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Helensburgh Travel Guide - Scotland

Located only four miles from Loch Lomond is the picturesque coastal town of Helensburgh. This town is the last major centre before you reach Oban and is the gateway to the Highlands. Famous for its fishing, this town has spectacular scenery with the mountains clad with bracken and heather in the background.

In 1600, the Ardencaple Castle was built. Little remains of this castle today because in the late 1700's it was the site of spa baths. The owner of these baths, Sir Ian Colquhoun, gave the town its name after his wife, Helen. The town actually owes much of his success to this man because he started the ferry service across the River Clyde enabling people to work in other locations and still live in Helensburgh.

At the pier in the harbour, visitors will see an obelisk dedicated to Henry Bell. This gentleman designed the first ocean going steam ship in the world. The first ship he built was named the Comet and it was used to bring vacationers from Glasgow to their holiday destination in Helensburgh. Since then the town has become a very important ferry terminus for all boats on the River Clyde. There is a yachting centre located here with a lifeboat and coastguard station.

Visitors to Helensburgh delight in a visit to Hill House and during the summer there are regular pipe band performances and highland dancing on the pier. Using Helensburgh as a base, you can easily tour the west coast of Loch Lomond by car, but a more exciting way to see everything is by train. The West Highland Line provides you with spectacular sights and exquisite scenery. You might also like to take a ride on the last paddleboat steamer in the world – the Waverly. This boat sails the River Clyde in the summer months. Golfers will want to tee off at the 18-hole championship course. While nature lovers will just want to walk among the fields of heather and see the wildlife or take advantage of the excellent cycle paths in the area.

Helensburgh features a swimming pool and a fitness centre. Strolling through the town will also provide you with exercise and give you a chance to see the charming Victorian architecture. For your shopping enjoyment there are many stores in the town that feature exclusive designs. For example, drop into Stewarts of Helensburgh to see the line of British and European designs in men's and women's clothing or browse the extensive line of swimwear and lingerie at the Cat's Pyjamas. Bizarre offers many unusual items in gifts and jewellery and MacGillivrays has Scottish gifts. You will be thrilled with the selection of stores and the items that they have for sale.
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Scottish Holidays is currently accepting photographs of Helensburgh and would be delighted to publish your pictures of the area on our webpage for other fans of Helensburgh to enjoy. To submit a photo, please contact us.