The majestic Caledonian Canal is 60 miles
(96.6 km) in length of which 22 miles (35.4 km) is man-made.
Stretching from Inverness to Banavie it is one of the great waterways of the world,
offering visitors spectacular scenery, amazing wildlife and
the world famous Scots hospitality. The Great Glen divides
the Highlands of Scotland with its series of lochs, and was
therefore considered an ideal site for a
Caledonian Canal shares many characteristics with
the Gõte Canal in Sweden and Canada’s Rideau Canal.
Consequently both are twinn, ed with the Caledonian
The Caledonian Canal was designed by Thomas
Telford, the greatest of Scotland’s civil engineers. Funded
by the British Government and constructed between 1803 and
1822, it was the first state-funded transport undertaking in
British history, and remains under public ownership to this
Though initially intended to provide
a safe transport route for naval frigates during the Napoleonic
wars, the Caledonian Canal did not serve a military function until
the First World War. Nonetheless, the Canal has played a
significant role in the development of the Highland economy,
fostering trade between East and West, as well as with Germany,
Holland and the Scandinavian countries.
Major use is now leisure and
yachtsmen use the canal as a safe winter berth as well as safe
scenic passage from west to east.
A restoration programme, instigated
in the mid 1990s, is nearing completion having achieved its aim of
stabilising the many lock structures along the length of the canal.
Many of the techniques and specialist products used in this process
were specially created by us, for use on the Caledonian Canal.
Chase The Wild
Goose Hostel at Banavie is a great
place to stay if you are on a budget.