The Rob Roy Way starts in the picturesque village of Drymen, just outside Glasgow, and finishes in the lively tourist town of Pitlochry in Perthshire. This route follows in the footsteps of Rob Roy MacGregor, the legendary Scottish outlaw who made the area unsafe around 1700. The Rob Roy Way follows small paths and narrow roads and passes through dense woodland past the impressive Lakes of Loch Venachar, Loch Lubnaig, Loch Verdien, and Loch Tay. Along the way, you can enjoy the many views of the mighty peaks of the Scottish Highlands of which Ben Lawers is the highest. Alternately, the route follows quiet scenic roads and paths through the Scottish countryside where time seems to have stood still. Join us on this historic route and follow Rob Roy closely.
The Rob Roy Way is one of Scotland's 'Great Trails' and is 128 kilometers long, or 80 miles. The route runs from Drymen to Pitlochry. With an alternative, wilder route via Amulree, you can extend the route to a total length of 155 kilometers. Are you ready to follow in the footsteps of Scotland's most beloved villain? Let's go!
Looking for a walking adventure in Scotland? Here you can find all our trekking options, including the Rob Roy Way.
Origin of Rob Roy Way
Rob Roy became Scotland's most famous outlaw through circumstance. Roy is an Anglicisation of the Gaelic 'ruadh', which means red: Red Rob. Rob is not be confused with Robin Hood. His territory was confiscated and his surname was banned for 40 years after his death. Some considered him a hero because of his generosity to the poor, others saw him as a villain because he stole livestock. Rob Roy is buried a short distance from the route. Now - three centuries later - a long-distance trail bears his name as a tribute.
The route passes through places where Rob Roy and his clan were active, particularly around Aberfoyle and Killin. It also follows many of the tracks and paths that would have been used by Rob Roy, and the walk gives a good idea of the place where he worked, fought, and lived. For history lovers, the route passes many historic sites, including Roman forts and viaducts, crannogs (houses built on lakes), and standing stones, forts, and stone circles left by prehistoric settlers. Along the path, you'll come across military roads and bridges built by English troops during the Jacobite Rebellion, while locations of clan feuds and stories of Rob Roy's adventures add to the charm of this scenic walk.
If you book a Rob Roy Way package through Bookatrekking.com, you will receive a travel guide full of useful tips, as well as fun background information. View all our Rob Roy Way packages here.
Distance: How Long is The Rob Roy Way?
The Rob Roy Way starts in Drymen, where the West Highland Way also passes and ends in Pitlochry. The route is more south than the Great Glen Way, is 128 kilometers long, or 80 miles, and is divided into 7 stages. The route takes you through beautiful Highland scenery, through forests, along valleys and rivers. It also takes you past the places where Rob Roy worked, fought, and lived, and past Roman forts and stone circles.
Rob Roy Way: Weather and Best Season
When it comes to the best season to walk the Rob Roy Way, the weather is pretty much the same no matter when you go. You can see this as either an advantage or a disadvantage. In the Highlands, the weather is always bad. You can even experience all four seasons in one day... and it will certainly rain. That is the hard truth. Officially, the best time is in the summer months, July and August. During summer, the average temperature rises slightly and the days are longer. But during those two months, it is mosquito season and that can be quite annoying. A more suitable time is spring, i.e. May to June when temperatures are about the same as in summer, there is less rain and, most importantly, no mosquitoes.
If you need help planning your Rob Roy Way trip, you can find all our packages here.
Rob Roy Way: Map
Below is a map of the 7 stages of the Rob Roy Way, starting in Drymen and ending in Pitlochry.
For more detailed and interactive maps, we can recommend taking a look at our Komoot collection for the Rob Roy Way.
Rob Roy Way: Route From Day to Day
The Rob Roy Way is divided into 7 stages, starting in Drymen and finishing in Pitlochry. This route does not include the alternative, wilder route via Amulree, which can be done in one extra day.
Day 1: Drymen to Aberfoyle
The path leads you into the forest and soon crosses the West Highland Way. You pass the picturesque Muir Park Reservoir surrounded by open meadows. The path continues through the extensive Loch Ard Forest with its occasional sweeping views and on to High Corrie and Corrie Viaduct. The route continues via Clashmore Cottage to the ruins of Kirkton Church.
Distance: 18 kilometers / 11 miles
Walking time: 5.5 hours
Day 2: Aberfoyle to Callander
Today the path begins again in the forest and leads you eastwards to the Mentheit Hills. The path begins to climb until you have spectacular views of the peaks of Stuc Odhar and Ben Lei. You will also have a wonderful view of Loch Venachar. From here you descend to the banks of Loch Venachar and through the woods of Coihallan Woods, you reach Callander.
Distance: 15 kilometers / 9 miles
Walking time: 4.45 hours
Day 3: Callander to Strathyre
The path takes you past a former old Roman fort to the railway line along the south bank of the River Teith. The path leads you into the forest and passes the Falls of Leny, with the top of Ben Ledi in the background. You then walk through open meadows to the southern banks of Loch Lubnaig. From here the path ascends and gives magnificent views of Glen Ample, the Pass of Leny, and Strathyre.
