Great Glen Way

Great Glen Way

A walk through Scotland's Great Glen along the impressive Caledonian Canal.

3 to 8 nights
22-77 miles
Moderate to Demanding

From £390 per person

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About the trail

Take in Scotland’s finest scenery on a long-distance walking holiday through the Highlands, past Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis, and along the shore of Loch Ness.

The Great Glen Way National Trail follows the route of the Caledonian Canal, which links the enormous lochs of the Great Glen all the way from the Atlantic Ocean to the North Sea. Open moorland, tree-lined towpaths, and towering, heather-clad hills are staple views, alongside castles and forts that have witnessed some of the most bloody scenes of Scotland’s turbulent history.

We offer multiple holiday options along this trail. If you wish to experience the entire trail, simply select the first option from the list below.

Choose your route

  • Great Glen Way
  • Great Glen Way Short Break

Trail running tours available

We also organise trail running holidays along this route. Find out more.

About this route

6 to 8 nights
77 miles
Moderate to Demanding
27th March to 14th October

From £725 per person

Great Glen Way

This holiday option explores the full length of the Great Glen Way National Trail from Fort William to Inverness. This epic 73-mile holiday encounters the iconic British landmarks of Ben Nevis and Loch Ness, along with a plethora of other fantastic scenery to enjoy.

As you cross the breadth of Scotland from coast to coast, expect a unique mixture of beautiful views, charming settlements, elusive wildlife and fascinating history, making for an all-round magnificent walking adventure.

This route can be walked in the opposite direction upon request. Please contact us and we will be happy to assist you.

Available tours

Code Tour Duration Difficulty Price per person
GGW1 From Fort William to Inverness 6 nights, 5 days walking Demanding £725
GGW2 From Fort William to Inverness 7 nights, 6 days walking Moderate / Demanding £835
GGW3 From Fort William to Inverness 8 nights, 7 days walking Moderate £950

Short breaks

Code Tour Duration Difficulty Price per person
GGWSB1 From Fort Augustus to Drumnadrochit 3 nights, 2 days walking Moderate / Demanding £390

Great Glen Way 6 nights, 5 days walking

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

Important information

Please note: For 2024, a trail diversion is in effect due to tree felling taking place at South Laggan. This diversion has been incorporated into our itineraries, with current mileages, maps, GPX files and other tour information reflecting this temporary route. If you have any queries regarding this, please contact us and we will be happy to discuss this with you.

Please note this trail is very popular, if you have flexibility with your start date, please advise this when booking. Please do not make any travel plans until we have double checked and confirmed availability for your booking.

Start

Travel to Fort William where your first night's accommodation will be booked

Day 1

Fort William to Gairlochy(T). 11 miles (17.5km)

Day 2

Gairlochy(T) to Invergarry. 17 miles (27km)

Day 3

Invergarry to Invermoriston. 15.5 miles (25km)

Day 4

Invermoriston to Drumnadrochit. 15 miles (24km)

Day 5

Drumnadrochit to Inverness. 19 miles (30.5km)

Finish

Depart from Inverness 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 in most cases; should your accommodation be further than this, transfers will be provided as standard if practical. A very limited number of stops will require you to travel on foot up to two miles off the trail, however these instances will be clearly communicated to you if applicable.

Further transfers may also be required due to some accommodations having a two-night minimum booking policy, especially at weekends.

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
£60.00 per person / per night
Single Supplement
£50.00 per person / per night


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

Extra night (Standard)
£65.00 per person / per night
Standard
Interactive
© Contours Walking Holidays Great Glen Way map
Fort William to Inverness
77 miles (124 km)
27th March to 14th October

Holiday highlights

Tracing the course of the Caledonian Canal through spectacular forests.

Discovering the impressive castles on the route, including Urquhart Castle and Ardverikie Castle.

Revelling in the sense of achievement as you cross the country of Scotland from coast to coast.

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

An extra night gives you the chance to explore some of the villages and old market towns along the trail, catch up with writing postcards or to simply relax and give those weary legs a rest.

Many people have an extra night in Fort William before starting the trail and visit Glen Coe or Glen Nevis or climb Ben Nevis, Britain's highest mountain.

If you fancy somewhere peaceful, consider Invermoriston. It is an attractive little village and there are some lovely walks to waterfalls along woodland trails.

If you want to spend time looking for the Loch Ness Monster then Drumnadrochit is a good choice.

There is a lot to see and do in Inverness. The castle, cathedral, the Inverness Museum and Balnain House, with its fascinating exhibition of Highland music, are all worth a visit. Culloden Battlefield, which also has an informative visitor centre, is a short bus journey from the town.

