One of Scotland’s hidden gems
Sometimes there’s nothing like jumping in the car and hitting the road. That’s exactly what we did on one of the brightest days of the summer, when we set off north from Stirling along the A84 via Callander, the A85 at Lochearnhead, before joining the wonderful A82 at Crianlarich.
The road which takes you through Glencoe en route to Fort William, is one of the most accessible and picturesque roads in central Scotland, taking in great glens and magical scenery along the way. If you’re planning a road trip this summer then we definitely recommend trying this one!
We encountered these remarkable beauty spots along the way, showing why Scotland is the most beautiful country in the world…
During the first stretch of the road trip, just after travelling through Callander you’ll pass Loch Lubnaig, in Loch Lomond & Trossachs National Park. The view is mesmerizing, and many people stop here for quiet contemplation, to enjoy a picnic by the water, or simply to soak in the loch’s beauty.
Glen Ogle Viaduct
As you cruise along the A85 road you’ll see this former railway line dating back to 1880 on your left. Set high on the side of a dramatic Scottish mountain, Glen Ogle Viaduct looks downwards towards the nearest village of Lochearnhead. It’s now a popular walking route called the Rob Roy Way. Glen Ogle is not as well known as Glenfinnan Viaduct made famous in the Harry Potter films, but it’s equally dramatic. If you’re looking to stay in this area then check out Crianlarich Youth Hostel, which is only 20 minutes away.
Glen Coe viewpoint and Nature Reserve
You won’t be able to resist stopping off to take in the beauty of this great glen, which is also a national nature reserve. The glen is named after the River Coe which runs through it, and is considered to be the home of Scottish mountaineering, popular with hillwalkers and Munro baggers. Glencoe Youth Hostel is just a 10-minute drive from here.
The A82 crosses the western side of Rannoch Moor, on the way to Glen Coe and Fort William. An impressive area of boggy moorland, this is also a Site of Special Scientific Interest and a Special Area of Conservation.
Just outside Fort William sits the King of all Munros - Ben Nevis. Head to this beautiful and inspiring landscape to experience the UK’s highest mountain for yourself, whether you choose to climb it or admire it from below. One of the footpaths leading up to the mighty Ben starts just across the road from Glen Nevis Youth Hostel, which is handy! The area’s beauty spots have been featured in the new live-action Pokémon film, so look out for Pikachu roaming the surrounding hillsides.
If you’re looking to stay over en route, then check out Hostelling Scotland’s youth hostels in Crianlarich, Glencoe and Glen Nevis.