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Loch Awe

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Loch Awe: Our most recommended tours and activities

From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe, Highland Lochs & Castles Tour

From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe, Highland Lochs & Castles Tour

Departing from Glasgow you travel northwest along the shores of Loch Lomond. Here you will cross the Highland Boundary Fault Line where the scenery changes quickly and dramatically - the flat fertile plains of the Lowlands giving way to shimmering lochs, rugged mountain tops, and forest-filled glens. It's easy to forget that this was once thought of as a dangerous frontier fought over by the fiercely territorial Highland clans such as the MacGregors, made famous by highland folk hero, Rob Roy MacGregor. You will then take a leisurely drive over the at 'Rest and Be Thankful' mountain pass. It was given its name in 1753 by the weary soldiers who had just finished building the old military road up through Glen Croe (not to be confused with Glencoe which you will visit later in the day). From here you will travel through the steep-sided mountains, known as the Arrochar Alps, to the picturesque harbour town of Inveraray on the shores of Loch Fyne, home of the Duke of Argyll, chief of the Campbell clan. The town is a classic 18th-century planned village with its straight wide streets and dignified Georgian houses, designed by Robert Adam, famous for his architecture in Edinburgh’s New Town. From here you will drive along the shore of Scotland’s longest loch, Loch Awe, where you stop to take your photos of Kilchurn Castle, a magnificent ruin situated in the middle of Loch Awe and former home of the Campbells of Breadalbane. You will then continue to the harbour town of Oban, gateway to the Isles, for lunch of your choice. After lunch you will then travel north along the west coast around Appin, passing the impregnable Castle Stalker, and into Scotland's most famous valley, Glencoe. Stunningly beautiful, with its dramatic cliff faces and steep slopes, Glencoe is infamous as the site of the Glencoe massacre in 1692. Following orders from King William, Scottish soldiers under the leadership of Captain Robert Campbell slaughtered 38 men, women and children of the Macdonald clan. This was especially shocking as the soldiers had been living with the people of Glencoe for two weeks and killed them in their own homes. Nobody was ever punished for this crime, as the King himself had signed the order, but the Highlands would never be the same again. Travelling south, as you pass the majestic peak of Buachaille Etive Mor (meaning 'the great shepherd of Etive'), you descend towards the wild desolation of Rannoch Moor. At an altitude of over 1000ft, covered by heather and peat-bogs and dotted with dozens of lochs, it's a unique landscape. From here you will then travel through Glen Falloch, and then drive south towards Loch Lomond. This is Scotland's largest loch and it takes its name from the mountain Ben Lomond on the eastern shore. From here you return to Glasgow.

From Edinburgh: West Highland Lochs & Castles Full-Day Trip

From Edinburgh: West Highland Lochs & Castles Full-Day Trip

Explore the Scottish Highlands on this bus day trip from Edinburgh. Take in classic sights like Stirling, Doune, and Inveraray castle. Admire natural landscapes like Loch Lubnaig, Glen Ogle, and the Arrochar Alps. Hop aboard the spacious and airconditioned bus in Edinburgh and travel west, passing in the imposing show of Stirling Castle which rests high on its volcanic rock. Visit to Doune Castle which was featured in "Monty Python and the Holy Grail". Drive into the Highlands, past the lovely Loch Lubnaig, and up through impressive Glen Ogle. Stopping nearby at a place where you can purchase lunch with views of the surrounding natural scenery. After lunch, drive further into the Highlands, stopping to view one of the most photographed castles in Scotland, Kilchurn Castle. Marvel at this relic which juts into Loch Awe and is stunningly framed by mountain peaks. Venture to Inveraray, a quaint town built in the mid-18th century, on the shore of Loch Fyne. Have free time to explore the town and pick up some Highland souvenirs, or pay an optional visit to Inveraray Castle (closed Tuesdays & Wednesdays), the historic home of the Duke of Argyll. Begin your homeward journey, driving over the Arrochar Alps, an attractive range of mountains, with a brief pause near the top of the "Rest and Be Thankful Pass. Reach Loch Lomond, and visit the charming village of Luss before returning to Edinburgh.

