Top 5 cosy autumn/winter getaways in the Scottish Highlands

Go-Hi's top 5 cosy Autumn/Winter getaways in the Scottish Highlands

If you’re looking for the perfect Autumn/Winter break as the weather gets cooler, the Scottish Highlands offers an ideal change of scenery. Featuring mountains, lochs, glens and quaint seaside towns, travellers visit the Highlands for a break away from their usual routine and to experience breath-taking views as the landscape turns a golden hue.

The Highlands are known for their incredible range of wild animals that make their home in this region from the Autumn months, including red deer, grey seals, and many Scandinavian coastal and mountainous birds. In certain spots, whales, dolphins, sharks, and porpoises can be spotted across the coastlines.

The endless and varied natural landscape means the area is popular for outdoor activities, which can be ideal for thrill-seekers looking for an adrenaline boost. Other visitors may be happy to lay back in comfort at a boutique hotel and take in the rich culture and history of the Highlands in their spare time, from browsing local museums and art galleries, to visiting restaurants and whisky distilleries.

This list of Scottish hotels created by the team at Go-Hi represent the ideal balance between a luxury stay and a wide range of local activities to keep you busy in the Highlands, so you’ll be ideally situated to enjoy the best that this region has to offer, even if the weather takes a turn for the worse.

Torlinnhe Guest House, Fort William

The multi-award winning Torlinnhe Guest House is in Fort William and its location gives you beautiful views of Loch Eil and Ben Nevis, the largest mountain in the UK at over 4,000 feet above sea level. The guest house offers luxury accommodation at an affordable price, so you won’t be breaking the bank before Christmas.

The comfortable rooms all include a large, smart TV with free Wi-Fi and Netflix, hand-made Scottish shortbread, and organic toiletries. A room at the hotel also gives you access to the local leisure centre which has fitness classes such as yoga, along with a swimming pool and sauna.

If you’re feeling brave and want to go on an Autumnal hike or climb, the team at Torlinnhe will even make lunch for you to take on your adventures. If you prefer to stay local, the breakfast and dinner offered at the guest house is made from locally sourced ingredients by the in-house chef, with the food travelling less than 20 miles to arrive at your table.

Aside from the star of the show Ben Nevis, adrenaline junkies may wish to try sea kayaking to spot seals, otters, basking sharks, and coastal birds or even white water rafting at Loch Oich. For those who don’t fancy braving the cold weather, there’s indoor rock climbing and bouldering in the centre of Fort William to practice your skills indoors.

  • Prices start from £150 for a King Double Room, including breakfast.

Clouds Bed & Breakfast, Isle of Skye

True to its historic roots, Clouds Bed & Breakfast is named after the old Norse translation of Isle of Skye which means “Isle of Cloud”. Clouds is a family-owned B&B located just four miles from Uig village which has transport links via ferry. Well suited to sustainable travellers, the owners grow their own vegetables, generate electricity to power the guest house using solar panels, and guests can even order farm-fresh eggs to their suite.

There are two types of accommodation on offer: the studio and the apartment. The studio is tailored to couples and has a decked outdoor balcony which allows you to overlook the lavish sea views towards the Western Isles. Great for larger parties, the apartment comfortably accommodates five people with a king double bed, two single beds and a sofa bed.

Uig village features a range of different restaurants and establishments for those looking to wine and dine. The Ferry Inn is a highly recommended restaurant which serves the best regional cuisine made from fresh and local ingredients. Another highlight is the multi-award winning Isle of Skye Brewing Company located on the pier which was the first brewery to open on the island in 1992.

If you’re looking to enjoy the natural scenery, Trotternish Ridge is a must-see which offers a scenic route for a cosy Autumn/Winter walk, suited to people of all physical abilities. To the west of Trotternish is the Fairy Glen which is a geological wonder formed of landslides. Not far from Uig are the Fairy Pools near Carbost Village which are breath-taking rock pools of mountain spring water fed by a series of waterfalls.

  • Prices start from £95 for the studio or £120 for the apartment, including breakfast.

The Old Library Lodge & Restaurant, Lochaber

The Old Library is a converted 200-year-old stone-built stable which now features bed and breakfast accommodation and an in-house restaurant. The hotel has six well-appointed rooms, two of which overlook the sea and the rest including patios which overlook the garden. A colour TV, amenities and free Wi-Fi are included in the rate along with breakfast.

