Glenfinnan is situated at the head of
Loch Shiel, 16 miles west of Fort
William, 26 miles southeast of the
port village Mallaig. Isle of Skye
ferries depart from Mallaig.
The Visitor Centre with museum, shop
and cafe is open April – October free of
charge. You can visit the Jacobite
Monument and Viaduct seen in a Harry
Potter Movie with Hogwarts Express Steam
Train all year. The Steam Trains only run
April – October though, and you can only
climb to the top of the monument for
great views April – October as well.
Postcode: PH37 4LT
See also a large Click On
Map for Top Attractions in the area.
The small Glenfinnan Train Station, half of
a mile west of the Visitor Centre, has a small
with vintage carriages to explore and a dinning
car for meals.
The image top is of the Visitor centre with
a shop, cafe and museum covering the Second Jacobite
Rising led by Bonnie Prince Charlie in
Glenfinnan is an area of only a few houses,
Church and Glenfinnan House
The 3,159ft / 963m Sgurr Thuilm and 3,136ft
953m Sgurr nan Coireachan are popular Mountains
to hike from Glenfinnan. Hike
1745 - Prince Charles Edward Stuart traveled
from France to Western Scotland in an attempt
to gain the throne of Great Britain for his
father, landing close to Glenfinnan.
Charles was a Catholic Stuart who claimed
his father had a greater right to the throne
than the Protestant George II who
was made King of Great Britain in 1727.
1745 August - Charlie met MacDonalds,
Camerons, Macfies and MacDonnells at Glenfinnan
where he raised his standard to start the
1745 December - the Jacobite's had advanced
south into England with victory seeming
possible. The Jacobite's then decided to return
to Scotland to try and strengthen their forces.
This allowed the British Government time to get
its far larger forces together to hunt down the
1746 April - Charlie's army was defeated at
the Battle of Culloden by Inverness 83
miles northeast of Glenfinnan, ending the
Second Jacobite Rising, the last major battle
fought on the British mainland.
1746 Sept - Charlie left on a boat from a
spot 13 miles west of Glenfinnan, now marked by
the Prince's Cairn.
He returned to France where his family lived in
1812 - Thomas Telford constructed a new road
from Fort William to Glenfinnan and on to
Arisaig on the coast.
1815 - the Glenfinnan Monument was built for
Alexander Macdonald of Glenaladale to
commemorate the Jacobite Risings. Monument Large
The Monument is 60ft / 18m high with narrow
steps to the top.
1835 - the statue of an Unknown Highlander
was erected on top of the monument.
1901 - the Glenfinnan Viaduct was completed
at 416 yards / 380m long, longest viaduct in
Scotland, allowing trains to run between Fort
William and Mallaig on the coast. Ferries run
from Mallaig on the 5 mile crossing to Armadale
on the Isle of Skye.
Viaduct & Steam
Train large image.
1901 - a small station was opened at
Glenfinnan that now has a Museum with old
carriages and a dining car.
1938 - the Glenfinnan Monument was taken
over by the National Trust for Scotland. They
allow visits to the top for great views in
summer with a small charge.
2002 - the film Harry Potter and the Chamber
of Secrets is released with the Steam Train
named Hogwarts Express filmed crossing the
Glenfinnan Viaduct with a flying Ford Anglia
Today - many photographers walk a path from
the visitor centre, 200 yards west alongside
the main road, through the hiking car park,
under the Viaduct, then onto the hillside above
the Viaduct to take photos of the Steam Trains
that run between Fort William and Mallaig in
summer. The first Steam Train traveling up to
Mallaig crosses the Viaduct about 10.50. The
afternoon Steam Train traveling up to Mallaig
crosses the Viaduct about 15.00.
There is also a steep path up to a viewpoint
above the visitor centre that also gives views
of the train crossing the viaduct.
The Glenfinnan Visitor Centre and Hiking car
parks can be full in summer so you may have to
park up at the Train Station half of a mile
west and walk down to the visitor centre on a