- Quick Facts
Grab your boots and challenge yourself to walk the West Highland Way in 4 days. This route was Scotland’s first designated long distance trail, but it took nearly 20 years for it to be officially opened from its original conception in the 1960s. Although walking days are long, you will experience the outstanding scenery of this beautiful region. There is a good reason this has become a classic trail. Savour the magic of Scotland’s magnificent Highlands with views of vast lochs, majestic mountains, tumbling rivers, wild moors and great glens.
Other versions available
- South Section in 3 Days
- North Section in 4 Days
- West Highland Way - 6 Days
- West Highland Way - 8 Days
- West Highland Way - 9 Days
- 4 nights’ accommodation
- 4 days’ walking
- guide book and map provided
- daily door to door luggage transfers
- 24hr on call assistance during your walk if necessary
- 96 miles (153km) and 4,313m (14,146ft) of ascent
- Walk the full length of the West Highland Way from South to North
- Admire views of Scotland’s greatest mountains including Ben Nevis
- Stand on the ‘bonnie banks’ of Loch Lomond gazing over the beautiful lake
- Experience the wild beauty of Rannoch Moor
About & Details
The mountainous beauty of this classic trail through the Scottish Highlands rivals anywhere in the world. The views are breath taking and incredibly varied. It is usually walked from the South to the North, starting in the outskirts of Glasgow and heading past Loch Lomond, the desolate but beautiful Rannoch Moor and the Devils Steps to the finish point in Fort William, in the heart of the Highlands. As you walk, you find the scenery becoming more and more dramatic, culminating in views of Ben Nevis, the highest mountain in Britain.
The whole route is well signposted on well-maintained paths, with much of the trail on ancient roads. There’s even a section which follows an old Drover’s road. For the majority of the walk, you’re never very far from a settlement, but some of the wilder sections, particularly over Rannoch Moor and the Devil’s Staircase can feel quite remote.
We take the stress out of your trip with expert local knowledge, hand-picked accommodation, luggage transfers and detailed support to help you find your way. You will need full walking kit including a waterproof jacket and trousers, a comfortable day sack and comfortable walking boots. You will receive a more detailed kit list upon booking. The price for this trip is based on 2 people sharing.
- 4 nights’ accommodation in good quality B&Bs or hotels with ensuite or private bathroom and breakfast
- Luggage transfers each walking day (1 x bag per person, max. weight limit 20kg)
- Map and guide book plus detailed directions to your accommodation from the trail
- Expert local knowledge and 24 hour emergency assistance during your trip
- Professional event organisation
- Travel to and from the start and finish points of the trip
- Lunches and evening meals
- Personal insurance (for cancellation, accident, health, emergency evacuation and loss, theft of or damage to baggage and personal effects)
- Guiding (please contact us if you would like this trip to be guided)
- Single room supplement £90 per person per night (subject to availability)
- Solo traveller supplement £90 per person per night
- Odd number group supplement £90 per group per night may apply if a single room is required
- Extra night prior to the start (single room) £150 per person
- Extra night prior to the start (twin room, needs 2 people) £95 per person
- Extra night at the end of the event (single room) £150 per person
- Extra night at the end of the event (twin room, needs 2 people) £95 per person
- Transfer back to your car at the end of your walk (for up to 3 passengers) £250
- Extra bag £12.50 per person per day
Please select from Optional Extras at checkout.
Getting there and back
By road:Milngavie is located 25 minutes to the North of Glasgow. There is free parking available for the duration of the trip outside the station in Milngavie or in front of the Police Station.
By public transport:Glasgow is well served by train services from all parts of the UK. From the centre of Glasgow [GLC] there is a regular train service to Milngavie Station [MLN] at the start of the West Highland Way, which takes around 25 minutes. Checktraveline.infofor the latest public transport information.
By air:The nearest airport is Glasgow International [GLA], from where you can take one of the regular airport shuttles into the centre of Glasgow (20 minutes). From here, take a train from either Glasgow Central Station or Glasgow Queen Street Station to Milngavie Station (25 minutes). Check www.traveline.info for the latest public travel information. There are also excellent public transport links from Edinburgh Airport (EDI]. Take the AIR coach direct from the airport to Buchannan Street Bus Station in the centre of Glasgow (1 hour) and then there is a short walk from the bus station to Queen Street Station, where you catch the train to Milngavie (25 minutes).
