The Drovers Inn

Ardlui, G83 7DX , United Kingdom
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Satisfaction Poor
Very Good


Value Score No Data

Good For Business
  • Families44
  • Couples52
  • Solo50
  • Business62

More about The Drovers Inn

Youth Hostel standards at Hilton prices

by TripAdvisor Member ChunterChunter

Stayed here for one night only (thank god) whilst walking the West Highland Way. The owners (squatters?) have obviously decided to exploit the 'old Scottish pub' character and assumed that this means they don't have to clean or maintain the hotel in any way. Broken windows (covered up with cardboard - not kidding!), urine stained toilet and carpet, mouldy window frames, worn out matresses and decrepit furniture are all included in the ridiculously overpriced rooms. Atmosphere, character, history call it what you want but filth is filth and that is the memory you will most leave with. Why did we stay then? Try finding somewhere else in the middle of nowhere after having walked 14 miles and the squatters know it!! We couldn't even get a hot shower as the hot water ran out. When we complained we were given the well-rehearsed 'it was good enough for Rob Roy to stay in routine' which incidentally was around about the last time the place was cleaned! The breakfast was dreadful, coffee served in a filthy and cracked pot and they had run out of fruit juice so gave us coloured water. This place is an abhorration and the Scottish Tourist Board needs to do something about it soon - does it actually undergo fire/health and safety/food hygiene inspections? We stayed in 8 hotels/B&Bs during our holiday and all the others were very good - Anchorage Cottage near Rowardennan was without doubt the cream of the crop. Please do not stay at The Drovers' Inn - this place is a disgrace!

Avoid staying, but use the pub

by TripAdvisor Member JB_Glasgow

Unfortunately this place seems to be taking a bit too much advantage of (a) its history and (b) the fact that it is on the West Highland Way and there aren't many alternatives at each stop. We had camped for two nights and were looking forward to our B&B mid-walk treat. The pub is appealing - real fires, sense of being back in time, and the evening meal was good. The whole place really needs some TLC though. In no way am I a luxury hotel girlie (after all - we were walking 100 miles carrying all our gear!), but there's shabby-chic, and then there's just plain shabby. I can't understand the owners - they have such a wonderful place, but seem to be just letting it deteriorate further. Also, the breakfast was poor (cold plates and that yukky square sausage!). My recommendation for this section would be to camp at the site over the road (Ben Glas?) in a wooden wigwam thing if you don't have a tent, and just go to the Drovers for a drink.

Dont Stay At This Dump

by TripAdvisor Member LindsayFife_Scotland

I Booked this for my boyfriends birthday and was seriously disappointed. I could have cried when i saw the room it was tiny,the door had bits taken out of it so made it easy for anyone wanting to come in. The wardrobe smelled and the matress felt like you could have sunk into it. There was no tv and the wallpaper was ripped. So i plucked up the courage to complain to reception to be told "it's a standard room" a standard room which doesn't contain a bathroom (you would have to share a separate bath and toilet on the floor) so i basically refused i didn't fancy sharing the bath when it looked so filthy!! so i payed an extra £10 for a en suite which contained a ripped matress, no tv, a broken window, wonky headboard, and was basically a mess. Don't be fooled by the website they obviously took only one picture of a better looking room. In my opinion the place is a sham the staff are ignorant and the website contains false advertising (where about does it tell you you have to share facilities with other guests) a waste of £80 so stay at a travel lodge if you can they offer a better service

Not worth the money. Dirty, run down and noisy

by TripAdvisor Member rob-n-sandy

I was attracted to the Drover's Inn by its location, near Loch Lomond, and it's historical appearance. I wish I'd plumped for one of the other places a couple of miles down the road instead. I also wish I'd checked out tripadvisor first before booking, in which case I wouldn't have gone ahead with the booking!

The pub is several centuries old, and has a certain ambience. So well worth popping in for a drink and/or a meal. As long as the huge collection of stuffed animals doesn't bother you - vegetarians would be well advised to steer clear! But just don't bother staying the night!

Where to begin with the litany of complaints? Well, first impression was of a run-down, dirty room. The bed was comfy enough, but had a very threadbare mattress. The ensuite was filthy. There were untouched cobwebs around the place. The window was badly in need of replacing. The shower was noisy as hell. No TV in the room. All of this I could live with if it was cheap, but if I'm going to pay £80 I expect to get decent accomodation. It's all very well being historical and 'authentic', but that doesn't mean you can't keep the place in good condition.

On the subject of 'authenticity', I couldn't help but feel it was a bit naff to insist all the staff have to wear kilts, when they're less Scottish than I am. I think I heard 1 scots accent out of all the staff we spoke to - the rest were English or Aussie. If forced to guess, I would say the wages aren't too high, and no-one local wants to work there. The surliness of the staff (with a couple of notable exceptions) certainly backs up this theory. But enough guesswork, back to the facts..

