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Glamping in Scotland: Inspiration for Cute & Unusual Places to Stay

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Posted on: March 13, 2019
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Glamping in Scotland: Inspiration for Cute & Unusual Places to Stay

Glamping in Scotland: Inspiration for Cute & Unusual Places to Stay The Ultimate Guide to Glamping in Scotland If you fancy going glamping in Scotland, you’re in for a treat. There’s an ever-growing list of cute and quirky wee structures, in some of the country’s most serene locations. Get inspired by my guide to glamping in Scotland, complete with a list of glamping accommodation which I can personally recommend. This post contains affiliate links to experiences which I love, and may make a small commission from, at no extra cost to you. Where would you like to wake up on your Scottish getaway? I favour a morning routine which involves: a) lighting the wood-burner and jumping back into bed while the heat starts to circulate b) boiling the kettle on a stove until it whistles and c) drinking my cuppa outside in the freshest of air, surrounded by scenic vistas. Happy lassie . For me, it’s about finding accommodation that’s completely different to a classic hotel stay or camping experience ; something that’s cosy, full of character, and proudly boasting the ‘cute factor’. Glamping sites in Scotland come in all shapes and sizes, each with their own wee quirks; from yurts and pods, to wigwams and shepherd’s huts. If there’s an option to go glamping on my Scottish adventures, you can guarantee I’ll take it. Summer Howf My Recommended Places to Go Glamping. How does glamping differ from camping? Camping and glamping are both popular options for an escape in Scotland, though they each offer a completely different experience. Camping gets your hands dirty and brings on a wave of satisfaction by doing it yourself, and showing off your best survival tactics. You are closer to nature and more immersed in the outdoors; in any location of your choosing, given the ‘ Freedom to Roam ‘ in Scotland. Glamping, on the other hand, comes with an extra sprinkling of comfort, convenience, romance and luxury. Hence the name, glamour + camping = glamping! Many glamping sites are fully equipped with bedding, a heat source, cooking appliances, (access to) a hot shower, and drinking water – sometimes even a fridge. In terms of cost, you will, of course, pay more for the luxury of not having to build your own tent. Glamping sites come in varying styles and standards; some only provide shelter and have basic sleeping arrangements, while others are far more quirky and luxurious. High-end glamping experiences aren’t exactly cheap (usually £100+ per night), however you can guarantee your experience will be a special one. Choosing between glamping and camping is entirely down to personal preference. I thoroughly enjoy camping when someone else takes responsibility for the arrangements and supplies all the necessary equipment and appliances. My ‘chaotic’ and impractical tendencies mean that I literally ‘couldn’t be trusted to organise a camping trip’! Glamping, on the other hand, is ideal. It allows me to get in amongst Scotland’s scenery, but with all my home comforts. There’s nothing quite like getting cosy in a fairy-lit shepherd’s hut, listening to the crackle of the fire, and the howl of the wind outside. Planning a glamping trip in Scotland. Glamping sites can be found all over Scotland; from the wild Highlands and remote islands, to less touristy areas of southern Scotland. There are even glamping options within close reach of the cities! If you already know where in Scotland you’re travelling to, or would like to visit, you can simply search online for glamping options in that area. Like everything I do, I always start my search on Google and research websites from there. I create wish-lists on booking.com and Airbnb to save my wee discoveries, and refer to them when I’m planning a trip. If you haven’t used Airbnb before sign up here to get £25 off your first booking. I get £15 travel credit too – so it’s a win win! I’ll often visit a destination simply because I want to stay in a glamping accommodation which I’ve come across when daydreaming/wish-listing/distracting myself from work. Websites like Canopy & Stars and Huts and Cabins are the usual suspects for such pleasant distractions, and are packed with inspiration for cute glamping escapes. My Recommended Places to Go Glamping. Glamping pods in Scotland. John O’ Groats Glamping Pod, John O’ Groats. Basic but perfectly functional pod on the NC500 (sleeps 2) This small site has three glamping pods in total, and a separate pod with shared toilets and hot showers. Each pod has heating, sockets to charge your devices and two single beds with mattresses. Oh, and there’s also a hammock in each pod! Check-in is across the road at the Seaview Hotel , where you can ask to hire a sleeping