On offer

West Highland Way Guided Trail Holiday

Landscape on West Highland Way
Duration: 9 nights
Type: Guided trails
Walking Grade: 4
from £1,959pp £1,929pp

Journey through stunning highland scenery on one of Scotland’s most famous trails. A firm favourite of our guests, this superb walk winds its way from Milngavie to the foot of Ben Nevis at Fort William. You’ll hike from the sparkling shores of Loch Lomond to the wilderness of Rannoch Moor, surrounded by wow-worthy Scottish Munros and mountains.

What you’ll love

  • Journeying through spectacular Highland scenery
  • Exploring trails steeped in Scottish history
  • Enjoying stunning views of Ben Nevis
  • A ferry ride across Loch Lomond
  • The bragging rights of conquering all 96 miles of this famous trail
  • Staying in carefully-selected partner hotels and our country house in Glen Coe

What’s included

  • Comfortable en-suite rooms in our partner accommodation(s) 
  • Cooked or continental breakfast every morning 
  • Daily packed lunches
  • Three-course evening meals, plus tea & coffee  
  • Guided walks with an experienced HF Holidays Leader 
  • All transport to and from walks where necessary 
  • Luggage transfers

Trip Notes

Easy to download as a PDF, our trip notes provide detailed information for every holiday. Please click below to find the trip notes for your departure date.

All our carefully-curated itineraries are designed by our experts. While we make every effort to adhere to the described itinerary, we may take alternative routes or adapt the running order for weather and/or operational reasons.

Check-in at the Grand Central from 15:00. Your leader will be at reception at 18:30 to meet the group and for a quick introduction to the holiday before dinner.

West Highland Way - Glasgow - AdobeStock_188851206.jpeg

Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow - West Highland Way

The historic Grand Central Hotel is adjacent to Glasgow Central Station. Dating back to 1883, the hotel has original features including the grand staircase and the magnificent Champagne Central Bar with its domed ceiling and marble floor. The comfortable rooms are equipped with TV,  WiFi, tea and coffee making facilities and a hairdryer. This hotel is dog-friendly so you may meet four legged friends in some of the communal areas.


Leaving Milngavie, we are into pleasant parkland, woods and fields. The first section to Drymen is an easy walk most of the way. Undulating at first, the path flattens out following the trackbed of the now disused railway line between Glasgow and Aberfoyle. We pass the Dumgoyach Standing Stones, thought to date from the Bronze Age, and also the Glengoyne Distillery, which is well worth a visit if time allows. We pass stone cottages at the hamlet of Gartness, before some minor road walking through rolling farmland leads us  into the village of Drymen.

12½ miles (20km) with 900 feet (280m) of ascent.

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Buchanan Arms Hotel

Situated in the popular tourist village of Drymen, the Buchanan Arms Hotel dates to the mid 1700's. Formerly an inn, it has been lovingly restored to its modern-day form. The hotel boasts a leisure club with swimming pool and gym which are free for guests to use.  All rooms include hairdryer, tea and coffee making facilities, TV, Wi-Fi, and telephone. This hotel is dog-friendly so you may meet four legged friends in some of the communal areas.


We follow forest tracks, paths and minor roads through gently rolling countryside, gradually gaining views of the hills around us, including Ben Lomond to the north. The section over Conic Hill (1,184 feet), involves some 700 feet of ascent, but we are rewarded with fine views of Loch Lomond from the summit. Once past Balmaha we join woodland paths winding pleasantly by the shores of Loch Lomond with a good chance of seeing Ospreys. We can have welcome refreshments at the end at the Rowardennan Hotel on the edge of the loch.

14½ miles (23.5km) with 2,150 feet (650m) of ascent.

West Highland Way - AdobeStock_93927105.jpeg

Buchanan Arms Hotel

Situated in the popular tourist village of Drymen, the Buchanan Arms Hotel dates to the mid 1700's. Formerly an inn, it has been lovingly restored to its modern-day form. The hotel boasts a leisure club with swimming pool and gym which are free for guests to use.  All rooms include hairdryer, tea and coffee making facilities, TV, Wi-Fi, and telephone. This hotel is dog-friendly so you may meet four legged friends in some of the communal areas.


