The Best Glencoe Walks: The Ultimate Guide for Hiking Weekend

Clachaig Inn has beautiful localisation for Glencoe walks

The Scottish Highlands are a treasure trove of stunning views, and Glencoe has some of the best. Glencoe is a beautiful place to explore and it is home to some of the best walks in Scotland, with spectacular mountain views.

 

The proposed Glencoe walks are easy to walk and perfect for everyone. They offer stunning views of the surrounding mountains, as well as plenty of wildlife sightings.

 

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Here is a 48-hour Itinerary for a weekend in Glencoe

Here are a few itinerary ideas for your best weekend in Glencoe. We’ve picked walks that are easy and won’t require any more than putting one foot in front of the other.

 

Day 1

 

Morning

Drive The Glen Etive Road – Scotland’s Most Beautiful Road

On the way to Glencoe, in the heart of Scotland’s mountains and glens, is the Glen Etive road, which offers twelve miles of magnificent scenery.

Mountains and moorlands here provide incredible views and idyllic spots. This idyllic spot has played a major role in the Skyfall film, but it also has significance to Bond author Ian Fleming.

His lodge would be found at the end of a scenic long drive through this glen and this road was featured prominently in Skyfall.

Glen Etive Road is one of the most scenic, popular locations in Scotland and an area where almost all the famous movie scenes were filmed.

Glen Etive Road

Glen Etive Road

 

Where is the Glen Etive Road?

Situated in the west of the Scottish Highlands, Glen Etive is south of Fort William and can be reached along the A82 between Glencoe and Bridge of Orchy.

The turning onto Glen Etive Road is signposted on the A82, near the Glencoe Mountain Resort. The turn will be on your left if you are heading from the south, or on your right when coming from Glencoe.

The road isn’t very long but is packed with natural beauty. With no facilities or shops, make sure you pack some food and drinks for a scenic picnic in the heart of Scotland.

Known as the ‘Herdsmen of Etive’, the Buachaille Etive Mor and Buachaille Etive Beag, are two mountains that welcome visitors at the beginning of the road.

With its perfect pyramid peak, Buachaille Etive Mor is one of Scotland’s most photographed mountains, so make sure you get your camera ready to snap a shot of this incredible natural landmark.

Buachaille Etive Mor

Buachaille Etive Mor

 

Along the first stretch of the road, you will be walking or driving along the riverside of River Etive, a popular destination for whitewater kayaking.

It starts at Rannoch Moor and has become a big river because of rainwater. After following the path for just over four miles, you’ll reach the Etive Mor Waterfall near Glencoe.

It’s well worth exploring it as it offers magnificent views; is only a short walk from the car park

Without a doubt, Buachailie Etive Beag is the best drive in Scotland and also the best for walks in Glencoe. 

The bumpy road follows the glacial valleys of Lairig Elide and Lairig Gartian, rising to an altitude of 600m above sea level for just 14km.

For those who travel by car, the A82 road that crosses the Glen Coe can park near the waterfall where the valley looks like a gorge. This section is called the study.

Follow the road until you reach the Loch Etive side signpost headed south. The path turns uphill and reaches the highest point in the Allt Lairg elide valley.

 

Stop for lunch at Glencoe Visitor Centre

Recommended Visit Duration: 30m to 1h30

An eco-friendly visitor centre, nestled in woodland, is an essential starting point for your adventure in Glencoe and Glen Etive.

Pretend you’re one of the many people that make Glencoe National Nature Reserve so special by getting a taste of its serene atmosphere and learning about the stories that have made this place so famous.

Make sure you see the Glen Revealed a short documentary that has been created in partnership with the National Trust for Scotland.

You can see ‘a journey back in time through the dramatic history and fascinating wildlife of The National Nature Reserve.

Narrated by Game of Thrones actor Rory McCann, it’ll take you on a journey through millions of years and leave you inspired to support the National Trust for Scotland’s work here today.

Head to the cafe Highland Coo – for refuelling. The gift shop has some nice Glencoe inspired gifts, as well.

Glencoe National Nature Reserve is a mile south of Glencoe Village on the A82. It’s run by the National Trust of Scotland and entry is free, with a £4 charge for the car park. PH49 4HX

 



 

Afternoon 

Take a Forest Bathing in An Torr  

Moderate 25 minutes to 2 hours 2.5 miles / 3.75 km

For an easy, accessible short hike and a breathtaking view, take the path that begins just off the A82 (past Glencoe Visitor Centre if you drive from Ballachulish and Glencoe village).

There are three paths linked, so choose the one leading to Signal Rock (If you have time, combine all three of these as they are linked (Signal Rock provides stunning views of the Glencoe sisters).

The rock’s original title is “Tom a Ghrianain,” meaning the knoll of the sun, and Druids are said to have used the rock because it’s a great location to view the rising of the sun and the sun setting. It was also used for worshipping the sun.

 

An Torr walks Glencoe

An Torr walks Glencoe

 

It is also claimed that this was a meeting place for the MacDonalds to reach in case of an emergency or the site where a beacon would be lit by the clan to warn of any dangers. This could be another link to the Glencoe Massacre.

