Last weekend I traveled to Loch Lomond Shores in Balloch, which is the very southern tip of Loch Lomond. Loch Lomond is the third largest inland stretch of water in the United Kingdom. From the Loch Lomond Shores you can hike out to see the Loch, a castle, and there is a strip with cute shops, cafes, and an aquarium.
The travel there is super easy from Glasgow. I live in the West End of the city (sounds so weird saying that) so from the Train Station Partick it was just about 50mins to the town of Balloch. The train ride was so lovely going through the country side. It was the first time I had left the city of Glasgow, it was so exciting to see the Scottish country side for the first time, and it was just as beautiful as I had imagined.
Once we arrived we decided to head straight towards Loch Lomond, heading towards the castle! We were so lucky, it was such a beautiful day out so it was easy to explore!
The first view of the loch was absolutely spectacular, and it only got better the more we walked. The water was so calm, except for a few dogs that were splashing around. They also offer a boat tour of the loch that leaves from two different locations in Balloch, if you were interested in seeing more of the water. We were just happy to sit on the shore of the loch, but maybe another trip will be required to do the boat tour or to visit further north of the loch. About a half hour in there was a cafe and a little wharf. The wharf barely stood above the water level, so it almost felt like I was standing in the loch when I walked out to the end of it.
Up on the hill looking out towards the loch there is a beautiful little castle. The Balloch Castle was built in the 19th Century and belonged to the Lennox family in Scotland. Previously on this location there had been a castle built in the 13th Century, but it was demolished and replaced in 1808-1809. With my Early European and Medieval History background I am always so excited to see a castle of any shape, size, or age, so that was a major highlight for me!!
Just down from the castle was a beautiful little garden! From the way we approached the garden (this door below) we thought the garden was locked, and when we started to walk away in the other direction we noticed that the gate on the other side was wide open. So, naturally we had to wander in to see what was hidden in the garden.
The outfit I am wearing in this post is all from Gap Body (minus the leather boots, they are Clarks and my Nine West purse). I knew that I was going to be physically active, but knew that it was not going to be an intense hike so active wear and sneakers were not necessary for the slight hill we needed to climb up. This Gap Body poncho is one of my favourite items I have ever purchased from the Gap, it is so soft and it is so diverse. I can wear it with leggings, jeans, and even a dress. The black long sleeve is a Lux t-shirt, which is my favourite style of t-shirts that the Gap carries, paired with the basic Active legging.
For my first adventure outside Glasgow it was a lovely day, and I can not wait for more Scottish adventures to come over the next year!
Photography: Claire Paetkau https://clairepaetkauphotography.weebly.com