As dog owners of two Border Collies (Molly & Rosie) we know how important it is to share your holiday with your dogs. When we first set up the hotel we visited some wonderful hotels around Scotland and discovered the joy of sharing these times with our own young dogs. The best trips were always where dogs were not only welcomed but provided for and so we decided we would try and do the same here at Knockderry.
We have always been a pet & dog friendly hotel and the surrounding area is perfect for walking and exploring. We are surrounded by stunning coastal walks and forest paths, energising hill walks and open countryside, ideal for a wide range of dog walks including some from the hotel. We have listed below a few example of walks that we enjoy and hope you will want to come and try them too. Maps are available at Hotel Reception.
Peaton Hill Forest Walk
Peaton Hill behind us leads to a magnificent viewing point of the Clyde coast and Loch Long. It’s a bit of a climb but not anything too strenuous. It’s a real favourite amongst all the local dog owners so do expect to meet lots of doggie friends on your walk. The walk is over a forestry commission track. The trees were cut down a couple of years back which now means there is an uninterrupted view of Loch Long and the Clyde estuary. To access the hill, park in the Peaton Hill Community Nature Reserve Car Park and walk over the road to the entrance to the Forestry Commission track. There is only one path leading up to the viewing point so you cannot get lost and there are some picnic tables at the top for you to sit and enjoy the view. It is a quiet area away from cars so you can be confident there will be no traffic or sheep.
Peaton Hill Nature Reserve Board Walk
In 2012 the Helensburgh and West Dunbartonshire Ramblers upgraded and extended the boardwalk path in the Peaton Hill Community Nature Reserve on the Rosneath Peninsula, making it easier for walkers to enjoy the wildlife haven. It’s not a long walk but sheltered on a wet day. Leave your car in the same car park as before and follow the path into the reserve. There are signposts but all you need to do is follow the boardwalk around and it will bring you back in a circle. It’s about a kilometre in total.
Coastal Shore Walk
If you just fancy a stroll along the shore then you can access the loch side from the hotel. On low tide (yes, we are a sea loch!), you can virtually make your way all the way into the village via the shore line. There is a picnic area about half-way along which will make it easier to access the shore if you want to come back up on to the roadside.
Hill Reservoir Walk
This was one of our favourite walks when the dogs were a bit younger. It’s also a chance to enjoy some wonderful scenery and possibly some wildlife too – but you will need some sturdy boots as it can be damp underfoot. You will also need to keep your dog on a lead as there can be sheep on the hills, particularly during lambing season. Park up off the main road to Loch Lomond on the A817, and make your way up the tarmac track to the reservoir at the top. You can make your way around the reservoir and extend the walk considerably if you wish.
The Three Lochs Way
If you are looking for a a long-distance walking route the Three Lochs Way has been recently upgraded and is in four parts.
1. Balloch to Helensburgh – 13.5km 3½ – 4½ hours
2. Helensburgh to Garelochhead – 14.75km 3½ – 4½ hours
3. Garelochhead to Arrochar / Tarbet – 19km 4½ – 5½ hours
4. Arrochar / Tarbert to Inveruglas – 9.5km 2½ – 3 hours
It has a railway station at the start and end of each section, except at the very end at Inveruglas where there is only a bus stop.
The West Highland Way
The West Highland Way is the first of Scotland’s long distance routes and remains extremely popular. It starts in Milngavie on the edge of Glasgow and stretches to Fort William at the foot of Ben Nevis, the nearest part to us runs along the eastern shore of Loch Lomond. The route offers a fabulous introduction to the Scottish Highlands, glens and lochs
West Highland Way: Drymen to Rowardennan
You can park in Drymen and make direct access onto the West Highland way. The path climbs through a section of forestry beside Loch Lomond before crossing moorland to reach Conic Hill. The view from the summit is quite breathtaking overlooking Loch Lomond and its islands. After the village of Balmaha, the route stays close to Loch Lomond on an undulating but very scenic stretch that leads on to Rowardennan. Please note that dogs are not allowed in the two enclosed fields on the approach to Conic Hill during the lambing season, which is normaly in April and May.
If you would like further details we recommend the following links: