch Long. Following the single track road for five miles down the west shore of Loch Goil leads to Carrick Castle, which is not open to the public.

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