Distance: 14 kilometers / 9 miles
Walking time: 4.5 hours
Day 4: Strathyre to Killin
Today you start by crossing the river Balvag, after which you walk into the forest. Then you cross the river Kendrum Burn and walk in front of Lochearnhead. The path ascends a little which offers wonderful views of the long stretched Loch Tay, Ben Lawers, and Killin.
Distance: 20 kilometers / 13 miles
Walking time: 6 hours
Day 5: Killin to Ardtalnaig
Today the path starts right away with ascending through the forest, where you'll find the small reservoir Lochan Breachlaich, along with beautiful views over Loch Tay with the summit of Ben Lawers in the background. Please note that the path can be a little boggy in places.
Distance: 19 kilometers / 12 miles
Walking time: 6 hours
Day 6: Ardtalnaig to Aberfeldy
The path follows the banks of Loch Tay and at Acharn, you will ascend past the Falls of Acharn. The path now continues on the open hillside (also known as the Queen's Drive) and gives great views of the peaks of Ben Lawers, Meal Garbh, and Meal Geigh. You then pass Kenmore which lies down on the banks of the Lach Tay, with Taymouth Castle.
Distance: 23 kilometers / 15 miles
Walking time: 7 hours
Day 7: Aberfeldy to Pitlochry
You first follow a wooded path along the River Tay until you reach Garandfully. Here you cross the river to Strathtay. The path continues through the Dunfallandy Hills, into woodland, and passes a historic stone circle. The path then descends to the River Tummel and you finish over the bridge in the center of Pitlochry.
Distance: 15 kilometers / 9 miles
Walking time: 5 hours
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Rob Roy Way Accommodation
On the Rob Roy Way, you can either spend the night in a cozy hotel in a small town or camp on one of the various campsites along the way. Wild camping along the Rob Roy Way is also an option. However, accommodation options can sometimes be limited. The problem with the Rob Roy Way is that the stages usually start and end in very small towns, where there are usually only 1, 2 or maybe 3 accommodation options. The Rob Roy Way is a popular trek in Scotland and welcomes thousands of trekkers every year. Organizing the stages and booking accommodation should not be taken lightly. Hotels can be fully booked months in advance.
Do you need help arranging your accommodation on Rob Roy Way? Here you can find all our packages including accommodation.
Luggage Transport on the Rob Roy Way
The Rob Roy Way is a very popular trek that attracts thousands of tourists every year. Thanks to its popularity, there is always a possibility of transporting your luggage. Your suitcase will be collected from your hotel each morning and waiting for you at your next hotel at the end of the day. Pretty convenient, right?
The luggage transfer is included in our Rob Roy Way tour. Find all our options here!
Walking the Rob Roy Way: Starting and Ending Point
The Rob Roy Way starts in Drymen and ends in Pitlochry. The path is traditionally walked from south to north, although it can also be done in the opposite direction. Both Drymen and Pitlochry are reachable by public transport.
To get to Drymen, the easiest option is to take a plane, train, or bus to Glasgow. From there it takes about 2 hours by train and bus to get to Drymen. Drymen has a long history of tourism. In the 18th and 19th centuries, Drymen was a popular stopping place for Highland cattle drivers. Nowadays, this no longer happens, but Drymen is just as touristy as it was then! There are several restaurants, churches, and the ruins of Buchanan Castle.
The Rob Roy Way ends in Pitlochry. From here, you can return to Glasgow by train and bus in about 3.5 hours.
Need advice on transport along the Rob Roy Way? Our trekking experts help hundreds of walkers each year to arrange their walking arrangements and we would be happy to help you too. Get in touch with us and enjoy your walking holidays free of stress!
Recommendations for Your Packing List
On the Rob Roy Way, being prepared for the changing weather is paramount. Scotland has a very diverse climate and you may experience all four seasons in one day! With this in mind, it’s essential to pack clothing, footwear, and accessories suitable for changing weather conditions. Try to base your clothing on the "three-layer" principle. This consists of a base layer, which will absorb the moisture from your skin; a middle layer, which should provide some warmth; and a waterproof outer layer to protect you from the rain and the wind. Here are our recommendations for your Rob Roy Way walk:
- Trousers, waterproof, lightweight, and quick-drying
- Shirts for a base layer
- Warm jacket or pullover for a middle layer
- Waterproof jacket
- Warm hat and gloves
- Trekking boots, worn in
- Good quality socks
- Extra footwear for the night
- Waste bags
- Whistle to summon assistance in case of accidents
- Water bottle containing enough water to take you to your next stop
- Torch (preferably a head-torch) with spare bulb and batteries
- Emergency food and snacks (high energy snacks such as chocolate, dried fruit, energy bars, etc.)
- Hiking poles
- First aid kit
Where Do I Book This Trek?
If you want to hike the Rob Roy Way without a care in the world, Bookatrekking.com is the place to go. Do you want to stay in comfortable rooms, receive local tips for romantic dining, a tailor-made route, not have to care about luggage transportation, and just enjoy yourself to the fullest? Then choose one of our Bookatrekking.com packages. Contact our Trekking Experts today for free advice!
Are you looking for a different route or walking area in the British Isles? Then have a look at one of our other informative blog posts:
- Walking in England
- Walking in Ireland
- Walking in Scotland
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