Crianlarich is a village in Stirlingshire, 6 miles northeast of the head of Loch Lomond. It bills itself as "the gateway to the Highlands" but it's more like halfway down the hall, because it's distinctly Highland in nature. It's a tiny place (the population in 2001 was 185) but an important junction: routes through here date back to General Wade's 18th century military roads, and the railway divides for Oban or Fort William. It's also the midpoint of the West Highland Way long distance walking trail. Most visitors are just making a rest stop. The main reason to stay longer is the choice of nearby mountains, easily climbed.

There isn't a tourist information centre in Crianlarich, but the Scottish Tourist Board can be contacted online or on 0845 225 5121.

Get in edit

By road, have at least half a tank of fuel before leaving the lowlands - filling stations here are sparse and pricey. The north-south highway is A82 from Glasgow along the west bank of Loch Lomond then over the hill to Crianlarich, then on north over Rannoch Moor to Glencoe and Fort William. The east-west highway is A85 from Perth via Crieff to Lochearnhead, then over the hill into Glen Dochart and Crianlarich. Here it merges with the A82 north as far as Tyndrum then strikes out west towards Oban.

By bus: Citylink Buses 914/915/916/975 run 6 times a day from Glasgow Buchanan station via A82, taking 1 hr 45 min to Crianlarich. They continue either to Oban, or to Glencoe, Fort William, Invergarry, Kyle of Lochalsh and Portree on the Isle of Skye. The bus stop is at the Crianlarich Hotel.

Bus 978 runs once a day from Edinburgh and takes 2 hr 50 min via the airport, Grangemouth, Stirling, Doune and Callander, and continues to Oban. Otherwise change at Glasgow, for a travel time of 4 hours.

McGills Bus 160 / S60 runs from Stirling twice, on the first and third Saturday of each month. It takes 90 min via Callander, Lochearnhead and Killin, and continues to Tyndrum.

By train: Scotrail trains run four times a day from Glasgow Queen Street via Dumbarton, Helensburgh and Arrochar, taking two hours to Crianlarich where they divide. One portion is for Oban, the other for Fort William and Mallaig - both stop at Tyndrum the next village north but at different stations.

The Caledonian Highland Sleeper to Fort William leaves London Euston Su-F around 9:30PM to reach Crianlarich shortly after 7AM. The southbound train leaves around 1PM to reach Euston towards 8AM. Or you can take the Lowland Sleeper from Euston near midnight to arrive Glasgow Queen Street at 7:20AM, then a daytime train arriving around 11:30AM. Returning south you need to leave Crianlarich around 7:30PM to reach Queen Street by 9:30PM and wait two hours for the southbound sleeper, reaching Euston by 07:00; the later train doesn't connect.

1 Crianlarich station is just an island platform with no ticket office or machines; buy on board if your journey starts from here. There are toilets and a waiting room, and you might even find the tea-room open. Access to the platform is by a subway with no step-free route.

Get around edit

The village is small, but you need wheels to reach the mountain trails.

Taxi: Crianlarich Cars only operate Apr-Oct: M-F 8AM-8PM, Sa Su 9AM-7PM, shorter hours in winter. You need to pre-book on +44 778 7788 360.

See edit

Munros near Crianlarich
  • It's gorgeous in late autumn and late spring when the snowy hilltops glisten above rabbit-coloured glens.
  • The Old Mill, Killin FK21 8X (east via A85 and A827). Apr-Oct Su Tu 11AM-4PM, W-Sa 11 AM-5PM. Water mill in working order by the Falls of Dochart, with a small local heritage display.

Do edit

  • 1 Ben More is a Munro at 1174 m / 3842 ft. Common approaches are from Benmore Farm off A85 and straight up the steep ridge; or follow the burn of Allt Coire Chaorach then head for the ridge of Sròn nam Fòirsairean once clear of the forest. It's often combined with the Munro of Stob Binnein (1165 m).
Other Munros in this area are Cruach Ardrain (1046 m), Beinn Tulaichean (946 m), An Casteal (996 m), Beinn a' Chroin (941 m) and Beinn Chabhair (932 m).
  • West Highland Way is a long-distance trail between Milngavie and Fort William. The local section leads from Inverarnan (mile 40) to Crianlarich (mile 46, about the midpoint) then north to Tyndrum (mile 52).
  • Golf: Killin GC at the head of Loch Tay is nine holes.
  • Killin Music Festival is next held 20-22 June 2025, there's no event in 2024.
  • Killin Highland Games are held in Breadalbane Park in Killin, with the next on W 7 Aug 2024.

