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The Great Glen Way

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Homepage > Scotland > The Great Glen Way
  • Duration: 7 Nights
  • Difficulty: Level 2-3
  • Tour Type: Self Guided
  • Availability: April to September
  • Location: Fort William
Tour Details

The Great Glen Way Walking Holiday is a fabulous 79 miles walking holiday in some of Scotland’s most wonderful scenery.  You will also be able to explore the Scottish Highlands and pass some great landmarks along the way.

The Great Glen Way in Scotland starts in Fort William, to the highland capital of Inverness. You will walk through some breathtaking scenery including lochs, hills and forests. Exploring The Great Glen Way by foot means you will also enjoy glorious views over Loch Ness.

Upon leaving Fort William, you will be able to see Neptune’s Staircase. This is a series of eight sea locks which are at the opening of the Caledonian Canal. Continuing along the Great Glen Way you will pass Loch Lochy and Loch Oich, before reaching the world-famous Loch Ness.

Make sure you make a stop by Castle Urquhart, which is one of the most photographed Castles overlooking Loch Ness. It is a short distance from the Trail but it well worth the detour.

The final stage of your Great Glen Way walk is from Drumnadrochit to Inverness. This is generally easy walking through farmland and forestry which give some lovely views for short sections over Loch Ness and the mountains to the north.

Let us take the planning out of your holiday, so you can enjoy the Great Glen Way. With daily luggage transfers, you won’t have to worry about carrying all your belongings. Just don’t forget your camera!

Starting Location

Fort William

Price Includes

  • 7 nights bed and breakfast
  • 3 & 4 star graded hotels, guest houses and country inns
  • Navigation by Smart Phone App
  • Luggage transfers
  • GPS Files on request

Price Excludes

  • Transport before and after tour
  • Single Rooms
  • Flights
  • Public Transport
  • Lunchs, Dinner and Snacks
  • Travel Insurance
Trip Info

Please Note

Please note not like other operators we do not just provide a map and a guide book from a bookshop, we have walked this trail and provide detailed photographic instructions which are easy to follow.

Travel Insurance

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Hooked on Walking that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the chosen activity and for emergency evacuation and hospital care.


Day 1Arrive Fort William

Day 2Fort William to Gairlochy 9.3-12.7 miles, 14.9-20.3km 5 hours, up 80-106m.

The first stage of the Great Glen Way offers easy walking alongside the Caledonian Canal which shows many interesting features including Neptune’s Staircase and excellent views of Ben Nevis. The route begins at the Old Fort in Fort William, under the shadow of Britain’s highest mountain. From here it skirts the shores of Loch Linnhe to join the historic Caledonian Canal at Corpach. It is then that the journey along Scotland’s longest Glen and greatest geological fault begins. The canal towpath is followed to Gairlochy, passing on the way several remains of the old construction works around the canal. The route runs for six miles between the River Lochy, its beautiful surrounding woodlands and the Caledonian Canal.

Accommodation in Gairlochy is limited and often we stay in Spean Bridge, this will add between 2-4 miles to the day’s distance today and tomorrow.

Day 3Gairlochy to Laggan/Invergarry 12.7-16.2 miles, 20.3-25.92km, 4.5-5.5 hours, up 393m.

Today the route runs along the peaceful western shores of Loch Lochy. There are splendid views over the loch as you pass below towering mountains walking mainly on wide, beautiful and quite forests tracks. On approaching South Laggan the track starts to descend and joins a minor road at Kilfinnan. This section of the Way offers a nice walk along a wooded strip of land with the canal visible at times to the left. The Canal comes back into sight and you rejoin the towpath at Laggan Locks, where you are close to the site of the Clan Battle of the Shirts in 1544. From here the route leads you into Laggan Avenue, a lovely canal-side path through a fine variety of tall trees established by Thomas Telford.

Day 4Laggan/Invergarry to Fort Augustus 9.9-13.4 miles, 15.8-21.5km, 4 hours, up 100m

Following first the old railway line, abandoned in 1946, and then a section of General Wade’s Military Road, you will walk along the tranquil shores of the loch through beautiful mixed woodland where wildlife abounds. The Great Glen Way offers scenic sections with lovely views along Loch Oich before emerging at Aberchalder swing bridge where you once again join the canal towpath for a scenic walk to Fort Augustus passing the delightful Kytra and Cullochy Locks. At historic Fort Augustus, you should visit the grand, imposing Abbey, which until recently housed Benedictine monks.

Day 5Fort Augustus to Invermoriston 7.3/7.8 miles 11.7/12.5km 3.5 hours, up 246/408 m

A day out walking through the pristine and beautiful ancient forests of Scotland. From Fort Augustus, you start the first real climb of the week but the reward is a series of breathtaking views back over the village and across Loch Ness as you follow high forest tracks to Invermoriston. As you come into the tiny village and cross the mighty river Moriston, have a look at the splendid old bridge, another Telford design. A quiet minor road is followed through crofting land, high above Loch Ness before the route starts to climb again through a pinewood before turning to the north following the western shore of Loch Ness. After the Allt na Criche forest car park the track has a constant but gradual climb. This often affords attractive views over the Loch and to Beinn a Bhacaidh.

Day 6 Invermoriston to Drumnadrochit 14.7/13.8 miles 23.5/22km 5-6 hours, up 562/588m

The path descends through the trees to the area of an Iron Age fort near Grotaig. After one last climb, the way emerges onto a single track road and crosses a moorland where pretty coloured heather abounds. You will then cross through another magnificent forest before the way starts a steep descent into Drumnadrochit. This section of the track is commonly used as a horse riding area. Since the Great Glen Way runs slightly inland and at this point towards the west of Loch Ness, you will have missed Urquhart Castle; which stands high above the shore looking onto Urquhart Bay. If time permits it is well worth travelling out to this castle and visitor centre. This can may be done during an evening stroll.

Day 7Drumnadrochit to Inverness 18.6 miles 29.8km 8 hours, up 478m.

This stage is perhaps the most varied of all, with further ascent and descent and a mixture of farmland, moorland and forests. Leaving the roadside the track climbs steadily through farmland offering unforgettable views back over Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle before entering the woodland and winding its way up. On a clear day, the east coast of Scotland and the majestic Monadliath mountains come into sight.

A short section across exposed, rugged heather moorland and you are nearly at Abriachan, another hill crofting community leading onto the Blackfold road. Here, the Great Glen Way turns into quiet and incredibly beautiful Craig Leach Forest before giving way to dramatic views of your destination and Beauly Firth to the north. Pleasant and easy walking alongside the canal and its riverside paths will lead you through the outskirts of the city to Inverness Castle, in the heart of the highland capital.

Day 8Departure

From Inverness, you can easily take the train or coach back to Edinburgh or Glasgow or even fly out of Inverness airport.


How to get there

By Plane to Edinburgh or Glasgow  airport where trains are available to Fort William. Travel time around 5 hours.

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GGW1 (7 Nights)  from £899 Book Now
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