Highland Holidays with a Twist
Come and stay in our newly renovated, 18th Century crofter’s cottage in the Highlands of Scotland and take time to work on your photography skills!
During your holiday you can book personalised tuition with wildlife and nature photographer Trevor Penfold – on a one-2-one basis or as a small group – for as little or as much as you like. And during your stay you can practice your skills in the beautiful countryside around us. Hawthorn Cottage is close to some amazing walks, cycle routes and views with wildlife literally on your doorstep – the dry stone walls are perfect habitat for lizards and slow worms and the hares love the new grass shoots in the cottage garden!
To plan and book your photography tuition please contact Trevor in advance, to discuss your requirements and ensure he’s available.
Or just Book the Cottage to come for a relaxing holiday in the Highlands! Look forward to seeing you!
Note: After you’ve selected your preferred dates and you click Book Now you will be taken to our Booking Agent, Highland Perthshire Holiday Homes, to complete your details and pay using their secure payment processing protal.
Hawthorn Cottage was originally an 18th Century crofter’s cottage (built around 1740) so it has a lovely cosy feel – yet now with all the modern luxuries, including super-fast fibre broadband! Beautifully decorated and furnished throughout, this gorgeous, dog-friendly, semi-detached old cottage is more of a grown-up space, so best suited for adults and older children (therefore there is an age restriction of 12 years and older).
It has recently undergone a complete renovation (including the addition of an upstairs extension to add a spacious second bathroom) plus full refurbishment to create a top-quality holiday cottage. The cottage has a pretty approach, along a nicely laid-out path with flowerbeds and large potted plants either side. On entering through the front door there is a bright and airy entrance lobby/boot room with plenty of space for hanging wet jackets and outdoor shoes! Moving through the hall there is an invitingly cosy sitting room with exposed original beams, two comfy sofas, coffee table and occasional tables, flat-screen Smart TV and a log-burning stove for the cooler months. There is also a good supply of games, jigsaw puzzles and books for when the weather is truly ‘dreich‘! Also downstairs is the fully equipped, delightful, cottage-style kitchen with a large window overlooking the pretty back garden, a small dining area with a window overlooking the front garden, a utility area with a washer-dryer and an impressive downstairs bathroom with built-in shower and large heated towel rail.
Upstairs (and please note the stairs are quite steep due to the age of the cottage!) are the two bedrooms and the second luxuriously finished bathroom, with lovely views over the back garden. This upstairs bathroom features a large built-in shower, 2 large heated towel rails and a separate bath. The spacious main bedroom has zip-and-link beds which can be configured into either a full-sized, super king or into two extra-long singles. This room has a charming window seat with a lovely rural outlook, a hanging space and chest of drawers with a mirror. The second bedroom has a king-sized bed and also features a window seat with front-facing rural views as well as a small window overlooking the rear garden, plus hanging space and plenty of storage. There is also additional hanging space and storage space for larger items such as suitcases etc in the cupboard on the landing.
The rear of the property can be accessed through the back door by the kitchen or directly through the outdoor gate – which can be locked from inside for additional security for bikes etc if required. There is a sunny patio with an outdoor sofa set and gas BBQ, and a large picnic table in an interesting sunken area of the garden with outdoor lighting. There are also delightful, sheltered garden areas ideal for catching the sun and enjoying the views out towards Drummond Hill and the start of Glen Lyon.
There is clearly marked, reserved parking for cottage guests at the front of the property (for one car) and further parking can be arranged with us when booking.
For more information about the facilities at Hawthorn Cottage and for things to see and do in the area please see below. And to check availability and book please visit our booking agent Highland Perthshire Holiday Homes.
Just minutes from Loch Tay, Hawthorn Cottage is a cosy and luxurious way to enjoy the countryside in the Scottish Highlands – we look forward to welcoming you!
Hawthorn Cottage (and ‘Clach an Tuirc’ next door) were built as crofter’s cottages in approximately 1740. Originally, they would have been a basic 2-up, 2-down home with an outside toilet in the back garden. During our recent renovation of Hawthorn Cottage, we discovered the original inglenook fireplace which would have been the main cooking area and the only form of heating (now with the microwave in). Water was collected from a well just opposite the double wooden back gates of ‘Clach an Tuirc’ – in fact, some locals who were born here can remember fetching water from this very well!