To get back to your car:To return to your car in Milngavie, take the train or bus from Fort William to Glasgow Queen Street and change for a train to Milngavie Station. The journey takes approximately 4 hours.
By road:Fort William is located on the A82 on the banks of Loch Linnhe 2½ hours north of Glasgow.
By public transport:There is a public bus or train service from Fort William Station to Glasgow which takes around 3½ hours.
By air:Return to Glasgow via bus or train and take either the airport shuttle to Glasgow Airport or the AIR bus to Edinburgh Airport.
Evening meals and lunches
You can purchase evening meals either at the accommodation or nearby. When our event planners send you the schedule with your itinerary you could prearrange directly with the accommodation or during the walk.
For lunches we would suggest bringing some of your own favourite snack bars and then asking the accommodation for a packed lunch for the following day and also supplementing that at stops en-route.
Accommodation is generally at B&B, guest houses and small hotels. Once booked in, your event planner will send you a list of your booked accommodation. It is possible to adjust according to preference at this stage so please mention it if you wish to change.
If you would like to bring your four legged friend, then we will do our best to source dog friendly accommodation. It is usually possible but if it were not, then we would suggest a change of date to enable it or offer a refund. There may be a small surcharge for the overnight stays. Therefore, once booked in, please alert your event planner that you would like to bring your dog and we can proceed from there.
Need a guide?
If you would prefer to have a guide for your walk, even just for one day, then we are happy to help. We can provide a qualified leader (also first aid qualified) to lead your trek or on just one of the sections. Just ask us.
A guide can not only take the stress out of navigation, but you will also find them a great asset in terms of providing an insight into all things environment and nature.
Dates and prices
For available dates please click on the ‘book now’ option on the left hand side on desktops or at the bottom on mobiles. You can reserve your space via this route.
After you book
After placing your booking with us, you will in the first instance receive an automated email from our system confirming receipt of your reservation. If you don’t receive it, it is worth checking your spam/clutter folder.
In the process of placing your booking, you will generally set up an access password to our online gateway where you can review the details of the booking.
Your personal event planner will then be in touch with you to start to confirm the details. This contact will usually be taken up in the working day after receipt of your booking, but may, in busy times, take a little longer. The event planner will then liaise with you regarding the details of the course. If you have any specific requirements, please do mention it at this stage.
At the end of your trip
Unfortunately, all good things come to an end at some point and when you arrive in Fort William, you have one of several options. If you have not booked an additional night’s stay in Fort William then we will deliver your luggage to the Nevis Centre in Fort William. From there you may have onward travel arranged as per the ‘Getting There and Back’ tab above.
Some people like to treat themselves to a night’s stay in Fort William at the end. And why not? You’ve earned it. You can arrange this as an optional add on with your event planner.
Sitting majestically at the end of the West Highland Way is Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis. If you are of the tireless variety, then you may consider climbing this at the end of your trek. We provide regular guided ascents of Ben Nevis and you could either join an open event or book yourself your own personal guide for the day. Please speak to your event planner should this be of interest.
Day 1 - Milngavie
Check into your accommodation in Milngavie.
Day 2 - Milngavie to Rowardennan
Arrive in Milngavie (pronounced ‘Mullguy’) Head to the official starting point of the West Highland Way, a grey granite obelisk which stands proudly in Douglas Street and then follow the signposted route along gentle paths through the Mugdock Country Park Estate to Craigallian Loch, where there are surprising views over the Campsie Fells to the North-East. Glencoyne Distillery makes a good stopping place, where you can pop in for a tour and a ‘wee dram’ of the famous whisky. The route then winds past Gartness and down into the attractive village of Drymen.
The next part of the hike brings a lot of undulations, however it is generally on good paths and tracks. You will pass the geological fault line which marks the boundary of the Highlands and be treated to views over Loch Lomond from Conic Hill. Descending to the village of Balmaha, a touristy village on the shores of Loch Lomond, there are regular boat trips and plenty of places to grab a bite to eat. From here, the route meanders alongside the lake, dipping down to secluded bays and rising up through the native woodland which hugs the shore to the hamlet of Rowardennan and your accommodation for the night.