From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe & West Highland Castles Day Tour

From Glasgow: Oban, Glencoe & West Highland Castles Day Tour

On this tour, you will experience the shimmering lochs, scenic mountain views, and romantic and historic castles of the western highlands. From Glasgow cross the Firth of Clyde, passing Dumbarton's famous and imposing rock fortress. The first stop is the pretty conservation village of Luss, on the 'Bonny, Bonny Banks' of Loch Lomond. Here you can walk along the shore or stay to admire the village. Pass several dramatic castles and lochs as the tour climb into the Highlands. Make a stop for lunch at the fishing town of Oban. Journey on a southern route that takes you past the spectacular Kilchurn Castle, majestically situated on Loch Awe. Our final stop is Inveraray, the historic seat of the Duke of Argyll, where you can choose to either visit Inveraray Castle (April-October only) or explore the town’s Georgian houses and wide streets. Return to Glasgow via the Rest and Be Thankful pass.

From Edinburgh: West Highlands, Lochs, and Castles Tour

From Edinburgh: West Highlands, Lochs, and Castles Tour

Discover the stunning scenery and historic landmarks of the West Highlands of Scotland on a day tour from Edinburgh. Find out more about Scottish history and culture as you explore Doune Castle, Loch Lubnai, the town of Inveraray, and iconic Loch Lomond. Meet your guide and board the bus in central Edinburgh. Travel west out of the city and enjoy the scenery as you pass Stirling Castle on your way to your first stop at Doune Castle. Admire the sight of the imposing Doune Castle*, which has been standing for 600 years. You can choose to visit the inside on the day. If you’re a fan of Monty Python and The Holy Grail, The Outlaw King, or the Outlander series, you can learn about how the castle was used as a filming location. Continue on your adventure through the charming town of Callander and cross the Highland Boundary Fault Line. Leave behind the rolling hills of farmland for the wild mountains and forests of the Highlands. Make a short stop at Loch Lubnaig and continue over the Braes of Balquhidder. From Balquhidder, the tour winds its way through the tough knot of mountains known as Breadalbane (meaning the 'high country of Scotland'). Before lunch, you have a photo stop to take in the sight of Kilchurn Castle, a magnificent ruin situated on the edge of Loch Awe and former home of the Campbells of Breadalbane. Travel by the banks of Loch Awe through Campbell country to the picturesque town of Inveraray on the shores of Loch Fyne. Here you can admire the 18th-century castle (open to visitors from April until October), take time to explore the town, or head to the Old Jail. Leaving Inveraray, drive up through the steep-sided mountains known as the Arrochar Alps to the great viewpoint at 'Rest and Be Thankful'. Skirt around Loch Long and then down to the "Bonnie, Bonnie Banks" of Loch Lomond. Visit the conservation village of Luss, where you can wander around taking in its quaint houses and stunning views across the loch. From here, relax on the return journey back to Edinburgh, arriving in the capital in the early evening.

From Edinburgh: Loch Lomond and the West Highlands Day Tour

From Edinburgh: Loch Lomond and the West Highlands Day Tour

Depart Edinburgh city center early in the morning and head towards the west of Scotland, including Argyll, Loch Lomond, Inveraray, and more. Your first stop of the day is Doune Castle, where you have the option of exploring Doune Castle, widely recognized for the famous TV series "Outlander." From Doune, make your way to Tyndrum for a comfort break. Continue to the impressive ruins of Kilchurn Castle. Once home to the Campbells of Glenorchy, Kilchurn Castle overlooks the peaceful Loch Awe and has a rich history connected to the Jacobite rebellion. Then head to your next stop at Inveraray's beautiful Loch Fyne for lunch before an optional visit to Inveraray Jail, one of the best-reserved prisons in Britain. In the afternoon, begin your journey back to Edinburgh, making a quick stop at the aptly named "Rest and Be Thankful," where you do exactly that. Take in the amazing views before continuing east. The day's final stop is in Luss, where you will be transported back in time and breathe in the west highland air one last time before we return to Edinburgh.

