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For those planning a holiday in the Scottish Highlands during May 2015, Lochaber might just be the perfect destination. This large rural area contains the popular town of Fort William, which lies at the foot of Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain. Lochaber is one of the most stunning locations in the United Kingdom, with plenty to see and do. There are numerous glens and lochs, as well as opportunities for many summer and winter sports.

Lochaber Geopark Birds

Festival

From 16th to 30th May 2015, Lochaber will be home to the Wild Lochaber Festival. The festival has been running since 2012 and has the aim of highlighting all the splendour on offer in this picturesque part of the world. With such a diverse location, there will be plenty of activities for everyone. Nature lovers can enjoy the fantastic creatures and habitats of the area through a number of workshops that will be held during the festival. There are plans for boat trips, forest walks, rock and wildlife safaris, as well as a host of activities directed at schools. This is the first year that the event will take place over two weeks instead of one, so there will be even more opportunity for people to enjoy this unspoilt location.

Programme of Events

Go Wild on the Canal

One of the most exciting events for the 2015 Wild Lochaber Festival is ‘Go Wild on the Canal’. This event will take place on Saturday, May 16th from 8am to 4pm and will include activities such as boat trips, water walkers, and wildlife safaris. Visitors are encouraged to try out the kayaks and canoes as well as make some time to see the bird of prey display. The event takes place on The Caledonian Canal, near Neptune’s Staircase.

Throughout the day, a number of stalls will be available with experts who will talk about nature and wildlife. Those that want to take part in the Go Wild on the Canal event are asked to meet at the Banavie carpark near Fort William. The event is free and is suitable for all ages.

Visit the Wild Lochaber website for more details.

Seashor Festival

On Sunday, 17th May, the Seashor Festival gives the entire family the chance to enjoy Lochaber and all it has to offer. This event takes place in Glenuig, Moidart and will include activities such as storytelling, rock pooling, music, sculpture, and a seashore scavenge. The Seashor Festival will be running from 11am until 5pm.

Field Excursion to Cuil Bay

The Lochaber Natural History Society and the Lochaber Geopark have joined forces to stage a field excursion to Cuil Bay, which will take place on Friday 22nd May. It is expected that the event will run from 10am that morning, but exact details have still to be confirmed.

Castle Stalker Cuil Bay
Castle Stalker, just south of Cuil Bay

 

Ally Mhuic Butterfly Conservation Reserve Family Fun Day

The date for this event has still to be confirmed, but it is expected to run from 11am to 3pm on Saturday 30th May. As well as guided forest walks, there will be a number of activities and games planned for the whole family, making it an event not to be missed.

Canal Cruises

During the Wild Lochaber Festival, there will also be the opportunity to enjoy some fantastic canal cruises. On Saturday 16th May, there will be three sailings on the Caledonian Canal from Banavie at 10.30am, 12pm., and 2pm. Clyde Cruises offers guests the chance to enjoy a comfortable setting from which to enjoy the beautiful surroundings of the Lochaber area.

The 10.30am and 12pm trips take one-and-a-half hours and the cost for an adult will be £15. The afternoon trip is two hours long and is priced at £20.00. Kids go free, making it an ideal way to enjoy the beauty and wildlife of the area with the family.

As well as the comfortable seating in the cabin, full commentary is provided, and there is a coffee shop from which hot drinks and snacks are available. For those travelling with small children, a ‘Little Pirates’ activity sheet will keep them occupied. If you are lucky, you may get the chance to see Scotland’s Big 5 – otters, seals, red deer, golden eagles, and red squirrels.

Cruises run from Banavie; Clyde Cruises can be found past the Moorings Hotel at the top lock at Neptune’s Staircase.

Things to Do in Lochaber

If you are lucky enough to be visiting Lochaber during Wild Lochaber Festival 2015, you will find many events and activities to keep you busy. However, do not despair if you are visiting Lochaber before or after the festival, as there is always plenty to see and do here. Canal cruises run during the summer months and are the perfect way to sit back and relax while soaking up the tranquil atmosphere of one of the most beautiful places on earth.

When it comes to eating out in Lochaber, there is a host of fantastic restaurants, cafes, and pubs offering exceptional food. Traditional fish and chip shops are popular, and a number of bakeries are available, from which you can buy delicious pastries.

During the spring and summer months, Lochaber is home to a number of Highland Games and which make a great day out for the entire family. As well as the games, visitors can often enjoy exhibitions, live entertainment, and art festivals.

Hiking, cycling and fishing are popular activities in the area, and there are many walking trails that visitors can enjoy. During the winter months, sports such as skiing and snowboarding are popular.

Sit Back and Relax

Lochaber is one of the most beautiful places on the planet. If you are planning to visit during 2015, we recommend that you take a cruise on the Caledonian Canal. This will give you the perfect opportunity to take a breath and just drink in the glorious scenery all around you.

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