42km (26 miles), 1073m (3519ft) ascent approximate
Day 3 - Rowardennan to Tyndrum
Standing on the shore at Rowardennan take a moment to savour the quiet beauty and tranquillity of the loch. The vast lake extends over 23 miles and is dotted with 38 islands, many of which used to be inhabited. The majestic Ben Lomond towers over you some 974m above sea level which makes an excellent side trip if you wish to add a free day to your itinerary. The route to Inverarnan takes you along a forest track passing many waterfalls gushing down from the mountain and yields glorious glimpses of the loch through the trees. For the more adventurous, a challenging alternative route hugs the shore, but beware, it is very slow going. At Inversnaid, you enter the RSPB’s nature reserve. This ancient oak woodland is home to a wide array of wildlife including redstarts, red deer and black grouse. You might even encounter a wild goat. The route then climbs away from the loch to Dubh Lochan and down into Glen Falloch, where the scenery changes abruptly to the craggy hillsides and mountain streams of the uplands.
Heading up Glen Falloch, the trail overlooks the wide river, passing tumbling rapids and sheep pastures to the Falls of Falloch (quite difficult to see from the trail) and onwards to the busy village of Crianlarich – the half way point of the trail. From the village, you walk up through woodland, where you are treated to good views of two great mountains, Ben More and Stob Binnein, before heading down to the River Filla and the interesting remains of St Fillian’s Priory. It’s then a pleasant walk along the valley, passing evidence of the area’s lead mining heritage and through glades of native trees to the tiny village of Tyndrum, a traditional stopping place for travellers heading to Oban and Fort William.
42km (26 miles), 1357m (4451ft) ascent approximate
Day 4 - Tyndrum to Kingshouse
The valley narrows considerably northwards as you walk beneath great majestic mountains with views straight ahead of one particularly impressively shaped mountain, Beinn Dorain. The railway is a companion to Bridge of Orchy, where you leave the valley and enjoy a lovely walk up to the top of a small ridge, where you get to enjoy an incredible view over Loch Tulla, Black Mount and Rannoch Moor – the next leg of your journey. Passing Inveroran, the trail ascends Black Mount, an expanse of high moorland and crosses over the beautiful and remote Rannoch Moor. This wild expanse is designated a SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) and has inspired many authors and poets. Dotted with innumerable lochans (small boggy pools), the plateau rises to around 500m (1,650ft) and is surrounded by mountains. The route then descends gently past the Glencoe ski station and down to the Kingshouse Hotel, perched beneath the stunning Buachaille Etive Mor.
Tonight features an overnight stay in Kingshouse. The only accommodation available in this area is The Kingshouse Hotel. If you wish to stay here, a surcharge will apply. Please note that a minimum 2-night stay is required during busy periods, and this is determined by the hotel. Alternatively, we can arrange a return taxi transfer to the nearby villages of Glencoe or Tyndrum where you will stay the night. A supplement may be payable.
30km (19 miles), 706m (2,316ft) of ascent approximate
Day 5 - Kingshouse to Fort William
Our final day’s walk includes the highest point on the walk – the top of the Devil’s Staircase. It is a daunting name, but the reality is actually a fairly straight forward walk up to 548m (1,800ft). Your efforts are rewarded with glorious views over the Mamores and Ben Nevis peeping behind. It’s then a gentle descent down to Kinlochleven at sea level across the rugged mountainside amidst stunning Highland scenery.
Leaving the hustle of Kinlochleven this section of the walk is tough, but rewarding with some of the best scenery the Scottish Highlands have to offer. Starting with a steep ascent out of Kinlochleven, the trail levels off ascending gently with wonderful views over Loch Leven as you climb up to the top of the Lairigmor Pass. To your right are the Mamores, a ridge of mountains approximately 15km in length and rising steeply on the far side of the loch is the Aonach Eagach, one of the most challenging ridges in Great Britain. After the pass, it’s a gentle walk down beside a cascading mountain stream to a conifer plantation. The final leg takes you through Nevis Forest and into Glen Nevis, where you get glimpses of Ben Nevis standing 1344m (4,406ft) above sea level, with a final push into the centre of Fort William, ready for a celebratory drink. The trip ends at the end of the walk unless you have booked extra nights or other optional services with us.
