For many people, the ideal holiday accommodation in Scotland would be a traditional, whitewashed Highland cottage (provided, of course, it was well kitted out with 21st century comforts!) in a peaceful and secluded situation in one of the loveliest glens in Scotland. If that sounds like your kind of place, then Lillieoak Cottage may well be the place for you.
It is a detached, south facing cottage with a wonderful outlook and stunning mountain views, standing in its own grounds of about 1/3 acre, secluded and snuggling into the hillside, yet within walking distance of the pretty village of Tomich (hotel) 30 miles south-west of Inverness. It is accessed by a short track and surrounded by woods and forestry land, ideal for walking and cycling. But the cherry on this particular cake, situation-wise, is that it is alongside two of the most beautiful of Scottish glens, Glen Affric and Glen Cannich.
The cottage itself is cosy and inviting, with an open fire in the sitting room and a wood burning stove in the dining area to augment the electric heating. There is a bathroom on the ground floor, and upstairs, a double and twin bedroom. It is a most comfortable and well-appointed base from which to enjoy this magnificent area.
The well-tended garden is enclosed. There is parking for several cars at the cottage and canoes, bikes and other sporting equipment can be safely stowed in the garage. Nature lovers will think they are in heaven, for red squirrels, deer, pine martens and even rare wild cats can all be spotted. Otters are known to visit the garden itself. And then there are the birds. The Common Buzzard is, well, downright common here, while the red kites which have been newly reintroduced into this area can also be seen. The RSPB run dawn expeditions to carefully guarded locations in the glens where you can witness the black grouse lek in season, and you should also keep an eye out for the golden eagles which soar above the hills.
The energetic visitor can walk, climb, cycle, ride, play golf and fish in nearby lochs and rivers (permits available locally). The Tomich fishings where you can hire a boat or bank fish are very well known.
The cottage is also an excellent centre for touring. Loch Ness, with all its attractions, is a 20 minute drive. The village of Drumnadrochit (known locally simply as 'Drum') on the shores of the loch, is a thriving tourist centre, where you can take boat trips on the loch, arrange fishing and riding, or head up or down the Great Glen either to Inverness, the bustling capital of the Highlands or Fort William and Ben Nevis. It's easy, too, to head over to the West Coast and Skye via Invermoriston, just down the loch. Buses run to Inverness from Cannich village (3m), should the driver also feel like a holiday. Cannich has an excellent general store and two pubs. The pretty and thriving village of Beauly is also 20 miles distant.
Or if you feel like a quiet evening stroll after dinner, you can plod a-long to the Plodda Falls, a delightful woodland walk to the 40ft high waterfall, the highest in the area.
Bed linen, towels and logs are included. There is a key meter for the electricity. Well behaved pets are welcome by arrangement. Smoking is not permitted in the cottage. The house has a telephone.
Accommodation (sleeps 4):
- Sitting room with open fire, TV/Video, Ipod Dock and radio
- Dining kitchen wood-burning stove, electric cooker, microwave and fridge-freezer etc
- Bathroom with bath/shower, WC and wash basin and washer/drier
- Double bedroom
- Twin bedroom