And being a crofter’s cottage, each one had their own strip of land behind them for livestock. The field behind the cottage garden, running up towards Drummond Hill, would have been divided up the middle; but it was sold about 40 years ago to the owners of ‘Clach an Tuirc’. Also, each crofter had grazing rights in the Cow Park (behind the field) for 1 cow, though these rights have changed considerably in recent years. And the Cow Park is now a SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest) due to its unusual rock and the associated wildflowers, including orchids.
There’s an enormous stone/boulder in the front corner of the front garden – this is known as The Boar Stone (Clach an Tuirc in Gaelic) and it’s mentioned in a local prophecy from the 17th Century by the Lady of Lawers. She lived in the old village of Lawers (now derelict), on the north shore of Loch Tay, in the mid to late 1600s. She was the wife of John Stewart, the second son of the Laird of Appin, and was known as a spaewife, or soothsayer.
Her prophecies, originally stated in Scots Gaelic, include ‘fire-coaches yet to be seen crossing the Drumochter Pass’, almost 200 years before the introduction of steam trains along the Highland Railway! And another prophesy, ‘The land will first be sifted then riddled of its people and the homes on Loch Tay shall become so scarce that a cock crowing will not be heard from one to the other, and the jaw of the sheep will drive the plough from the ground,’ was eerily accurate too, as The Clearances in the 1830s reduced the population of Loch Tayside by about 3,000 – to about 500 – and the cultivated land was then used for sheep farming.
But her prophesy for The Boar Stone has yet to happen… ‘When the Boar’s Stone at Fearnan is toppled, a strange heir will come to Balloch’…. and given its immense size and shape it doesn’t seem likely to do so anytime soon!
The Boar Stone is marked on OS maps, though it’s not a listed monument, and it has Prehistoric cup and ring marks on it. There are many of these types of stones in this area which can be found by visiting the www.megalithic.co.uk website.
There’s a huge range of activites to choose from in and around this beautiful area – too many to list here! So we’ve shared those businesses that we’d personally recommend (so you can book with them direct) plus useful links for other activites. Or you can book via Unique Adventure Tours Scotland who liase with all the best providers.
The small hamlet of Fearnan sits on the North shore of Loch Tay, just 3 miles from the historic village of Kenmore. Here you can find the Courtyard Deli and a range of restaurants. There’s also a small beach area from which you can launch kayaks and paddleboards or just enjoy a picnic or a swim. For golf enthusiasts there is the Mains of Taymouth Golf Course, a lovely course situated just past the Courtyard Deli.
Kenmore is home to the new Loch Tay Safari adventure – now based out of The Taymouth Marina, by the original Crannog Centre – part of the award-winning Highland Safaris based in Dull.
The Scottish Crannog Centre is a short walk from Kenmore on the South side of Loch Tay. It has regular events, music nights and workshops throughout the year as well as storytelling, tours and a small museum displaying the Bronze Age artifacts found in the Loch. It’s also developing a new site at Dalerb, on the opposite shore just before you reach Kenmore, which opens November 2023. This promises to be really interesting as it will show how they’re building the replica Bronze Age crannogs using traditional materials and crafts. Definitly worth a visit.
Just 2 miles North from Fearnan is Fortingall – another historic village, renowned for having the Fortingall Yew which is the oldest tree in the UK and possibly the oldest ‘living thing’ in Europe! It also has some lovely architecture and is home to the annual Fortingall Art Summer Exhibition (usually in mid-July to early August) which has an excellent selection of local and Scottish artists exhibiting.
Glen Lyon is accessed from a turning just before you reach Fortingall. Known as the longest and loneliest glen in Scotland it’s also our favourite! Definitely worth a trip to explore it and to visit the tea rooms serving cakes and lunches at the Glen Lyon Tea Room and Post Office near Innerwick.
Aberfeldy is a 15 minute drive and has all the amenities you might need including: a large supermarket, butcher, bakery, pet shop, petrol station, medical centre, dentist, vet, bank, ATMs and Post Office and lots of places to eat. It also has a good range of gift and craft shops, an award-winning book shop and cafe at The Watermill, and a community owned, independent cinema, The Birks, which has a great selection of films, plus music nights and other activities. And there’s a monthly farmers’ and arts market on the first Sunday of the month between April and October.
Or you can go in the other direction to Killin (15-20 minute drive) which has all the essentials, plus the Falls of Dochart which are an awesome sight to see after heavy rain. Killin sits at the Western head of Loch Tay and there are some easily accessible walks from the village, along the River Dochart and the shore of the Loch where you can get quite close sightings of the beavers on the small island nearby.
In addition, there are numerous castles and distilleries and various festivals and music events run throughout the year. You can check them out at Visit Aberfeldy.
