The South Loch Ness Trail

Running for almost 50km from remote Loch Tarff to the outskirts of the Highland capital, Inverness, The South Loch Ness Trail explores the varied landscapes on the quieter side of Scotland's most famous loch.

The first stage begins up and along a low moorland ridge from Loch Tarff, giving superb open views down Strathnairn. There follows a section with farmland and alongside rivers until reaching the village of Foyers - famed for its dramatic waterfall.

The second stage heads through forests - with some rugged going in places - to the hamlet of Inverfargaig. It then follows a tiny road up into the hills before crossing the Fair Haired Lad's Pass - a highlight of the whole route for its superb panorama over Loch Ness. The long descent to Dores keeps the loch in view for much of the way.

The final stage follows a low ridge towards Inverness, offering excellent walking with unexpectedly extensive views.

Stage descriptions Length Time Done
Loch Tarff to Foyers 16.5km 3.5 - 4.5 hours
Foyers to Dores 22km 5 - 6 hours
Dores to Torbreck 11km 2.5 - 3 hours


The route follows tracks and footpaths throughout, and is mostly waymarked, although some markers are missing on the middle stage.


Click to open our photo gallery


Loch Tarff is a remote location with no facilities.

Foyers is a small village with a shop, cafe and a choice of accommodation, including B&Bs, guesthouses and hotels.

Dores has an inn/restauraunt and bed and breakfast accommodation, but no shop.

There are no facilities at Torbreck, which is just outside the Highland Capital, Inverness.


There is no public transport to Loch Tarff. One possibility would be to get a bus to Fort Augustus and book a private taxi from there.

Buses from Inverness serve as far as the Knockie Lodge road end on the B862, part way through the first stage. They also call at Whitebridge, Foyers, Inverfarigaig and Dores.

Timetables for all the routes can be found on Traveline Scotland.

Users' walk reports for the South Loch Ness Trail

There are 27 Walkhighlanders who have completed the South Loch Ness Trail. To record if you have completed the route, you must register and be logged in. Our users have contributed one public walk report for the route.

Title AuthorDate walked Likes
  19/06/2015  3

Share your report for the chance to win gear every month

Share on 

Walking can be dangerous and is done entirely at your own risk. Information is provided free of charge; it is each walker's responsibility to check it and navigate using a map and compass.