Loch Ness Tours

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As huge as Loch Ness is, its vast size is not the reason for its global fame, nor is it the magnificent surrounding scenery. The real reason visitors flock to this Scottish body of water is to spot the elusive Loch Ness Monster. Rumors about Nessie have flown since an Irish monk first caught sight of something unusual swimming around the lake’s inky waters back in the seventh century. Today. travelers still cruise around the loch in hopes of catching sight of the mysterious aquatic monster.

The Basics
Loch Ness is most often visited during day trips from Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Aberdeen that incorporate other Highlands attractions such as Urquhart Castle, Stirling Castle, Caledonian Canal, Glencoe, Rannoch Moor, Cairngorms National Park, and even Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain. Shorter half-day trips, which typically include boat tours on the lake, typically depart from Inverness, while cruise-ship passengers can take shore excursions from Invergordon. Motorized boat trips are the most common way for visitors to scour Nessie’s lair, though it’s also possible to paddle a canoe or kayak out on the loch, or even take a self-guided cycling trip.
 
Things to Know Before You Go
  • For background on the Nessie phenomenon, visit the Loch Ness Centre & Exhibition at Drumnadrochit.
  • Wear warm clothes, including a waterproof outer layer, as it can get cold out on the water.
  • Day trips from Edinburgh and Glasgow generally last around 12 hours.
  • The Loch Ness Centre is wheelchair accessible, however most boat trips are not.
  • Bring along a camera so you can document any unusual lake activity!
 
How to Get There
Loch Ness stretches between Inverness and Fort Augustus, and is one of many such lakes located along the Great Glen. Tours from Inverness, Edinburgh, and Glasgow typically include round-trip transportation to cruise departure points such as Clansman Harbour, Dochgarroch, and Tomnahurich Bridge.  

When to Get There
Boat trips around Loch Ness run year-round, though they are weather-dependent. During summer, the main A82 thoroughfare between Fort William and Inverness sees a lot of traffic and sightseeing cruises often sell out, so be sure to buy tickets in advance.
 
How to Maximize Your Chance of a Monster Sighting
For the best chances of glimpsing the fabled Loch Ness Monster, choose a boat that is fitted with special onboard sonar systems to ensure Nessie doesn’t swim by unnoticed. If you are worried the sound of a motor may disturb Nessie, opt for a canoe or kayak tour instead. And if you’d rather stay away from the water altogether, the high lakeside perch where the ruins of Urquhart Castle lie makes for a great viewing spot, with uninterrupted lake panoramas.
Location
Address: Scotland
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28 Tours & Activities to Experience

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Loch Ness Sightseeing Cruise

Set sail across the misty waters of Loch Ness and discover the eerie legend of the Loch Ness Monster on this 1-hour sightseeing cruise from Inverness.  Cruise past the majestic ruins of Urquhart Castle as you explore one of Britain’s largest freshwater lakes and use the ship’s sonar system to seek out the loch’s notorious resident.
  • Duration: 1 hour
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US$17,94
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  • Duration: 1 hour
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US$17,94

Loch Ness Sightseeing Cruise and Visit to Urquhart Castle

Experience famous Loch Ness and the ruins of Urquhart Castle on this 2-hour tour from Clansman Harbour, just outside of Inverness. Climb aboard an open-air boat for a tranquil cruise to Urquhart Castle – provided you don’t meet the Loch Ness monster along the way!  Tour the historic medieval castle, learn about its turbulent and bloody history, and enjoy scenic views of the Scottish countryside before returning to the harbor.
  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$28,19
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  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$28,19

Full-Day Outlander Experience in the Scottish Highlands from Inverness

Discover filming locations from the hit TV show Outlander on this private full-day tour from Inverness and benefit from the inside knowledge of a local guide. Marvel at historic sites such as the Clava Cairns and Culloden Battlefield; admire natural scenery including the Monadhliath Mountains, Loch Ness, and Fraser Cave; and visit Urquhart Castle, Beauly, and Castle Leoch.
  • Duration: 8 hours
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US$512,57
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  • Duration: 8 hours
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US$512,57