Buy edit

  • Crianlarich Store (Londis), Station Road FK20 8QN (next to Youth Hostel), +44 1838 300245. M-Sa 7:30AM-6PM, Su 9AM-2PM. General store and Post Office.
  • No fuel here! The nearest filling stations are five miles north at Tyndrum (where A82 and A85 diverge) or ten miles east on A85 at the junction for Killin and Loch Tay.

Eat edit

The station platform has no step-free access
  • 1 Rod and Reel, Main Street, Crianlarich FK20 8QN, +44 1838 300271. M-Sa 11AM-11PM, Su 12:30-11PM. Decent bar food.

Drink edit

  • Crianlarich Hotel: see Sleep. Bar open year round, walkers and outdoor folk welcome. Roaring log fires in winter.
  • Ben More Lodge: see Sleep. Traditional pub with beer from Oban Ales, Belhaven and others, and good range of malt whiskies.

Sleep edit

  • 1 Best Western Crianlarich Hotel, Main St, Crianlarich FK20 8RW, +44 1838 300272. Quiet comfy hotel with 36 en-suite bedrooms, dog-friendly. B&B double £100.
  • Glenbruar B&B is opposite Crianlarich Hotel.
  • 2 Crianlarich Youth Hostel, Station Rd, Crianlarich FK20 8QN, +44 1838 300260. Hostel fully open Apr-Oct; Nov-Mar F Sa only. Good value accommodation with a warm welcome, close to transport, dogs accepted. Dorm £22 ppn, room (sleeps 4) £94.
  • Craigbank Guest House, Main Street, Crianlarich FK20 8QS (next to Glenardran), +44 1838 300279. Pleasant welcoming B&B. B&B double £115.
  • Glenardran House, Main St, Crianlarich FK20 8QS, +44 1838 300236, . Friendly, clean and comfy B&B, open all year. B&B double £115.
  • Ben More Lodge, Main Road, Crianlarich FK20 8QS (opposite Inverardran), +44 1838 300385. Comfortable lodge hotel with restaurant, dog-friendly. Ignore the old website that says it's closed. B&B double £85.
  • 3 Inverardran Guest House, Crianlarich FK20 8QS, +44 1838 300240, . Charming friendly B&B at east edge of village, children and pets welcome. Also has self-catering cottages. B&B double £125.
  • 4 Lodge House, A82, Crianlarich FK20 8RU, +44 7436 037000. Clean welcoming place half a mile west of village. The owner runs the village taxi.
  • Tyndrum the next village north has a dozen or so B&Bs. Arriving by train, Tyndrum Lower is slightly nearer the accommodation, so be in the Oban-bound portion.

Connect edit

Angler on Loch Iubhair

As of March 2024, Crianlarich and the A82 from Loch Lomond have 4G with all UK carriers, but the signal is patchy further north on A82 or east on A85. Don't plan on getting any signal on the mountains. 5G has not reached this area.

Go next edit

  • Loch Lomond is easily reached on A82 south towards Glasgow, but this runs along the west bank and is always busy with traffic. There's no direct road to the more peaceful, scenic east bank: you have to circle around via A85 to Lochearnhead and Callander before approaching from the east.
  • Rannoch Moor is similarly skirted by A82 north to Glencoe. But to get in properly, you have to swing away east along Loch Tay then Bridge of Tummel before starting up the long valley.
  • Loch Tay is reached by A85 east, then branch off through the village of Killin. Ben Lawers is the big climb on the north bank.
  • Head west to Oban for ferries to several Hebridean islands - Mull is the most popular - but for Skye you go north past Fort William to cross via the bridge.

Routes through Crianlarich
Fort WilliamRannoch Moor  N   S  TarbetGlasgow
ObanTaynuilt  W   E  Comrie Perth
ObanTaynuilt  W   S  Tarbet Glasgow Queen Street

This city travel guide to Crianlarich is a usable article. It has information on how to get there and on restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please feel free to improve it by editing the page.