From Glasgow: Standing Stones, Castles & Highlands Tour

From Glasgow: Standing Stones, Castles & Highlands Tour

Take in the beauty of the Scottish Highlands on a guided day trip to locations steeped in fascinating folklore. Admire the stunning views of the landscape as you visit some historic locations which are deeply linked to Scottish history and heritage. Start your tour from Glasgow and take in the wonderful views looking out over the River Clyde and west towards the Clyde Estuary, where fresh water and saltwater meet. On a clear day, you may even be able to see where the Vikings moored their longboats over 1300 years ago. Pass through Trossachs National Park and all its scenic splendour. From Scotland’s first National Park, travel west towards Argyll for a visit to Inveraray Castle. Admire the collection of antique weaponry, used against the Jacobite soldiers and other historic artefacts. (Castle Closed - 1st November to 31st March) During this period you'll get to enjoy the town of Inveraray, built in the 1700's along with getting to spend more time at the historical locations later in the day. After your first historic Castle visit, travel along the shores of Loch Fyne, the longest saltwater Loch in Scotland. Keep a watchful eye on the water as there’s a good chance you will see some seals and other marine wildlife. Next, stop at Kilmartin Glen, where there are over 350 ancient monuments spread across the valley, making this one of the most historically important locations in the whole of Scotland. Explore a large finding of cup and ring marks, dating from thousands of years back. Continue towards the historical standing stones, stone circles, and burial cairns located within the area. Discover these mysterious ancient formations, believed to be over 5000 years old. Afterward, travel to Kilchurn Castle. Explore the abandoned 15th-century castle located at the head of Loch Awe, which was once home to the large and powerful Campbell Clan of Glenorchy. Leave Kilchurn and make your way further into the Highlands towards the mountainous Trossachs region. Stop along the banks of Loch Lomond to enjoy some of the magnificent Highland scenery, before returning to Glasgow.

Oban, Lochs & Inveraray Full-Day Tour from Edinburgh

Oban, Lochs & Inveraray Full-Day Tour from Edinburgh

You’ll depart Edinburgh in the morning and travel through Scotland's bustling central belt, across to Glasgow, the country’s largest city. From Glasgow, it’s on to Loch Lomond, the largest expanse of fresh water in the country. Stop at the conservation village of Luss for coffee and sightseeing. Head deep into the Highlands, traveling through breathtaking scenery, on this full-day tour. You’ll see Loch Awe, the longest of Scotland’s lakes, and countryside with a rich history. You’ll come to haunting Kilchurn Castle, historically a stronghold of the Campbell Clan, and the Pass of Brander, where Robert the Bruce had a notable victory. Enjoy lunch in Oban and then take time to explore this lovely Victorian seaside town. Climb up McCaig's Tower, take in the views of the islands of Mull and Kerrera, and try some of the freshest seafood you’ve ever tasted! On the way back to Edinburgh, you'll visit Inveraray, the seat of the Campbell Clan, with a stop for ice cream, homemade sweets, or cakes. Enjoy a coffee and take in the beauty of Loch Fyne.

Oban: Historical Tour and Seafood Lunch

Oban: Historical Tour and Seafood Lunch

After meeting at the central point in Oban, you will be taken on a tour off the beaten track to local historical sites often not seen by the average tourist and learn about the origins and history of Oban. Visit Dunstaffanage Castle a ruined castle which has a unique local history dating back to the 12th-century. Then will visit the St. Conan's Kirk a uniquely famous and renowned architectural church which holds bones of Robert the Bruce. From there you will go to see Kilchurn Castle which dates to back to the 15th-century and was the original home of the Clan Campbell. You will then be taken through Glen Lonan, a hidden gem of a valley where standing stones and highland cattle can be seen. This glen is hard to find and not normally visited by tourists and is also on the "coffin trail" an ancient burial route of Scottish Kings and Queens on route to their final burial place in Iona. While exploring the glen you will have many opportunities to get up close and personal with the Highland cattle and calves. With your tour coming to an end, enjoy a seafood lunch on the fishing pier in Oban. You will learn about the local fishing economy and get to enjoy delicious local catches. Vegetarian and other dietary options available on request.

