The Glen Affric Route: Scotland’s most beautiful Valley

  • Duration 8 Days / 7 Nights
  • Grade
  • Start / Finish Inverness / Gleneg
  • Distance 135 km / 84 miles
  • Trip Style Self Guided
  • Availability
    JFMAMJJASOND
  • Availability
    April - September
  • Price From $1,213

Overview

Discover Glen Affric, one of Scotland's most beautiful and enigmatic places. Take the route through the valley that begins between the rugged Kintail Mountains and the beautiful Loch Affric, located at the foot of the mountains of the Great Glen Valley complex.

Walk along the trails in the Kintail National Scenic Area, starting the route at the mouth of Loch Ness, in the city of Inverness, to continue to the town of Drumnadrochit, on the west bank of the lake and at the foot of Glen Urquhart.

Head to the village of Cannich and traverse the central part of Glen Affric, a national nature reserve with wild pines and one of the vestiges of the original Caledonian forest, which once covered much of Scotland.

  • Explore the home of Nessie, the animal that, according to legend, inhabits Loch Ness.
  • Get to know Glenshiel Hills also known as Kintail's Five Sisters.
  • Know the 12th-century castle where Shakespeare placed some of Macbeth's scenes.
  • You’ll find the menhir Cill Fhearchair, a vertical standing stone 1.75 m high, 2,000 years old, located in a cemetery.
  • Visit Glen Affric Youth Hostel in Alltbeithe, the most remote in the Scottish Highlands.
  • Visit Kirkton of Glenelg, an area of scattered houses overlooking the Isle of Skye.

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    Itinerary

    Services

    Included

    • Accommodation
    • Breakfasts
    • Information dossier with maps and routes
    • Baggage transfer service according to itinerary
    • 24-hour telephone support
    • Taxes included

    Excluded

    • Travel to Inverness and Glenelg
    • Breakfast at Glen Affric Youth Hostel
    • Lunches, dinners, drinks and snacks
    • Personal equipment
    • Baggage transfer to Glen Affric Youth Hostel
    • Tourist taxes

    Extras

    • Travel insurance
    • Cancellation insurance
    • Additional nights before, during or after the tour
    • Improved hotel room upgrades (if available)

    Accomodation

    General information

    The accommodations with which we collaborate have a private bathroom and all the necessary services to ensure the best comfort available.

    Our team checks in situ the quality of all the accommodations offered, so that you have an unforgettable experience during your trip.

    The accommodation that we will book for your trip will be selected taking into account our commitment to you: guaranteeing comfort, calm and enjoyment throughout your trip.

    We work with quality hotels and country cottages with limited capacity, so we invite you to confirm your reservation as soon as possible.

    The name of each accommodation will be provided to you a few weeks before your trip begins.

    Room types

    It is possible to book this journey in single, double or triple rooms.

    All rooms have private bathrooms.

    Map

    Travel & Transfers

    To get to the city of Inverness by plane, we suggest the following options: Inverness Airport, Edinburgh Airport or Glasgow Airport.

    By train: you can take one from Edinburgh Waverley station, (3 h 30 min), or from Glasgow (3 h 20 min). This option is the most expensive, so you'll need to book tickets in time to reduce their cost. The second option is to take a bus, which is cheaper, and the journey takes exactly the same as by train.

    Of course, you can also rent a car. From Edinburgh, the journey takes 3 and a half hours, and its main advantage is that it allows you to stop in interesting places, such as Perth. From Glasgow, you can take the A9 route and in 3 hours you will arrive in Inverness. 

    For the return from Glenelg, we suggest taking a taxi to Shiel Bridge or to Kyle of Lochalsh, where you can take a bus to Inverness (1 h 40 min) or Glasgow (5 h). From Inverness or Glasgow, you can head to the airport in either of these cities, depending on your next destination. 

    If you decide to continue the journey on your own to the Isle of Skye, you must take the ferry.

    FAQs

    This route is classified as a medium-high difficulty, so you'll need to have an active lifestyle and ability to travel wet, swampy and rather bumpy stretches. 

    Because of the above and that you will have daily walks on trails for 8 hours, we recommend physically preparing with a personal trainer or taking mountain walks several months before starting the route.

    Usually when starting or finishing a tour you will have to walk through a section of public roads, but don't worry, there is a good hard shoulder that will not allow you to be too exposed, except on the route to the Glen Affric Youth Hostel in Alltbeithe, planned for day 5.

    We recommend that you book as soon as you are sure about your dates, as accommodation can fill up very quickly in this area. 

    Once you make your reservation we will send you all the detailed information about the specific equipment you need for this route, considering recommendations for shoes, boots, clothes and a day-to day backpack. 

    You can start on this route all year round, but we recommend doing it between April and October, when the weather and temperatures are perfect for walking.   

    In the summer months, especially between June and August, mosquitoes (midges) proliferate, so we suggest applying insect repellent. During these months, demand is higher, so you must book accommodation in advance.

    In winter, since the weather can be quite hard and the days are much shorter, you will require more physical preparation, especially to travel on the most remote parts of the route. The weather, however, can change drastically even in short sections, so prepare yourself for adventure.

    This route is ideal for adventurers looking to experience walking, climbing and/or cycling along the mountain trails in the Scottish Highlands, while touring national scenic areas, national nature reserves and beautiful conservation sites: forest walks and open glen landscapes.

    An ideal route if you are a fan of exotic flora and fauna sightings: Caledonian pine forests, wintergreens and many species of lichens.

    You will be able to observe birds such as the black grouse, the great tit, the osprey or the woodpecker, as well as mountain cats and Scottish otters. 

    If you like photography or painting, the landscapes in Morvich and in Shiel Bridge village are spectacular, and have been cited as "one of the most picturesque areas in Britain".

    Yes, it's included. We will transfer the luggage between each accommodation according to your itinerary. Each person can take a suitcase up to 20 kg (45 lbs).

    You can call us to arrange a private transfer for you. If you prefer, you can also use public transport or local taxis to get to your next accommodation.