My Story | A Girls Getaway in Scotland

Unplug and Reconnect with Nature on a Scottish Retreat

Posted on 17-05-24, updated on 05-07-24By: Claire S. | 5 minute read

Girls retreat in Scotland

Girls retreat in Scotland

A Scottish Short Break to Remember

Are you yearning for an escape to the country? Our marketing manager headed off on an exciting 6-day adventure, exploring two amazing destinations with a friend! They stayed in two delightful Scotland cottages nestled in the heart of the breathtaking Scottish countryside, where every moment was filled with relaxation and discovery.

Perched above Loch Tay with panoramic views of the enchanting Perthshire landscape, Chapelburn was originally built as a chapel in the early 1900s, this charming cottage sits by a serene stream and pool once used for village baptisms. Chapelburn's recent transformation into an expansive holiday retreat seamlessly blends its rich history with modern comfort. Here, you'll find luxurious accommodation complete with top-notch amenities, exquisite furnishings, and plush linens—all set against a backdrop of stunning natural beauty. Imagine soaking in a hot tub on elevated decking while savouring spectacular vistas or taking an invigorating plunge into a waterfall-fed pool before unwinding in our cosy sauna.

On the shores of Loch Dunvegan, The Beach House seamlessly mixes the traditional with the contemporary, whilst surrounded by some of the best scenery Skye has to offer. With stunning finishes inside and out, in the most exquisite of settings, The Beach House is a gem. Recently restored using the original footprint and stone of the previous croft house, this property combines the old with the new and delivers a very attractive 3-bedroom home for you to enjoy. With a traditional stone exterior, the interior could not be more contemporary, with plenty of natural light and large rooms throughout.

Loch Tay

Loch Tay

Where did you go and for how long? And with whom?

My best friend and I embarked on an unforgettable 6-night girls' road trip to the stunning landscapes of Scotland! We spent our first 3 nights embracing the charm of Aberfeldy at a cosy cottage called Chapelburn on the bank of Loch Tay. The next leg of our adventure took us to the breathtaking Isle of Skye, where we enjoyed another wonderful 3 nights in a delightful cottage known as The Beach House. It was truly a magical getaway filled with cherished memories and beautiful scenery!

Chapelburn in Aberfeldy

Chapelburn in Aberfeldy

What are the most important aspects for you when choosing a holiday home?

Whether you're looking for a holiday filled with invigorating walks or conveniently near local attractions, these cottages offered the perfect blend of both. We were able to enjoy the peace and tranquillity away from bustling crowds. Visiting in January meant we had the company of sheep and cows, a truly calming experience!

Unplugging on the Isle of Skye

Unplugging on the Isle of Skye

What did you think of the location and its convenience to local attractions?

Chapelburn was near Dewar's whiskey distillery that we toured and tasted at—such an enjoyable experience! We also explored a Red Deer Safari in the charmingly named town of Dull, which is twinned with Boring, Oregon in the US.

We discovered a treasure trove of activities in the area, starting with the charming conservation village of Kenmore at Loch Tay's eastern edge. This picturesque locale boasts a shingle beach and breathtaking views down the loch, perfect for indulging in water sports, enjoying tranquil loch cruises, or trying your hand at fishing. You'll find everything you need: a local shop, post office, deli, Scotland's oldest inn, enticing restaurants—alongside the fascinating Crannog Centre where a reconstructed Iron Age stilt dwelling stands over the water.

Every January brings excitement as Kenmore hosts its traditional ceremony to celebrate the opening of the salmon season on Loch Tay. The surrounding area is great for invigorating walks and challenging climbs amid spectacular surroundings. Begin your journey in Fearnan by exploring one end of Tay Forest Park that leads you to Fortingall—a hamlet graced with Europe's ancient marvel—the Fortingall Yew.

Or drive through stunning landscapes to Killin to witness the majestic Falls of Dochart or embark on an unforgettable route from here towards Bridge of Balgie leading up Glen Lyon—Scotland's longest glen! There is also plenty to do from golfing to horse riding, quad biking, bird-watching and cycling.

Staying at the Beach House was an extraordinary experience! The walks were simply stunning, and we were just a stone's throw away from Coral Beach - one of Skye's most picturesque secrets. With the sun shining, on a freezing cold winter's day it felt as though we had been transported to the Caribbean with its crystal-clear blue waters. Nature surrounded us, creating an incredibly peaceful ambience. Our visit to the Fairy Pools on the Isle of Skye added another layer of magic; their stunning beauty made our trip truly memorable. The Beach House was idyllic, a perfect place to unplug and go to rediscover the great outdoors. As we were there in January, it was an ideal time as it felt we had the Isle to ourselves!

The abundance of wildlife right on the doorstep is nothing short of magical! A resident seal colony adorns the shores below, while occasional pods of dolphins delight as they pass through. It's common to see majestic Golden Eagles or sea eagles soaring above, and playful otters frolicking on the beach nearby. This property serves as a perfect base for a variety of activities: walking, hiking, boat trips, cycling, kayaking, and fishing—all possible right from your doorstep!

Dewars Whiskey Distillery

Take a tour at Dewar's Distillery

Were there any specific amenities or features of the cottage that you particularly enjoyed?

Chapelburn was originally a chapel, and the house still boasts its baptism font, now skilfully transformed into a luxurious plunge pool—perfect for cooling off after a relaxing sauna. Chapelburn also has a hot tub, a sauna, and a pool table. Although it was just the two of us on this trip, this would be an ideal holiday home for creating unforgettable memories with a group of friends!

The Beach House offered an entirely unique experience, featuring breathtaking views, scenic walks, and a tranquil atmosphere that made our visit truly special. Both sets of owners were incredibly helpful, and to top it off, each cottage welcomed us with goodie baskets—a truly heartwarming gesture.

The Beach House, near Dunvegan

The Beach House, near Dunvegan

What were the highlights of your break? Any memorable experiences?

Although our getaway was just 6 days, it truly felt like a holiday! One evening, we cosied up by the fire with a glass of Baileys each, watching "The Holiday" – pure bliss. Disconnecting from the hustle and bustle to reconnect with nature was rejuvenating. Sipping wine in the hot tub while gazing at thousands of stars twinkling in an unspoiled night sky was magical. With zero light pollution, it's an ideal spot for catching a spectacular display of the Northern Lights.

Walking on the Isle of Skye

Walking in a winter wonderland, on the Isle of Skye

Did you visit any local restaurants and discover any hidden gems?

On the Isle of Skye, we discovered a delightful off-season surprise! Many restaurants were closed, but this turned out to be a blessing in disguise. The cottage was incredibly well-equipped, allowing us to savour cooking our own meals and basking by the fire's warmth after our invigorating walks. It made our stay even more cosy and special! At Chapelburn the area was dotted with incredible restaurants, and one of our favourites even featured a spa. Imagine sliding from the pool right into the loch—it was absolutely breathtaking!

For more short breaks in Scotland check out our helpful guide of where to go and what to see. For inspiration of short breaks around the UK we've got you covered.

The Fairy Pools Isle of Skye

The Fairy Pools, Isle of Skye

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