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

Extra night (Standard)
£65.00 per person / per night

Tour Facts

Total distance: 77 miles (123.5 km)
Duration: 6 nights, 5 days walking
Minimum daily distance: 11 miles (17.5 km)
Maximum daily distance: 19 miles (30.5 km)
Code: GGW1 Grade: Demanding
Season: 27th March - 14th October
Start of holiday: Fort William
End of holiday: Inverness

Route Profile

Great Glen 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 Inverness, Glasgow and Glasgow Prestwick.

By Rail - There is a rail station at the start of the trail (Fort William) and also at the end of the trail (Inverness).

By Bus - Various bus services run to Fort William and from Inverness.

From London - Trains run from London Euston/Kings Cross stations to Fort William. Alternatively, trains run from London Euston/Kings Cross stations to Glasgow, where coaches then run regularly to Fort William.

Return To The Start - The easiest way to return to the start of the trail, is to take the coach from Inverness to Fort William.

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.
"Rain coming in along Loch Ness" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022) "Rain coming in along Loch Ness" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022)
"Loch Lochy on a Gloomy Day" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022) "Loch Lochy on a Gloomy Day" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022)
"Trying to Catch a Rainbow" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022) "Trying to Catch a Rainbow" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022)
"Invermoriston" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022) "Invermoriston" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022)
"Rainbow near Drumnadochit" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022) "Rainbow near Drumnadochit" by Marty and Jane Holski (2022)
"Loch Lochy near St Ciaran's Church" by Fiona Walton (2021) "Loch Lochy near St Ciaran's Church" by Fiona Walton (2021)
"Swimming in the Caledonian Canal" by Fiona Walton (2021) "Swimming in the Caledonian Canal" by Fiona Walton (2021)
"Eating Cake at Abriachan Eco Cafe" by Fiona Walton (2021) "Eating Cake at Abriachan Eco Cafe" by Fiona Walton (2021)
"Glenfinnan Viaduct" by Lubo Jurkovic (2019) "Glenfinnan Viaduct" by Lubo Jurkovic (2019)
"Fairy Trail" by Lubo Jurkovic (2019) "Fairy Trail" by Lubo Jurkovic (2019)
"After Gairlochy Locks" by Paula Aaltonen (2019) "After Gairlochy Locks" by Paula Aaltonen (2019)
"Outside Fort William" by Kim Dudley (2019) "Outside Fort William" by Kim Dudley (2019)
"Outside Fort Augustus" by Kim Dudley (2019) "Outside Fort Augustus" by Kim Dudley (2019)
"Looking Back to Urquart Castle" by Kim Dudley (2019) "Looking Back to Urquart Castle" by Kim Dudley (2019)
"Looking Back to Ben Nevis" by Kim Dudley (2019) "Looking Back to Ben Nevis" by Kim Dudley (2019)
"Between South Laggan and Fort Augustus" by Kim Dudley (2019) "Between South Laggan and Fort Augustus" by Kim Dudley (2019)
"View across Loch Ness" by Mary Jane Haemig (2019) "View across Loch Ness" by Mary Jane Haemig (2019)
"Loch Lochy near Clunes" by Jo McDonough (2018) "Loch Lochy near Clunes" by Jo McDonough (2018)
"Walking Companion" by Jo McDonough (2018) "Walking Companion" by Jo McDonough (2018)
"Corpach" by Jo McDonough (2018) "Corpach" by Jo McDonough (2018)
"Loch Ness" by Hilary Donahue (2017) "Loch Ness" by Hilary Donahue (2017)

Customer reviews from the Great Glen Way

“Once again your organisation of luggage and booking of accommodation was excellent. I enjoyed the challenge of walking the Great Glen. You do a great job.”
Mrs Catton, UK
“Another good walk. I enjoyed my stay in Scotland despite the weather (just one sunny day) I always tell others that I use yourselves and tell them home much I'm impressed with the holidays that you have sorted in the past. My next Contours holiday is The John Muir Way next May. This holiday had to be postponed in May 2020 and May 2021due to lockdowns! I will shortly be booking some more holidays for next year. I am keen to do some more of the Welsh Coastline.”
Mr Duthoit, UK
“Brilliantly arranged by Contours.”
Mr Robbins, UK
“Thank you for organising this walk for us, with kind regards.”
Dr Klein, Switzerland
“Overall very good. Lovely route.”
Mr Bicknell, UK
“Once again delighted with all the information given and accommodation provided. Piggy Back baggage people seemed to be super. have recommended Contours to just about everybody we met. Man thanks I thoroughly enjoyed my walking holiday.”
Miss Redden, UK
“Thank you, we had a lovely, hassle-free holiday.”
Mrs Cresswell, UK
“Everything was perfectly organised and timed. Thank you very much!”
Mr Gubser, Switzerland
“I enjoyed the holiday.”
Mrs Muir, Canada
Find your holiday