Moderate
Difficulty level
Hiking/Walking
Activity (Hike)
7 Night, 8 Day
Duration

Scotland: West Coast Hike

Seven nights; seven days of walks and hikes on pathways and lanes, exploring the beaches, lochs, highlands, valleys, forests, and castles of western Scotland and the Isle of Mull.


“The Freewheeling company, and the tour guides did an excellent job. I was VERY pleased with the experience and will gladly recommend this tour company to my friends.”- Sue S.


WHY THIS TRIP?

  • Beautiful coastal walks.
  • Jacobite Steam Train over the Glenfinnan Viaduct – the rail journey of a lifetime!
  • Glen Nevis falls.
  • Mysterious moors, hardwood forests, heather, and ferns.
  • Castles over the lochs.
  • The cliffs of Treshnish.
  • Ferry to Isle of Mull.
  • Pubs in Tobermory.

 

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.


Easy to moderate walks and hikes on established paths and laneways. Three to six hours of walking daily, with options for further exploration. Some of the walks are along the coast, by the shores of a loch or in the moors; conditions are weather dependent and may be wet. Good quality, waterproof, hiking footwear is recommended.


Daily Distance:

  • DAY 1: Introductions, ~7 km
  • DAY 2: ~6.5 km
  • DAY 3: ~10 km
  • DAY 4: ~14 km
  • DAY 5: ~8 km
  • DAY 6: ~11 km
  • DAY 7: ~6 km
  • DAY 8: Farewells

Scotland: West Coast Hike – Elevation Profile

(Click image to enlarge)

 

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

 

Start: Fort William railway station, 13:00, day one. Fort William can be reached by train from Glasgow (~four hours). Click here for schedule & fares. Please contact us to arrange alternate plans, if necessary.

If you would like to try for the summit of Ben Nevis (8-9 hours of strenuous hiking), we recommend arriving in Fort William a day or two early.

Finish: Oban, 09:00, day eight. Catch a train back to Glasgow or continue exploring the highlands.

Please contact us to arrange alternate plans, if necessary.

1

Introductions, Steall Falls and the Nevis Gorge 3.5 km and the Achriabhach Forest, ~3.5 km

Start in Fort William, at the base of Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain. Spend the afternoon warming up with a walk in the foothills of Ben Nevis before retiring to your hotel on Loch Shiel for fine dining and sumptuous relaxation. D (Meal inclusions provided for guided trips; self-guided trips include breakfast)

Glenfinnan House Hotel, Glenfinnan, near Fort William

2

Glenfinnan Viaduct, Port Murrach 4.5 km, Camusdarach Beach 2 km & Jacobite Steam Train

Take in the famous Glenfinnan Viaduct enroute to Port Murrach and the first of two beautiful coastal walks. Camusdarach Beach is one of many sandy beaches lining the coast from Arisaig to Morar. A short drive further takes you to Mallaig where you can enjoy lunch before catching the train to Fort William; many (especially railfans) consider this train ride to be a journey of a lifetime. BL

Same lodging

3

Strontian Lead Mines via the Ariundle Oakwoods. One hour transfer; 10.5km walk

Start with a transfer, along the banks of Lochs Eil and Linnhe, then west through the valley between Garbh Bheinn and Creach Bheinn. Your hike today will take in the best of the Ariundle Oakwood National Nature Reserve, including a steady climb or two rewarded on clear days by panoramic views of the highlands. BLD

Kilcamb Lodge Hotel, or, Strontian Hotel, Strontian; or, Kingairloch Highland Estate, Ardgour

4

~4km on Aird Molach Loop, Castel Tioram, and ~9.5km to Singing Sands

The day begins with a walk exploring a dense Atlantic Oakwood (Aird Molach) before climbing the moorland with gorgeous views of Loch Moidart. A short transfer brings you to Castle Tioram and then your afternoon walk to the Singing Sands along the tidal Affric river to Allt Beithe and Kentra Bay. BLD

Same lodging

5

Isle of Mull – Loch Ba; 1 hour transfer, short ferry, and ~11km walk

An early start today takes you to Lochaline and the short ferry to the Isle of Mull. You will stretch your legs with a leisurely walk along Loch Ba, taking in the beauty at the heart of the mountains all around, then transfer to Tobermory with time to explore shops and pubs. BL

Strongarbh House, or, The Tobermory Hotel, Tobermory

6

Treshnish and the Whisky Cave up to 11km and the Ardmore Shore

Begin the day at the cliffs of the Treshnish Peninsula, a strikingly beautiful coastline. Walk along the coast and to the Whisky Cave where some of Mull’s best moonshine was once made. Pause for tea at Calgary Bay before returning to Tobermory. The Ardmore Shore offers an additional walk with excellent views across the Sound of Mull, if time permits. Optional boat tour to Fingal’s Cave and the Treshnis Isles. BLD

Same lodging

7

Torosay Castle and Oban, ~6km

Your time on Mull concludes with a walk through the forest to Torosay Castle and on to a picturesque bay overlooking Duart Castle. Take the midday ferry to Oban where you can climb to McCaig’s tower for a splendid view of the village, or sample the eponymous whiskey at the Oban Distillery.

Perle Oban Hotel, or, Glenburnie House Inn, or, upgrade to Manor House, Oban

8

Farewells

Your tour concludes this morning following breakfast. B

All details and pricing are subject to change without notice.


Guided: C 4675 (per person, double occupancy)

Includes 8 days, 7 nights, 7 breakfasts, 6 picnic lunches, 5 dinners, Jacobite Steam Train ride, ferries, luggage handling, full-time guide, ground transportation, maps, taxes

Self-Guided: C 3995 (per person, double occupancy)

Includes 8 days, 7 nights, 7 breakfasts, Jacobite Steam Train ride, ferries, ground transportation as outlined, inn to inn luggage transfers, maps, taxes


Single Occupancy: 1045


All details and pricing are subject to change without notice.


2022 Guided dates:

  • May 15-22
  • Sep 11-18

2023 Guided dates:

  • May 28-Jun 4
  • Sep 10-17

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:


Highlights:

The Glenfinnan Viaduct, the falls at Glen Nevis, Castles over the lochs, hardwood forests, heather and ferns on Mull,the cliffs of Treshnish, views of the Outer Isles; pubs in Tobermory; phoning home from a phone box surrounded by sheep, wool and tweed in Oban.

Your adventure begins in Fort William on the bank of Loch Linnhe at the foot of Ben Nevis where you will visit waterfalls and the Achriabhach Forest. Discover quiet white sand beaches and ride theJacobite Steam Train over the Glenfinnan Viaduct, an experience recognized as “the greatest railway journey in the world”. Stroll through hardwood forests and climb into the rugged glory of the highlands. Views of the outer isles will enhance your memories of the bens and glens of this quintessentially Scottish land. Lord Ullin’s daughter fled her father’s ire here, and it’s where the headless horseman rode. 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 luxurious and hospitable, and the varied terrain will inspire all levels of walker.