It’s one of the Highland’s best-known resorts, and once you’ve seen the dramatic setting of Fort William you’ll easily understand why.
With just over 10,000 inhabitants, the town swells as thousands visit the region every year to enjoy the skiing, walking and scenery.
Here are just a few of the best things to do in Fort William that will have you adding a new destination to your bucket list quicker than you can say “wow”.
7 reasons to visit Fort William in Scotland
7. It’s an outdoor-lover’s playground
You can’t come to Fort William and be bored – you just can’t. The town sits in the shadow of the highest mountain in the British Isles, Ben Nevis, tempting you to don your walking boots and hit the mountain path from the moment you arrive – but don’t expect an easy ride.
If you’re going to attempt the ascent, go prepared; wear the right walking boots, dress warmly, and expect to have sore legs for a couple of days.
Or you could cheat and hitch a ride on the cable car – either way, the views will be worth it.
6. It’s the setting for Braveheart
“They may take our lives, but they’ll never take our FREEDOM” bellowed Mel Gibson in the iconic scene from Braveheart.
With such amazing views on offer it’s no wonder that Fort William and the surrounding areas have attracted attention from film directors over the years.
Scenes from Braveheart were filmed here, Harry Potter was filmed nearby, and (spoiler alert!) 007 made the long journey to the Scottish Highlands to return to his childhood home, Skyfall, with M, for Judi Dench’s last appearance in the film franchise.
5. Its accommodation is idyllic
After all that fresh air and exhilarating exercise you’ll have earned a bit of luxury – and that’s exactly what you’ll find in the many stunning holiday lodges located in and around Fort William.
This large holiday house, overlooking the Grey Corries, is ideal if you’re looking for an action-packed holiday. It sleeps up to 8 adults and 2 children in comfort and provides the perfect base for you to explore the nearby Glencoe and Ben Nevis resorts.
4. It’s a magical place
You must set aside time to go and find the Steall Falls during your stay – they’re located just a short walk through the dramatic and beautiful Nevis Gorge, along one of the busiest and most popular paths in Scotland – but provide some of the area’s most stunning scenery.
Don’t let the signs warning of danger of death at the start of the walk put you off – seriously – the walk is an adventure, including rocky terrain, precipitous mountainsides and a rather wobbly rope bridge to get to the stream… but the views and the walk are both fantastic, well worth the effort.
3. It’s home to the Hogwarts Express
We can’t guarantee that Hagrid will welcome you at the platform but the moment you get on board the Jacobite steam train in Fort William you’ll be instantly transported to those famous scenes – the Hogwarts Express chuffing serenely across the 21-arch Glenfinnan viaduct towards a new school term and a whole year of adventures for Harry, Ron and Hermione.
Take the short train ride to Malaig and enjoy the wonderful scenery en-route, a spot of lunch in the town before heading back to Fort William for the evening.
2. The restaurants are award-winning
With the Nevis Range Ski Resort just minutes away you’ll work up quite an appetite on your visit to Fort William, which is why you’ll be thrilled to discover that the town is awash with fantastic restaurants.
The Crannog Seafood Restaurant, with unbeatable views across the Loch Linnhe, specialises in freshly caught seafood including oysters, salmon, Langoustine and scallops as well as fish cakes, venison and steak, and is popular with locals as well as tourists.
You’ll also want to stop off at the Ben Nevis Inn, which welcomes you back from your adventure at the foot of the mountain.
1. The views will stay with you forever
Who wouldn’t want to open the curtains to this?
Scotland boasts some of the finest views anywhere in the world with Fort William playing a major role in that reputation (rightly so).
And just when you think you’ve seen it all, take the gondola ride 2,000ft up the mountain and enjoy the amazing views from a whole new perspective.
If you’re as blown away with this area as we are, talk to one of the team today about the perfect holiday accommodation for your next family break.