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Fort William to Gairlochy

Fort William to Gairlochy

Distance: 10.5 miles/17 km

The Great Glen Way begins (or ends) at the grounds of the Old Fort in Fort William from which the town gets its name.

The first day of walking on the Great Glen Way leads you from the remains of the Old Fort along the historic Caledonian Canal, to the village of Gairlochy where most walkers spend their first night.

Regular train and bus services run between Fort William and Glasgow and bus connections to Inverness, allowing you to easily return at the end of your trip if required. With plenty of local shops and supermarkets this is the place to get your last minute provisions. Skirting the shores of Loch Linnhe as you pass through Fort William, the Way joins the Caledonian Canal at Corpach, then following the canal towpath to Gairlochy. This first section of the route is level and smooth, making it a good warm up for later sections.

Gairlochy has limited accommodation available and no shops. Many route users choose to stay in Spean Bridge, 4.5 miles away. If you don’t fancy the extra walk (and the return the next morning) some of the accommodation providers will arrange a pick up by car.

While travelling along the canal look out for the famous Neptune's Staircase, the longest flight of locks on the canal, as well as viaducts, original buildings and the hand operated swing bridge, remnants of the original construction of the canal, opened in 1822.

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