Moderate
Difficulty level
Cycling
Activity (Bike)
6 Night, 7 Day
Duration

Scotland: West Coast Bike

Six nights; seven days of bicycle touring on very quiet one-lane paved roads of western Scotland.

“This was the best trip of my life, and I loved every minute of it. The location was heavenly…The cuisine far exceeded our expectations. Honestly, I would sign up for this very same trip again!” – Sue & Linda



WHY THIS TRIP?

  • Quiet, single-track roads with varying terrain along glens, lochs, rivers, seashores, and across wide open moors.
  • Charming and hospitable lodging.
  • Oban’s wool and tweed.
  • Heather and ferns on Mull.
  • Guinness in Tobermory.
  • Waterfalls near Ulva.
  • Druid and Stone Age ruins around Dunadd.
  • Iona, where the Book of Kells was written, and Scottish kings buried.

 

ROUTE EXPECTATIONS:

Requiring moderate fitness levels, these cover terrain with hills and valleys, and tend to include distances of 50-80km (30-50mi.)/day cycling, or 3-6 hours of walking per day. Most Freewheeling Adventures fall into this category, and are suitable for most ability levels.


Lots of climbing, and beautiful descents. Relaxed riders may be encouraged to rely on van support, or to rent e-bikes. Advanced riders will enjoy longer options.


Daily Distance:

  • DAY 1: Introductions, ~26 km
  • DAY 2: ~45 km or ~98 km
  • DAY 3: ~70 km
  • DAY 4: ~45 km
  • DAY 5: ~75 or ~100 km
  • DAY 6: Variable
  • DAY 7: ~56 km

Scotland: West Coast Bike – Elevation Profile

(Click image to enlarge)

 

Not sure about difficulties, and support level? Check out our What to Expect page!

 

Start: Glasgow Central Railway Station, Hope St. entrance, 09:30, day one. Glasgow can be reached by train from Edinburgh. Click here for schedule & fares. Please contact us to arrange alternate plans, if necessary.

Finish: Fort William, 14:00; or Glasgow 17:00, day seven.

Please contact us to arrange alternate plans, if necessary.

1

Glasgow to Kilmartin. Ride to Crinan, ~33 km

Pickup in Glasgow. Begin cycling in Kilmartin, near Lochgilphead. Ride through level countryside and along the canal towpath near the ancient capital of Dalriada, seeing castles, gardens, and Neolithic & Bronze Age ceremonial sites. Tonight’s elegant dinner at the Crinan Hotel is a demonstration of culinary flair. LD (Meal inclusions provided for guided trips. Self-guided trips include breakfast only).

Crinan Hotel, Crinan

2

Crinan to Oban, ~83 km

Magnificent views over the waters of Loch Awe, as you ride the shore through the Inverliever and Eredine Forests, inspire songs, poetry, and a rich appreciation for this land and its history. The final stretch downstream to Taynuilt and through Glen Lonan is a beautiful ride. Finish in Oban, where waterfront walks lead to many shops, restaurants, and the distillery. BL

Perle Oban Hotel, or, Glenburnie House Inn, or, upgrade to Manor House ($125pp), Oban

3

Oban to Iona, ~63 km

Take the ferry from Oban to the Isle of Mull. Visit Duart and Torosay Castles, and then ride up through Glen More and down where the headless horseman rode to Pennyghael. Finish with another, short ferry to the Isle of Iona where you’ll find your inn. BL

Argyll Hotel, or, Ardoran House, Isle of Iona

4

Iona to Tobemory, ~80 km with options up to ~117 km

Visit Iona (burial place of ancient kings, such as MacBeth, and where the Book of Kells was discovered lying in the heather) or cycle along the dramatic, hilly western coast of Mull, passing the Ulva ferry, site of Campbell’s poem “Lord Ullin’s Daughter”, and stopping at Calgary Bay for, perhaps, a swim. Finish in Tobermory. BLD

Strongarbh House, or, Tobermory Hotel, Tobermory

5

Tobermory Loop Ride. Variable distance, optional hike

A hilly loop ride around the Northern half of Mull, including a side trip to see Glengorm Castle in its magnificent setting overlooking the Sound of Mull and the Ardnamurchan, and a climb to where another view of the Outer Hebrides will enchant you. Return to Tobermory, where shopping along the quaint waterfront, at one end of which is the Tobermory distillery, will occupy a pleasant couple of hours. Choose from many dinner options in Tobermory then transfer back to your hotel. B