bag for £5 if you haven’t brought your own. I stayed here for two nights with my best friend and really enjoyed it. We bought filled rolls for breakfast from The Cabin at John O’ Groats (I obviously had the haggis), dined at Stack’s Coffee House and Bistro , and visited Orkney for the day. Getting there: I flew to Wick from Edinburgh with Loganair and took the Stagecoach bus from Wick to John O’Groats. Prices start from £39 (not including Airbnb service/cleaning fee) For more information and to book click here Maol Farm, Isle of Iona. Basic rural retreat in a peaceful location with hairy coos (sleeps 2) This wee pod is all about the location and the experience. Situated a ten-minute walk (up a wee bit of a hill) from the ferry terminal, the pod sits in a quiet location on a working farm. The pod is basic and compact with two single beds, but kept us warm and dry during a heavy rainstorm on the island. Sleeping bags and pillows are provided, and guests have use of the bathroom and shower inside the entrance to the farm house, which is just a few metres away. Andrew and Lorna were lovely hosts, providing us with burgers and sausages to cook in the pod’s gas stove, and introducing us to their baby Highland cow called Afro. My best friend and I loved it! We took a day trip to Staffa , had dinner at the Argyll Hotel , and went to a ceilidh at the Iona Village Hall .
Getting there: You can travel to Iona on public transport by taking the train from Glasgow to Oban, the ferry from Oban to Mull, a bus from Craignure to Fionnphort, then the ferry to Iona. Prices start from £50 per night (not including Airbnb service fees) For more information and to book click here Iona Pods, Isle of Iona. Fully equipped, modern pods close to the island’s stunning beaches (sleeps 4) The pods are the newest glamping site on the island, and are fifteen-minutes on foot from the ferry terminal. They are surprisingly spacious inside, fitting a double bed and two single beds with camping mattresses, as well as a microwave, fridge, cooker, kettle, cooking utensils and crockery. There’s a picnic bench outside and in a separate building (see image below), you’ll find shared showers and toilets, vending machines, washing machines, tumble driers (a godsend after getting caught in the rain) and WiFi. There are several glamping pods on the site, which sit against a backdrop of Dun I – the highest point on the island. Be sure to visit the nearby Iona Abbey and the beautiful white sand beaches around the west of the island. Getting there: You don’t need a car to travel to Iona and the island is easy to walk around. Prices start from £65 per night For more information and to book click here Hillside Havens, Dufftown. Luxury pods in the heart of scenic Speyside (sleeps 4) When it comes to glamping, I’m totally cool with a wee bit of favouritism, and these perfect wee pods are the best I’ve come across yet. Inside, you’ll discover a corner sofa-bed which sleeps two, a kitchen area with everything you need, a bathroom with a toilet and shower, a TV/DVD player, and…. a PROPER double bed with plump pillows and a cosy duvet. Such an amazing use of space, and I honestly felt so warm and comfortable in my wee pod. There’s a microwave and fold-away table inside, or a BBQ/fire-pit and picnic bench outside which overlooks the Speyside countryside. To top it off, Derek and Eleanor are the friendliest of hosts. The pods are a mile outside of Dufftown, so if you don’t fancy cooking, you can grab treats from the bakery or go for dinner at The Seven Stills. For more ideas for things to do in and around Dufftown, check out my blog about my adventure on the Speyside Whisky Trail . Getting there: I travelled to Dufftown by taking the train to Inverness, then a Stagecoach bus from Inverness to Dufftown via Elgin. Prices start from £90 per night For more information and to book click here Would you like a wee hand planning your perfect trip in Scotland? Check out my Itinerary Planning Services . I’d love to help! Yurt glamping in Scotland. Yurt Experience, Isle of Gigha. Traditional Mongolian yurt in the Southern Hebrides (sleeps 4) This colourful wee gem is perfectly located on the Isle of Gigha, behind the local shop and post office (which are owned by the same family), just a ten-minute walk from the ferry terminal. There’s a double futon and two single futons in the spacious interior, and all bedding is provided. Chickens roam around outside and there’s no electricity; don’t worry, you can charge your devices in the adjacent barn. My host Joe was super-helpful, and hiked me a bike to explore the island. Find out what else I got up to in my blog about the Isle of Gigha . After a few drams with the locals in the Gigha Hotel, I walked back to the yurt in the pitch dark – serious fun. Once inside, I switched on the battery powered lantern and managed to get the wood-burner going. Success! I loved lying inside, wrapped in my duvet, listening to the sound of the rain on the roof.
