There are two routes to the island. The scenic way (approximately 75 miles by car from Glasgow) takes you along the shores of Loch Lomond and through the Arrochar Alps in the heart of Argyll. This is some of the most stunning scenery in Scotland. Stop at the top of “Rest and Be Thankful” and admire the view. Skirting the top of Loch Fyne, with views across to Inveraray Castle, you head south and arrive at the Colintraive ferry for the 5 minute crossing to Rhubodach on Bute. The crossings are frequent, so if you just miss the boat it’ll be back soon. Rothesay is about 7 miles from here.
The principal route to the island is by car & passenger ferry from Wemyss Bay. The crossing takes half an hour with sailings every 45mins at peak times. Wemyss bay can be reached by car or train from Glasgow Central station or Paisley station if you are flying into Glasgow International Airport. There is no need to book. Just turn up with at least 10mins to spare. A ticket seller will come to your car for your fare. You can download timetables for both routes by Clicking Here
From the Ferry to Loch Fad
Once you disembark the ferry the loch is a 10 min drive from Rothesay. If you are arriving on foot there are plenty of taxis at the rank next to the harbour. If driving, cross straight over the traffic lights from the pier and head up the High St passing Rothesay Castle. Take the 2nd right after the Castle into Russell St and carry on up the hill. Once you are past the row of houses on the right (a field is on the left) you will come to a road junction next to Barone Cottage. The loch is signposted and you take a left here. Follow this single track road for approximately 1 mile until you reach the loch and car park.
Getting to Loch Quien
The wee loch lies to the south of the Fad. To get there cross the traffic lights as before but this time head straight up the High St and up the hill out of Rothesay heading toward Scalpsie Bay. The distance you’ll need to travel is about 3.5 miles from the traffic lights. Towards the end of this distance look out for a cottage set back about 200m from the road on the right and just after this point you’ll see the sign indicating the access track to the loch on the right. The boats and jetty are at the end of this track.
The photo below illustrates the routes and might help you get your bearings. Click on it to enlarge.