Highland Perthshire Holiday Homes manages all of our bookings. Please find below a copy of their Terms and Conditions.
Terms and Conditions
Payment: A deposit of 25%, or payment in full for bookings within 8 weeks of the holiday date, is payable at the time of booking. Confirmation will be sent by email upon receipt of the deposit. The balance of the cost of the holiday is due 8 weeks before arrival. We reserve the right to re-let the property if final payment is not received by the due date. You are strongly advised to book via our online booking system, accessible from our website. The person making the booking is responsible for all payments. Payments can be made by credit or debit card when placing an online booking or by bank transfer, the details for which will be emailed to you once the booking has been placed.
Booking: A Provisional booking will be held for 7 days, after which time we reserve the right to let to other customers. Provisional bookings should be confirmed as soon as possible with a deposit or full payment as detailed above at which point the booking becomes binding. Late payment of the final balance for your booking contravenes the terms and conditions you have agreed to when placing your booking. This could affect your entitlement to a refund if you should have to cancel for any reason, including Coronavirus.
Confirmation documents: Confirmation documents will be sent to you via email. It is your responsibility to check all the booking details are correct. Any errors should be notified to HPHH immediately. HPHH cannot be held responsible for any errors that are not drawn to their attention at the time confirmation is issued/received.
Cancellation of bookings: A holiday booking with us forms a legal contract. If you are unable to take up the holiday and property booking you are still liable for the full cost. You should notify us as soon as you are aware of the need to cancel. If we are able to re-let the property for the same period, and you do not have holiday insurance cover, we will consider refunding, or deduct from what is owed, any such rental monies received, or due to be paid, less the deposit paid. This will be done entirely at the discretion of HPHH and we are under no obligation to do so. In all circumstances the deposit is non-refundable. Should we have to cancel your holiday booking due to circumstances beyond our reasonable control, in relation to that specific property, (i.e. property not fit for use due to leak, fire damage, storm damage or similar) we will make every effort to offer or find alternative accommodation at one of our other properties. However, if this is not possible all monies paid to us in relation to the booking will be fully refunded on behalf of the owner of the property. Our liability will not extend beyond this. In the event of a cancellation due to government guidelines or law, we will postpone your booking and issue you with a voucher for the value paid so that the booking can be rescheduled at a later date. In these type of circumstances where the situation is out with our own control, refunds will not be given.
Insurance: We strongly advise that you take out suitable travel or cancellation insurance to cover all types of eventualities relating to your travel arrangements, ie flights, trains, car hire etc.
Availability: Booking of the property is normally on a Friday to Friday basis, with arrival after 4.00pm on the start date. It is a strict requirement that the property is vacated by 10:00am on the day of departure. We reserve the right to make additional charge if you depart late and we have to incur extra cleaning costs to prepare for the next booking.
Property: Nothing in these terms or in the booking procedure will imply any form of tenancy agreement. All properties are let solely on a holiday use basis, for the days agreed. You are required to take all reasonable care to protect the property and its contents and to ensure that it is left fully cleaned, tidied and free of rubbish before your departure. We reserve the right to make additional charge to cover costs we may additionally incur to prepare for the next booking for properties not reasonably left as found on arrival. The number of people occupying the property shall not exceed 8 or fewer at any time, as stated for the property and as agreed at the time of booking. Guests are expected to show consideration and respect to neighbours of the property at all times, especially in relation to noise. Parties are not allowed in or on the property. EV charging is not permitted at the property. There are EV charging points in the public car park at the rear of the Co-op Supermarket in Aberfeldy.
Adverse Weather Conditions: It is important to consider the location of a cottage when booking for the winter months, especially in relation to the type of vehicle you drive. We do get snow here most winters and thawing snow which then freezes can also be a problem. As with all travel during the winter, it is important for drivers to be prepared and think ahead. We will always do what we can to facilitate access to properties but it is important that guests consider their departure plans if there is snow during their stay which makes it difficult. We suggest you keep an eye on the weather forecast and consider leaving cars parked out with the property if appropriate. It is ultimately the guests responsibility to manage their vehicles departure from the property on the day you check out, in the same way you would at home.
Damages and Breakages: A security/good housekeeping deposit will be required in the form of a pre-authorised payment from your credit card for each booking. This pre-authorisation will be processed 7-10 days prior to your arrival date. In the event of deductions being required, full details of deductions i.e. damage, breakages or extra cleaning required, will be provided. Any payment due will be taken from your credit card within 10 days of guest departure. If not charges are required you will be notified when the pre-authorisation has been cancelled.