Getting there: I took the Citylink bus from Glasgow to Tayinloan, where I caught the ferry to Gigha. Prices start from £91 per night For more information and to book click here West Auchraw Croft, Lochearnhead. Cosy Mongolian yurt in the Scottish Highlands (sleeps 2) Tucked away in the garden of a beautifully converted croft near Loch Earn, this quirky wee abode has got all your creature comforts covered; there is a comfy (proper) double bed, tea making facilities, a CD player, and plug sockets for charging devices. The host Melanie is such a character and so creative; she’s a talented photographer who can take portrait photos of you during your stay – if she’s available. I was worried about the temperature when I visited at the end of November, but the yurt was super-cosy with the wood-burner going and the wee electric radiator on. In fact, at one point I had to slightly open the door for some cool air! Guests have use of the lovely bathroom in the croft (which is also a B&B), and the homemade breakfast in the morning was amazing . Getting there: You need a car to travel to get to the yurt. The journey takes around 1.5 hours from Edinburgh. Prices start from £75 per night (not including Airbnb service/cleaning fees) For more information and to book click here Shepherds’ Huts in Scotland. Ochils Edge Glamping, near Perth. Room with a view in rural Perthshire (sleeps 2) Location, location, location. Staying here makes you feel like you’re really ‘getting away from it all’, yet it’s only a twenty-minute drive from the city of Perth. There’s no one else around, apart from the lovely host Jared, if you need him. The real selling point of this is the view from the huge front-facing window… WOW. The elevated position on a hill above the farm offers vistas which extend over miles of rolling hills and sheep-scattered countryside. What a sight to wake up to (and continue to lie in bed under the covers looking at). The hut has no electricity and the chemical toilet is a unique experience, but there’s a wee wood-burner to keep you warm, a comfy double bed, and fairy lights. Take simple supplies with you if you intend to cook; there’s a gas stove, fire pit, crockery, drinking water and a picnic table outside. A perfect escape.