39km (24 miles), 1177m (3860ft) approximate
Timings and mileages are approximate.
We will always endeavour to accommodate you in the locations detailed in the above itinerary. Due to very high demand, some accommodation providers may occasionally have limited availability and so we may need to accommodate you in an alternative location, nearby. In this case, we will arrange a taxi transfer for you to take you from the trail to your accommodation and back again the following morning.An additional charge may be payable. We will notify you of this when confirming your booking.
Why book with us
We know you have a choice of companies providing trips for your next adventures. Here are some of the reasons you should choose to travel with Maximum Adventure:
- We are an established adventure travel business
- We have been trading since 2002
- We are financially protected in accordance with the 1992 travel regulation
- Knowledgeable and available office staff
- Qualified leaders and guides with ascents ranging from Ben Nevis to Mount Everest
- All activities are risk assessed
- We will provide you with the best service available
- We are aware this is your holiday/your challenge and will do our best to make it an enjoyable and rewarding experience
- We have many repeat clients stretching back over a number of years
20+ years adventure organisation experience
Full liability & financial protection
Leading provider of high quality adventure challenges
Great team of staff to support you
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Walks and Treks
Walks and Treks
Can you do the West Highland Way in 4 days? ›
Grab your boots and challenge yourself to walk the West Highland Way in 4 days. This route was Scotland's first designated long distance trail, but it took nearly 20 years for it to be officially opened from its original conception in the 1960s.Can I do the West Highland Way on my own? ›
Can I do the West Highland Way on my own? Yes! For some people it offers great solitude to undertake the trek on your own, but undoubtedly you will make new friends too by the time you reach Fort William. Most people tend to split the route up into similar sections so you often meet the same people each day.What is the hardest part of the West Highland Way? ›
Rowardennan to Inverarnan. Very rough and rocky, with undulating trails covered in tree roots. This is a challenging stage, said to be one of the toughest of the whole West Highland Way.Can you walk the West Highland Way without camping? ›
Camping the West Highland Way is a great option for hikers looking to keep costs down, stay connected to nature, and maintain a flexible itinerary while walking Scotland's most popular long-distance trail. You can opt to wild camp along the Way, pitch up in campsites, or combine the two.How fit do you need to be to walk the West Highland Way? ›
Re: Ways to train for the West Highland Way(Or other long hi
You should be able to get your base weight down below 10kg comfortably. You don't have to be as fit carrying 10kg as you do carrying 20kg. When are you planning to walk?
Its location and the high ground means that the West Highland Way is best walked between April and October. Before that you can expect snow and very difficult conditions. Late spring is an especially good time to walk if you want to avoid the dreaded midges who reside in the area.Can a beginner walk the West Highland Way? ›
Venturing along 96-miles of natural terrain, ascending mountains and descending river beds may seem daunting to those who are unfamiliar with long-distance walking, but the West Highland Way is suitable for everyone, even beginners.Can you do the West Highland Way with no training? ›
You must build your fitness up for the West Highland Way given that every day is a demanding hiking day. You'll enjoy hiking the walk more if you've worked to get your fitness up.Is Devil's Staircase on the West Highland Way? ›
The Devil's Staircase is one of the most popular sections of the long-distance walking route 'The West Highland Way'. With breathtaking views of Buachaille Etive Mòr and the Mamores mountain range, it is easy to see why. You can find the starting point for the walk at Altnafeadh.Can you drink water on West Highland Way? ›
“It's really important for walkers to stay hydrated and the top up taps are a great addition to the Way, encouraging more people to use refillable water bottles.” Scottish Water's Top up Taps at the north and south ends of the iconic West Highland Way make that easy.