The room was also extremely noisy. Now I realise this probably isn't a totally fair complaint. If you stay in a room above a pub on a Saturday night, you don't really expect peace and quiet. But the problem was that the noise downstairs stopped at around 1.30am, but upstairs it carried on till 3 as some of the more noisy guests (and staff) headed upstairs and carried on shouting for another 90 mins. Then an hour or 2 later the local rooster started on his rounds. So £80 for 2 hours sleep in a run-down dirty room? I don't think so!

There are plenty of nice looking b&bs and hotels within a 20-mile radius of this place. Go to one of those and give the Drovers a miss.

Would rather sleep in a ditch than stay here!

by TripAdvisor Member Billhartzia

Seven hours of the M5 and 6 and then this...! I don't mind quirky or whimsy and could not care less for TV and mod-cons and all that but when whimsy descends into squalor! The pub bit was full of anthrax ridden stuffed things and ersatz olde worlde armour and similar tat! We were shoved into a flooded and neglected shack over the road called the Limp Inn or something- a school terrapin sort of set up in its nth incarnation of failed pizza parlour or tramp hostel! This paper thin cabin had as one of its extra charms a leaking all over the floor jacuzzi/sheep dip which added a sort of mass grave stench to the place! An identical room minus foetid aroma was then built and forced on us! Cool eh? Supper was taken in said Gaffer Tape Hall where we dined on sausages (?) and a pie which was as home made as my motorbike ( a catering pie differs from a pie in as much as it usually is a dollop of some generic corpse with a disc of the Brake Brothers finest pastry frisbeed at it). So that was that until something called breakfast a la really grim truck stop style ( catering slabs of sausage(?), slabs of some other tack and probably something else slabform.) For some unfathomable reason we had booked two nights of this but dined at the stunning Ben Lomond down the road in Tarbet the next night and scarpered barbarically early the following morning just in case some of the staff smiled or made us scoff something nice!
So if you want to spend £100 a night on the sort of accommodation I would have phoned my Dad to rescue me from on a school trip up some scarred terrain, bathe in a partially functioning pond-thing and dine on uninspiring food and gasp at how a business can catch leprosy, this is the place! Otherwise keep going.

as bad as they say, but we had ball !!!!

by TripAdvisor Member fio5na

We arrived a little later than advised to be told the room wasn't ready...go and do "something". we did and I saw Glencoe. Went back to the hotel and were given the key to our room. NO WAY was I staying overnight in there!!!! Cold, tiny and sharing an Avocado minging bathroom across the hall. Asked to be moved to an en suite, no probs but its £11 dearer. Bit the bullet, went to the bar. Great atmosphere, musicians jamming and enjoying the afternoon. Food a plenty and drink likewise. After a wait we were given the key and we were in the buildings opposite the hotel. The room was lovely (we were allocated a shower room ) no problem there. Back to the bar ! Ordered food , it was really good...very over priced, but they've got you, there is no where else to go. Staff were great, no problems there. As I've said, the atmosphere in the bar wasbrilliant. Really good night , live music, join in, great night. However.......... the room was nice but you could hear everything goin on in the next room, so you were terrified to even speak. Breakfast was awful. left the was off !!! All the other diners left it too. Why dont we just send it back ? Must be a British thing. Sat in the dining room which hasn't seen a lick of paint for the last 30 years (being generous there) the dead animals didn't bother me...they added to the ambiance. It was really authentic. Stayed in a hotel at Gatwick which claimed to be as old as the Drovers in June and it stank. This place was fine on that level, they were cleaning all the time we were there., Would I stay again? Doubt it, it wasn't cheap. Hotel services are abysmal but I would go again for the bar atmosphere. Go for a drink (take your credit card ......£4 for a Malt.) But book a room somewhere else. Again as others have commented what must our tourists think. The accommodation was really the pits and this is representing Scotland. They honestly couldn't have cared less. Yes the staff were Australian and American but they were nice. We only spent 1 night and it cost us around £250 with drinks and food. Save up, get a cheap deal to the sun!!


by TripAdvisor Member theseasonedtraveller

The room stank of the urine soaked carpet in the bathroom!!!
We were woken at about 1 or 2am by what can only be described as the very loud and drunken STAFF members returning to their rooms. Awful awful awful.
Otherwise the food was good sized servings and very hearty but not gourmet.