Getting there: Ochils Edge is only accessible by car, and takes around 1 hour from Edinburgh. Prices start from £50 per night (not including Airbnb service fees) For more information and to book click here EcoCamp Glenshee, near Blairgowrie. Cute shepherd’s hut in Perthshire for animal lovers (sleeps 4) The EcoCamp Glenshee is an environmentally friendly glamping site in rural Perthshire, with solar lights, low energy bulbs and an energy boiler. There are several pods and huts to choose from, but myself and two friends stayed in the ‘Shepherd’s Hut for Four’ which has a double bed and two singles – a duvet and pillows are supplied for the double, and you can request sleeping bags for the singles if you don’t bring your own. There’s electric lighting and a plug socket, and the communal toilet/shower block is just a short walk from the shepherd’s hut. Goats, donkeys and geese all live on the farm too, as well as llamas which you can book in to feed and take for a walk! There’s even llama-themed décor in the shepherd’s hut. So cute. Make a cuppa on the wood-burning stove, have a BBQ on the fire pit outside, and soak up the surrounding scenery. Getting there: You need a car to visit the EcoCamp which is approx. 1 hour 45 minutes from Edinburgh. Prices start at £85 per night For more information and to book click here More glamping options in Scotland. Summer Howf, near Dunblane Adorable summer house hidden in a pretty garden (sleeps 2) Craighead Farm is a wee countryside haven just outside Dunblane. The land is home to a luxurious converted steading and a handful of unique glamping options – including a treehouse and hobbit house – which are collectively known as Craighead Howfs. I stayed in the Summer Howf, which is tucked away in a corner of the enchanting garden, amidst trees and bushes, leafy archways and pebbly paths, trickling streams and wee wooden bridges. The interior was beautiful when I stayed, and it has since been renovated to look even cuter, with a cabin bed and wood-burner. Outside, there’s a double stove, water tap, fire-pit and picnic table, as well as all the crockery/utensils you’ll need. The toilets and showers are just a short walk away in the main building, as well as a wee honesty stop to grab some treats e.g. marshmallows for the fire! The Summer Howf feels sublimely secluded, even though the grounds are shared with a few interesting characters; turkeys, goats, ducks, chickens, horses, hairy coos and… ostrich. Brilliant. Getting there: It is possible to get to Craighead Howfs without a car if you take the train from Edinburgh to Dunblane and pre-book a local taxi from the train station (journey time 10/15 minutes). Prices start from £105 per night (two-night minimum stay) For more information and to book click here Cleadale Bothy, Isle of Eigg. Cosy bothy with stunning views on an organic, sustainable croft (sleeps 4) This bonnie wee bothy sits against a backdrop of cliffs, and looks out to the spectacular Singing Sands beach, and the Jurassic-like mountains on the Isle of Rum beyond. Once the croft’s cattle shed, the inside has been converted into basic but perfectly comfortable lodgings, complete with a double futon, bunkbeds, a wood-burner, full-sized cooker, running water, a wee fridge, and a dining table. All bedding and crockery/utensils are included, and there’s a toilet and hot shower in the main house. Cleadale is on the opposite side of the island from where the ferry arrives, so I would strongly recommend stocking up in the local shop at the port, and hiking a bike from Eigg Adventures to get there; there is a sizeable incline and decline to get there so make sure you wear a helmet! Getting there: Only locals are allowed cars on the island, so public transport is definitely the best option. Take the West Highland Line from Glasgow to Mallaig, where you catch the ferry to Eigg and then cycle to the bothy. Prices start from £55 per night (not including Airbnb service fees) For more information and to book click here Burnhead Bothies, near Glasgow. A contemporary eco-bothy, surprisingly close to the city (sleeps 4) Perched on the hillside above a working farm, this striking wee structure feels remote, despite being only a twenty-minute drive from Glasgow. There’s a double bedroom with fairy lights, and a bathroom with a sink and hot shower. The open-plan living/dining area has a double sofa bed, wood-burner, table & chairs and a fully-equipped kitchen. Our lovely hosts Duncan and Ashley provided plenty bottled water for our stay, as the bothy is fed by spring water, and we brought supplies from a nearby ASDA. Once you’ve stocked up and unpacked, there really is no reason to leave. Natural light is abundant, and splashes of colour from the Scottish artwork, the rug and the statement armchair brighten up the interior even more. I loved starting the day with a cup of tea on the decking outside, and munching the freshest of eggs (still warm), as delivered to us that morning by Ashley. I also loved snuggling up on the couch with a dram from the nearby Glengoyne Distillery in hand, fire flickering, listening to the ferocious wind and rain outside. Getting there: Driving is definitely the easiest option for Burnhead Bothies, however you could take the train from Edinburgh to Croy and pre-book a local taxi to drive you to the farm. You would then have to walk up the hill to the bothy though! Prices start from £99 per night (two-night minimum stay) For more information to book click here What’s your ideal kind of glamping accommodation? Happy travels!

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