Pinsteps. Gordon Square in Fort William: A Historical Crossroads of Culture and Outdoor Adventure
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Gordon Square in Fort William has long been a hub of activity and a community centre, marked by significant developments that have shaped its history and present. The square has seen the transformation of Fort William from a modest settlement to the largest town in the Highlands, recognized as the "Outdoor Capital of the UK."

The first significant milestone in Gordon Square and Fort William's development was the Caledonian Canal (Canal Cailleannach), opening in 1822. This new waterway brought the first wave of tourists to the area, introducing a new source of commerce and community growth.

This influx of visitors increased dramatically with the arrival of the railway in 1894. This brought more visitors and provided new opportunities for the town's residents to interact with people from other areas, broadening the cultural influences and experiences within the community.

The West Highland Way, a popular long-distance walk from Milngavie near Glasgow to Fort William, has also played a vital role in the history of Gordon Square. As the route's endpoint, the town has become a favourite destination for walkers and outdoor enthusiasts, cementing its status as a hub for outdoor activities in the UK.

Fort William and Gordon Square became an established destination for coach tours of the Highlands and a starting point for mountaineers eager to conquer Ben Nevis. With a ferry trip on Loch Linnhe providing stunning views of Ben Nevis, the town and Gordon Square remain beautiful and historic.

Gordon Square is also a gateway to the west end of the town, leading to loch-side gardens, a popular spot for wildlife spotting and enjoying unforgettable sunsets.

The square's role in Fort William's development has been captured in numerous 20th-century postcards featuring views from in and around Gordon Square. Sending a postcard from here to loved ones back home has become a tradition for many visitors, sharing a piece of the Fort William experience and its history.

So, whether you're tracing the path of the millions of visitors who have enjoyed the hospitality, explored the town, bought souvenirs, or discovered it for the first time, Gordon Square's rich history and welcoming atmosphere will surely make your visit memorable.

Pictures uploaded by @Evgeny Praisman
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Evgeny Praisman
A Highland Odyssey: From Glencoe through Fort William to Letterfinlay Lodge, 14 of July 2023

My journey began in the serene valley of Glencoe, an enchanting landscape where tales of ancient clans and bloody battles echoed in the wind. Surrounded by majestic mountains, I felt a palpable sense of history intertwining with the region's raw beauty.

My next destination was Fort William, a pivotal gateway to the Highlands. There, I witnessed the Fort William War Memorial, a stark testament to the enduring resilience of the Highlanders. The nearby Parish Church of Duncansburgh MacIntosh, with its quaint charm, pulled me into the rich religious history of the region.

Just a stone's throw away, I found myself at the Fort William Railway Station. The starting point of the magical Jacobite Steam Train journey, the station served as a poignant reminder of the railway's significant role in the town's development.

Continuing my journey, I stumbled upon the Commando Memorial, a site dedicated to the brave Commandos who trained in the unforgiving conditions of the Highlands during World War II. I deeply respected these courageous individuals and was touched by the enduring bond between the locals and the Commandos.

My Highland odyssey culminated at the luxurious retreat of Letterfinlay Lodge. Nestled on the tranquil shores of Loch Lochy, this lodge was a haven of traditional Scottish hospitality. I found myself exploring the charming gardens, savouring exquisite cuisine on the veranda, and unwinding in the plush comfort of my room, styled with traditional Scottish elegance.

The panoramic views of the loch were captivating, while the rumours of hidden treasures in the surrounding forest added a hint of mystery to the lodge's allure. I realised, sitting there, sipping on a fine Scottish whisky, that every element of Letterfinlay Lodge was imbued with the magic of the Highlands.

The journey from Glencoe, through Fort William, to Letterfinlay Lodge was an odyssey through the heart of the Scottish Highlands. Each stop was a testament to the region's rich history and stunning beauty, and the entire adventure left me with unforgettable memories and a newfound appreciation for the magic of the Highlands.

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Evgeny Praisman (author)
Здравствуйте! Меня зовут Женя, я путешественник и гид. Здесь я публикую свои путешествия и путеводители по городам и странам. Вы можете воспользоваться ими, как готовыми путеводителями, так и ресурсом для создания собственных маршрутов. Некоторые находятся в свободном доступе, некоторые открываются по промо коду. Чтобы получить промо код напишите мне сообщение на телефон +972 537907561 или на и я с радостью вам помогу! Иначе, зачем я всё это делаю?
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