Follow in the footsteps of medieval bishops to a tranquil retreat from the city

Bishop Loch

Relax at Bishop Loch

Bishop Loch has long been a peaceful haven, treasured since the Bishops of Glasgow built a palatial retreat here 700 years ago. Their palace is long gone, but the loch is still a highlight and there are lovely views over the water to the Victorian turrets of the former Gartloch Hospital. The attractive mix of woodland, wetland, grassland and wildflower meadows here is ideal for exploring on foot, bike or horseback, and is home to a rich variety of wildlife. Find a map and more details in our Bishop Loch leaflet, part of the Easterhouse map pack.

There is a network of about 2 miles (3km) of wide smooth paths across the site, all of which are suitable for pushchairs, walking, cycling, jogging and horse riding. Most of the routes are flat and the few sections of gentle slopes can be avoided.

Walking Cycling Horse riding Viewpoint

Life’s essentials

You can find toilets and plenty of places to eat, drink and shop at nearby Glasgow Fort retail park and the Shandwick Square Shopping Centre in Easterhouse.

Walking trails

Cycling trails

Mountain biking trails

Go further

If you want to explore further afield, there are paths through to neighbouring Todds Well wood, through Lochend Burn and all the way to Drumpellier Country Park.

Wildlife watching

The mix of wetland, woods, grassland and meadows here attract a wealth of wildlife. Look out for areas of bulrushes and willow scrub, attractive birch wood and peat bog. This is also home to the largest area of common reed bed (phragmites) in Europe. In summer the meadows are full of colourful, sweet-scented wildflowers, attracting a host of insects and butterflies. Watch for roe deer and foxes amongst the trees and listen out for the loud plop of shy water voles dropping into the loch and the sweet songs in summer of visiting whitethroats. Bishop Loch is valued for its wildlife and habitats and has been designated a Local Nature Reserve.

Easterhouse and the Bishops Estate Forest

Five wonderful woodlands spread across Greater Easterhouse and the Bishops Estate, so called because the land here was once owned by the medieval Bishops of Glasgow. All the woods are different, but each makes a great getaway without leaving the city. You can enjoy walking, cycling, horse riding, wildlife spotting or simply sit back to enjoy the peace and quiet.

Glasgow City Council owns the land here, while we at Forestry Commission Scotland manage the woods. Together, we have improved the trails across the Easterhouse woods and planted new native woodland to create more green spaces for people and wildlife in the city.

Commonwealth Woods

The woodlands at Easterhouse were also one of fourteen Commonwealth Woods, designated as part of the legacy of the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, that provide outdoor spaces for people to enjoy free events and activities, get active or just go for a walk in the fresh air. The network of green spaces around the city includes a mix of well-established and newly-planted woods, and a new riverside park created out of derelict land opposite the Commonwealth Games athletes’ village.

Seven Lochs Wetland Park

Bishop Loch is part of the Seven Lochs Wetland Park. Destined to become Scotland's largest urban nature park, the Seven Lochs Wetland Park is an exciting new Green Network project. Bringing together 20 square kilometres of lochs, parks, nature reserves and woodlands between Glasgow and Coatbridge, the park offers an exciting range of things to see and do. With seven lochs, five local nature reserves, a country park and one of Glasgow’s oldest buildings at Provan Hall, plus miles of waking and cycling routes to explore, the park is the perfect place to unwind from the stresses of city life.

Over the next five years Glasgow and Clyde Valley Green Network Partnership, Glasgow City Council, North Lanarkshire Council, Forestry Commission Scotland and others will work together to develop the park as a place for people, nature and heritage. With lots of activities to encourage recreation and education, and a range of ways to get involved in the park, we hope there’s something for everyone.

Contact: Scottish Lowlands Forest District

Address: Five Sisters House, Five Sisters Business Park, West Calder

Postcode: EH55 8PN

Telephone: 0300 067 6700


How to get here

Bishop Loch lies just to the north of Easterhouse on the east side of Glasgow. Easterhouse is easy to reach from Junction 10 of the M8 motorway.

The entrance to Bishop Loch is on Lochend Road. Turn onto Lochend Road from Westerhouse Road in Easterhouse, near St Benedict’s Church and Easterhouse Police Station. Follow Lochend Road until you reach the turning to Dubton Street; the entrance to the wood is just opposite the junction at grid reference NS 676 661.

There is no formal car park for the wood here but plenty of on-street parking nearby.

Using SatNav?

G34 0ND is the nearest postcode.

Public transport

There are regular trains from Glasgow Queen Street to Easterhouse railway station. Find details at Traveline Scotland.

Nearby places

There are four other woods to explore around Easterhouse.

Discover a wildlife haven with wonderful views beneath a rocky outcrop at nearby Todds Well or head to Cardowan for another peaceful woodland with plenty of wildlife – and a hidden sculpture.

There are attractive woods and lovely summertime wildflower meadows at Lochend Burn, or watch out for birds of prey at quiet West Maryston wood and get a bird’s eye view of your own over the lost villages of Easterhouse and out to Tinto Hill.

For more bird-watching and easy trails for the whole family, visit nearby Hogganfield Park with its lovely loch and island bird sanctuary. A little further east of the city is Drumpellier Country Park, with more scenic lochs, canals and woodland full of wildlife.

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