Close
Articles by Year

<<     >>

Articles by Category

UK +44 (0)1479 420 020

Activities

Selected Trips

    Locations

    Selected Trips

      Self Guided
      The Great Glen Way

      73 review(s)

      Duration: 7 night(s) From £725

      Trip Details & Highlights

      Trip created by Rachael Gavan
      View Rachael's Profile

      Region: Multi-Location
      Trip Type: Self Guided
      Comfort: Classic
      Deposit From £0.00

      Difficulty:

      All you need to know about your trip, this essential document is a must for all adventures.

      Download Itinerary

      Trip Details

      2019 Availability (Updated Feb 2019 – next review March 2019):
      We are sadly not able to take new bookings for the Great Glen Way during the following times:

      • Late April (Easter and after)
      • May (entire month)
      • first two weeks of June

      This is due to the trail now being very busy and hence a lack of available accommodation. If you are interested in a spring or early summer trip we encourage you to consider our Guided Walking holidays, or to book early for 2020.

      The Great Glen Way traverses Scotland from west to east, following the Great Glen fault line which almost splits Scotland in two.

      Hiking past some of our most beautiful lochs, including Loch Ness, at 117km the Great Glen Way route is one of Scotland’s finest long distance trails.

      The trail begins in Fort William beneath the slopes of Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis. You will then trek north-east through spectacular scenery and past lochs Lochy, Oich and, of course, Loch Ness. The hike becomes more challenging in its second half as the path takes to the hillsides above the loch, but by then you are well warmed up to the hike. You finish the route in the capital of the Highlands, Inverness.

      Self Guided Walking Holidays – Your Questions Answered

       

      PLEASE NOTE: Total daily distances are given for each stage but will vary slightly as you also need to walk to your accommodation each day which will usually add a short distance.

      Extra Nights and Accommodation Upgrades
      You also have the option to choose the following upgrades and extra nights:

      • Upgraded accommodation package – we will reserve the best rooms available along the route – £1285 per person
      • Split Day 7 and walk the route over 8 days. The additional charge is £65 per person, £90 per person if using upgraded accommodation
      • Upgraded package plus luxury nights at 5 star Inverlochy Castle and Rocpool Reserve – £1480 per person

      Trip Highlights

      • Traverse Scotland from coast to coast on a rewarding journey through deep glens and past dramatic mountain ranges.
      • Take in the sweeping views across Loch Ness, perhaps catching a glimpse of the Loch Ness Monster.
      • Enjoy moderate hiking on good trails as you hike from village to village through this spectacular geological fault line.

      Day by Day Itinerary

      Day 1 – Arrival in Fort William

      Today you’ll make your own way to Fort William where you’ll spend the night at your first guesthouse of the trip. Tomorrow morning the hike begins!

      Day 2 – Past Ben Nevis to Gairlochy

      The route starts in Fort William and takes you close to Inverlochy Castle, built in the 1200s, then continues to the start of the Caledonian Canal. From here the journey along Scotland’s longest glen and greatest geological fault begins. Following the canal towpath, you travel up Neptune’s Staircase, a ladder of eight locks which give some of the best views of Ben Nevis, and continue along to Gairloch.

      Distance: 17km/10.5 miles Ascent: 40m

      Day 3 – Gairlochy to South Laggan

      The second day’s walk sticks fairly closely to the west shore of Loch Lochy. It follows mainly quiet, forest tracks with high mountains rising up on both sides of the loch, offering fine views. By the time you reach your accommodation, you will have hiked the length of Loch Lochy.

      Distance: 19km/11.5 miles Ascent: 85m

      Day 4 – South Laggan to Fort Augustus

      You hike along the east shore of Loch Oich, joining the famous Caledonian Canal at the north end of the Loch. This is one of the easier days on the trail so take your time and enjoy the scenery. After leaving Loch Oich behind, you follow the canal to Fort Augustus at the southern end of Loch Ness, which stretches into the distance in front of you.

      Distance: 17km/10.5 miles Ascent: 10m

      Day 5 – Fort Augustus to Invermoriston

      Today you will walk along the west side of the world famous Loch Ness. There are two route options – a high and lower level route. Both are the same overall length but the higher one obviously adds more ascent. It also provides some of the best views of the trip above the forest and the loch, gazing for mile on mile. The higher route is therefore usually preferred, but if you want an easier day you can stay lower down.

      Distance: 12km/7.5 miles Ascent: 120m (low level option) / 480m (high level option)

      Day 6 – Invermoriston to Drumnadrochit

      Today you again have the choice of a high or low level route, however this only affects the first part of the day. Either way, there is still a fair amount of ascent today. The high level option climbs a hill beside Drumnadrochit, offering superb views again before descending gradually through forest to rejoin the original route. The low option skirts past this hill through forestry. After the paths rejoin you will pass the tiny hamlet of Bunloit – this marks half way along Loch Ness. From here there is a section along a quiet road before a steep trail descends to Drumnadrochit and day’s end.