Same lodging

6

Kilchoan to Strontian, ~47 km

Early morning ferry to Kilchoan (don’t pronounce the “c”). Ride along the fantastically beautiful and remote Ardnamurchan peninsula, visiting an ancient castle in ruins, and a baronial mansion awash in Victorian opulence. Follow the shore of Loch Sunart to Salen, and then choose between short and long afternoon options. Cycle the quiet hills of Moidart to visit the ruins of Castle Tioram in its magnificent setting on Loch Shiel Estate then take a ride you’ll never forget along the shore of Loch Shiel to tyour lodging at Strontian. BLD

Strontian Hotel, Strontian

7

Strontian to Fort William; transfer to Glasgow, ~47 km

A beautiful, peaceful ride this morning will take you by coastline, cows, and sheep to Corran Ferry, close to the finish point in Fort William – an ideal base for exploring Loch Ness, Ben Nevis, and the historically infamous Glencoe. This is on the train line known as the most beautiful in the world, and you can choose to travel back to Glasgow with us, or to take the train on your own. Either way, you will enjoy fabulous views of Glencoe and across Rannoch Moor before following the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond. BL

All details and pricing are subject to change without notice.


Guided: C 4275 (per person, double occupancy)

includes 7 days, 6 nights, 6 breakfasts, 6 picnic lunches, 3 dinners, ferries, luggage handling, full-time guide, support van, maps and route instructions, taxes


Self-Guided: C 3785 (per person, double occupancy)

Includes 7 days, 6 nights, 6 breakfasts, luggage transfers, maps and route instructions, essential transfers, emergency support, taxes


Single Occupancy: 1055


Bike Rentals:

Hybrid-Fitness: 265

Aluminum Racing: na

Carbon Racing: na

Electric-Assist: na


All details and pricing are subject to change without notice.


2022 Guided dates:

  • May 8-14
  • Jun 5-11
  • Aug 7-13
  • Sep 4-10

2023 Guided dates:

  • May 7-13
  • Jun 4-10
  • Aug 6-12
  • Sep 3-9

Self-Guided available any dates, except for those listed above. New dates are also welcomed for guided or private departures.

Interested in custom or private departures?


Please see above for accurate pricing and inclusions, unless we have proposed a customized trip for you and those details are provided in your custom proposal.

1. Choose an advertised date to join a small group, or see our Join a Group page to see where groups are already forming.

2. Pick your own dates. We will confirm quickly, and are happy to talk with you as you make your choice. If you would like a private guided date, price remains the same as advertised if you have at least six. If you prefer self-guided, we usually only require two participants to initiate a new date at the advertised price, and can sometimes reduce prices for you if you have four or more.

 
PLEASE NOTE: Trip Cancellation Insurance is highly recommended. If this is not provided by your credit card or elsewhere, please let us know and we can provide recommendations.

More Reading:


The quiet single-track roads of Western Scotland follow glens, lochs, rivers, seashores, and across wide open moors, and are so quiet you will often feel like the sky and the ever-changing view are all yours. We pick you up in Glasgow, and start your bike tour near Oban with a warm-up on the Crinan Canal towpath. Your imagination will reel as you explore the Druid and Stone Age ruins around Dunadd. Ancient rites performed here included the crowning of kings as they sat upon the Stone of Destiny. You will ride north along the shore of Loch Awe, then ferry past the Lady’s Rock to the fair Isle of Mull. Magical views of the outer isles will enhance your memories of the bens and glens of this quintessentially Scottish Island. Lord Ullin’s daughter fled her father’s ire here, and it’s where the headless horseman rode. You may visit Iona, where the Book of Kells was written, and Scottish kings buried. After visiting Tobermory, the remote Ardnamurchan Peninsula will be your avenue eastward. On the return to Glasgow, you will pass through battle-bloodied Glencoe and along the shores of Loch Lomond. You will learn about Scotland’s rich and savage history, which often sounds more like imaginative myth than fact, while you visit country estates, gardens, pubs, distilleries, and castles. The lodging on this adventure is exceptionally charming and hospitable, and the varied terrain will inspire all levels of cyclist.