Fort William sits at the base of Ben Nevis and at the head of Loch Linnhe, the self proclaimed 'Outdoor Capital of the UK'. Indeed many of the best places to stay in Fort William are geared up to cater to just such a clientele. But Fort William isn't just for hikers, bikers, climbers and sailors. Glen Nevis, the glen below the mountain, has been a movie star several times over, in Braveheart, Rob Roy and the Harry Potter films, and this is a remarkable setting for simply relaxing and drinking in the view.
If you've ever dreamt of tackling Ben Nevis you'll have heard of Fort William. This is where walkers set out from - with warm clothing and waterproofs, please! Despite a couple of challenging stretches near the peak, Ben Nevis is a pretty popular summit. For a quieter mountain hiking experience try the Mamores, a range running southwards from Glen Nevis. And if you're here in winter you can also ski and snowboard in the Nevis Range.
If you're more mountain biking than hiking this region has hundreds of routes to offer you.
For something more sedate see the Loch from the deck of a cruise boat. The main boat leaves Fort William's pier at two hour intervals and takes a 90 minute jaunt around the loch. For added relaxation there's a bar.
Fort William's spectacular surroundings possibly weren't appreciated properly by town planners. The town itself is cut off from the beautiful loch by a busy road. So you do need to get out of town to make the most of it.
In town there's a pretty Hight Street where you can buy all manner of Scottish bits and bobs, the West highland Museum, always worth a look in, especially 'cause it's free, and the Ben Nevis distillery, where you can try a dram of the local single malt.
For a Harry Potter style experience, catch the 'Deerstalker' from London, the overnight sleeper leaving from Euston. The name comes from its popularity with shooting parties.
Still undecided? Browse through our list of all the best places to stay in Fort William, or contact, one of our friendly gurus for advice. Alternatively take a look at all our recommendations in the Highlands and Islands.
This stylish hotel is situated in the heart of the North West Highlands. Being the 'outdoor capital of the UK' there are a plethora of activities on offer. The in-house gallery has contemporary art on show and the award winning restaurant serves seasonal, locally sourced food. A great country escape
Set in the quiet village of Spean Bridge just 11 miles from Fort William and close to Loch Lochy. The four rooms are comfortable and tastefully decorated in a Scottish highland style. The restaurant serves up locally produced fare and the garden room offers the perfect spot for a quiet drink.
Victorian townhouse turned luxury guesthouse on the western edge of Fort William. Stunning views over Loch Linnhe to the Ardgour Mountains and more activities in the area than you can possibly imagine. Traditional yet stylish bedrooms with sumptuous bathrooms and views to die for.
Elegance, romance and old-school service in sublime surroundings at the foot of Ben Nevis. Imposing rooms with heavy curtains, chintz wallpaper, antique paintings and four poster beds. The bathrooms are the height of modernity. A multi award winning restaurant. The perfect country getaway.
Once the home of Lord Strathcona, this handsome country house is set in ravishing Highlands scenery overlooking Loch Leven. Family and dog friendly, comfortable, spacious suites, some with open fires and superb in-suite dining. There is plenty to entertain the hearty from fly fishing to walking.