Although low level, this is a tough day. It is however a beautiful walk along this side of Loch Lomond, below Ben Lomond, and quiet once we have left Rowardennan. We have the option of the shore path to Inversnaid, rebuilt in 2014, or the higher forest path. We go through much natural oak woodland, including the RSPB Inversnaid reserve which is full of bird and animal wildlife. This is an area much associated with the outlaw Rob Roy MacGregor - the path passes close by ‘Rob Roy's Prison’ and ‘Rob Roy's Cave’. At the north east shore a ferry takes us across the loch, to Ardlui.

11½ miles (19km) with 1,400 feet (430m) of ascent.

Loch Lomond at rowardennan, Summer in Scotland, UK

Ardlui Hotel, Ardlui - West Highland Way

The Ardlui Hotel commands a magnificent location on the banks of Loch Lomond. Having walked along the eastern shore of the Loch we arrive at the hotel by boat, where a warm welcome is assured from the Squires family. The hotel has 10 en-suite bedrooms. All our rooms have a tea and coffee making facilities,TV, hairdryer and radio. WiFi is available but limited. This hotel is dog-friendly so you may meet four legged friends in some of the communal areas.


We re-cross the Loch on the ferry to rejoin the path and begin to really travel into the hills, but the walking is much easier. There are excellent views south over Loch Lomond from the side of the small hill of Cnap Mor. A gentle ascent up Glen Falloch takes us past the Falls of Falloch. Near the top of the pass, we join, for the first time, the old 18th century military road built by General Wade's successors. From now on the walking gets easier, as much of the Way follows this military road almost through to Fort William.

We stay high above Crianlarich, in forestry that is being sympathetically managed by the Forestry Commission, featuring some interesting and varied tree species, and maintaining an openness allowing good views out over Strath Fillan and the surrounding hills. We drop down to Tyndrum (pronounced "Tyne-drum") a small village, now a busy little tourist centre. The village originally became prosperous from lead mining and the spoil heaps are still clearly visible on the southern hill slopes. More recently it experienced renewed fame as a gold mining centre. Despite its small size it also has the distinction of possessing two railway stations, as the lines from Glasgow to Fort William and Oban diverge at this point.

14 miles (22km) with 2,150 feet (660m) of ascent.

West Highland Way - AdobeStock_116970505.jpeg

Ardlui Hotel, Ardlui - West Highland Way

The Ardlui Hotel commands a magnificent location on the banks of Loch Lomond. Having walked along the eastern shore of the Loch we arrive at the hotel by boat, where a warm welcome is assured from the Squires family. The hotel has 10 en-suite bedrooms. All our rooms have a tea and coffee making facilities,TV, hairdryer and radio. WiFi is available but limited. This hotel is dog-friendly so you may meet four legged friends in some of the communal areas.


This is an easy day, mostly along the good tracks of the military road. From Tyndrum we head up over the top of the pass to face the magnificent Beinn Dorain, an imposing hill rising almost 3,000 feet from the valley floor in a single steep and craggy slope. We descend to the wide flat valley floor where we are likely to meet the Highland cattle of the Auch Estate and enjoy easy walking to Bridge of Orchy. We see the last of the railway line to Fort William here as it departs north-eastwards across lonely and uninhabited stretches of Rannoch Moor. A short ascent through forestry takes us out into the open for superb views of the mountains of The Black Mount to the north before we drop down to Inveroran.

9 miles (14km) with 1,050 feet (320m) of ascent. 

Dramatic Clouds over Beinn Dorain and Beinn Odhar Mountains in Scotland.

Alltshellach

For a combination of mountain views, olde-worlde charm, and somewhere comfortable to sleep, this stately Scottish house in North Ballachulish has an enviable setting right on the shores of Loch Leven. The walking opportunities here are as every bit rugged and romantic as you’d expect, especially around Glen Coe, the Mamores, Kinlochleven, Bidean nam Bian, and Ben Nevis – the 1,345-metre-high peak towering above glistening lochans and glacial valleys in the north-west Highlands. You can also spend time in Fort William and ride the Hogwarts-esque Jacobite steam train as it makes its way through beauty spots such as Loch Eil, Glenfinnan, and Arisaig to the fishing port of Mallaig.