You are fully responsible for any damage or breakage you or members of your party cause to the property, contents or grounds and the costs arising from same. You are asked to report any such damage or breakage at your earliest convenience to enable repair or replacement to be arranged as soon as is possible. If such costs exceed the pre-authorised GHD figure, then you agree and undertake to make good the difference within seven days of being invoiced for them.
Reviews: You will receive an email from UpFront Reviews, 2 days after your departure. This email is sent by them on our behalf and will ask you to consider leaving us a review by following the link provided. These reviews are displayed on our website as well as on the UpFront Reviews website. Only verified guests are invited to leave reviews for us and we appreciate you taking the time to do so.
Each of our properties has a guest information folder which gives details on the house, appliance instructions, local information etc. In addition, there may be house rules displayed that apply to that specific house, in particular rules about noise and use of outdoor spaces. These rules must be adhered to as noise management is a requirement of the owners Short Term Let License. Other conditions of the STLL include following the instructions provided about recycling and disposal of rubbish, anti-social behaviour, parking etc. It is very important that all guests are made aware of any house rules that apply throughout your stay. We suggest the lead guest reads all the information provided and ensures rules and instructions are adhered to at all times.
EV Charging: Please note that EV charging is not permitted at any of our properties. There are EV charging points in the public car park at the rear of the Co-op supermarket in Aberfeldy.
Pets: Please see individual property details. As you will see most of our properties accept pets and there is a £20 charge per dog. Guests with pets are expected to ensure that animals are not allowed on any furniture or in bedrooms. Dogs must not be left unattended in a property at any time. Dog owners are expected to ‘pick up’ after their dogs in the garden please. Specific dog rules are displayed in all properties that accept dogs. If you know that your dog sheds a lot, it would be much appreciated if you could hoover from time to time, keep on top of dog hair around the house. Any evidence that these rules have not been adhered to may result in a charge from your GHD. You will find more useful information on our Dog Friendly page here.
Lost Property: Any items of clothing, toys, phone chargers etc left behind in the house after your departure will not be returned. Such items will be donated to our local Thrift Shop. Any valuable items such as jewellery, mobile phones, tablets/lap tops etc will be returned and the costs for postage and packing, as well as an administration fee of £20, will be charged to your GHD. It is therefore vital that you check the house thoroughly before leaving and ensure that you have ALL your personal possessions with you.
Internet Access: Internet access and WiFi, where provided, are done so on a complimentary basis. Due to the rural location of many of our properties, Broadband speeds can be variable and often unreliable at peak times. This is out with our control and we cannot be held responsible if access is not available at any time during your stay. We work on a fair use policy and any unreasonable or excessive use of data may be charged for.
Smoking: In the interests of safety and for the comfort of future guests all properties are strictly no smoking. If anyone smokes within a property then an additional deep cleaning charge of £500 will be applied.
Advertising: We make every reasonable effort to ensure that any advertising that exists is up-to-date and accurate. However, we reserve the right to make changes as required and accept no liability for minor inaccuracies. Guests are required to ensure that the information they may have seen is recent and up-to-date. All information is given in good faith.
Liability: We do not accept any liability for injury to persons or loss or damage to vehicles, their contents or anyone’s personal possessions arising out of the let of the property or the use of the properties’ facilities or equipment. You undertake to indemnify us from any liability for damage or injury, however caused by you or any member of your party to any third party, the property or to the properties’ facilities or equipment.
Access: We retain the right to enter the property at any reasonable time for the purpose of repair work, inspection etc. We will normally make all reasonable effort to give forewarning.
Complaint: Should you have complaints during your stay you should please advise us immediately so that appropriate action can be taken. If we receive complaints about you or your party, we will bring these to your attention. If the cause of complaint continues we reserve the right to ask you to leave immediately without compensation or reimbursement of monies paid. We would remind you that parties are not allowed in or on the property and the number of guests should not exceed the number stated on the booking at any time during your stay.
Your Personal Data: For the purposes of our booking contract with you, we will store the personal data you provide on your booking form and use it for the following:
- Administering bookings
- Dealing with your enquiries and requests
- Providing information about products and services – if you have opted to subscribe to our newsletter.
Your data will be kept for a period of 3 years and will be stored on our secure booking system.
Legal: This agreement shall be governed by and subject to Scottish Law. Should any clause not be permissible in Law, the remainder of the contract shall remain valid. None of the above shall affect your statutory rights