The An Torr walk starts from Signal Rock car park on the A82, 2.5 miles south of Glencoe.

Evening 

After a rewarding walk in Glencoe, you deserve to spend a wonderful evening in this award-winning pub. Among the many beautiful views, you’ll see when you’re here, you can’t take your eyes off of this stunning location found at the foot of Glencoe.

Clachaig Inn has a lively bar with over 300 whiskies and live folk music. Hundreds of people each year come to see the 300-year-old inn that’s steeped in history and has a great reputation with travellers. Spend some time in the pub to soak in the atmosphere and enjoy great pub food.

 

Read also:

The Best Half-Mile in Scotland: Steall Falls

 

Day 2 

 

Morning

Walk a Lochan trial 

Easy 1 hour to 1.5 hours 1.5 miles / 2.5 km

Created in the 19th century, Glencoe Lochan and the charming mixed woodland that surrounds it was designed to replicate British Columbia by Lord Strathcona for his homesick Native American wife. 

This beautiful setting is perfect for visitors looking for an easy walk in Glencoe, tranquillity and a good view of the surrounding mountains.

Visitors can choose the short circular of all abilities, walk around the lochan or take one or two more adventurous routes through the forest of Scots pine, oak, beech and rowan.

 

Loch Lochan walks

Loch Lochan walks

Which includes some breathtaking views over Loch Leven and the surrounding mountains. There is an opportunity to fish in the lochan, enjoy a paddleboard, or trip on an abilities boat.

It’s just 3.2 km to the Glencoe Visitor Centre (the walk there is not recommended in the winter). 

Lunch at the Glencoe village

Crafts and things featured in the Lonely Planet Guide to Scotland, it’s for sure an eating experience you won’t miss.

The single main road in the village features a few interesting stops if you would like to take a short walk around the village.

A short walk from the village will take you to the Massacre Monument, located on top of a small hill by the side of the river. The monument is dedicated to those who were killed at the Glencoe Massacre. 

The interesting white building of Glencoe Mountain Rescue is a stop to give the thought to those who save a life in the mountains. The team has been voluntarily engaged in search and rescue hillwalkers since 1961 years.

These volunteers put in long hours and face extreme conditions, but remain dedicated to protecting the most vulnerable in emergencies.

The outside wall shows a plaque dedicated to the memory of Graham Flatters, 1957-1996, “who loved to wander in wild places”.

Saint Mary’s, Church in Glencoe is a member of the worldwide Anglican Communion which traces its history back to St Columba and the early days of Christianity in Scotland.

There is an interesting story about the church that you can read here

Glencoe Studio Gallery is a small gallery featuring the work of Glencoe based landscape artist Caroline Cooke.

Lots of prints and glass pieces are suitable for presents or if you want, take a piece of Scotland home.   The gallery is at Tigh Phuirt just off the A82 at Glencoe crossroads.

 

 

 

Afternoon 

Visit the Hidden Treasure of Glencoe – Folk Museum  

Recommended Visit Duration: 1h to 1h30

An excellent example of not having to be big to be great. This wee museum is jam-packed with artefacts from the area.

Glencoe Museum was founded in 1967 by local lady Barbara Fairweather MBE. Beautiful museum cottages are the only thatched buildings in the area, dating to the early 1700s. Known as ‘cruck cottages’, meaning that the bearing beams of the roof come down the inside walls.

The museum has a fascinating collection of objects, agricultural implements, medical equipment, classic toys, archaeology and photographs, First and Second war memorabilia and domestic items from around the Glencoe area.

You can also learn about the infamous Massacre of Glencoe and the Jacobite uprising. 

Glencoe Folk Museum is located in the heart of Glencoe Village, just off the A82 

From April-October open Wednesday-Sunday from 11 am-3 pm, last entry at 2.30 pm

 

Evening 

Lochleven Seafood Café

Loch Leven Seafood Cafe in the north of Ballachulish is worth the extra drive to sample food cooked to order fresh from the water. The best lunch or dinner with the view of the stunning Highlands. 

Loch Leven seafood cafe, Onich, Fort William, Tel +44 (0) 1855 821 048

 

Where to Stay in Glencoe 

Clachaig Inn

Glencoe House

Isles of Glencoe Hotel

Kingshouse Hotel

Ardno House

Signal Rock Cottage

Strath Lodge Cottage

Where to Eat in Glencoe

Clachaig Inn

Glencoe Cafe

Hollytree Seafood Restaurant and Grill

The Clubhouse Cafe

Other activities in Glencoe

Glencoe Activities

Glencoe Bike Hire

Glencoe Mountain Resort

Rugged Paddleboard

Vertical Descents and Via Ferrata

 

About me
Scotland Itinerary planning

My name is Kate and I created Scotland Itinerary Planning to give you those life-changing experiences right in the beautiful country I call home.

I’m proud to live in Edinburgh, Scotland, one of the world’s most beautiful capital cities. Living in Edinburgh has provided me a base to explore extensively around this magical little country.

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