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Caledonian Canal

The Caledonian Canal runs from Corpach (just north of Fort William) on the west coast of Scotland, through the Great Glen, to Inverness on the east coast.

Things to do nearby

Facts & Stats

60 miles

(96.6 km)

The length of the Caledonian Canal that is navigable.

29 locks

From Corpach to Inverness

It comprises a series of canals built to link lochs Ness, Oich, Lochy and Linhe. 

A survey was made in 1793 but the war with France eight years later led to the building of the canal as a means of avoiding privateers. By the time the canal was built, the war was over, but with the spectacular scenery, the canal was popular for pleasure cruising and it provided the safe passage it had originally been intended to during the First World War.

Waterway notes

Maximum boat sizes

  • Length: 150′ (45.7 metres)
  • Beam: 35′ (10.6 metres)
  • Height: 89′ 8″ (27.3 metres)
  • Draught: 13′ 6″ (4.1 metres)

Navigation authority

Scottish Canals

Funding of waterways managed by the Environment Agency

Along with its many environmental responsibilities, the Environment Agency manages the navigation of 630 miles of waterways – such as the River Thames and the River Medway in the south east – and many waterways in the Anglian Region.

Funding of Scottish Canals

150 miles of canal in Scotland are managed by Scottish Canals, the name for what remains of the British Waterways Board after their waterways in England and Wales were transferred to Canal & River Trust in 2012.