There are many reasons to visit Fort William and Lochaber, but here are the top 10.
1. The remoteness
Lochaber is home to some of the wildest and most remote countryside in the UK, so it’s a rare chance to really escape to the wilderness. Take a drive along the river Etive, cycle around the Ardnamurchan peninsula or hike into the mountains and experience wild nature at its finest.
2. The great outdoors
This area is called The Outdoor Capital of the UK for a reason. Whether your bag is climbing, walking, skiing, fishing, cycling or sailing, there’s an adventure waiting for you here.
3. The spectacular scenery
Whether you enjoy it from the comfort of your car or get involved, the scenery here really is a feast for the eyes. Take your pick from rugged mountainous landscapes and atmospheric lochs to brooding moors and spectacular sandy coastlines.
4. The impressive wildlife
It’s a great chance to see wildlife up close and personal in its own territory. During your visit, you could be lucky enough to see soaring golden eagles, red squirrels, pine martens and Highland cows, as well as dolphins, otters and seals.
5. The Highland hospitality
Scotland, and particularly the Highlands, is renowned for its hospitality. People pride themselves on creating a warm welcome for tourists and visitors, and you’ll often find yourself enjoying the craic (the banter and the fun) with friendly locals.
6. The freshest food
With an abundant natural larder, you can enjoy some of the best food from land and sea here, including Highland game such as venison, grouse or pheasant. Seafood lovers will rejoice – the lobster, crab, scallops and langoustines from this region are some of the best in the world, and here you can eat them fresh from the water.
7. The fascinating geology
The dramatic scenery of Lochaber is a product of its geology, and Lochaber Geopark is recognised for its outstanding geological heritage. The dramatic and varied landscape of Lochaber has a fascinating story to tell of ancient mountain building, fiery volcanic activity and glaciers carving out lochs and glens. Many of the sites within the geopark are world famous, such as the volcanic rings of Ardnamurchan, the Ben Nevis Caldera and the Parallel roads of Glen Roy.
8. The rich culture
This region hasn’t forgotten its past – and you can tell. Road signs are written in Gaelic as well as English and there are kilted bagpipe players around every corner, topped off by Highland favourites like the haggis, salmon and whisky that you’ll find on every menu.
9. The traditional music
From pipe bands to rousing folk music led by fiddlers and accordionists, this region has a long history of traditional music. Even today, you’ll find traditional Scottish bands playing in many pubs and hotels – and you’re likely to come across a ceilidh or two as well.
10. The Ben
Ben Nevis, or The Ben as it’s fondly known, deserves its own mention. This majestic mountain just outside Fort William stands at 1345 metres and is an impressive sight above the town. Views from the top are phenomenal, too – and how many people can say they’ve summited Britain’s highest peak?
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