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Loch Lomond and Cowal Way

A self-guided walking holiday from the Forth of Clyde to Loch Lomond across the Cowal Peninsula.

6 nights
53 miles
Moderate / Demanding

From £550 per person

Find out about the tour

About this route

Bounded by the Arrochar Mountains, Loch Fyne and the Firth of Clyde, the Cowal Peninsula boasts deep glens and mountain views over open moors, providing a diverse landscape ripe for exploration. The Loch Lomond and Cowal Way is therefore a fabulous trail showcasing everything the west coast of Scotland has to offer.

The route journeys through quiet woodland, thriving pastureland and sandy beaches, with a variety of geological wonders such as waterfalls and stone stacks to admire along the way. The many towns and villages along the walk are full of character, and there are chances to glimpse ruined castles and other historic landmarks throughout the duration of your holiday.

© Contours Walking Holidays Loch Lomond and Cowal Way map
Portavadie to Arrochar
53 miles (84 km)
21st March to 31st October

Holiday highlights

Admiring the many waterfalls along the trail, from the Struth Ban Falls to those crashing down the hillside opposite the Allt Robuic Gorge.

Pausing to enjoy the far-reaching views out over the various lochs and mountainsides of the Cowal Peninsula.

Reaching the shores of Loch Lomond and enjoying a sense of tranquillity and calm among the beautiful Scottish countryside.

Available tours

CodeTourDurationDifficultyPrice per person
COWW3 From Tighnabruaich to Arrochar 6 nights, 5 days walking Moderate / Demanding£550

Loch Lomond and Cowal Way 6 nights, 5 days walking

£NNN per person
  • Itinerary
  • What's included?
  • Extra nights?
  • Tour facts
  • Route profile
  • Travel info
  • Weather

Travel to Tighnabruaich where your first night's accommodation has been booked
Transport is provided from Tighnabruaich to Portavadie for the morning of your walk.

Day 1

Portavadie to Tighnabruaich. 7 miles (11km)

Day 2

Tighnabruaich to Glendaruel(L). 11 miles (18km)

Day 3

Glendaruel(L) to Strachur(L). 15.5 miles (25km)

Day 4

Strachur(L) to Lochgoilhead. 9 miles (14km)

Day 5

Lochgoilhead to Arrochar. 10 miles (16km)


Depart from Arrochar after breakfast

Your Itinerary

This itinerary lists our preferred overnight stops for this tour. Sometimes there may be a shortage of available accommodation in a preferred location, in which case we will transfer you from the trail to your accommodation and back again at no extra charge. Overnight stops marked with a (T) will always require transfers as standard.

Overnight stops marked with an (L) have very limited accommodation, and therefore more often than not will also require a transfer, particularly on bank holidays and weekends. We will use non-transfer accommodation wherever possible.

The daily mileages quoted are average trail miles only and do not include the distance from the trail to your accommodation. We do not expect you to have to travel more than a mile from the trail to your accommodation; should your accommodation be further than this, transfers will be provided as standard.

Below are the additional costs that may apply depending on your requirements. Dog-friendly tours are subject to a Daily Dog Charge, which will be listed below if applicable. Our standard prices per person are based upon two people sharing a room; if you are on your own, or are part of a group but require a room of your own, then the Solo Traveller or Single Supplements apply respectively:

A note about transfers
Solo Traveller Supplement
£45.00 per person / per night
Single Supplement
£35.00 per person / per night

You can add rest days at any of the overnight stops:

Extra night (Standard)
£55.00 per person / per night

What's included?

  • 6 nights' accommodation in en-suite rooms (where available) in selected B&B’s, hotels, inns and guesthouses along the trail, or a short distance away via taxi provided at our expense.
  • Breakfast each day.
  • Door to door luggage transfer.
  • Maps with the route marked on and a guidebook or route notes describing the trail.
  • An information pack containing an itinerary, instructions on how to find your accommodation each night and a kit list.
  • Detailed travel instructions on how to get to the start of your holiday and back from the end of it.

Extra Nights & Rest Days

Take an extra day in Strachur and relax on the shore of Loch Fyne, while Lochgoilhead offers the opportunity to enjoy the rugged scenery around Loch Goil. Arrochar sits in idyllic surroundings at the head of Loch Long, and an extra night here makes a ramble up the Cobbler very doable. Arrochar is not without its own charms, with various local pubs, the historic Old Kirk and parish church.

You can add rest days at any of the overnight stops:

Extra night (Standard)
£55.00 per person / per night

Tour Facts

Total distance: 52.5 miles (84 km)
Duration: 6 nights, 5 days walking
Minimum daily distance: 7 miles (11 km)
Maximum daily distance: 15.5 miles (25 km)
Code: COWW3 Grade: Moderate / Demanding
Season: 21st March - 31st October
Start of holiday: Portavadie
End of holiday: Arrochar

Route Profile

Loch Lomond and Cowal Way Route Profile

Travel Information

Useful information and travel links that will assist you in your plans to travel to the start of the holiday and back from the end of it are sent to you with your full tour pack. A summary is given below:

By Air - The most convenient major city and international airports are Glasgow and Glasgow Prestwick.

By Rail - The nearest rail station to the start of the trail (Tighnabruaich) is Gourock (about 31 miles away). From Gourock you need to catch the Calmac ferry to Dunoon. There is a rail station at the end of the trail (Arrochar & Tarbet).

By Bus - There is a bus service from Dunoon to Tighnabruaich.

From London - Trains run from London Euston station to Gourock. From there you will need to take the Argyll ferry (20 minute journey) to Dunoon, where buses then run to Portavadie.

Return To The Start - You can take the bus from Arrochar to Portavadie. However the journey is long, services are very infrequent and on Sundays non-existent. So the easiest way would be to take a taxi from Arrochar to Portavadie.

Weather Information

To find out more about the weather forecast for your chosen holiday's general location, please see the following websites:

  • MetCheck - This website allows you to look up detailed weather information for specific locations as far as six months in advance.
  • Met Office - This website shows regional area forecasts a few days in advance, with a general UK forecast description of up to 30 days in advance.
  • Mountain Forecast - This website shows what the forecast is like up on specific hills and fells, and offers forecasts a few days in advance.
"Cairn Between Lochgoilhead and Ardgarten" by Janet Clapton (2019) "Cairn Between Lochgoilhead and Ardgarten" by Janet Clapton (2019)
"View on the Loch Long" by Pirson Marc (2018) "View on the Loch Long" by Pirson Marc (2018)
"Near Lettermay Burn Waterfalls" by Pirson Marc (2018) "Near Lettermay Burn Waterfalls" by Pirson Marc (2018)
"Kyles of Bute in the Fog" by Pirson Marc (2018) "Kyles of Bute in the Fog" by Pirson Marc (2018)
"In the Garvie Burn Valley" by Pirson Marc (2018) "In the Garvie Burn Valley" by Pirson Marc (2018)

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