JC Travels: The Scotland Series: Exploring Loch Lomond
Woo, it’s time. Time for the Scotland posts to begin!! We had such an epic trip, starting at the end of August for 9 days into September. Drove 100s of miles, took 1000s of photos and had 100,000 of calories. It was an epic trip. So epic, that I originally thought I would only do 2 posts, but I’m now going to do 5! Yes 5! But trust me, there is just so much to tell, I’m going to cover the 5 main areas which we covered:
- Loch Lomond
- Fort William and Glencoe
- Isle of Skye
- The Cairngorms
We headed off on a trip on a pleasant Friday afternoon, finishing up work, packing up the car and getting on the road. It is about 8-9 hours drive from London to Loch Lomond, so we decided to break it up by having a night in Manchester on the way. This meant we only had to do a 4 hour stint after a long day. After fuelling up with a delicious breakfast on Saturday morning (soon to be a regular occurrence) we continued to drive up North.
The first stop – Tebay services. I know this is a random one, but when I asked some friends at the recent wedding what we need to see in Scotland, not one, but two people said that we had to stop off at Tebay services. So stop we did! And it was a good one. Most definitely the best services in the UK, full of local produce, a delicious farm shop, beautiful views and very helpful staff! I picked up some Yorkshire biscuits for the drive which served us well. Though my one tip is to not fill up here, it was about 10p more expensive than most of the other services we saw!
So the drive continues, passing through Glasgow and gaining a little bit of traffic due to the long weekend when we arrived in Tabot. The weather was slightly average, passing showers but the rain didn’t last long when it arrived. We had a wander to the tourist info before heading out on our first hike – the three loch loop. This was a short 90 minute hike up a very steep hill and into the wilderness. It was amazing to be out in the countryside so soon after arriving! The loch itself was stunning, full of jutting island and surrounding by lush greenland.
We then headed to the B+B – the Loch Lomond Country Guest House and we were in for a treat. Just look at that view in the picture above, that was from the bedroom window! I ended up spending a lot of time staring out the window, watching the clouds pass through. We stopped off at the Village Inn for some delicious dinner as well.
We only had one night in Loch Lomond and woke up to another cloudy but bright day. We decided to hang around the area for awhile before heading onto Fort William. We went and hired some bikes so that we could do the 9 mile cycle along the West Lomond cycle way along the loch edge to Luss. This turned out to be a great idea as it was a stunning ride! You could see all the way out throughout the loch and the majority of the ride was on the old road surrounded by forest. In Luss, we stopped for a drink and bought some good Scottish fudge before cycling back to the car.
We wanted to explore a bit further afield in the area and went to Inverary on the way up North. It houses a huge castle which was really beautiful – though very pricey to go inside so we just had a drive round! We stopped at the George Hotel for a bite to eat before getting on road.
Overall, I really enjoyed Loch Lomond and the general area – not only is it stunningly beautiful but there are so many little towns to visit and things to do. Plus, it is only about an hour outside of Glasgow but you do feel as thought you could be in the middle of no where.
We were then on our way to Glencoe and Fort William…. to be continued.
Have you been to Loch Lomond?