Think of Scotland and you think of Loch Lomond and Loch Ness. Scotland’s abundance of water gives it some of its most spectacular and famous scenery. With over 32,000 lochs in Scotland to explore, from the famous to the familiar, here are my favourite loch walks in Scotland.
The best loch walks in Scotland
Looking for more loch walks in Scotland, here are plenty more to explore!
Map of loch walks in Scotland
Loch Lomond Walks
There are few places in Scotland more beautiful than Loch Lomond – and the best way to see the Loch is by foot. Here are the best walks around Loch Lomond.
More Trossachs and Perthshire loch walks
A visit to the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park is much more than a stroll around Loch Lomond. With 22 large lochs to to explore, let’s get exploring!
Loch Venachar Walk
Explore the forested banks of Loch Venachar on this 11 miles circuit with views over highland Perthshire. Stop at the Venachar Lochside cafe for lunch or a scone. Not got much time, visit the southside of Loch Venachar on this popular 4.25 mile forestry walk with great views.
Loch Katrine Walks
Lovely Loch Katrine is often viewed from the top of popular Ben A’an but it is also worth heading down to the water to explore, here are my favourite walks at Loch Katrine.
Loch Tay Walks
Located just 2 hours north of Glasgow and Edinburgh, Loch Tay is a great place to base yourself for a Scotland holiday. Loch Tay is one of my favourite lochs as whatever the weather there are lots gentle bank side Loch Tay Walks…
Loch Voil Walks
Deep in the heart of Perthshire just off the A84 by Balquidder, lies Loch Voil, a small loch just 8km in length. Climb up to Creag an Tuirc above the village you can see for miles. Nearby Mhor 84 serves food all day.
Loch Ness Walks
Loch walks in the Cairngorms
With forests pepper-potted with deep green lochans, forests home to ospreys, reindeer, pine martens and red squirrels, the Cairngorms National Park is one of Scotland’s two national parks. Here are my favourite walks around lochs in the Cairngorms.
An Lochan Uaine, the green lochan walk
Deep in the heart of the ancient Glenmore Forest and surrounded by huge Caledonian pines is the beautiful Lochan Uaine – where it is said the waters get their green hue from the local fairies washing their clothes in it.The 3.7 miles / 6 km walk up to the beautiful Lochan Uaine (The Green Lochan) is a popular walk for families.
Loch an Eilein Walk
To the east of Aviemore is Loch an Eilein (Loch of the Island). There is a gorgeous 4.5-mile circular walk or cycle around the loch – look out for Ospreys and red squirrels. The castle in the middle of the loch was built by the grandson of Robert the Bruce, Alexander Stewart. Walk Loch an Eilein.
Loch Morlich walk
Scotland’s highest beach at Loch Morlich is a huge draw on a summer’s day – and swimming in the loch gives you beautiful views of the surrounding mountains – watch out, the loch is fed from snowfalls on the mountains, it can get very cold indeed. The 4-mile circular walk around the loch takes you along the beaches with beautiful views of the surrounding mountains. Walk or cycle Loch Morlich.
Loch Muick walk, Balmoral
Explore this large loch on the Balmoral Estate with views of Glas-allt Shiel house, built by Queen Victoria. The walk around the loch is around 7 miles and will take 3-4 hours. Hike around Loch Muick with this walk from Walkhighlands.
Loch Brandy walk, Glen Clova
Starting at the Glen Clova Hotel, explore the glen by hiking up to the pretty Loch Brandy with stunning views of the stunning Cairngorms Plateau.
Highlands and Islands loch walks
Heading further north….
Loch Hourn Walk
At the end of Britain’s longest dead end road is Kinloch Hourn (also marked as Lochhournhead) a tiny settlement sitting on Loch Hourn.
The gateway to remote Knoydart, from Lochhournhead a path takes you out alongside beautiful Loch Hourn 6.75 miles (4 hours) to Barrisdale Bay or onwards to Inverie, the main settlement on the peninsula.
Loch Affric walk, Glen Affric
The 11-mile circular path around Loch Affric must be one of Scotland’s most awe-inspiring walks. Amongst the remnants of Scotland’s ancient Caledonian Scots Pine forest, the walk takes you alongside the River Affric, past Loch Affric and Loch Beinn a’ Mheadhain amongst huge surrounding mountains.
Behind Glencoe village hides a romantic lochan in a beautiful forest. Take a walk amongst the trees overshadowed by two of Glencoe’s most famous peaks; the imposing Pap of Glencoe which guards the entrance to the glen and Beinn a’Bheithir, the Mountain of the Thunderbolt.
There are three routes to explore, the woodland, the mountain and the lochan trail, a map is available in the car park and the routes are well marked. On a clear day, the reflections of the trees and mountains in the lochan are just spectacular. More walks in Glencoe.
Loch Coruisk walk, Skye
The circuit of Skye’s Loch Coruisk is one of Scotland’s most dramatic mountain walks. To get to the Loch catch a boat from Elgol to Loch na Cuilce. The circuit is boggy and has one ‘bad step’ where care is needed in bad weather, but this is a hike to remember.
More west of Scotland and highland loch side walks
East of Scotland loch walks
Loch Leven walk (Kinross)
Loch Leven near Kinross is a great spot to go for loch walk. Take a 13mile walk around Loch Leven along the Heritage Trail to the RSPB Loch Leven where along with the birds you can spot Highland Cows. In the centre of the loch, discover Loch Leven castle where Mary Queen of Scots was imprisoned before she was beheaded. The full walk around Loch Leven will take around 5-6 hours. Find out more at Visit Loch Leven.
Loch walks in Fife
South Scotland loch walks
Galloway Forest Park – Loch Doon and Loch Trool – the largest forest park in the whole of the UK is one of my favourite places to walk in Scotland. By day, take a hike around beautiful Loch Trool to find Bruce’s Stone under the towering mountains, or the short stroll up the gorgeous Ness Glen near Loch Doon.
Which is your favourite loch walk in Scotland?
I’m Kate – a travel writer and photographer living in Scotland. Love, From Scotland is the Scotland travel guide that shows you where to stay and how to get outside in Scotland.