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Why Choose an Apartment in Scotland when Traveling With Kids

  • Posted: Jun 24, 2014
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kitchenWhether you are going on a romantic getaway, a family vacation, a business trip, or a short trip to Scotland with friends, careful planning is essential to ensure the success of your holiday. Planning becomes even more vital when you are travelling with kids. Contrary to what most people believe, kids also have their own needs which when ignored can ruin your entire holiday. Among the many decisions you will make while planning you family holiday, finding accommodations is usually at the top of the list. In the past, travellers never looked beyond hotels but nowadays, the trend of renting holiday apartments is picking up fast. Below are reasons why renting a holiday apartment is the ideal choice when you are travelling with children.

Plenty Of Space

Holiday apartments in Scotland not only have more space than hotel rooms but they have real living space. A typical holiday apartment comes with a living room, dining area, kitchen, and bedrooms, all of which are fully furnished. Holiday apartments give you and your kids plenty of space to sit and relax together, watch TV, and even play games. There are times during vacations when you prefer to sit and relax indoors but keeping children still can be difficult. Holiday apartments can come in handy during such instances. The space of the apartment allows you to stay at one corner of the apartment and relax while the children entertain themselves with watching TV or playing games in the rest of the house.

Privacy

Holiday apartments offer you more privacy than hotel rooms thus allowing you and the kids more freedom to live as you please. With a holiday apartment, you have the entire house to yourself unlike in hotels where you encounter people everywhere, be it in the hotel’s lobby, laundry area, or hallways. Also with a holiday apartment, you do not have to worry about interruptions from a room cleaner when you prefer to be alone. You can either do the cleaning yourself or have a cleaning person come in at a time that is convenient for you.

Readily Available Food

Children rarely stay still especially when they are on vacation due to the excitement of travelling. All the running and jumping around both indoors and outdoors gets the kids hungry pretty quickly. Heading out to a restaurant every time the kids are hungry can be quite cumbersome hence the importance of a kitchen. Having a kitchen enables you to whoop up something very quickly when the kids want to eat. What’s more, you can stock up on healthy snacks such as fruits and yoghurt, which the children can have whenever they want. Having a kitchen also saves you from always eating out throughout your entire vacation thus saving you a lot of money. You can set up a schedule where you can have home cooked breakfast and dinner and only eat at restaurants during the day when you are out exploring and sightseeing.

Finally, a holiday apartment in Scotland costs less than a hotel room especially when you are travelling with your family. For instance, if you are travelling in a group of 6 people, renting a holiday apartment will be a whole lot cheaper than renting 3 hotel rooms during your stay.

This article was written by Finela Monroe. Finela is an avid traveler who loves to write travel related articles that offer advice to vacationers. If you are planning on travelling to the UK, Finela recommends you rent Edinburgh Pearl Apartments which are at a great location.

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Hostel Travel Tips For First Time Visitors to Scotland

  • Posted: Mar 08, 2014
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Hostel Travel Tips

Hostel In ScotlandJust like visiting any foreign country, you need to do your research. Utilizing hostel accommodations when travelling saves money and affords travellers the ability to meet like-minded adventurous people.

Travellers able to share amenities and lacking qualms about sharing a room with strangers are the perfect candidates for hostel stays.

Knowing what to expect during a stay in a hostel and having safeguards in place enable travelers to enjoy a favourable hostel experience.

Securing Trusted Hostel Accommodations

Whether travelling to Glasgow,Edinburgh or the Scottish Highlands, there are many ways to find a hostel near your holiday destination. On-line reviews are valuable as they speak honestly about experiences at hostels being considered. This is especially important for those visiting unfamiliar destinations.

There are many online directories that provide reviews but a good one to check is Hostels.com. In addition, you can visit more direct tourism sites like Visit Scotland or the Scottish Independent Hostels website to find ideas of what to do while passing through these hostels. Another option is to contact the Hostel direct for excellent information like Glencoe Independent Hostel, either way you are bound to find a cheap and affordable place to stay.

Most of hostels can be booked directly or via one of many credible websites profiling established hostels in all corners of the globe.

Female travellers often seek hostels providing women-only rooms. This is not always an option and should be verified prior to booking. Another favourable characteristic of select hostels is having suites and private rooms. Again, this is not a given but is nice for couples or for travellers on the last leg of their trip and seeking some solitude.

