Wednesday, 22 September 2021
Ardgartan (meaning the High Garden in Gaelic) is at the heart of an area of vast natural beauty. The forest of Sitka and Norway spruce is an ideal habitat for red squirrel, roe deer, buzzards and owls. Mixed woodland along the many small rivers and burns is home to otters, kingfishers and bats.
The trails offer great views for cyclists, walkers or horse riders. If you don’t feel like following the waymarked trails, just wander wherever you fancy... through the forest, across the hills or along the secluded loch shore.
A delightful stroll through the beech and oak woodland alongside the sparkling Croe Water.
Firm gravel surface with some grassy and uneven sections. Includes some exposed tree roots and very muddy sections. Two short steep slopes, a bridge and some broad steps.
Allow 1 hour
Watch for red squirrels scampering among the trees and listen for the many species of birds that live in the forest. Otters live here too: you might see their footprints or tail marks on the sandy shore, or if you're very lucky catch sight of one in the river’s large pools.
Forest rides, loch shore and a fun descent back to the start.
Mostly forest road with sections on tarmac. Long, moderate climbs and descents.
Allow 2 hours
Start by following the trail south towards the farm at Coilessan and round by the loch shore – you might just glimpse otters here. Then it’s a climb through red and roe deer’s territory in the shadow of Cnoc Coinnich before heading back down Coilessan Glen. Take a breather on the way to admire the view over Loch Long towards the Clyde!
The network of trails here is very popular with bikers looking for fun cross-country rides. They're good to walk along too. For an interesting route between two forests, try the link route between here and Arrochar forest.
There are public toilets at Ardgartan. There are shops and cafes in Arrochar village, a few miles to the east.
If you’d like more time here, why not book a holiday cabin with Forest Holidays.
Motorhomes and campervans that are self-contained and have their own toilet facilities will be able to stay overnight at the Ardgartan car park from 26 April – 31 October 2021. This does not include overnight tent camping or car parking.
To help plan your stay, please see the details below:
Please visit our Stay the Night page for full details, participating locations, best practice, and terms and conditions of use.
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.
Ardgartan car park lies on the south side of the A83 between Loch Long and the Rest and Be Thankful, 3 miles west of Arrochar.
If coming from the direction of Arrochar, ignore the 'Forest Holidays' turning; Ardgartan is ½ mile beyond this.
G83 7AS is the nearest postcode, about 1 mile along the road towards Inveraray.
Buses heading from Glasgow to Inveraray and beyond can stop next to the entrance to Ardgartan. Plan your journey at Traveline Scotland.
A scenic stop off on the iconic Rest and Be Thankful
Start your hillwalk up The Arrochar Alps