One of the best ways to experience Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park is by foot and throughout the park there is an excellent choice of waymarked paths to enjoy.
Head to the south western fringes of the park and the Cowal Peninsula where you’ll find the magical Puck’s Glen. This stunning area forms part of the Argyll Forest Park and legend has it that fairies once lived here. Starting from the Forestry Commission car park at Benmore, follow the two mile trail through the glen and soak up the enchanted kingdom-like atmosphere. The path leads through dense trees up a steep and narrow gorge complete with rock pools and waterfalls.
From the glen, take the short journey north to Benmore Botanic Garden where you can wander through the impressive collections of rhododendrons and exotic plants from south east Asia and beyond. Visitors to the garden enter through an avenue of giant redwoods which were planted in 1863.
There are many other areas of Argyll Forest Park worth exploring, with many beautiful woodland walks which can be enjoyed at your own pace. From the woodland circuit of Kilmun Arboretum where you will wander through an area which features over 160 different tree species, to the waymarked paths at Glenbranter which are suitable for both walkers and cyclists, there are plenty routes to choose. Look out for the stunning carpets of bluebells in Glenbranter in early springtime.
Another beautiful forest walk, which is accessible for wheelchairs, is along the banks of Loch Long at Ardentinny. After the walk, relax on the loch side beach, one of only a few on the Cowal coastline.
If you’re looking for something a little more challenging, put on your hiking boots and head for the northern part of Argyll Forest Park and Ben Arthur, one of Scotland’s most popular mountains. Affectionately known as The Cobbler, Ben Arthur provides a great day of walking with a combination of stepped hill paths and steeper sections towards the top, as well as spectacular views across the Arrochar Alps.
Find more information about Argyll Forest Park from the Forestry Commission.