Bothan na' Tilleadh is in the hamlet of Polbain (The White Pool or Pond) overlooking the Summer Isles on the Coigach Peninsula some twenty-five miles (40 kilometers) to the north-west of Ullapool in Wester Ross in the North-West of Scotland.
The area is remote, but then that is its charm. It is beautiful, summer and winter. Bothan na' Tilleadh is the smaller on a half-acre of land we have recently purchased. The main house, Tigh na' Tilleadh, was the crofter's cottage and Bothan na ' Tilleadh was originally the byre.
The view from the house.
Well converted, comfortably furnished and newly decorated the Bothan consists of a hallway, one bedroom, a shower room and an open-plan kitchen, dining area and living room. The house is reached by steps from above through a gate onto the road opposite Polbain Stores. It has mains electricity, its own spring supplying water, full electric central heating and cooking, as is usual in the area, is done by calor gas. All electricity, water and gas are included in the cost of rental.
We have to make sure that the bothan is to as high a standard and as well equipped as our own. It is suitable for two adults or two adults and up to two children and at a little more of a stretch, four adults.
The bedroom is designed for two, either in a king-sized bed or two singles. The bases of the two single beds merely lock together to form the king-size and the mattresses zip together. King-sized sheets, duvets and duvet covers plus pillows and pillow slips are supplied and again included in the cost of rental. A cot and a fold-down single bed are also available on request.
This is a shower room and not a bathroom. There is no bath. The shower is, however, very good with excellent pressure. The water is heated by an immersion heater. The room is heated by an electrical fire and there is also an heated towel-rail.
We believe the kitchen is fully equipped for up to 4 people. As well as the calor gas stove we have also installed a washer-dryer, a dishwasher, plus toaster, kettle, coffee maker and microwave. There is a large refrigerator and freezer.
The Dining Area
The dining area is again designed for four with an extension flap on the dining table for additional guests. It is on the same level as the kitchen between it and the sitting area. However, because the sitting area is below the the level of the kitchen there are direct views through the picture window across the sound to Tanera Mor. For babies there is a high-chair available, which can be turned into a toddler's chair and table.
The Living Room
The living room is down three steps from the dining area. The south-facing wall is almost entirely window with superb views across the paddock and down to the Summer Isles. It has an armchair and a folding settee that sleeps up to two additional people. There is a television with Freesat. There is also a stereo, with a CD player and tape recorder.
By the main house there is a large patio with wooden garden-furniture. There is also a small, walled, sheltered one to the front and right of the bothan.
There is a small lawn in front of the main house and to the right of the bothan, where there is a large childrens' climbing frame. Much of the rest of the garden is left semi-wild and the paddock is left completely wild. We have, especially in summer, a wide variety of bird life including hawks, and a remarkable variety of butterflies and moths. To encourage them we leave as much of their potential habitat a possible. The midge can be the scourge of The Highlands but we, because we are close to the sea, have little problem except some evenings at dusk.
Hot water in the bothan is by immersion heater and the bathroom has its own electrical heater. Heating in the other rooms is by electric wall-heaters. There is one in hallway, one in the bedroom, one in the kitchen-dining area and two in the living room. Each can be turned on and off at the mains independently and can be adjusted by using the timers, the boost switches and the programmers. As people who have lived in Southern Europe and even in the Tropics at various times we have over-specified that the heating to ensure we, our family and all our guests remain warm and dry even in the depths of winter. All the costs of heating and hot water are included in the rental.
Bedding and Linen
Beds are all made to your specification on your arrival. We can offer double and single beds. All bed-linen, bath-, face- and tea-towels are always included in the rental and are changed at least weekly .
Pricing and Availability
If the dates you are looking for are available here are the prices and the seasons but read this note first.
It may save you money.
If the dates you are looking for are already booked do not click off, there is an alternative. We recognise that the Bothan is often booked very early because it is one of the few smaller properties in Coigach.We have a second property, the Tigh, that is larger but which we are quite prepared to let to up to three adults or up to two adults and up to two children up to 12 years old. We also have a special price for the Tigh for such combinations for dates when the Bothan is already booked. Such Specials have to be paid in full on booking. The Tigh availability is shown below, prices are as follows. Contact us again on 01854-622448 or firstname.lastname@example.org
All bookings in high- and mid-season are normally taken only from Saturday to Saturday. In the case of long bookings, i.e., over 2 weeks, we can be flexible. That may mean at times that there will also be gaps that can be filled in. Please carefully check the available dates above, if you are looking for a shorter break. Non-standard, high-season bookings are all charged on a pro-rata basis.
In mid-season over Christmas, New Year and Easter we are happy to accept arrivals and departures on other days other than Saturday. We also accept stays longer or shorter than a week. Stays longer than a week are then calculated on a pro-rata basis. Stays shorter than a week are calculated at basic rate of £33 per day, plus the daily rate for any other applicable supplements.
In low season we are happy to accept bookings of duration of two days or more, arriving and departing on any day. We then charge a basic rate of £25 per day, plus the daily rate for any other applicable supplements. You might also be interested in some of our short-break, special offers, details of which are given immediately below.
