Day 9: West Highland Way(Fort William and Back to London)


Fort William harbour

With Michelle off to London last night, I had a day alone in Fort William to explore, shop and relax a little before the evening train trip back to London.  I thought about making a day of it and going to see a distillery or even take a train trip somewhere, but I really needed a down day, and it was the perfect sunny day to do a little local exploring.  Plus my suitcase contents needed a revamp, laundry needed sorting and I had to buy some more provisions for my next hike with Nikki in a couple of days.  Laundry is such a mundane topic, but it really rules your life when you’re trying to live out of a suitcase.

Fort William is a fair-sized town compared to anything we had seen since Milngavie.  It has a High Street with chain stores, most of which are for tourists.  My watch broke for the second time just before this trip and buying a new one sounded like a good focus for an hour or so, but I guess pedestrians in Fort William don’t buy watches as the only jewelers was closed down.  But I was able to buy a few hiking shirts from some of the many outdoors shops – all of which had big sales on – plus toiletries and other bits and pieces.

Enjoying the green in Fort William

I walked around the green and looked at a couple of churches and pretty gardens.  I guess sunny days are rare enough around here as the town green was covered in people sitting on the grass enjoying the sun on a Tuesday morning – and they weren’t tourists.  I walked down to the water’s edge. Fort William is on the sea with fishing boats and ferries coming and going up the channel.  Its not upmarket enough to have fancy fish restaurants, but it had a couple of interesting looking places that were a step up from a chippy, and would have made a good dinner spot if we had had the time.

I liked Fort William.  I’m sure I was seeing it in its best light with the sun shining, and there were signs that the economy was struggling and very reliant on the tourism.  But I also got to see some typical rain as the weather had turned quite quickly as the afternoon wore on.  I left for the train station in pouring rain, boarding the Caledonian Sleeper around 7.30pm, for arrival in London around 7.30am the next morning.  Then on to “Following the Acorn…”  Yet another walk.  I must be nuts. More to follow.

2 thoughts on “Day 9: West Highland Way(Fort William and Back to London)

  1. Ha ha…believe it or not, I was wondering why I didn’t recognize the shirt you were wearing in one of the photos of your next hike (yep, 8 days together breeds that kind of random knowledge!). Now I know…you shopped in Fort William 🙂

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    • I know right…! The pink shirt was the perfect purchase. Light weight but long-sleeved. I might even be able to wear it in Manila to protect from the sun.

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