Cruise the Caledonian Canal, Sail Loch Ness and View Urquhart Castle

Explore the Caledonian Canal and Loch Ness by boat, and enjoy sweeping views over Urquhart Castle on this 3.5-hour sightseeing cruise from Inverness. Choose the tour time to suit your schedule, then cruise out along the Caledonian Canal to Loch Ness with a guide. Admire the 13th- to 16th-century ruins of Urquhart Castle from the waves, and gain insight into Loch Ness’ rich history and mythology. This sightseeing cruise includes round-trip travel from Tomnahurich Bridge in Inverness.
  • Duration: 3 hours 20 minutes
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US$30,75
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  • Duration: 3 hours 20 minutes
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US$30,75

Shore Excursion - Invergordon - Loch Ness and Cawdor Castle

Explore the Scottish highlands without the hassle of planning on a private tour with hassle-free, round-trip transport from the Invergordon cruise port. In addition to navigating for you, your guide provides little-known anecdotes about the area’s top landmarks, from Cawdor Castle to Loch Ness. Unlike most inflexible large-group tours, a private tour ensures your guide’s full attention and a personal, tailored experience.
  • Duration: 9 hours
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US$845,74
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  • Duration: 9 hours
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US$845,74

Loch Ness, Glencoe, and the Highlands Small Group Day Trip from Glasgow

Experience rugged and mythical Scotland on this 12-hour trip from Glasgow. In a small group, explore the Scottish Highlands, Cairngorms National Park and the famous Loch Ness — fabled home of the elusive water monster, Nessie! Visit historic battle sites like Glencoe, Fort Augustus and Stirling Castle, where legendary hero William Wallace commanded an infamous fight against the British. Along the way, enjoy free time for optional cruises or tours.
  • Duration: 12 hours
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US$56,38
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  • Duration: 12 hours
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US$56,38

Glencoe, Loch Ness, and The Highlands Tour from Edinburgh

See the best of Scotland in one action-packed day on this 12.5-hour Glencoe, Loch Ness and the Highlands tour from Edinburgh. Pass Stirling Castle on route to Kilmahog with a guide, then continue through Rannoch Moor to the soaring Highland peaks of Glen Coe. Head along the banks of Loch Linnhe to Fort William and gaze over Ben Nevis — Scotland’s highest mountain. Enjoy free time to explore Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle, and learn the famous legend of Nessie! Visit Inverness, then travel through the mighty Grampian Mountains to Edinburgh.
  • Duration: 12 hours 30 minutes
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US$53,82
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  • Duration: 12 hours 30 minutes
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US$53,82

Highlander Loch Ness and Culloden Battlefield from Inverness

Immerse yourself in Scotland’s spectacular natural landscapes on an 8-hour tour of the Scottish Highlands from Inverness. In a small group limited to eight, you’ll visit Loch Ness, home to the legendary Loch Ness Monster, and observe bottlenose dolphins at Chanonry Point. Plus, you’ll stop at the Clava Cairns (Stones of Clava), Culloden Battlefield, and Glen Ord Whiskey Distillery.
  • Duration: 8 hours
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US$89,70
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  • Duration: 8 hours
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US$89,70

Isle of Skye Full Day 8-Seater Bus Tour from Inverness

Check out the Isle of Skye on a 10-hour day trip from Inverness. With a Scottish local in a kilt as your driver-guide, you’ll discover the history behind the island plus some famous landmarks along the way. Pass Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle, then cross Skye Bridge to spend time on the island itself. Visit the town of Portree, travel through the Cuillin mountains, and discover beguiling natural sights such as the Old Mann of Storr. Numbers are limited to just eight people for a small-group experience.
  • Duration: 8 to 11 hours
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US$102,51
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  • Duration: 8 to 11 hours
From
US$102,51

Skye and Eilean Donan Castle - Day tour from Inverness

Visit Eilean Donan Castle and the spectacular Isle of Skye on a full-day trip from Inverness, and explore an iconic Scottish landscape of wind-swept valleys, rock formations, and coastal cliffs. Travel in a luxurious mini-coach, following a route through the mountains of Wester Ross on your way to Eilean Donan Castle and the Isle of Skye, then visit the island’s highlights with an experienced guide. This 12-hour tour departs from central Inverness, and it’s the perfect introduction for first-time visitors to the Isle of Skye.
  • Duration: 12 hours
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US$62,79
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  • Duration: 12 hours
From
US$62,79

