Sir Walter Scott once referred to Loch Lomond as the “Queen of all Scottish Lakes”. What inspired the writer was the lake's incredible setting in what is today a national park. The 24 miles long freshwater loch – the largest in Scotland – offers a tremendous variety of water sports and other activities, such as hiking or riding on a paddle steamer. An unforgettable view awaits those who take the trouble to walk to the top of Ben Lomond (973 m/3,000 feet) on the eastern shore. The wooded glens of the Trossachs region northeast of Loch Lomond are also worth a visit.
Romantic castle on Loch Lomond
The original castle at the southern tip of Loch Lomond dates back to 1238, but there is not much more of this first castle than the moat. Until 1390 Balloch Castle was the ancestral seat of the Earls of Lennox and his family, who gained fame at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314. At the beginning of the 19th century, 500 metres further north, today's Balloch Castle was built in the Tudor style. Today it is located in a landscape park by the lake, which is part of Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park.
On the summit of the southernmost Munro in Scotland
Ben Lomond rises to an elevation of 974 meters (3,196 ft) on the eastern shore of Loch Lomond. Its name, Beinn Laomainn, means something like beacon or signal mountain. It is Scotland's southernmost Munro. The Munros are mountains named after Hugh Munro, who created a list of all the Scottish mountains over 3,000 feet (914.4 meters). The popular and well-worn path to the summit starts in Rowardennan, at the base of Ben Lomond. The summit offers a magnificent view of Loch Lomond and the Scottish Highlands. (5 hrs, 12 km, elevation change: 920 m)
An Art Nouveau residence
The villa situated on a hill near Helensburgh and overlooking the Firth of Clyde was completed in 1904 after a two-year building time. The architect was Charles Rennie Mackintosh, as whose most important residence it is also considered to be. Despite its young age and its friendly architecture Hill House is not protected from ghostly apparitions: At irregular intervals, a person dressed in black is said to drop by. In addition, the library often smells of pipe tobacco, exactly the kind the former owner Blackie used to smoke. On the opposite side of the street stands the gloomy Drumadoon Villa, also called “Hell House”, which has been abandonned for years.
Scottish Heritage Pass
Excursion boats on the Ice Age Lake
The dammed freshwater lake near Stirling has the elongated shape of an ice age lake. The 13 kilometre long but only one kilometre wide water body is the primary water reservoir of the Glasgow area. Ships running on petrol or diesel are not allowed on the lake to avoid pollution of the drinking water. The ship SS Sir Walter Scott has been offering tourist trips across the lake since 1899. Today, however, it has been converted to biodiesel. Sir Walter Scott dedicated the poem The Lady of the Lake to Loch Katrine, which was reworked by Gioachino Rossini into the opera La Donna del Lago.