From the junction leading into Black Rock Cottage, the turn-off to our next destination Glen Etive, is just 1.6 miles ahead. When you’re driving north on the A82, the distraction of the beautiful mountain scenery is so breathtaking that it’s easy to miss the next junction. It is marked by just a small signboard but you’ll have no problem finding it on Google map. This will be one of the most scenic detours in the North West Highlands and well worth the drive. The scenery is simply superb and as soon as the A82 is out of sight, a sense of calm sets in.
Glen Etive is a narrow valley in the Highlands of Scotland. A single track road leads from highway A82 down south to Glen Etive. This road ls also known as the ‘road to nowhere’. It meanders for about 14 miles to a dead end at Loch Etive. There are numerous passing places where you can stop to take photos to record your memory. For most of the drive, the road is often close to river Etive that forms numerous pools and picturesque waterfalls as it courses down to the Loch and eventually towards the sea.
Allow yourself plenty of time as you slow drive along the valley to absorb the superb scenery along the way. There’s absolutely stunning landscape throughout. This is our first experience where on both sides, we were flanked by huge majestic mountains that seems to squeeze you. Literally, you’ll be driving in a narrow strip of valley. If you are a James Bond fan, try to recreate a scene from the film “Skyfall” shot within the vicinity.
On your way back along the same road, soak in all of the amazing scenery completely from a different perspective. You will return from Glen Etive back to the A82 highway with a heavy heart and a sense of regret. Back to the busy world on A82, you feel being robbed of something so serene and tranquil.
About 4½ miles from exiting the junction heading toward the town of Glencoe is ‘The Meeting of the Three Waters’ waterfall just besides the A82. It’s not signposted and located after a series of bends after a bridge. Parking spot is available before the bridge and a keen eye will ensure you’ll not miss this spot. You can type in ‘Glencoe Waterfall’ into Google map to find it. The waterfall isn’t one that is spectacular falling off a high cliff but alas, it’s still beautiful to admire and photograph.
Continuing our drive north, you’ll find the ‘Three Sisters’ mountain range. The ‘Three Sisters’ is in the Scottish Highlands residing off A82 about a mile from the ‘The Meeting of the Three Waters’ waterfall heading towards the town of Glencoe. This part of Scotland is filled with rolling hills and waterfalls as we have just seen earlier. You can pull your car over into one of the two parking areas and enjoy a few minutes of serenity before proceeding with your drive.
We reached Fort William by mid afternoon and checked into Premier Inn. This is the first time we will be staying at Premier Inn which in our opinion is comparable to Travelodge. The deciding factor in choosing Premier Inn is it offers free parking. Check-in was super fast, room was spacious and best of all, is the free, fast & stable wi-fi. It’s located within a short walking distance to Morrisons, a hyper market and Fort William train station where you can board the Jacobite steam train. Will definitely recommend and stay again at Premier Inn.