Holidays in Neptune's Staircase

Holiday Travel Guide
Neptune\'s Staircase which includes a river or creek and boating

Bring the kids to watch these canal locks at work and marvel at the machinery dating back to the 19th century.

Neptune’s Staircase is a fascinating early 19th-century engineering treasure on the Caledonian Canal. It is Britain’s longest staircase lock, with a complex design that allows boats to pass. Embark on a family walk along the steps of the staircase and inspect the impressive machinery.

The highlight for children and adults alike is watching the locks at work, permitting boats to pass between lakes. Note the eight locks that lift vessels a height of 64 feet (20 meters). Stroll alongside the machinery to see the entire process, which takes roughly 90 minutes. Enjoy a close-up view of a boat traversing each stage. Read the information boards to learn how the locks work using hydraulic rams. Its initial operation used many cables and took half a day to complete a lifting.

Stroll along the elegant paths on the flanks of the canal and enjoy the serene atmosphere. Listen to the flowing water and the calls of wildlife in the dense surrounding forest. Meditate on life as you look into the canal from one of its bridges.

The patches of grass on both banks are ideal for picnics. Relax with your family and eat with a backdrop of the Ben Nevis mountain rising over the forest. Snap photos of the eight locks that are 180 feet (55 meters) long. Stay for the sunset, when the hues of the water and sky change with brilliant colors.

Learn about the history of the locks, which were constructed by engineer Thomas Telford between 1803 and 1822. They went through several periods of crisis, notably in the 1990s when the walls leaked.

Dine at the restaurant and the tearoom in the hotel beside the canal. Check the online schedule for the Jacobite Steam Train, which passes nearby.

Neptune’s Staircase is in Banavie, a small village 3 miles (5 kilometers) north of Fort Williams. Visit the Ben Nevis Distillery, Loch Linnhe and the Old Inverlochy Castle on the way. Take a bus or drive to the site in about 10 minutes from the city. Leave your car at the free parking lot.

Top activities in Neptune's Staircase

373 Cheap Hotels Near Neptune's Staircase

The Garrison
The Garrison
4 out of 5
High Street, \N, Fort William, Scotland
The price is AU$75 per night from 2 Nov. to 2 Nov.
Situated in Fort William, this hotel is steps away from Loch Linnhe, Lochaber Geopark and West Highland Way. Lochaber Geopark Visitor Centre and West Highland ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (250 reviews)
"Fantastic concept we loved it in the cells"

Reviewed on 6 Oct. 2021

The Garrison
Nevis Bank Inn
Nevis Bank Inn
4 out of 5
Belford Road, Fort William, Scotland
The price is AU$194 per night from 2 Nov. to 2 Nov.
Situated in Fort William, this hotel is steps away from Loch Linnhe and Lochaber Geopark. Belford Hospital and Inverlochy Castle are also within 10 minutes. ...
4.4/5 Excellent! (410 reviews)
"Great rooms and meals"

Reviewed on 18 Oct. 2021

Nevis Bank Inn
Moorings Hotel
Moorings Hotel
4 out of 5
Seanivan, Banavie, Fort William, Scotland
The price is AU$166 per night from 25 Oct. to 25 Oct.
Situated on the waterfront, this hotel is steps away from Lochaber Geopark and Neptune's Staircase. Loch Linnhe and Inverlochy Castle are also within 6 mi (10 ...
4.1/5 Very Good! (59 reviews)
"We stayed at this hotel twice on our trip round Scotland. The 2nd time was better than the 1st, mainly because the room better dodgy water pressure 1st time round. Staff were pretty good, food was fine. Bit pricey and I'm not really sure how it can be a 4 star hotel. Suited our needs you get a good ..."

Reviewed on 18 Aug. 2021

Moorings Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Popular places to visit in Neptune's Staircase

Holidays in Neptune's Staircase

Choose two or more items and save on your trip:

Top Neptune's Staircase Hotel & Accommodation Deals

The Garrison
The Garrison
4 out of 5
High Street, \N, Fort William, Scotland
The price is AU$75 per night from 2 Nov. to 2 Nov.
The Garrison
Nevis Bank Inn
Nevis Bank Inn
4 out of 5
Belford Road, Fort William, Scotland
The price is AU$194 per night from 2 Nov. to 2 Nov.
Nevis Bank Inn
Moorings Hotel
Moorings Hotel
4 out of 5
Seanivan, Banavie, Fort William, Scotland
The price is AU$166 per night from 25 Oct. to 25 Oct.
Moorings Hotel
Laxdale Cottage
Laxdale Cottage
3.5 out of 5
Banavie Highland, Fort William, Scotland
Laxdale Cottage
2 bedroom accommodation in Fort William
2 bedroom accommodation in Fort William
2 canal side Banavie, Fort William, SCT
2 bedroom accommodation in Fort William
Chase The Wild Goose Hostel
Chase The Wild Goose Hostel
2 out of 5
Banavie, Fort William, Scotland
Chase The Wild Goose Hostel
Treetops B&B
Treetops B&B
4 out of 5
BADABRIE, BANAVIE, Fort William, Scotland
The price is AU$175 per night from 11 Nov. to 11 Nov.
Treetops B&B
Moonfrog Lets - The Old Forge
Moonfrog Lets - The Old Forge
3.5 out of 5
1 Glencairn Villas, Kilmallie Road, Fort William, Scotland
Moonfrog Lets - The Old Forge
Ben Nevis Manor
Ben Nevis Manor
2.5 out of 5
Camaghael, Fort William, Scotland
Ben Nevis Manor
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.