Location and Travel Information
It’s easy to get to the Gateway to Argyll!
There are 2 main rail lines into the Gateway to Argyll. The Glasgow North Clyde suburban line, and the West Highland line.
On the Glasgow North Clyde suburban line, Helensburgh Central has direct trains to Glasgow (half hourly service, approx. 50 minutes) and Edinburgh (approx 2 hours). Cardross is also on this line. Timetables and tickets can be found at the ScotRail website, or via National Rail or Trainline.
Helensburgh Upper, as well as Garelochhead, Arrochar & Tarbet and Ardlui are on the world famous West Highland Line, one of the world’s great scenic railway lines. These are also stops on the Caledonian Sleeper Highlander Route, meaning travellers can get between London and Helensburgh and Lomond overnight.
Scotrail has also launched their new active travel carriage service – The ScotRail Highland Explorer, especially designed to provide travellers with storage so they can take bikes, skis, or other sporting gear on their journey.
A number of Bus operators serve the area. You can use the Traveline Scotland Journey Planner to find routes, times and fares. You can also find out about getting around Scotland by coach, including travel passes, at the VisitScotland website.
The Gateway to Argyll is easily accessible by road. It is served by the main A82 route which runs from Glasgow to Inverness via Fort William. Travellers can diverge from this at Dumbarton to travel along the edge of the Clyde on the A814 to Cardross and Helensburgh and on to Garelochhead and Arrochar, or they can travel up the A82 on Loch Lomondside. Helensburgh is only around 10 minutes from Loch Lomondside on the A818, or there is the A817 connecting to Garelochhead. At Tarbet on Loch Lomond, the A82 carries on North towards Crianlarich, and the A83 branches off towards Lochgoilhead, Inverary and the west via the famous Rest and Be Thankful viewpoint.
Traffic Scotland is the website for real-time information about traffic conditions, including details of forthcoming events which may affect routes.
There are several cycle routes and paths in the area. You can find out more at the SusTrans website. You can also cycle off-road via routes such as the John Muir Way. Helensburgh Cycles hire out bikes and e-bikes, as well as doing sales, spares and repairs, and the Campbell Bike Workshop in Arrochar also offers bike hire, sales and maintenance. Cycle Luss and Loch Lomond Leisure do e-bike hire.
The Gateway to Argyll can also be reached and traversed on foot via the John Muir Way and the Three Lochs Way. There are lots of other local walks, and walkers can also link up with the West Highland Way and the Loch Lomond and Cowal Way and then further on to the Kintyre Way. Scotland’s Great Trails has the full long-distance network.
The local airport is Glasgow Airport which has flights to over 100 destinations worldwide, including Canada, the US, Europe and the Gulf. The airport is a 40 minute drive from Helensburgh.