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Glenfinnan - the tiny village with an enormous history

Glenfinnan is one of our favourite places to visit. This is a magical place - surrounded by mountains on three sides and by the shore of Loch Shiel.

Glenfinnan may be a tiny village, but it has become world-renowned for several things. Firstly the story of Bonnie Prince Charlie's fight for the British throne gathered momentum at Glenfinnan where he raised the Jacobite standard and rallied his clansmen for battle. It must have been an amazing scene - 1200 Highlanders gathered at the head of Loch Shiel among the steep mountains, waiting for the Prince’s arrival from Loch Nan Uamh on August 19th 1745. Glenfinnan Monuement marks this site and the memory of the clansmen who fought for the cause. It was built by Alexander MacDonald of Glenaladale in 1815. The monument is now in the care of the National Trust for Scotland. The Visitor Centre is open April – October and tells the whole story.

The next icon you will immediately be familiar with, is the famous Glenfinnan Viaduct which carries the railway to Glenfinnan Station. It was designed by the famous rail and road engineer, Robert McAlpine, who became known as Concrete Bob. The viaduct at Glenfinnan carries the train across a 1,000-feet span, 100 feet above the ground. Another viaduct at Loch Nan Uamh was designed and built at the same time. Fascinatingly, it holds the remains of a horse and cart which fell into the concrete structure before it set. In the summer months, the Jacobite steam engine runs from here to Fort William and Mallaig and ordinary trains are available the rest of the year. The line from Glasgow reached Fort William in 1894 but was only extended to Mallaig in 1901 and is now considered to be among the finest railway journeys in the world, offering a perspective of scenery not available by road. Be sure to call into Glenfinnan Station and visit the Glenfinnan Railway Museum operated by John Barnes

And of course, the filming of the second and third Harry Potter books, 'Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets' and 'Harry Potter and the prisoner of Azkaban' took place in September 2001 and in 2003/4 with 'Hogwarts Express' calling at Glenfinnan. Pupils from Lochaber High School were dressed in wizard robes as pupils of Hogwarts Castle, the School for Wizards.
We think Glenfinnan is a very special place. We recommend you get Glenfinnan onto your itinerary and stop off and stay for a couple of nights.

Surrounded by towering mountains and located by the shore of picturesque Loch Shiel, there is just something very special about this place. It is well known as the location of the second Jacobite Rising in 1745. The Holywood production Harry Potter has created more interest in the village since the Hogworts steam locomotive came through the village on the Glenfinnan Viaduct one night....

Glenfinnan has an interesting visitor centre owned and managed by the National Trust for Scotland and we commend this to you. Walking out to the Monument by the waters edge is quite special - there's a real sense of history and real people... the weather somehow adds to the mystery and intrigue.

Each year in August, The Glenfinnan Gathering takes place beside the famous monument. This is a terrific day out and should not be missed.

Glenfinnan House Hotel is a must visit place! This amazing building has been a feature on the lochside for a long time, and the atmosphere inside is very special indeed. Almost every day in the year, the large open fire in the hallway warms and invites you to stay... Loch Shiel Cruises offers guided tours on Loch Shiel with plenty opportunities to see wildlife.

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Loch Shiel Cruises
For a unique cruise through one of Scotland’s most remote, beautiful and unspoilt landscapes, take a trip to Glenfinnan. Join local skipper Jim Michie on his lovingly restored 1940 ex-naval harbour launch, who will guide you along this magnificent loch while keeping a close eye out for Golden & Sea Eagles, Red Deer and a variety of Rare Wildlife.   A variety of cruises operate on the Loch. A morning 2 hour run takes you to majestic Glenaladale, former homeland of a notable branch of the Clan MacDonald who were prominent in there support of Bonnie Prince Charlie’s attempt to regain the throne of Britain for his father, the exiled King James. A superb view of the “Jacobite” steam train crossing MacAlpine’s famous 21 arch viaduct can be seen on this cruise.   A 1 hour cruise to the Prince’s Bay will give a you taste of the Loch and its stunning surrounding landscape.   An afternoon 2.5 hour cruise visits Gaskan, where the writer and naturalist Mike Tomkies found the perfect seclusion to study and record the wide variety of his beloved wildlife.   For a great day out go on the Wednesday Loch Cruise which takes you the full length of the Loch to the crofting community of Acharacle where you can have lunch before returning home. This cruise passes the “Green Isle”, ancient sanctuary of St Finan and burial ground for over 1500 years.   Sileas is available  for private charter, be it for weddings, birthdays, corporate or group outings.   Further details on the cruises & timetable can be found on our website.   Don’t miss the boat, this is not just a cruise but an unforgettable experience!   Timetabled Cruises operate on Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday Only. Private Charter Available 7 Days/Week April to November. ADVANCE BOOKING ADVISABLE.
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iPowerboat - Scotland's Premier Powerboat Center
iPowerboat is Scotland's Premier Powerboat Centre with bases in both Ballachulish and Kinlochleven. FAST BOAT TASTER SESSIONS! YES THAT'S RIGHT I YOU CAN BE DRIVING ONE OF OUR BOATS!! Want to try something different on your holiday? Or need that surge of adrenaline? Then come to iPowerboat! Our taster sessions will take you on a journey on Loch Leven and Loch Linnhe, and we will show you some of the spectacular scenery that the Outdoor Capital of the UK has to offer! Make sure you bring your camera! Our taster sessions may be great fun, but rest assured your safety on board our vessels is never compromised. All crew will be required to wear a lifejacket, it is your choice if you wish to wear waterproofs - we recommend it in this part of the world! Subject to weather conditions, you will be given a marine safety helmet - this will help you keep your eyes open in the rain - and they look cool too! All of our taster sessions are run on a request basis - we have no set sailing times, which allows us to be flexible! This does mean that we can become overwhelmed with bookings on busy days, so book early to avoid disappointment. PRICES One hour taster sessions are £75, and you can bring along up to 2 guests on board for the experience.  ABOUT US iPowerboat is an RYA recognised powerboat training centre in Ballachulish in the heart of the Outdoor Capital of the UK. Providing first class powerboat tuition, you can be sure that you will have a fun and enjoyable course with us! Being one of Scotland's largest powerboat training providers our instructors are trained to the highest standards. During the cold winter months, why not join a RYA theory course, and learn the advanced skills of marine navigation? All of our courses are run from our centre based in South Ballachulish, which is directly underneath the Ballachulish bridge!!! During the warm summer months iPowerboat offers a fun, exciting, and professional RIB ride service. All trips depart from Ballachulish - or a specially arranged trip can leave from Corpach near Fort William. Evening trips are possible subject availability and weather. Booking is essential due to boat availability, trips may have to be postponed or rescheduled due to adverse weather conditions. Please remember to bring warm and waterproof clothing - we will supply you with lifejacket's and other necessary safety equipment. The two most important things to bring with you are your camera and a smile!!! Specially arranged skippered trips are available, should you wish to be dropped off to a peaceful beach, and picked up again later during the day. We are also specialists in providing a commercial safety boat, escort service and commercial powerboat training. Our vessel and skipper are fully licensed, trained and insured to carry out this service. We look forward to seeing you soon! In the meantime please feel free to enquire today. You can also find us on FACEBOOK - www.facebook.com/ipowerboat RYA Powerboat Courses in Lochaber | RYA Theory Course | RIB Rides / Boat Trips | Skippered Charter | Commercial Safety Boat | Commercial Training
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