We encounter the longest and most exposed stretch of the whole Way, reaching an altitude of almost 1,500 feet amongst the open country of Rannoch Moor. Bad weather can be experienced, with no shelter for more than six miles. We walk over a landscape of wild, open moorland, scenery of heather, rocks and lochans, always with the chance to spot an eagle. In good weather it can be a beautiful, if lonely, place with clear views for miles around and encircled by mountains. Eventually we drop down to The Kingshouse Hotel, newly built on the site of what is believed to be one of Scotland's oldest licensed inns. The original inn was built in the eighteenth century.

9½ miles (15.5km) with 1,080 feet (330m) of ascent.

Photography - Selworthy - Exmoor Through A Lens - AdobeStock_192465214.jpeg

Alltshellach

For a combination of mountain views, olde-worlde charm, and somewhere comfortable to sleep, this stately Scottish house in North Ballachulish has an enviable setting right on the shores of Loch Leven. The walking opportunities here are as every bit rugged and romantic as you’d expect, especially around Glen Coe, the Mamores, Kinlochleven, Bidean nam Bian, and Ben Nevis – the 1,345-metre-high peak towering above glistening lochans and glacial valleys in the north-west Highlands. You can also spend time in Fort William and ride the Hogwarts-esque Jacobite steam train as it makes its way through beauty spots such as Loch Eil, Glenfinnan, and Arisaig to the fishing port of Mallaig.


We are now in the upper end of Glencoe, which is guarded by the imposing rocky mountain of Buachaille Etive Mor (the Great Herdsman of Etive). This is magnificent scenery, which we can take time to admire as we climb the "Devil's Staircase"; a zig-zag track winding its way upwards. From the high point of 1,850 feet at the Staircase summit, also the highest point of the West Highland Way. The way from the top of “Devil’s Staircase” to Kinlochleven holds a sting in the tail; it is a hard road which seems to double back away from Kinlochleven. We descend to Kinlochleven, the former site of Britain's second aluminium smelting plant. The complex was built between 1904 and 1909, although the first aluminium was produced in 1908, in a small temporary factory. On the way we pass close by the water conduit and pipelines bringing water down from Blackwater Reservoir to power the former plant by hydro-electricity.

8½ miles (13.5km) with 1,360 feet (410m) of ascent.

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Alltshellach

For a combination of mountain views, olde-worlde charm, and somewhere comfortable to sleep, this stately Scottish house in North Ballachulish has an enviable setting right on the shores of Loch Leven. The walking opportunities here are as every bit rugged and romantic as you’d expect, especially around Glen Coe, the Mamores, Kinlochleven, Bidean nam Bian, and Ben Nevis – the 1,345-metre-high peak towering above glistening lochans and glacial valleys in the north-west Highlands. You can also spend time in Fort William and ride the Hogwarts-esque Jacobite steam train as it makes its way through beauty spots such as Loch Eil, Glenfinnan, and Arisaig to the fishing port of Mallaig.


A steep but short climb out of Kinlochleven takes us on to easy walking through Lairigmor. There are magnificent mountains on both sides before a final ascent through forestry, cuts across the hillsides bringing us out above Glen Nevis, with spectacular Ben Nevis, Britain's highest mountain at 4,414 feet, immediately opposite.  We then continue down the glen to the end of the walk in Fort William

15½ miles (24.5 km) with 2,230 feet (680m) of ascent.

West Highland Way - Kinlochleven - AdobeStock_129570004.jpeg

Alltshellach

For a combination of mountain views, olde-worlde charm, and somewhere comfortable to sleep, this stately Scottish house in North Ballachulish has an enviable setting right on the shores of Loch Leven. The walking opportunities here are as every bit rugged and romantic as you’d expect, especially around Glen Coe, the Mamores, Kinlochleven, Bidean nam Bian, and Ben Nevis – the 1,345-metre-high peak towering above glistening lochans and glacial valleys in the north-west Highlands. You can also spend time in Fort William and ride the Hogwarts-esque Jacobite steam train as it makes its way through beauty spots such as Loch Eil, Glenfinnan, and Arisaig to the fishing port of Mallaig.



