A search on your PC, laptop, tablet or mobile for a holiday cottage in Scotland will bring up thousands of results. So how do you choose one in confidence from a website page and safe in the knowledge that it will meet or exceed your expectations when you arrive for your well-earned holiday? Well at Balnagown Estates we’ve put together this simple guide to help you…
1. Where exactly is the property?
Despite what many people elsewhere in the UK may think and who haven’t visited Scotland before, it’s actually a pretty big country! To give an indication, if you’re travelling from England by car up the M6 (which becomes the M74) then the first town you’ll come to when you cross the border is Gretna Green. Now consider that if you keep on driving until you get to John o’ Groats on the north coast, it’s a further 360 miles. A further factor to consider is that once you leave the few motorways there are in Scotland (and there are none in the Highlands) then you’ll need to allow for plenty of time to get to your holiday cottage. For example, to get to one of our more northern properties such as Tigh na Rhos near the village of Rosehall, it would take about 6 hours from the time you reached Gretna Green. So always check the exact location of where you’re booking to ensure you’re happy to travel the distance needed to get there.
2. What sort of area do you want to holiday in?
Scotland has a massive range of different landscapes, from relatively flat farmland to rugged mountains and dramatic coastlines. You can choose a remote location where you’ll be tens of miles from even a small village – our Duchally Lodge property certainly fits that bill – or right in a town or city centre location. Other factors you might want to consider is how close you are to a beach (there are some fantastic beaches in Scotland – albeit the sea will be a tad chilly!). And don’t forget to consider the weather! The west coast of Scotland gets some of the highest rainfall in the UK, whereas if you head east to areas such as the Cromarty firth where our five properties at Balnagown Estate are, then rainfall is around a third of that the west coast has to endure.
3. What sort of activities, if any, do you want to do?
This is another important consideration, as it might mean you have to end up travelling great distances each day to get to the specific activities you want to do whilst on holiday. So before booking your holiday cottage in Scotland, research the area to make sure that it has the things and places you need for your activities – e.g. golf, fishing, bird watching, mountain biking and walking. On the Balnagown Estates website we’ve made this a little easier for you, as every activity and all facilities etc. are detailed. Or of course, it’s absolutely acceptable to do little or nothing and just sit back and enjoy the Scottish scenery!
4. How about some sort of official grading system?
The Scottish Tourist Board have a star system in place, and it’s a very good idea to only pick a holiday cottage in Scotland which has a star rating. For example, all of the nine properties we offer at Balnagown Estates have either a 4 star or 5 star rating.
The above is just a brief guide and will hopefully allow you to choose your Scottish holiday cottage with more confidence, but if you’d like some further advice or information then please email us or give us a call on +44 (0) 1862 843601. We’d be delighted to help!