Best Places To Stay In Glencoe Scotland – Discover the beautiful Scottish Highlands with 13 of the best things to do in Fort William and Glencoe, with everything from hiking and mountain climbing adventures to scenic train rides and cozy pubs.
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Best Places To Stay In Glencoe Scotland
The West Highlands of Scotland are all about spectacular scenery. Part of the Lochaber Geopark, this majestic landscape is shaped by volcanoes and carved by glaciers to create a huge outdoor adventure park waiting to be explored.
Best Areas To Stay In Fort William & Ben Nevis, Scotland
Lakes, Badlands and Mountains are the two main bases of the region: the small historic town of Glencoe and the larger adventure town of Fort William. Whether you’re into hiking or history, extreme sports or cozy pubs, the Scottish Highlands is for you. Here are 13 things to do in Fort William and Glencoe.
From short walks to multi-day adventures, highland walks are one of the best things to do in Glencoe. The 2.5-mile An Torr Trail is an easy walk to Signal Rock, which marked the start of the Glencoe Massacre. It’s about an hour’s walk and you can see deer and other local wildlife along the way.
Another easy option is Glencoe Lochan, a small loch behind Glencoe Village, with other walks around the loch including woodland and hill walks.
A slightly more challenging walk is the Pap de Glencoe, a conical mountain overlooking the village of Glencoe. It’s steep but steady, and you have to climb 5 kilometers to the top, where you can enjoy panoramic views from the top. But if you’re up for the challenge, Scotland’s most popular long-distance trail, the West Highland Way, runs 96 miles through Glencoe.
Best Things To Do In Glencoe
A view that starts at Glencoe Mountain Resort, climbs the infamous Devil’s Staircase, the highest point on the West Highland Way at 550m, and offers fantastic views before descending to Kinclochleven. There is a nice 10.2 mile trail.
How to get there: The An Torr trail starts at Signal Rock car park on the A82, 1.5 miles south of Glencoe. There is a signed car park at Glencoe Lochan and the Pap of Glencoe walk starts near Strath Lodge south of Glencoe town.
Glencoe has a dark side to its beautiful landscape and you can learn more about one of the most famous events in history at the Glencoe Visitor Center. In the early morning hours of February 13, 1692, 38 men and women at McDonald’s were killed by government soldiers who were welcomed into their homes.
A few escaped and went to the hills, but later died of cold and exposure. All this happened shortly after the rise of the Jacobites, when King William III ordered the heads of the clan to sign an oath of allegiance on January 1, 1692. .
Best Places To Visit In Scotland
He felt his clan was safe and agreed when a regiment of 130 men asked the clan to stay for 10 days. And the way they then became hosts made for one of the most shocking events in Scottish history.
The visitor center tells the story of the massacre and the mountaineering history of the area (photos of early mountaineers and skiers in their original gear are a treat to behold!). The town of Glencoe also has a memorial to the missing members of the McDonald’s.
Directions: Glencoe Visitor Center is 1 mile south of Glencoe town on the A82. Operated by the National Trust for Scotland, entry is free and parking costs £4.
I loved this trip so much that I wrote a whole post about it, and the Glen Etive road trip is definitely one of my Highland highlights. This scenic road is short but perfectly formed, with just 12 miles of single track road leading to a dead end on the shores of Loch Etive, a large salt lake that joins the sea north of Oban.
Scotland Roadtrip: Edinburgh To Glencoe By Car
Glen Etive Road’s lack of length makes up for the beautiful views along the way. You may be familiar with some of these perspectives. Glenn is
The road starts between the famous peaks of Buachaille Etive Mor and Buachaille Etive Beag, along the River Etive through wild moors and forests, past lakes and traditional white stone huts to the shores of Loch Etive.
Directions: The Glen Etive Road junction is approximately 11 miles south of Glencoe on the A82. Look to the right before you reach Glencoe Mountain Resort.
There are only five ski resorts in Scotland, the oldest of which is Glencoe Mountain Resort. In winter, you can ski, snowboard or sledge on the slopes, enjoying the vast natural scenery of unspoilt Rannoch Moor.
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The ski area is not large, with 8 lifts and 20 pistes, but a mixture of pistes of different levels, including some of the longest and steepest ski runs in Scotland. Clothing and equipment can be rented at the resort and instructors are on hand if you need advice.
In the summer, the resort focuses on walking and mountain biking. There are downhill and cross-country skiing trails, as well as other outdoor activities such as orienteering, tubing and scavenger hunts. However, taking the cable car to the top of the mountain with views of the summits of Eagles Rest and Creag Dhubb is worth every visit.
Directions: Glencoe Mountain Resort is 12 miles south of Glencoe on the A82, turn right. Places cost €15 for adults / €10 for children.
If the weather in Scotland is too wet to be outdoors, why not get your adrenaline pumping from the giant fridge? The Kinlochleven Ice Factor has the largest indoor ice climbing wall in the United States, a 15 meter high covered iceberg.
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The owners have turned a former aluminum foundry building into a place for climbers to practice their winter skills after seeing so many lives lost in the Scottish Peaks. Mountain rescuers and the military use it to practice their skills, but you don’t need ice climbing or rock climbing experience to try it.
There’s an hour-long taster class where you can learn kit and skills (axes and boots provided, but wear gloves and warm clothes). Indoor climbing is also possible if you don’t like the cold.
How to get there: Kinlochleven is situated on Loch Leven, 7 miles east of Glencoe. Ice climbing at Ice Factor costs £30 for a taster hour (12+) and equipment costs £8.
On a cold day, you can’t beat the comfort of a traditional Scottish pub. Think bonfires, real ales and pub sandwiches. There’s plenty to choose from in the Highlands, but around Glencoe and Fort William there are some gems worth a visit.
National Trust For Scotland
First up, the 200-year-old converted stables, the Ben Nevis Inn, sits at the right foot of the mountain just outside Fort William. Fantastic views of Glen Nevis with drinks, bunk beds and restaurant included.
Another is the butchery-inspired Clachaig Inn in the heart of Glencoe (look for the ‘No Hawkers or Campbells’ sign). The inn is over 300 years old and Boots Bar is popular with daytrippers for its 365 whiskeys (and an impressive selection of gins) and live music nights.
How to get there: The Ben Nevis Inn is about two miles southeast of Fort William along the Achintee Road. Clachaig Inn is 2 miles south of Glencoe Village, just off the A82.
The ruins of the ancient 13th century Inverlochy Castle are just outside the heart of Fort William on the banks of the River Lochy. It might not look like it at first glance, but it is one of Scotland’s best-preserved castles of its time and has a horrific story to tell.
Loch Leven Hotel & Distillery, Glencoe
The castle was built by the Comyn family, who were sworn enemies of Robert the Bruce, but abandoned it when Bruce took the throne of Scotland. It was later reoccupied and two fierce battles took place here. The first killed 1,000 people in 1431, and the second in 1645 killed another 1,500 on the battlefield.
The castle was finally abandoned in 1654 and replaced by a fortress called Fort William. And if you’re wondering if there’s a new Inverlochy Castle, there’s definitely Inverlochy Castle*, a 19th-century manor house converted into a five-star hotel.
How to get there: Inverlochy Old Castle is 2.5 miles from Fort William. Head north of the city on the A82 or take a pleasant walk along the banks of the Great River.