Fort William and Glenfinnan Viaduct
Just a half hour or so bus tour north-west from the majesty of Glencoe is Fort William, recently earning the title ‘The Outdoor Capital of the UK’ for its diversity of outdoor pursuits. This welcoming tourist centre lies at a key access point for those exploring the highlands and islands of Scotland. The town lies on the shores of Lich Linnhe, nestled at the foot of Ben Nevis and just minutes from Glen Nevis. Glencoe lies to the south, the peak of Aonach Mor to the north, and Glenfinnan lies to the west, offering the onward Road to the Isles and a new landscape.
Heading west, on the banks of Loch Shiel lies the historic village of Glenfinnan. Perhaps familiar to fans of Highlander only as the home of fictional characters Connor and Duncan Macleod, this village played a very real part in Scotland’s heritage. It was here that the 1745 Jacobite uprising began, when Bonny Prince Charlie arrived on the Scottish mainland from France and raised his standard, unfolding a momentous chapter in the nation’s history that ended on Culloden Moor.
These days, visitors come to Glenfinnan to cruise the freshwater loch, spot golden and white-tailed eagles, hen harriers and osprey, and to gaze upwards at the 21 arches of the Glenfinnan Viaduct, immortalised by Harry Potter’s famous ‘Hogwarts Express’.