Loch Ness and the Highlands Small Group Day Tour from Edinburgh

Uncover the mysteries of Loch Ness on an exciting day-trip from Edinburgh. Set out north along Scotland's West Coast to experience one of the country's most iconic lochs, best known for the fabled 'monster' said to reside deep within its waters. En route you'll pass some incredible sights, including the ruins of Linlithgow Palace, Ben Nevis―Britain's tallest mountain―and dramatic Highlands landscapes recognizable from films like 'Skyfall.' Your guide will also regale you with stories about the area, making for an exciting, informative―and if you're lucky, truly 'legendary'―trip.
  • Duration: 12 hours
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US$57,66
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  • Duration: 12 hours
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US$57,66

Loch Ness Sightseeing Cruise Including Urquhart Castle

Witness the mythical splendor of Loch Ness and the ruins of Urquhart Castle on this 2.5-hour coach and boat trip from Inverness. Leave behind the bustle of the city for a scenic drive to Clansman Harbour (until April) or Dochgarroch (April - Sep), your cruise launch point. Take a leisurely boat ride to Urquhart Castle – keeping your eyes peeled for the famed Loch Ness monster! – where you’ll learn about the site’s bloody history and enjoy scenic views of the Scottish countryside.
  • Duration: 3 hours
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US$35,88
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  • Duration: 3 hours
From
US$35,88

Isle of Skye Day Trip from Inverness

Travel from Inverness to the Isle of Skye on a 10-hour day trip through the Scottish Highlands. Pass through glens and rugged mountain scenery, with stops at Loch Ness, Broadford and the ruins of Eilean Donan Castle, before reaching the purple heather–swathed hillsides of Skye. Then see the isle of Eilean Ban on the journey back to Inverness.
  • Duration: 10 hours
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US$65,35
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  • Duration: 10 hours
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US$65,35

Loch Ness Cruise Including Urquhart Castle and Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition

Soak up the myth and mystery of Loch Ness on a 3.5-hour tour from Inverness. Take a scenic drive to Clansman Harbour with a knowledgeable guide. From there, cruise the still waters of Loch Ness to Urquhart Castle. Explore the ruins and learn about the site’s grisly history, then continue to the Loch Ness Centre and Exhibition to hear about the legendary water monster, Nessie.
  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
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US$44,85
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  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
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US$44,85

Loch Ness, Glencoe, and the Highlands Day Trip from Glasgow

Explore Loch Ness, Glen Coe and the Highlands on this day trip from Glasgow. Visit Loch Lomond with a guide and enjoy spectacular views over the Scottish Highlands. Travel into Rannoch Moor and Glen Coe — widely considered to be Scotland’s most beautiful glen. Pass beneath Ben Nevis on route through the Great Glen. Take in Fort Augustus and Urquhart Castle on the shores of Loch Ness, and enjoy an optional cruise or castle visit. Journey onward to Inverness — the Highlands’ iconic capital — then return via the Grampian Mountains to Glasgow.
  • Duration: 11 hours 45 minutes
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US$51,26
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  • Duration: 11 hours 45 minutes
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US$51,26

Loch Ness and the Scottish Highlands Day Tour from Edinburgh

Marvel at the peaceful majesty of Loch Ness on this 12-hour Scottish Highlands day tour from Edinburgh. Leave Scotland’s busy capital behind and travel deep into the Highlands with a guide. Travel through pretty Kilmahog on route over Rannoch Moor, and enjoy spectacular views over mighty Glen Coe. Spend time at Loch Ness — widely considered Scotland’s most famous lake — and explore Fort Augustus at your leisure. Stop in the pretty Victorian town of Pitlochry, and travel along the banks of Loch Laggan on route back to Edinburgh.
  • Duration: 12 hours
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US$58,95
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  • Duration: 12 hours
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US$58,95

