Many of our treks in Scotland start in Fort William, the Outdoor Capital of the UK. Therefore, we are frequently asked by our customers “What is the best way to get to Fort William?”. Hopefully this blog post will not only be useful to our own customers, but to anyone travelling to Fort William. After all, this small town is the gateway to Ben Nevis, The East Highland Way, The Great Glen Way and The Cape Wrath Trail.
You can, of course, drive to Fort William. If you are heading up from the south (as many are) there are two main options. Once you are near Glasgow you can either choose to go the A82 route or the A84 route. Both have their own benefits and disadvantages. The A82 will take you along “The Loch Lomond Road”, this is a stunning but very difficult road to drive. As the name suggests, you will drive along the side of Loch Lomond as far as Crianlarich and in theory this is the fastest option. However, due to the twisting, narrow, busy nature of this road, littered with wing mirrors and hub caps, it can be a little stressful at times. An alternative is to head up the M80 and M9 towards Stirling, follow the A84 to Lochearnhead and then re-join the A82 at Crianlarich. This is a less pretty but much easier drive. So a useful alternative for those who are concerned about the Loch Lomond section of the A82. From Crianlarich the two routes combine to head through Tyndrum, Glencoe and finally Fort William.
There is a train station in Fort William. You can book tickets at www.thetrainline.com. While this can be useful to many, the trains don’t always get to Fort William as frequently as the coach. So it is best to check.
Fort William also has a coach station. The Citylink Bus (www.citylink.co.uk) is a great way to travel from Glasgow to Fort William. It is often more frequent then the train, and it is often quicker too! Do be aware you can only book tickets online about 6 weeks in advance, so do not panic if you are unable to book your tickets any earlier.
If you are planning to fly to Fort William, the most popular option is to fly to Glasgow. From there we would recommend the Citylink Bus as the fastest and most frequent way to continue on to Fort William. However, do seriously consider the often overlooked Inverness Airport too! The Citylink Bus goes very frequently from Inverness to Fort William and it is about 90 minutes quicker. However, you will need to get a taxi (www.inverness-taxis.com) from the airport to the coach station since it is about a 15 minute drive.
Travelling to Fort William from London
Many of our customers are from overseas or from London itself. Therefore, for those travelling to Fort William from London or flying into the UK the simplest and fastest way to get to Fort William would be one of the following:
Fly to Inverness, get a taxi to the coach station and the Citylink Coach to Fort William. You can fly to Inverness from London in 90 minutes, the taxi into the city will take about 15 minutes and the coach will take 2 hours. So you could realistically travel from London to Fort William in around 5 hours. This is much faster (and often cheaper) than the 10 hour drive.
If you would prefer to fly to Glasgow then you can do so in about 1 hour 15. From here you should get the Citylink bus, which takes around 3 and a half hours.
Please note, all the information above was correct at the time or writing. However, do make sure you research your options carefully, since this could certainly change in time.