Balloch Castle & Country Park

A beautiful gothic castle at the southern tip of Loch Lomond

Balloch Castle by Loch Lomond, and the Country Park, are a must-see when staying with us at Loch Lomond Waterfront. Only a 25-minute car ride or a bus trip away, you cannot miss the chance to see the castle’s Tudor Gothic architecture and explore the beautiful country park. It makes for a great family trip and an opportunity to witness fantastic views of Loch Lomond.

The history of the old and new Balloch Castle

In the 11th century, King Malcolm III granted the lands of Balloch to the Lennox family who built the original Balloch Castle around 1238. Two centuries after, the earls decided to move their base nearer the water. You can still see the earthworks of the old abandoned castle today. However, there are no standing remains to see, only an irregular mound. Nevertheless, you can still appreciate the beautiful views and imagine what the castle looked like centuries ago.

John Buchanan of Ardoch purchased the estate in the 19th century and demolished the ruins of the old castle. He decided to build his residence, the new Balloch Castle. The Glasgow merchant engaged a London-based architect Robert Lugar, to build the Tudor gothic turrets and creations. Although they do not hold any defensive value, they definitely give a picturesque form to the Castle. In 1915, the Dunbar was bought by Glasgow City Council and registered as a country park in 1980.

Balloch Castle Country Park

Loch Lomond’s only public country park is one of the finest public spaces in the West of Scotland. So you can enjoy a lovely walk when visiting Balloch Castle. Stretching over 200 acres it offers fantastic views over the waters and plenty of things to do. You can explore the Fairy Glen, Chinese Garden, Pleasure Grounds, Quarry Pond, Kitchen Garden, Secret Garden, Woodlands and Parklands. Additionally, thanks to the Heritage Lottery Fund Grant, the park was able to revamp its Boat House and Walled Garden. With its fresh new look, you must now see it for yourself!

Furthermore, Patrick Muir created a Fairy Trail using stumps of trees to carve out wooden sculptures of fairies’ houses, tree spirits, a dragon, and more! It makes for the perfect trail for the whole family. Including your four-legged best friend as the park is dog-friendly too! Moreover, the Balloch country park hosts the Loch Lomond Highland Games every July. Concert-goers will know that it also was the venue for major concerts like REM, Oasis, and Runrig.

How to get there

The Balloch Castle is only 11 miles away from Loch Lomond Waterfront and you can get there by car or bus. To help you plan your visit to the Balloch Castle Country Park, the Park Authority even prepared a leaflet with all the information you need in one place!

You must definitely visit Balloch Castle and the Country Park when staying with us. If you have any questions about this or any other places to visit near us, just get in touch!

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