Callander is a busy wee town situated on the river Teith, near Stirling and is often referred to as ‘The Gateway to the Highlands’ due to its geography as a historic meeting point between the Highlands and the Lowlands.
It’s a great base to explore Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park and Rob Roy Country, or even for a stop off on your way up to the Highlands. Fun fact – the town was used as the location for the original Doctor Findlay’s Casebook TV series!
Surrounded by mountains and lochs, you can easily base yourself here and fill your time walking, sailing, cycling and fishing. Bracklinn Falls and the River Keltie are worth exploring – there’s a great walk that will let you enjoy the surrounding scenery and out over the countryside towards Stirling. The name Bracklinn comes from the Gaelic word Breac, meaning speckled or tawny and refers to the colour of the peat-tinged water, and from Linn meaning pool.
To enjoy the Bracklinn Falls walk, park in the designated car park. You can leave from there as there is a marked path to follow. The path then reaches the river, follow it to the footbridge. The footbridge is the original cast-iron bridge, built for a visit of Queen Victoria in the 1870s. It was destroyed by flooding in 2004 but was replaced by in 2010. Further on this route there is another bridge to cross which would make it a circular route but be aware this is currently closed so you cannot complete the loop and must re-trace your steps.
If you’re looking for a more strenuous walk, try Ben Ledi which looks down on the town of Callander. At 879m this isn’t quite a Munro but is known as Corbett. There are great views back to Loch Lubnaig and across Callander into the lowlands. Further on the views over Callander are even better, with the Wallace Monument and sometimes even Stirling Castle visible, backed by the Pentlands on a clear day, whilst Loch Venachar comes into view when the ridge is gained. If you’re feeling energetic, it’s definitely worth it.
Being so close to Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park means you’ll find a variety of wildlife – including the Scottish Wild cat, red squirrels, deer and capercailzie. There’s also a lodge near Aberfoyle where you can use CCTV to watch Ospreys in their nests at breeding season.
The walks at the National Park are breath-taking. Whether you choose a lochside, forest or hill, you’ll be mesmerised at the surrounding landscapes.
With so much on offer it would be easy to forget about having a wander round Callander itself. There are lots of independent shops and a range of good restaurants and pubs in the town. A short drive from the town is Monachyle Mhor, a hotel and restaurant where you can enjoy some cracking food while admiring the views.
The Callander Jazz & Blues Festival is held in autumn each year and its confirmed dates for 2022 are 30 September to 2 October. Running for over 15 years, the festival has continued to grow, with the event featuring over 50 gigs across 12 venues, performing live jazz, blues, soul and boogie over 3 days. It’s a fantastic weekend of fun and music and well worth a visit. Autumn is a great season to visit as the colour in the surrounding hills and forests are simply stunning.
There are lots of campsites to choose from, but these are ones from our #haggisrecommends team are;
As ever, if you have any questions, please do get in touch. And if you have any recommendations or top tips you want to share, please let us know or post them on our Facebook or Instagram page!