One of Scotland’s most spectacular waterfalls and a cathedral of scented trees

Plodda Falls

Pause for thought at Plodda Falls

Plodda Falls soak the forest at their base in a fine mist as they plunge over drop of 151 feet (46 metres). They’re one of the most thrilling waterfalls in Scotland, but Plodda is also remarkable for its trees.

In other places in Glen Affric National Nature Reserve, we’re working hard to remove non-native trees. However, Here at Plodda, non-native trees are the glory of the forest: magnificent Douglas firs that soar up like the pillars of a cathedral. Crush their needles and you might be reminded of Christmas: they have an amazing scent of tangerines.

Our guide to Glen Affric (PDF 4.6MB) will help you explore this magical place.

Parking Picnic area Walking Viewpoint

Be prepared

Getting to Plodda is quite an adventure: it’s 5 miles (8 km) beyond the tiny village of Tomich, along narrow road and forest track. Drive slowly, and pull over to let other cars pass at the passing places.

Be warned that there is no mobile phone reception in the glen, so you won’t be able to use electronic maps that rely on a network connection.

Life’s essentials

There’s an inn in Tomich, and places to eat and a shop in Cannich. There are no cafés or shops in Glen Affric itself.

Walking trails

Cycling trails

Mountain biking trails

Trees for the laird

Douglas firs were first planted here by Lord Tweedmouth, who owned the estate in the late 1800s. The trees he knew as saplings are now giants and can be very valuable as timber. Their long, straight trunks are ideal for ships’ masts, or as structural timbers in large buildings. Underneath the mature trees, hundreds of seedlings are growing. We protect them so the unique character of this forest will continue into the future.

Poet Rody Gorman, who works in Scottish and Irish Gaelic as well as English, wrote a series of short poems inspired by Glen Affric. The English version plays with the multiple meanings of some Gaelic words. The poem for Plodda is inspired by Giùthsachan (pronounced ‘Hoos-achan’ – the place of the pines), an abandoned mansion house between Plodda and Tomich.

Giùthsachan – the place of the pines

An taigh-mòr a thog an t-uachdaran na làraich fo chèo
‘S an crann mòr Douglas a chuir e gu h-àrd ag èirigh bhon talamh na bheò

the bigmansionhouse the landlordsuperior carryawayrousebuilt a habitationruinsite in milkfog
and the big Douglas ploughmasttree he sowsnowfallput up rising from the countrysoilland cattlequickalive

Contact: Inverness, Ross and Skye Forest District

Address: Tower Road, Smithton, Inverness

Postcode: IV2 7NL

Telephone: 0300 067 6100


How to get here

From Inverness or Fort William, follow the A82 along Loch Ness to Drumnadrochit. Turn onto the A831, signposted for Canaich (Cannich). After about 10 miles (16 km), at a sharp right-hand bend before you reach Cannich village, turn left onto a minor road signposted for Tomich. Follow this road for about 6¼ miles (10 km), going through Tomich village. It's a narrow road - and after Tommich just a forest track – but keep going and you’ll reach the car park at grid reference NH 279 238.

Using SatNav?

IV4 7LY is a postcode on the road leading to Plodda. Keep going for another 1¾ mile (2.8 km) to reach the car park.

Public transport

Buses run from Inverness to Tomich and Cannich throughout the year. For details visit Traveline Scotland.

Nearby places

Plodda is just one of four places to explore in Glen Affric. There are wonderful trails through the forest at Dog Falls, and peaceful picnic places by Loch Beinn a’Mheadhain. At River Affric there’s a superb viewpoint and trail beside the dramatic river.

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For questions and complaints, please contact us directly.