      Distance: 23km/14.5 miles Ascent: 500m (low level option) / 740m (high level option)

      Day 7 – Drumnadrochit to Inverness

      The final day is a long trek but with straightforward walking on decent trails and a short section of quiet road. After about 4km the route leaves Loch Ness and heads inland, climbing up onto open hillside where you are rewarded with more views down Loch Ness and the Great Glen. You descend gradually through forest as you walk north and meet the River Ness at the edge of Inverness. The last few miles follow the river bank, finishing in the city centre with views across the river to Inverness Castle.*

      On reaching Inverness, you will have traversed Scotland from coast to coast along its most natural route, the Great Glen Way. On arrival in Inverness, settle into your accommodation then decide whether you need an early night, or if it is time to celebrate your success!

      Distance: 29km/18 miles Ascent: 480m

      *Day 7 can be split into 2 shorter days with an extra night’s accommodation in Drumnadrochit.

      Day 8 – Depart Inverness

      After breakfast this morning you can start your journey homeward, though if you have time or wish to add an extra night to your itinerary you may enjoy a look around Inverness before departing. On the way home you’ll have time to look back and reflect on a memorable hike across Scotland.

      Download Detailed Itinerary

      X
      Self Guided
      The Great Glen Way

      To download a PDF copy of our Trip Itinerary, containing full details about this holiday, please complete the form below:

      Fields marked with * are mandatory

      The phone number field is not required but if you would like us to give you a call to help find the trip for you, then enter the best number to call you on.

      Contact Us

      Map

      Photo Gallery

      What's Included

      Accommodation - Accommodation in carefully selected guest houses and hotels Read More

      ACCOMMODATION
      At each stage of your trek we will arrange accommodation for you to stay that night. The accommodations range from small guesthouses, Highland inns, small hotels and bed and breakfast establishments which will be of a 3 or 4 star standard. Our accommodation partners are carefully chosen according to a number of factors – charming locations, very good facilities and a reputation for providing Highland hospitality. We do not use accommodations we have not personally visited.

      If you choose the upgraded accommodation option we will reserve the best available accommodation option in each location for you. However, in some areas, accommodation is very limited so the choice is restricted. Where this is the case we will book the best quality room available for you.

      If you wish to choose upgraded accommodation please call us to book – this is not available online.

      Meals - Meals Info (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner) Read More

      Meals
      Accommodation will be reserved on a Bed & Breakfast basis – lunches and evening meals are not included. Local shops sell sandwiches and snacks for the day ahead. Many guest houses will also be able to provide a packed lunch for you if you ask them the night before. In the evenings, meals can be taken in local restaurants, hotels or bars.

      Book Now

      Price from: £725
      Duration: 7 night(s)

      Speak to an Expert

      Rachael is a true gem and we regularly receive feedback thanking her for designing inspiring itineraries and for being such a pleasure to chat to. In many cases the people Rachael designs tailor made trips for, actually become friends and she’s had more than one invite to far off lands as a result. Rachael believes in only the highest levels of customer experience and service.

      - Rachael Gavan

      Call Rachael Ask Rachael a Question

      Difficulty Grades Explained

      Blue Graded Self Guided Holidays 4-6

      Self guided Blue graded walking holidays are suitable for fit and experienced hikers. Walking at a good pace you can expect to be out for 6-8 hours a day. You will be following a trail but should understand how to follow a hiking map with at least basic navigation skills. Daily distances will vary – typically up to 20km but may be longer occasionally, or often on the more challenging trips in the grade. Daily hike details are available in the itinerary.

      Trail conditions will vary from well laid and maintained sections of gravel track to rough and rocky sections including muddy and wet areas. Short sections may be on tarmac.

      Trip Reviews

      Rated 4.88 out of 5 based on 73 review(s) of Self Guided – The Great Glen Way

       

      Every client receives a feedback survey when they return from their guided, self guided or tailor made holiday with us. Once completed the review is published on our website just as soon as our database updates. The little touches and details are important to us and where issues are raised we make positive changes to our trips to improve your experience.

      That’s why we read each of our client’s reviews and although we don’t respond to all of them, if it’s glowing feedback then we get the satisfaction of helping to make your holidays truly memorable.

      CM

      Carolin Mogler

      Reviewed on 21/08/2018

      The Bottom Line

      The Bottom Line

      Worth doing it Probably more information on the terrain might be helpful to choose the right boots

      JH

      Jeffrey Holmes

      Reviewed on 10/07/2018

      The Bottom Line

      JY

      Jason Young

      Reviewed on 08/07/2018

      The Bottom Line

      MC

      Melanie Climenhage

      Reviewed on 02/07/2018

      The Bottom Line

      The Bottom Line

      I really enjoyed this trip. I think it was a more arduous hike than I had first thought. But if I can finish the hike anyone can. I felt the day walking into drummnidochit from Invermoriston was way too much and long. We walked for about 8 hours that day. Then when we arrived we had to walk another mile or so to our B and B. I wonder if overall the Great Glen Way is a 4 out of 8 hike or perhaps harder such as a 5 out of 8. I also think that in the book notes that this day should be described in fuller detail. You mention the cafe where u can get a drink briefly. By this time we had walked for hours. Probably 6. That Cafe was such a welcoming resting point. Emphasize that more. Also, even though you provide the mileage for the trip, hikers walk further as they must find their bed and breakfast. When we arrived in Drummnadichit, we walked and walked to find Our B and B. Finally along came two joggers and they helped us locate it.

      MO

      Melaina Oak

      Reviewed on 28/06/2018

      The Bottom Line

      News & Offers

      Be the first to hear about new trips, locations and activities with our monthly newsletter