The Coigach Peninsula is ideal for leisurely cycling, as long as you do not mind a hill or two. Cearcall na'Coigach (The Coigach Ring Road) in either direction offers some of the best view in the Highlands. Clockwise you have views of the Summer Isles. Anti-clockwise you have the panorama of Beinn Mor Coigach, Beinn a'Eoin, Stac Pollaidh, Cul Mor, Cul Beag Suilven and Canisp.
The Autumn on the Coigach is a much underrated time of the year for walking or just taking a break away from it all. The colours of the trees and the heather around Lochs Bad a'Ghaill and Lurgainn and along the coastal road to Lochinver are at least as good as those in New England in the USA or in Eastern Canada. The weather on our peninsula is also often very mild at that time. The surrounding seas seems to create a warmer micro-climate not enjoyed just a few miles inland. In the first half of October the days are still long, the weather can be warm and pleasant and the ground underfoot still dry. At night, when conditions are right, there are the marvels of the Aurora Borealis. The end of October and November can be stormy but the colours are often at their best, ochre illuminated morning and evening by the low sun.
We have created some special pricing for the last week of September, October and November. For more details click on AUTUMN COLOUR.
Christmas and New Year
Christmas is a quiet time of the year in the Highlands. Hogmanay - New Year - is our time for quiet celebration. It means that both Christmas and Hogmanay are ideal times to have a few days away to celebrate in quite intimacy. Again we have put together some special Christmas and New Year pricing, details of which can be found by clicking on CHRISTMAS or HOGMANAY.
From the beginning of December until the Easter the landscape of the Coigach transforms itself. The seasons change but the hills and the moors are still there for walking. The beaches are still empty and the sheep still graze. We do not pretend that at times the wind does not blow, that the rain does not lash in across the Minch or waves crash against the Summer Isles. Such days have their own pleasures, if you are tucked up in the warmth and comfort that our bothy offers, perhaps with a good book and a dram. However, as often as the winds blow there is the other side of the Highland winter - calm days of milky sunshine, when the snow can glisten on the peaks of the Coigach, from the house snow can be seen on the peaks of Skye, Harris and Uist and there is complete quiet. We have put together a specially priced packages for the long-weekend, details of which can be found by clicking on WINTER .
The Coigach Gathering
Each year at the end of June or the beginning of July the Coigach Gathering is held. On the Friday evening there is a full Ceilidh followed on Saturday from midday by the gathering itself - an afternoon of piping, dancing and fun for all ages - plus the Coigach Hill Race.
"Getting Here" & Car-Hire Offer !
Getting to us with a car is not a problem. Getting anywhere in the Highlands, when you have no car, can a problem. We appreciate that. We in Polbain have a bus that stops right at our door and that may make your holiday with us possible but we also have one further offer. We appreciate too that it is a long drive to us from the South of England and Wales and still more from Continental Europe. We are 630 miles from London and do not try to hide the fact. That is one reason we are unique in landscape and culture. We think the drive is worth it and we want you to come. Many of our guests make the journey over two days with an overnight stay on the way. Others look to fly from wherever they stay in the World and then hire a car at Inverness, Aberdeen, Edinburgh or Glasgow's airports. We understand that care-hire is not cheap. Its extra cost may make the difference between you coming to us or holidayng elsewhere. We want you to stay with us and to encourage you to do so we will at any time of the year give you a 15% reduction in all our rental prices, except our "Specials". All you have to do is provide us in advance of your final payment to us a copy of your car rental agreement and pay us by the due date by cheque, either in Sterling or Euros.
For still more alternatives for getting to us, click on:
How to get to Polbain
It is said that the Coigach has something of a charmed weather record. Noone seems to know why. Perhaps it is is because we are sheltered from the full swell of the Atlantic by Lewis but not so sheltered that we do not enjoy the full effect of the Gulf Stream. Perhaps too because we are a fairly flat peninsula, reaching out into the Atlantic for 15 miles with high mountains at the eastern end, the worst of the weather passes over us because getting trapped on the those mountains and letting loose its rain. Perhaps the tunnel effect of the fjord-like Loch Brooms also carries the weather away from us before again hitting the high mountains. Noone has satisfactorily explained why the Summer Isles are so called but not infrequently there is blue sky over the Coigach as you reach Loch Osgaig and emerge from rain in the mountains.
That is not to say that we stay on the Costa d'Ecosse. This is still the West Coast of Scotland. Nor can you have a precise picture of our weather. The closest we can get are the forecasts for Ullapool and Stornaway. Average them and you will just about have the right picture. They can be found by clicking here on BBC Scotland Weather.
For more information and how to book
Wherever we are, for more details, to check availability or to book, our e-mail will reach me, Ian Campbell Whittle, on:
Or for more information or to book by 'phone, first try us first in Scotland on:
or, if there is no response, on the mobile:
Having talked to us we will give you a one week provisional booking and will invoice you by e-mail, fax or post, letting you know, whether you need to pay a deposit and when to pay the balance, or to pay the full amount. There are various ways, in which you can pay, which we will explain to you. As well as cheque and Eurocheque you can pay by bank transfer to our Euro or Pound Sterling accounts.
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