Itinerary map for West Highland Way

Grand Central Hotel, Glasgow - West Highland Way

The historic Grand Central Hotel is adjacent to Glasgow Central Station. Dating back to 1883, the hotel has original features including the grand staircase and the magnificent Champagne Central Bar with its domed ceiling and marble floor. The comfortable rooms are equipped with TV,  WiFi, tea and coffee making facilities and a hairdryer. This hotel is dog-friendly so you may meet four legged friends in some of the communal areas.

Buchanan Arms Hotel

Situated in the popular tourist village of Drymen, the Buchanan Arms Hotel dates to the mid 1700's. Formerly an inn, it has been lovingly restored to its modern-day form. The hotel boasts a leisure club with swimming pool and gym which are free for guests to use.  All rooms include hairdryer, tea and coffee making facilities, TV, Wi-Fi, and telephone. This hotel is dog-friendly so you may meet four legged friends in some of the communal areas.

Ardlui Hotel, Ardlui - West Highland Way

The Ardlui Hotel commands a magnificent location on the banks of Loch Lomond. Having walked along the eastern shore of the Loch we arrive at the hotel by boat, where a warm welcome is assured from the Squires family. The hotel has 10 en-suite bedrooms. All our rooms have a tea and coffee making facilities,TV, hairdryer and radio. WiFi is available but limited. This hotel is dog-friendly so you may meet four legged friends in some of the communal areas.

Alltshellach - West Highland Way

For a combination of mountain views, olde-worlde charm, and somewhere comfortable to sleep, our stately Scottish house in Glen Coe is hard to beat. With an enviable setting right on the shores of Loch Leven, the scenery here is every bit rugged and romantic as you’d expect. After a long day of walking, unwind in one of three comfortable lounges with a wee dram or two and take a post-dinner stroll around the beautiful lawns and wooded grounds that lead down to the water’s edge.

Essential information

The UK has a famously unpredictable climate so it's best to be prepared for weather that’s sunny one minute and raining the next.  To make it easier, here’s a list of items you should consider packing.   

Essentials  

  • Suitable footwear such as waterproof walking boots that provide ankle support and good grip  
  • Waterproof and windproof jacket 
  • Comfortable clothing (jeans & waterproof capes are not suitable)  
  • Mid-layer(s) to keep you warm. Fleeces make a good choice
  • Waterproof overtrousers  
  • Gloves and a warm hat  
  • Rucksack with waterproof liner 
  • Spotting scope and/or binoculars 
  • Flask for hot drinks   
  • Water bottle (at least 1 litre capacity)  
  • Sunscreen  
  • UV sunglasses  

Recommended  

  • Several base layers (long-sleeve or short-sleeve)  
  • Cushioned walking socks to avoid blisters  
  • First aid kit, including plasters and insect repellent 
  • Sit mat   
  • Waterproof pouch for valuables  
  • Rubbish bag (remember to always leave no trace)  
  • Wallet/purse  
  • Camera 
  • First-aid kit 

Guest reviews

All holidays are subject to availability. Supplements may apply.

Non-member fee: £30 per person.


Holiday prices

Date (Start - End) Itinerary Double / Twin Room Single Room Notes / Offers Trip Notes Book
2024

03 Jun - 12 Jun 2024

9 nights

Guided Trail

Single Call to Enquire
Double Call to Enquire
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05 Aug - 14 Aug 2024

9 nights

Guided Trail

Single Call to Enquire

Double from

£1,979 £1,929 pp

from

£1,979 £1,929 pp

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09 Sep - 18 Sep 2024

9 nights

Guided Trail

Single Call to Enquire

Double from

£1,959 pp

from

£1,959 pp

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30 Sep - 09 Oct 2024

9 nights

Guided Trail

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Double Call to Enquire
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2025

08 Sep - 17 Sep 2025

9 nights

Guided Trail

Single from

£2,303 £2,253

Double from

£2,159 £2,109 pp

from

£2,159 £2,109 pp

from

£2,303 £2,253

Save £50 Per Person Trip Notes
Book Now
Duration:
9 nights
Type:
Guided trails
Walking Grade:
4

9 nights from £1,959pp £1,929pp

On offer

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