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Balnain

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Find peace off the beaten track near Loch Ness

If you'd like to get away from the crowds hoping for a glimpse of the Loch Ness monster, Balnain is for you. The trail here offers a good long spell of peace and quiet amidst the trees.

The Affric Kintail Way, a new long distance route linking Drumnadrochit on Loch Ness to Morvich on the west coast, passes through the site.

A few years ago there was a ‘North Shore’ mountain bike park here. This is now closed and the trail structures have been removed. You are still welcome to ride along the forest tracks.

Walking trails

Balnain route card (PDF)

Walking

Loch Meiklie View Trail

A long circuit through the varied conifers of Glen Urquhart Forest with a magnificent viewpoint overlooking Loch Meiklie. A fine long walk or great off-road cycle ride. 

Wide, firm but uneven gravel surface throughout. Long fairly steep slope for half a mile. Includes one gate.

Strenuous trail grade icon
5 ¼ miles / 8.6 km

Allow
2½ hours

Facilities and access

Walking
Walking
Parking icon
Parking

Life's essentials

You'll find toilets and places to eat in Drumnadrochit, on the shores of Loch Ness, or Cannich, near Glen Affric.

Car parking information

There is no charge to park in this car park. Please park with care and consideration. In particular please park in designated parking areas only and do not block entrances or gates.

More about parking

Getting here

Balnain is on the A831 between Loch Ness and Cannich.

Using SatNav?

IV63 6TJ is the nearest postcode.

Public transport

Buses run along the A831 between Drumnadrochit and Balnain. Check Traveline Scotland for details.

Get directions

Get in touch

Have a question or suggestion for improvement?

Phone
0300 067 6100 (option 1)
More contact information

Nearby forests

Man looks down from hill top at Craigie Forest, over valley towards Loch Ness

Spectacular views over Urquhart Bay from the crag named after a Viking Prince

Facilities and activities
Walking
Walking
Viewpoint
Viewpoint
Distance from 'Balnain': 2.00 miles
View over Loch Ness and hills beyond from Change House, with broadleaf trees with red berries in the foreground

Peaceful picnic spot on Loch Ness' south shore with views over Urquhart Castle

Facilities and activities
Walking
Walking
Parking icon
Parking
Viewpoint
Viewpoint
Picnic area
Picnic area
Distance from 'Balnain': 3.93 miles
Man and woman walk through tree lined woodland path, Farigaig forest, near Inverfarigaig

Towering trees, wonderful wildlife and spectacular views of Loch Ness’ south shore

Facilities and activities
Walking
Walking
Parking icon
Parking
Viewpoint
Viewpoint
Picnic area
Picnic area
Distance from 'Balnain': 4.56 miles