Rural retreats in ScotlandDiscover Scotland’s beautiful, rural landscapes
When those everyday stresses get a little too much, it’s time for that well-deserved break. Of course, many of us choose to plan holidays abroad: we seek out exotic cultures and cuisines, paradisiacal beaches and tangled, tropical rainforests, and endure long-haul flights hoping for the holiday of lifetime. But why go through the hassle and expense when you could have that much-needed holiday at home? There are dozens of truly stunning Scottish destinations, each offering a different culture, cuisine and coastline! And what’s more, much of the country remains wild and untouched, so it’s the perfect spot for a rural retreat.
Swap Spain and spicy dishes for the Hebrides and haggis, and we promise you’ll be pleasantly surprised. We have thousands of cottages in Scotland, located in the country’s most breathtakingly beautiful areas: you could choose a fishing cottage in Argyll, a countryside house in the Cairngorms, or a rural apartment in Ayrshire. Wherever you want to explore, and whoever you’re travelling with, you’ll experience unrivalled space and privacy when you book through HomeAway Holiday Rentals. You’ll also receive greater value for money when you choose private accommodation, and the freedom to enjoy your break at your own pace. So why wait? Simply read on for our favourite holiday hotspots in Scotland.
Best rural retreats in Scotland
The Cairngorms National Park is located in the northeast of Scotland, and home to some of the country’s most beautiful, untouched countryside. An ideal destination for those interested in outdoor activities, the area offers extensive networks of marked walking, hiking and cycling trails, as well as the opportunity to try clay pigeon shooting, horse-riding and even skiing, come the winter. Due to such diverse and unspoilt landscapes, the Cairngorms is also home to a vast array of wildlife: whether you fancy bird watching or simply spotting red squirrels, there couldn’t be a lovelier place to do so.
Perthshire is a hugely popular destination with those looking to enjoy fishing in Scotland. Home to a range of winding streams and tumbling rivers, Perthshire has long been known for its excellent wild trout and salmon. Of course, that’s not all there is to this spectacular Scottish region: Perthshire is also known for its extensive list of annual events, offering tourists a great insight into Scottish culture and cuisine, history and heritage. From the Scottish Game Fair and Glenfiddich Piping Competition, to the Highland Games and historic dates at Scone Palace, there’s something to suit every interest.
For those looking to book a truly rural retreat, there couldn’t be a better spot than Argyll. A region dotted with tiny fishing villages and vast, beautiful landscapes, it’s a great place to get back to nature. You can simply stroll along the coast and pick mussels and oysters to cook at home, or explore one of the protected nature reserves or lochs in the area. Of course, you can also take excursions to nearby islands if you wish: both Mull and Jura are just a short journey away, and offer equally unique and exciting attractions. While Mull is known for its sleepy, old-fashioned atmosphere, Jura’s a haven for whisky lovers.
Situated in the southwest of Scotland, along the magnificent Clyde Coast, Ayrshire is both a fascinating and beautiful place to stay. The region can offer world-class outdoor activities, including adrenaline-fuelled pursuits like paragliding and abseiling, but also more laid-back activities like fishing, walking and bird watching. Of course, Ayrshire is also home to a huge number of acclaimed golf courses, including Prestwick, which was home to the first golf Open, as well as Turnberry and Troon. Just off the coast you’ll also find the Isle of Arran, home to the warm jumper of the same name! Hop on a ferry, and explore its beautiful coastline.
With no less than five pretty fishing harbours in the area, Galloway’s a great spot for a laid-back seaside break. Miles of soft-sand beaches, overlooked by towering, rugged cliffs, provide the perfect place for a refreshing stroll, while extensive woodlands and tranquil lochs offer a great place to get back to nature: the Southern Upland Way is a fantastic trail for those seeking a particularly challenging hike, stretching all the way from Portpatrick to Cockburnspath. Of course, those looking for more relaxed pursuits are also catered for: home to sites associated with Scotland’s son Robert Burns, Galloway has no shortage of historical attractions.