Known by many as the Highlands in miniature, Loch Lomond & The Trossachs have been loved and admired by poets and other visitors for hundreds of years. 

Being the first national park designated in Scotland, there is something extra special about the area, with its enchanting scenery of peaks, glens, forests and, of course, the dramatic and mysterious loch itself. 

Culture vultures can embark on The Great Trossachs Art & Literature Trail to experience the inspiration that William Wordsworth and Sir Walter Scott found here. 

For cyclists, the Sea to Sea route snakes through the area, while walkers can conquer the numerous peaks, including Ben Lomond. Cosy pubs and cafés can be found in historic villages like Drymen and Aberfoyle. 

Where to stay in Loch Lomond

Wake up to views of Loch Lomond at Milarrochy Bay C&CC Site near the West Highland Way. Alternatively, Trossachs Holiday Park sits on the south-east edge of the Trossachs, overlooking Campsie Fells.

After more ideas for where to go in Scotland? Our best caravan park in Scotland guide is sure to help!

What to do in Loch Lomond on Day 1

10amPeak performance

Serious climbers will know that the mighty Trossachs are home to no fewer than 21 Munros – Scottish peaks with a summit higher than 3000ft. 

But if your abilities are not quite up to scaling a mountain, you could instead explore the equally rewarding Conic Hill. 

Man walking on Conic Hill
Enjoy spectacular views of the loch on the descent from Conic Hill

Beginning from Balmaha Car Park, you can follow a moderate 5km route on a densely forested footpath, providing stunning views of the loch along the way. Retrace your steps at the peak, or follow the West Highland Way to the right to form an enjoyable circular route. 

You’ll follow the northern edge of the hill and come to the loch shore, eventually passing through Balmaha village. 

1pmLunch break

Before heading back to the car park, stop off for an excellent lunch at the Oak Tree Inn, in Balmaha. This cosy gastropub is an understandably popular pit-stop for hikers, fusing both traditional and modern in its hearty menu. Finish your meal with delicious homemade ice cream from the St Mocha Coffee Shop, just next door. 

3pmTake to the water

At the foot of Loch Lomond is the shoreside village of Balloch, often referred to as the gateway to the national park. From here, you can pick up a circular Island Discovery boat tour. The two-hour cruise weaves through the 22 islands and 27 islets of the magnificent loch, accompanied by an informative commentary from Scottish historian Neil Oliver. Adult ticket: £24.

Island Discovery sailing past Balloch Castle
The Island Discovery boat tour takes visitors past historic Balloch Castle

6pmTraditional dining

A short drive north of Balloch is The Cruin, a lochside venue with breathtaking views of both water and mountains. This inviting restaurant serves an appealing mix of Scottish delicacies and traditional dishes with an elegant twist. 

What to do on Day 2

10amWatch the birdie

Start your morning peacefully with a trip to RSPB Scotland Loch Lomond. The reserve’s wetlands are home to hundreds of birds, including ospreys, wood warblers and pink-footed geese. Stroll through ancient woodlands or along lakeside paths, all the while watching for woodpeckers, otters and red squirrels. The site is free to enter and has a car park. 

1pmLight bite

A scenic 30-minute drive from the reserve is Aberfoyle. With Loch Ard lying to the west, this charming village has a number of excellent shops, cafés and restaurants. Try The Station Coffee Shop for light bites, or the Aberfoyle Inn for a good choice of hearty pub grub.

Rowing boat at Loch Ard
Tranquil waters and rolling hills at Loch Ard

3pmOn your bike

What better way could there be to take in the sights of the Trossachs than on two wheels? 

If you don’t have a bike of your own, you can rent one from the nearby Aberfoyle Bike Hire (from £15 for three hours). 

There are several good routes starting at Loch Ard Forest Car Park, including the 4.5-mile Sculpture Trail, which traces the shorelines of Loch Ard, Lochan a’ Ghleannin and more.

Totem pole
Striking totem pole is just one of many notable artworks to be found on the Loch Ard Forest Sculpture Trail

 As you explore the woodland, keep an eye out for intriguing sculpture and local wildlife. 

6pmMagical menu

After such an action-packed day, it’s time for dinner – stop off at the Faerie Tree Inn for a well-deserved meal. Although not quite as mystical as it might sound, this historical pub is cosy and traditional, with a seasonal menu of British, Scottish and international dishes – including haggis fritters! 

Where to eat

  • Cameron House: Afternoon tea, fine dining or a hearty lunch followed by a cocktail at this elegant country manor overlooking scenic Loch Lomond.
  • The Clachan: One of Scotland’s oldest pubs, offering traditional meals, stone-baked pizza and Scottish favourites.
  • The Slanj: Set in a former 18th-century church, serving international dishes, including Scottish fare – and a dog menu!

Where to park in Loch Lomond

  • Conic Hill Car Park
  • Ben Lomond Car Park
  • Ben Venue Car Park

Head to our Best of British: Weekends Away section for more great touring ideas.

Lead image: Alamy

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