This hotel is found on the west coast of the Scottish Highlands in Arisaig village in Lochaber, Inverness-shire. Arisaig translates to ‘safe bay’ as the village is well known for its beautiful coastline featuring bright white sands, rocky shores, and crystal blue seas.

At low tides, nearby Camusdarach Beach is the ideal setting for a coastal walk. This beach was also used as a film set for the film ‘Local Hero’. Or in less than an hour’s drive, Glenfinnan Viaduct Viewpoint is a great place for Harry Potter fans to spot where the famous train crossed the bridge to Hogwarts. Visit The Land, Sea and Islands Centre for more information about the history of Lochaber along with local artists, culture and historical artifacts.

The village overlooks the islands of Rum and Eigg which can be visited using the local ferry services. The Isle of Rum features Kinloch Castle, built in the 1800s, and there are plenty of walks where you can spot wildlife such as otters, seals, eagles, and ‘Rum Ponies’ (a unique breed of ponies in this region). The Isle of Eigg is approximately 3 miles wide but packs in a vast amount of nature and heritage. A fun fact about the Isle of Eigg is that its residents built the world’s first electric power grid in 2008.

  • Prices start from £120 for a Deluxe King Double Room with sea view, including breakfast.

Western Isles Hotel, Isle of Mull

The Western Isles hotel is an affordable yet majestic hotel that overlooks Tobermory village in the Isle of Mull. Various rooms are available either overlooking the harbour or towards the Sound of Mull and mainland Scotland beyond.

The Isle of Mull can be accessed via ferry and the island itself is well known for its white-tailed eagles which has given it the colloquial name ‘The Eagle Island’. Tobermory is the setting of the children’s TV programme Balamory and visitors will be able to spot the brightly coloured rows of houses by the harbour featured in the show. The harbour itself is the location of a shipwrecked Spanish galleon and Tobermory played a unique role in the second world war which visitors can learn more about in The Mull Museum.

The Isle of Mull is the perfect location for whale spotting and visitors may also catch a glimpse of dolphins, sharks, and porpoises. The Isle of Iona is a nearby island that can be accessed via a short ferry from the Isle of Mull which is home to a thriving art community, with craft shops, galleries, and pottery studios. Boat tours can also be booked from Mull to Staffa Island to spot a range of wildlife and visit Fingal’s Cave.

If the weather takes a turn for the worse, why not check out Tobermory Distillery where you can sample the unique single malt whiskeys that are produced every 6 months, or visit the Mishnish Bar which was created in 1869 and offers the freshest seafood from the bay.

  • Prices start from £198 for an Inland View Double Room, including breakfast.

Loch Ness Lodge, Inverness-Shire

Loch Ness Lodge is a refined and cosy hotel in the centre of the Scottish Highlands where its customers can overlook the beautiful and mysterious Loch Ness near Inverness.

Loch Ness Lodge also provides treatment packages in their spa and therapy area which includes a Scandinavian Sauna, hot tub, and treatment room. The bar and restaurant offer a cosy setting to your Autumn/Winter getaway, where you can enjoy a single malt with the backdrop of a log-lit fire.

Loch Ness is one of the most well-known landmarks in the Scottish Highlands since sightings of the monster were released in 1933. Once you’ve had a walk by Loch Ness, venture towards Abriachan Forest where the sky is incredibly clear at this time of year and allows lucky visitors to observe the milky way.

Nearby Inverness is known as the capital of the Highlands as its the region’s largest settlement and only city. It’s the perfect setting for an Autumn/Winter romantic getaway where you can take a stroll along the banks of the River Ness and Ness Islands, or take a gander at the Inverness Museum and Art Gallery. If you fancy a special treat, not far from the hotel you can visit Michelin-starred restaurant Rocpool which provides contemporary brasserie dining created from the finest Scottish produce.

  • Prices start from £175 for an Executive Double Room, including breakfast.

If you need to book travel while you’re visiting the Scottish Highlands, Go-Hi is your one-stop shop for door-to-door travel. The Go-Hi smartphone app allows you to find, book and pay for all your travel in one place, including buses, trains, ferries, taxis, bike hire, car club, car hire, flights, and hotels.