Are there toilets on the West Highland Way? ›
Also there are public toilets or toilets in pubs (always buy a snack or drink if using a pub toilet, many sell chocolate bars or canned drinks you can have later on) all along the route.Can you walk the West Highland Way in 3 days? ›
In conclusion; the West Highland Way is definitely manageable in three days but it's hard going. Next time I would do in three days again but my overnight stops would be Inversnaid Bunkhouse, Inveroran Hotel and then Fort William. Or you could be sensible and do it in 5 days!How long does it take to complete the West Highland Way? ›
5 Day West Highland Way
Averaging about 20 miles per day, or 9-10 hours walking it is not something to attempt if you are just short of time, rather do half of the trip in longer sections and leave the 5 day trip to the hardened walkers.
In order to not get dehydrated it's a good idea to drink around two to three litres each day while you're walking. However, carrying all of that with you will significantly weigh you down.Is walking the West Highland Way difficult? ›
We recommend all groups on the Way take good maps and know how to navigate with a compass. For guaging distances walked and still to be walked, the maps really come into their own. The West Highland Way is not technically difficult and is designed as a long distance path open to all normally fit walkers.Where do you park your car on the West Highland Way? ›
No dedicated car park exists at either end of the walk. There is free parking outside Milngavie railway station with CCTV coverage or you can park outside the police station. You should inform the police of your intentions and give them your registration number and emergency contact number.How many calories do you burn walking the West Highland Way? ›
During a 15-mile walk you're likely to burn somewhere in the region of 1,100 calories.What is the easiest section of West Highland Way? ›
Tyndrum to Inveroran (9 miles/14.5km)
This is quite a short and easy section of the route, which passes through the desolate, but strangely beautiful, moorlands. This is one of the most quiet and remote sections of the route with very little signs of civilization along the way.
The West Highland Way is a serious trail so it's good to have experience hiking long days on rocky terrain and in bad weather. You can walk the West Highland Way between 5 to 10 days, with most folks taking 7 days to complete it.Can you walk the West Highland Way in 5 days? ›
Walking the West Highland Way can take as little or as long as you would like – make it your own Way! Below is a selection of suggested itineraries ranging from 5 to 7 days stopping at the main settlements along the West Highland Way.
What are the best sections of the West Highland Way? ›
The best part is the north section after Bridge of Orchy to Fort William, especially Glencoe and Devils Staircase. To walk Bridge of Orchy to Fort William takes 16 - 21 hours depending on speed.What is the cheapest way to do the West Highland Way? ›
The cheapest option on the West Highland Way is to wild camp and prepare your own meals. I was happy to spend more on warm meals, but I tried to keep my budget at a low level for accommodation.How much height do you gain on the West Highland Way? ›
The highest point along the West Highland Way is at the summit of the Devil's Staircase which elevates you to a height of 548m above sea-level. If you walk the whole 96-mile route, you'll gain over 3,000 metres in elevation, that's just over 10,000 ft!Can you do the highlands without a car? ›
Public transport options such as bus routes are frequent, but to save yourself waiting at the bus stop in the cold, be sure to check online for bus times. If you're wondering about seeing the great sites of the Highlands without a car, you'll be pleased to know it is possible.Can you do the West Highland Way in 3 days? ›
In conclusion; the West Highland Way is definitely manageable in three days but it's hard going. Next time I would do in three days again but my overnight stops would be Inversnaid Bunkhouse, Inveroran Hotel and then Fort William. Or you could be sensible and do it in 5 days!Can you do West Highland Way in 5 days? ›
West Highland Way in 5 days - Itinerary. One of the most popular itineraries for the WHW is the 5-day trek. This trek, however, is one of the most demanding ones. We recommend this trek only to those trekkers who have trekking experience and are used to walking long distances for several days.Can you walk the Great Glen Way in 4 days? ›
The Great Glen Way can be walked in 4 – 7 days, staying overnight in the various communities along the way, and suits all levels of walker. For the most part the route is low-level and mainly follows canal towpaths, forest tracks and roads.Is 4 days in Scotland enough? ›
While this may sound like a short amount of time, it is often the way when you have limited holidays and want to fit in a visit to other countries in the UK and Europe. The truth is, you can see and experience a lot with just 4 days in Scotland.