From Glasgow: Scotland Sightseeing Tour Shore Excursion

From Glasgow: Scotland Sightseeing Tour Shore Excursion

Meet your guide at the meeting point at the port of Greenock (Glasgow) and depart by bus over the Clyde River and onto the southern tip of the Scottish Highlands. Enjoy narration enhanced by Scottish music and movie sound bites setting the scene for the sights you are about to see. Your first stop is at An Ceann Mor with a vantage point overlooking Loch Lomond. This recent creation fits into the landscape due to its wooden composition and offers spectacular views of Scotland's most picturesque loch. As you travel onwards, make a brief stop at The Green Welly Stop for refreshments and a little souvenir hunting. Your next stop is at Kilchurn Castle, a ruin that was originally built on an island on Loch Awe in the 15th century. A short walk across a causeway gives you access to this magnificent former home of Sir Colin Campbell that has lain in ruin over the centuries. Spend time viewing the fantastic surroundings as you photograph the ruins before heading to your next destination. Arrive at Inveraray and visit the family seat of the Duke of Argyll where you can wander the halls and visit the castle armoury (Closed to public on Tuesdays). While in Inveraray, take the opportunity to sample Scottish cuisine at one of the town's delicious eateries. With your appetite sated, head to a stunning viewpoint overlooking a magnificent Scottish glen at the Rest and be Thankful mountain pass where you can capture a picture-perfect image of Scotland. The final destination before heading back to your ship is at the small village of Luss. Take time for last-minute souvenir shopping and some light refreshments as you wander around this lovely little village. Visit the church built by Sir James Colquhoun of the Clan Colquhoun where you’ll find some early medieval graves and evidence of Viking presence in the area.

Edinburgh: Oban, Kilchurn Castle & Inveraray Tour in Spanish

Edinburgh: Oban, Kilchurn Castle & Inveraray Tour in Spanish

Start your tour by bordering Glasgow to reach the west of Loch Lomond, the heart of Trossachs National Park. Loch Lomond is the largest expanse of fresh water in the country, where you will stop off at the conservation village of Luss. From here, the landscape turns into an unforgettable picture. The tour proceeds through mansions, golf courses, and nature, while the Military Road will guide you throughout history.  Continue on your tour of Oban with a visit to Loch Awe, a location that will surely delight you with one of the most impressive pictures of Scotland: the majestic and imperturbable Kilchurn Castle. This fortress belonged to the Clan Campbell of Glenorchy from the 15th-century. Later, in the 18th-century, it was abandoned and its ruins made it a source of inspiration for artists like William Turner, making this one of the most photographed castles in Scotland. If the rain makes access to the Castle difficult, you will have the chance to visit Saint Conan Kirk. This church and its cloister were designed by Walter Douglas Campbell at the end of the 19th-century. It was an architectonic whim made of granite, and nowadays it’s a tribute to Norman and Ancient Roman styles.  After the Castle visit, Oban awaits you. It is here that you will get a taste of the local gastronomy. This location, known as the “Seafood Capital of Scotland” will offer you many culinary possibilities in a welcoming environment. The west coast village is characterized by its Victorian style and the opening to the Atlantic Ocean, with views to the islands of Kerrera, Lismore or Mull. Before the trek back to Edinburgh, you will stop in Inveraray, Royal Burgh and home to the ancient Duke of Argyll, this town is situated next to Loch Fyne. Inveraray will show you the good taste of the most prominent architect of the Scottish Enlightenment, William Adam. Afterward, you will drive through the Argyll Forest Park, the oldest among the British forest parks, with very steep risks, hidden glens, and winding rivers. In the South of Loch Lomond, you will find the town of Balloch, where you will enjoy a hot drink before starting the last stage of your route to Edinburgh.

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What people are saying about Loch Awe

Overall rating

4.7
(1,174 reviews)

Excellent tour. Our guide, Dermot shared so much wonderful and interesting Irish history with us from medieval times through today and even led us in some singing! Great restaurant and activity recommendations. Our driver John navigated the small tight roads quite easily and kept us on time despite the traffic. I would 100% recommend this tour. One random note - no hot drinks on the bus so finish your coffee before you get on!

I recently went on a tour with my mother and my daughter, and we had a fantastic time. We were very impressed with his knowledge of the area and his ability to make history come alive through his storytelling. Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed the tour and would highly recommend it to anyone looking for an informative and entertaining experience. It was a memorable outing for our family!! ;)

I had an amazing experience on the day tour with Timberbush. The trip was incredibly exciting and left me with lasting impressions that will stay with me for a long time. Our guide Martin was authentic, knowledgeable, and had a deep understanding of Scotland's local history. I highly recommend this tour for anyone looking to explore Scotland with a fantastic guide!

A good day out with great people. Our guide James was informative and helpful. We had good weather and time to take great photos.

Mike was very cordial and helpful. Wonderful and engaging trip.