Loch Lomond’s bonnie banks are spectacular, but to see its true beauty you need to get up high. Here are my favourite Loch Lomond Walks with the best views.
The Glen Striddle Horseshoe
Loch Lomond contains over 30 islands and the best view of them is from above the village of Luss. Climb Beinn Dubb (The Black Mountain) to spot the islands of Inchlonaig, with its yew trees planted by Robert the Bruce, Inchconnachan, home to wallabies and once home to many illicit whisky stills and Inchtavanach, the Monk’s Island, steeped in religious history. You don’t need to climb high up Beinn Dubh for the view, but if you have more time and energy the Glen Striddle Horseshoe is a fine walk.
Loch Lomond Walks – Glen Striddle Horseshoe
- Park at the main Luss carpark off the A82.
- Height / Distance – as high up as you’d like to get! The full horseshoe is 7.25 miles.
- Difficulty – easy to medium
- Walk the Glen Striddle Horseshoe
A slightly longer walk (11. 5 miles) with a similar view is to climb Doune Hill and Beinn Eich also walked from the village of Luss.
Hike Conic Hill for Coos and Views
A popular Sunday stroll with Glasgow’s day trippers, Conic Hill is one of Loch Lomond’s iconic viewpoints. Sitting on the Highland Boundary Fault which marks the boundary between the lowlands and the mountainous highlands of Scotland, the Conic Hill is climbed from the village of Balmaha. The path takes you on part of the West Highland Way, past a herd of docile Highland Coos, for an incredible view back over the loch to Luss.
Loch Lomond Walks – Conic Hill
- Park at Balmaha, be warned on a sunny day the car park will be jam-packed.
- Height/Distance – 350m / 2 ½ miles
- Difficulty – easy to medium
- Climb Conic Hill
An easier walk for short legs is up Duncryne Hill (otherwise known as the Dumpling) with its view of Loch Lomond reached in only 40 minutes from Gartocharn.
Bag the Beacon – Ben Lomond
Challenging Ben Nevis for Scotland’s most popular hill climb, Ben Lomond (‘Beacon Mountain’) is tackled by around 30,000 people each year. However, you don’t need to climb far up the ‘tourist path’ before views of the north end of the loch are revealed, but it is worth climbing to the summit for an incredible view of the whole loch. My favourite views of Loch Lomond are actually from the Ptarmigan Ridge next to Ben Lomond. The path is rockier and tougher, but the views from the descent are beautiful.
Loch Lomond Walks – Ben Lomond
- Park at Rowardennan, be warned in summer the car park can fill up quickly.
- Height / Distance – 974m / 7.5 miles
- Difficulty – hard
- Climb Ben Lomond
The ‘Big Hills’ – Ben More & Stob Binnein
Ben More (‘Big Hill’) is a huge cone towering about Crianlarich and the path up the front is relentlessly steep. For a slightly easier climb head along the path through the glen to the bealach (the pass between two hills) between Ben More and its neighbour Stob Binnein. From the top of the bealach you can climb up to both hills for views across the National Park to Loch Lomond and to neighbouring Ben Lui, one of southern Scotland’s best mountains.
Loch Lomond Walks – Ben More
- Park by Ben More Farm, there is a small layby on the A85.
- Height / Distance – 1,174m,
- Difficulty – very hard – 7.5 miles
- Climb Ben More and Stob Binnein
The best view of the bay from Ben Vorlich
The ‘Arrochar Alps’ stand tall above the north end of Loch Lomond and from the loch the mighty Ben Vorlich (‘Hill of the Bay’) is the most dramatic. Climbed from the hydroelectric dam at Loch Sloy, be warned, the hike up Ben Vorlich is very steep and boggy and leads you up a series of false summits. However, all that effort is seriously worth it – the view across Loch Lomond, to Ben Lomond and to the rest of the Arrochar Alps is simply stunning. For Munro Baggers, the trig point at 941m isn’t actually the top of Ben Vorlich, 943m is marked by a cairn further up the summit plateau.
Loch Lomond Walks – Ben Vorlich
- Park at Inverarnan Car Park (£4 per day)
- Height / Distance – 943m / 8.5 miles
- Difficulty – very hard
- Climb Ben Vorlich (Don’t be confused by the other Ben Vorlich by Loch Earn!)
Before heading out into the hills make sure you are prepared – read my guide to hill walking in Scotland, which includes safety tips for bagging a Munro, clothing advice and more Munros to climb. Winter hill walking is only recommended for those with experience. Check MWIS for the mountain forecast before you head out into the hills.
Love, from Scotland x