Spectacular scenery and a wide variety of water sports are what makes Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park so popular. Being the largest stretch of freshwater in mainland Britain, it’s little wonder that kayaking and canoeing enthusiasts flock there. Sheltered from high winds, the loch is an ideal spot for beginners. Its position, in the shadow of Ben Lomond, makes it easy to get to. Canoes don’t need to be registered either, unless motorized.
The surrounding National Park offers loads of choices for canoeing and kayaking. There are plenty of open water lochs, rivers, and, for the more adventurous, falls and rapids.
For the less able-bodied, the Lake of Menteith Fishery provides a ‘wheelie boat’ for wheelchair users. Located on the lake’s east side, the facility enables those with disabilities to take part in fishing and boating activities. Visit www.menteith-fisheries.co.uk for more details.
Loch Lomond is also an ideal place to try windsurfing. Where you windsurf is, naturally, dependent on wind conditions, but the loch is one of Scotland’s more popular for the sport. Duck Bay on the west shore is one of the best launch sites, with Milarrochy Bay on the east. For safety reasons it is compulsory to carry or wear buoyancy or life jackets while surfing.
The Trossachs National Park also provides excellent fishing year round. Permits are required and are widely available throughout the park. Various fishing regulations are in place for safety and conservation and must be observed at all times.
Sailing on Loch Lomond is safe and fun. Parts of the loch have speed restrictions for motorised craft, so as not to spoil the peace and quiet. Its numerous islands, inlets and open water makes it ideal for a day out. For the more competitive, Loch Lomond Sailing Club organizes regular members race meetings year round.
A little further afield in the National Park is Loch Lubnaig. The loch is open all year and equally popular for non-motorised water sports. Like Loch Lomond, Lubnaig is sheltered so is ideal for beginners. Magnificent scenery, tranquil surroundings and few high winds makes this another haven for canoeing and kayaking.
To the west of the Park is Loch Long. This sea loch’s waters are warmed by the Gulf Stream and have become a firm favourite for diving. Beneath the surface, a fascinating and colourful world awaits. Its caves provide an open invitation to go snorkeling.
The Watersports Centre at the west end of Loch Earn caters for a wide variety of activities. If waterskiing or wakeboarding ticks your boxes, this is the place to go. The centre also caters for kneeboarding and even banana boat rides. Loch Earn’s shoreline restaurants and cafés provide a great way to end your day.
Covering 720 square miles, the Trossachs National Park is the fourth largest in Britain. Scotland’s first National Park, its 22 lochs provide some of the best watersports and contrasting scenery in Britain. Whether Highland or Lowland, the area is easy to get to and so hard to forget.