One of the great advantages of visiting Loch Awe is that, as Scotland’s longest loch, there’s a huge amount of countryside to explore nearby. So while sightseeing and a range of more sporting activities are very much on offer, there’s also ample opportunity to simply wander in the hills and woods of Argyll.
On the west side of Loch Awe, the River Avich descends from the small loch of the same name, flowing into Loch Awe by way of the ancient Dalavich oakwood forest and a spectacular set of waterfalls. Follow the blue trail (1.5 miles/2.5km) to reach the falls, or the red one to see more of the woods as well as lovely views of Loch Awe. This is easily one of the most spectacular and unexplored walks in mid-Argyll.
A little inland from Loch Awe, the Glen Nant Nature Reserve offers a gentle trail by the river Nant (red markers, 0.25 miles/0.4 km) and a more challenging walk uphill through oakwoods (white markers, 2 miles/3.5 km).
For those looking to take on a lengthier walk, the old drovers’ road from Durran on the east shore of Loch Awe to Furnace on the west side of Loch Fyne, is a great choice. Once the route of cattle being taken between the two villages, this cross country path is around 7 miles (11 km) long and winds through forests and open countryside. Walk this trail at dusk and you might see the friendly ‘white lady’ ghost rumoured to haunt the pathway down to Durran.
Walking in the Loch Awe area is also a wonderful way to spot some of the diverse local wildlife, including deer, pine martens, red squirrels, woodpeckers and, particularly in Glen Nant, butterflies and wood ants.
You can get even closer to nature, with a falconry experience at Kintail Wild Birds of Prey near Eredine Village on the South East side of the loch.
And of course, what trip to the Scottish Highlands would be complete without seeing the world famous and iconic Highland Cows? Visit Cladich Fold near the northern end of Loch Awe’s east side and you can’t miss these colourful cattle in the fields nearby!