Historical Acuracy

by TripAdvisor Member Fascinated

Having read all the horror stories we went to stay at the Drovers Inn regardless.
The place is unique.
If you want plastic fantastic it's not for you. If you want to soak up atmosphere, get well fed, drink good ale and enjoy stepping back in time, then definitely go.
The room was aged in keeping with the rest of the Inn, the bed was spotlessly clean, the carpets were clean. The water in the shower was hot if you left it to run a while.Clean towels and top ups of coffee and biscuits every day.
The door to our room looked like the bear in the reception had clawed at it.....brilliant!
From the walls glared awesome faces of people long since passed on, adding to the spooky atmosphere as you ascended the stairs. Windows rattle in the wind. No curtains, instead there are shutters.You will not be cold in bed.
Staff.....friendly, helpful, polite and cheerful....all are young, but all do their jobs well and work like a well oiled machine. If you go with the right attitude you will be rewarded with a slice of history. It oozes from every crack in the blackened plaster work.
We loved every minute of it and had the best laugh we have ever had in an hotel.
If you are lucky .....and I was, you may have an unusual experience during the night. Exactly what it was I am unable to explain fully. It could have been a trick of the light, it may have been half wakened eyes, I like to think it was something more.
We would definitely go again. You can't buy this in a bottle, it's the real deal.
Go with an open mind, or you will not get what this place is all about.

The worst shower in the world

by TripAdvisor Member LeJog

Arrived cold and wet after a 90 mile cycle ride, staff were fine, the room was very very basic and dirty but I could live with it. However the shower was truly horrible. I think i was cleaner before than after. When I asked a fellow resident where is was he told me and then said "and its the worst shower you will ever have" he wasn't wrong! The pub itself is actually not that bad if over priced. Breakfast was a bit better than the shower but not much.

don't listen to the moaning!

by TripAdvisor Member rachel17

please don't listen to the complaints! it's a three hundred year old building of course there is dust! we stayed in the Stagger Inn across the road for one night. room was clean, jacuzzi was excellent, bed was comfy, no worries at all. had to move back into the main old building the following night, and yes the furniture was old and the walls were peeling a bit, but it was clean and I have certainly stayed in worse hotels. staff were unfailingly friendly. it's a scottish breakfast you pay for so that is what you get. tattie scones, black pudding, bacon, fried eggs and a slice. if you want fruit and herbal tea then perhaps stay elsewhere. they made the best haggis I have ever tasted (ie out of about 3 or 4- but this one was actually good with only the briefest hint of stomach acid). had a little giggle about the ozzie in a kilt but generally this place has untold charm, so don't listen to the moaning! I'd go back in a flash- the only thing stopping me would be the fear of not enjoying it quite so much the second time around...

Comments (1)

  • Jul 9, 2013 at 4:14 AM

    Our experience of stating at The Drovers Inn was terrible. It actually started a few days prior to arriving and should have started alarm bells ringing, we received a phone call saying that they had cocked up their alcohol license and would not be able to serve us alcoholic drinks (if only that had been the case) but when we arrived with a bottle of wine we found there was no such issue. We got some garbled explanation that didn't make sense. Not a big issue, but things just snow balled from here.

    The room was grubby, dimly with all the lights on and had a door that connected to the adjoining room which meant we could hear everything going on next door and I'm sure they could hear every footstep and slight cough in our room

    The restaurant is cramped and again, not the cleanest of places and the food is at best average. The lady on the table next to us had to send her lamb shank back as it was so tough and over cooked it was inedible. A lamb shank! Something that just stews for hours making it melt in the mouth. The response to this? The waitress relayed the message from the chef that he had never had one sent back before - like there was some thing wrong with the lady! Two things struck me about that - chefs can be highly strung and find it hard to take criticism on the chin, which I have no problem with, but the waitress should be a buffer between the chef and the customer; she shouldn't just pass on his rants. And secondly, they were hardly operating a fine dining place there, there was no reason to get shirty with the guest because the food they were slopping up wasn't up to scratch.

    Things then got really bad. We were kept awake until 3 in the morning by drunk guests that were running amok around the lodge area like they were on an 18-30s holiday. There was no phones in the room so I had to use my own phone to get in touch with front desk to ask them to deal with the issue. The duty manager apparently had a word with them at around 1:15am and then went home leaving no night porter. The disturbances continued until around 3 am.

    This kind of thing happens I guess, no hotel vets it's guests in advance, but the nonchalance my complaints were met with in the morning at check out almost disgusted me more."we are only a small business" is not an excuse for the discomfort of paying guests. And to be told by the person on the desk that she wasn't there so she simply couldn't offer and opinion is ridiculous. Like the lady at dinner I was made to feel like I wasn't taking the quality of the hotel, the service and the apparent lack of interest in the guest as long as they get their money in the right manner.

    You may have read this review and be thinking this is a silly rant by a whinger, but I'll just qualify it by saying that this is the only time I've ever stayed anywhere I felt was bad enough to post a negative review. I would usually put a couple of issues at a hotel down to a bit of bad luck and the hotel will be rectifying them after I leave. Not here though.

    Terrible hotel, awful people and staff that could not care less.

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