Size:

163.22 ha (403.32 acres)

Grid reference:

NH575357

Map reference:

Explorer 416

OS Landranger 26

In an area steeped in mystery and wonder, with jaw-dropping views over Loch Ness and rare and exciting wildlife, Abriachan Wood has something to offer everyone.

Explore its past with an historical trail, look out for wild and remarkable animals found only in this part of the UK, and take in the spectacular beauty of Loch Ness.

Features

  • Parking nearby
  • Public access
  • Autumn colour
  • Spring flowers
  • Waymarked walk
  • Moorland
  • Broadleaved woodland

How to get to Abriachan Wood

Set in a breathtaking location in the Great Glen, Abriachan Wood covers a 5km (3.1-mile) stretch of the north-western shore of Loch Ness between Drumnadrochit and Inverness. The wood lies close to the village of Abriachan and has a prominent position on the steep and rocky valley side above the loch.

From Inverness, take the A82 south-west. Abriachan Wood is approximately  19km (12 miles) from the city centre.

The nearest train station is Inverness, around 19km (12 miles) from Abriachan Wood.

Visit National Rail for more information.

Buses from either direction stop close to the woods at the Clansman Hotel, on the A82 road.

More information and timetables can be found on Traveline.

Facilities and access

The wood lies on both sides of a minor road that leaves the A82 and heads uphill to the village of Abriachan.

In the southern section of woodland on the south side of the Abriachan road, there is a 3.4km (2 miles) network of grassy paths which are steep in places.

The northern section is steep and rocky with no public access available.

The main entrance to the wood is from Abriachan Gardens at the northern end of the wood’s southern section. You can also enter from the Clansman Hotel, which is at Brackla, by the main A82 at the wood’s southern end. There is an entrance track from Balchraggan too.

There are steps at the start of the path from Abriachan Gardens and short sections of stone steps below the Balchraggan entrance.

Parking is available by kind agreement at the Clansman Hotel (IV3 8AU) at the southern end and Abriachan Nurseries at the northern end.

Another option is to walk to Abriachan Wood through the adjacent Abriachan Forest Trust land. Parking is available at the Abriachan Forest Trust main entrance, east of the village near Loch Laide.

There are toilets at the Clansman Hotel which are accessible for wheelchair users. Public toilets are also available in the village car park at Drumnadrochit, which is 6.4km (4 miles) south-west along the A82.

Wildlife and habitats

Abriachan Wood is in a remote landscape that’s brimming with amazing wildlife.

Animals

Abriachan Wood is alive with the sights and sounds of the remarkable animals that live here. Look out for signs of pine martens, iconic red squirrels and majestic golden eagles.

Look out for:

Trees, plants and fungi

Abriachan Wood has diverse flora and fungi, from the creeping lichens that cling to hazel trees, to the dazzling show of primroses and bluebells on the woodland floor in spring.

Look out for:

Habitats

Abriachan Wood includes a mix of ancient semi-natural woodland, upland woods, heathland areas and broadleaved woodland.

Explore:
Acquisition

In 1989, locals saved this wood from the Forestry Commission's disposal list. They contacted us and managed to raise half the purchase price of the wood.

With the help of a grant from Scottish Natural Heritage we purchased the wood in 1995.

About Abriachan Wood

History

Throughout its history, local people have relied on Abriachan Wood for raw materials for firewood, fencing, tools, construction and as a food for their livestock.

It provided wood for barrels and creels that were sold to passing fishing boats, and for distilling whisky.

In the 1970s, Abriachan Wood was managed as a commercial forest by the Forestry Commission. Some of the areas were cleared of native trees and replaced with conifer plantation.

Close up of hazel leaves in Abriachan Wood, Scotland

Credit: Paul Glendell / WTML

Restoration

After taking Abriachan Wood into our care, we’ve worked hard to restore it with the support of the Forestry Commission and the Millennium Forest Trust.

We removed non-native conifers to allow natural regeneration, and planted native trees including oak, ash and hazel.

Dedication bench at Watkins Wood

Dedicate at this wood

This wood is one of more than 50 across the UK where it's possible to dedicate trees, benches or larger areas of woodland. Mark a special occasion or celebrate the life of a loved one with a meaningful gesture that lasts. 

Choose a dedication

Things to do at Abriachan Wood

Walks

Distance: 2km/1.2 miles

Time: 1 hour

The path follows the route many local people would have taken on their journey to their final resting place. The funeral procession would cast a sombre eye over  many spectacular viewpoints.

The path runs diagonally down the hillside. Begin the trail at the Clansman Hotel.

Distance: 2km/1.2 miles

Time: 1 hour

Follow in the footsteps of woodsmen of the past through hazel woods that provided woodfuel and shelter. Look out for coppiced hazels cut for rods to make creels and barrels.

Abriachan Wood - Management plan

Download

Abriachan Wood Management Plan

PDF  (141 KB)