Arrochar and Tarbet station is between the villages of Tarbet (an Tairbeart) and Arrochar. Tarbet, half a mile from the station, is on the bonnie banks of Loch Lomond, Scotland’s largest freshwater loch by surface area. On the other side of the loch lies Ben Lomond, Scotland’s most southerly Munro. There is a hotel, cafes and a local shop in Tarbet. he pier at Tarbet provides access to the loch and a variety of cruise options are available, including a ‘Water Bus‘ which allows a number of different options to explore Loch Lomond and its surroundings. A footpath links Arrochar to Tarbet and the distance is approximately 1.5miles. The walk is easy and provides for interesting views as it crosses the isthmus or narrow neck of land between Loch Lomond and Loch Long. Tarbet is the Gaelic word for such a narrow neck of land.
Arrochar, about 1 mile west of the station, is at the head of Loch Long which is a spectacular fjord-like sea loch. Arrochar can just be seen behind the trees on the extreme left of the picture above. There is accommodation, cafes and a local shop in the village. Across the loch from Arrochar are the spectacular ‘Arrochar Alps’, including Ben Arthur, known from its shape as “the Cobbler”. Forest Holidays has a log cabin resort on the lochside at nearby Ardgartan.
Arrochar and Tarbet are located on either side of an isthmus which separates Loch Long, a sea loch, and Loch Lomond, a fresh water inland lake. The gap is just over 2km and the Vikings were able to haul their longboats over the narrow strip of land to access Loch Lomond and advance their invasion into the heart of the country. The West Highland Line follows this gap and passengers can enjoy the changing scene as the line swings across from high above Loch Long to Loch Lomond. The picture, above left, shows a charter train crossing the isthmus, known as the ‘Tighness Gap’. The train is just about 200m from Arrochar & Tarbet Station.