Loch Lomond has been immortalised in art and in song and is still a place to which visitors flock in their thousands every year. This stunningly beautiful 27.5 square miles of water continues to be one of the biggest tourist attractions in the whole of Scotland. The Loch holds the record for being the biggest single inland watercourse in Great Britain, and its location only twenty miles outside of Glasgow makes it easily accessible to all.
As with many of the waterways and lochs and Scotland Loch Lomond was formed during the last ice age through the movement of immense glaciers that tore gouges out of the landscape and then filled with melt water. The Loch was at one time at the meeting point of three of the country’s ancient kingdoms, those being Pictland, Strathclyde and Dalriada. The waters of the Loch contain thirty seven islands in total, some of which were at one time inhabited, they became the ideal place for early Christians to reside, away from those that would do them harm.
Sailing on the Loch
It is the western shore of the loch that receives the majority of attention from tourists to the area, especially the area around Balloch. This is where the majority of the boat trips out onto the loch are run from and there are a number of pleasure crafts moored here including a traditional paddle steamer called ‘The Maid of the Loch’. The village of Luss is perhaps the prettiest of all of the Loch side villages, it is located on the western bank, many of the buildings here have recently undergone restoration, but it is the views that the village offers that make it remarkable.
Spend some time along the loch side walking area and venture out onto the pier and you will find yourself with some uninterrupted and breath taking views of the Loch. Other villages of interest are Tarbet, Arden and Ardlui. The village of Arden boasts a haunted youth hostel which is probably the prettiest hostel of its kind in Britain, housed as it is in a rather grand building complete with turrets.
The Eastern Shore
The eastern shore has a number of hotels and hostels, and it on this side of the loch that you will be well placed to follow the West Highland Way as it makes its way northwards to Fort William. You will also find the starting point here of the popular tourist trail up to the mountain of Ben Lomond. The main village on this side of the Loch is Balmaha, which sits right on the edge on what is considered to be the very start of the highlands, in the area of Conic Hill. The summer season sees this part of the country filled with visitors many of whom come to sail on the Loch and make the most of the fabulous scenery that the region offers, and explore one or two of the intriguing little islands that have their home in the waters here.