The Complete Loch Ness Experience Day Tour from Inverness

Explore the landscape and legends of Loch Ness and the Highlands on a sightseeing tour from Inverness by luxury mini coach. Take an optional cruise across the loch to see Urquhart Castle, enjoy an easy-going walk from Invermoriston, then see the picturesque villages of Foyers and Dores. This 7-hour Highlands tour includes pickup and drop-off at a central location in Inverness, and it’s limited to six people for personal service.
  • Duration: 7 hours
From
US$30,75
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  • Duration: 7 hours
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US$30,75

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Isle of Skye Explorer

Leave the city for the day and explore the beautiful Isle of Skye. Visit Eilean Donan Castle; one of Scotland's most photographed castles and cross the bridge to the scenic Isle of Skye. Visit Portree, it's village-capital and marvel in the beautiful scenic nature all in one day.
  • Duration: 12 hours
From
US$64,07
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  • Duration: 12 hours
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US$64,07

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Kilt Rock and Fairy Pools Isle of Skye

Explore Scotland’s most stunning natural and cultural sights on this guided Isle of Skye outdoors tour from Inverness. Highlights include hikes through the Fairy Glen and Fairy Pools plus a visit to 13th-century Eilean Donan Castle, a Highlands icon. Cover more attractions in less time by comfortable minivan, stopping for a first-hand peek at Loch Ness, Kilt Rock, and Urquhart Castle.
  • Duration: 12 hours
From
US$102,51
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  • Duration: 12 hours
From
US$102,51

Loch Ness Cruise and Urquhart Castle Visit from Inverness

Explore Loch Ness and Urquhart Castle on a 4-hour cruise tour from Inverness. Board the 'Jacobite Rebel' cruise boat at Dochgarroch Lock, and sail down the Caledonian Canal and Loch Dochfour to Loch Ness, Britain’s largest body of water by volume and famous for its mythical monster. Admire the scenery, hear stories about Loch Ness’ history, and enjoy two hours to explore 13th-century Urquhart Castle on the lochside before another hour of cruising.
  • Duration: 4 hours
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US$44,85
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  • Duration: 4 hours
From
US$44,85

Day-Trip to Torridon, Applecross, and Eilean Donan from Inverness

Experience the scenic highlights of the Scottish Highlands on a full-day trip from Inverness to Beinn Eighe National Nature Reserve, Loch Maree, Applecross, and the picturesque Eilean Donan Castle, which stands at the confluence of three lochs. Travel by luxurious mini-coach with a small group that’s limited to six people, and learn about highland history, culture, and wildlife along the way.
  • Duration: 11 hours
From
US$49,98
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  • Duration: 11 hours
From
US$49,98

Cruise the Caledonian Canal, Sail on Loch Ness and View Urquhart Castle

Seek out Nessie, the Loch Ness Monster, on a 2-hour cruise from Dochgarroch Lock. The boat is fitted with a special Nessie sonar, but if the elusive monster doesn’t show up, the area's other sights will charm you instead. Pass along the Caledonian Canal into Loch Ness to see Urquhart Castle, Bona Lighthouse, and the crash site of a World War II bomber. You'll learn about the loch’s history and legends as you cruise.
  • Duration: 2 hours
From
US$25,63
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  • Duration: 2 hours
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US$25,63

Best of Inverness and the Highlands by Spirit Journeys Worldwide

Make the most of your limited time and skip the hassle of driving or planning public transport routes on this guided tour from Inverness into the Highlands. Travel north to Dochgarroch for a 1-hour cruise up Loch Ness to Glen Urquhart Castle. Upon arrival at the castle, you have some time to explore its magnificent ruins and learn about the history of this strategic fortress. Your tour concludes with a walk through Inverness to explore its hidden corners and historic sites.
  • Duration: 6 hours
From
US$178,12
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  • Duration: 6 hours
From
US$178,12

Full-Day Loch Ness Tour from Aberdeen

Skip the hassle of travel-planning on this full-day tour from Aberdeen to Loch Ness. Traveling in a small group, get insights into the culture and history of the Scottish Highlands as you head for Loch Ness where you can embark on a boat cruise or visit Urquhart Castle (both at own expense). Afterward, continue past the haunting battlefield of Culloden to the Clava Cairns, an evocative circle of prehistoric chambered tomb cairns, before heading back over the mountain roads to Aberdeen.
  • Duration: 11 hours
From
US$76,89
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  • Duration: 11 hours
From
US$76,89


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