Evaluating amenities for extended stays is a must. Travellers seeking to save money during extended stays should verify possible fees such as elevated charges for laundry, towel rentals and Wi-Fi. Hostels boasting a community kitchen save travellers money on dining out.

Safeguards for a Successful Stay

Even though you will most likely find a hospitable person in Scotland to point you in the right direction, you should still secure comfortable and reliable shelter before you travel and take precautions to protect yourself and your belongings. Using the same level of common sense employed in other areas of travel comes into play when staying in hostels.

Personal belongings should be secured in lockers or kept on one’s person at all times. While most hostels provide lockers of some sort, they do not always supply locks free of charge. Packing a lock saves from running into a situation where one is not available.

Hostels with fewer beds per room are safer simply because there are fewer people per room. Hostels with a person at the front desk all day, every day are the safest. A close second in level of safety is those hostels with code-locked entrances.

Another important detail to staying safe is to not take the hostel’s word that it is centrally located. Third party sites tend to be more accurate than the actual hostel’s website as they are not affiliated with those hostels. Within these sites, you can usually find reviews to back up any claims by hostels.

Always, cross check your information across different platforms to rule out inconsistencies and inaccuracies to find the best place to stay.

With Scotland, there are multiple websites you can check to do this. In the end, saving money means little when staying in an unsafe area far away from attractions and main areas of a city. So, be proactive.

Packing to Perfection

Items to pack include toiletries such as shampoo and soap. These are most likely not provided. Flip flops for showering protect against possibly unsanitary bath floors, but this is very unlikely in Scotland compared to other countries.

Ear plugs serve to aid in a better night’s rest when there isn’t a curfew and party goers stumble in late at night, or when a snorer is nestled in a nearby bunk.

Checking all hostel options available leads to a journey without incident while saving money and opening travelers up to meeting a variety of interesting individuals.

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8 Ways To Ensure You Rent The Right Property For Your Holiday

  • Posted: Feb 10, 2014
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Choose The Correct Holiday Home in Scotland

Log Cabin in ScotlandTravellers are increasingly planning and arranging their own holidays to Scotland and many will opt to rent a house or apartment instead of staying in a hotel. There are many advantages to a home from home but not if you choose the wrong one! There are plenty of sites offering an array of properties but the listings can be vague or deceiving and it is easy to be seduced into something that does not fulfil your requirements. Here are the best ways to avoid making a mistake.

Make A List

Before you look at properties make a list of the most important issues to you and don’t be tempted to choose a property that doesn’t tick the right boxes just because it looks nice. If you want something on the coast then don’t get succored into an inland location because the house has a nice garden. Location, number of bedrooms, cooking facilities, a washing machine, hot-tub or access to amenities could all be crucial to the success of your trip so don’t settle for somewhere that doesn’t meet your criteria.

Consider Your requirements

Before you finalise your list of requirements think carefully about every aspect of your trip. Your priority may be location but remember that if you are travelling by car you will need access to parking and if you are skiing it would help to have somewhere to store your equipment.

Ask Questions

Property owners can be very lazy about their listings so if something you want is not mentioned that doesn’t mean it isn’t at the property. Ask the owners for further information and you might find that the place has everything you need after all.

Budget

Work out what you can afford and try to stick to it. That amazing apartment overlooking the sea might look wonderful but it won’t improve your holiday if you run out of cash.  Don’t take the prices listed as cast in stone. Property owners will often be prepared to negotiate and it is well worth asking the question before you reject somewhere on the basis of price. Tell them what you can afford to pay and see if they can help you. Whatever price you are offered compare this to other properties in the area to ensure that it is a favourable one.

Dates

It is a great advantage if you can be flexible on dates. Peak periods will vary from location to location and even from property to property so you could find that moving the date of your trip by just a week or two will yield huge savings.

Google Maps

The descriptions of property locations can be vague or downright deceptive. Use Google Maps and Google Earth to check out where the property really is, what it looks like and the nature of the general area. You may get a nasty surprise or you could find that a property which looked unpromising is much better than you thought. You can also use Google Maps to check out how long it takes to travel from the property to the locations you wish to visit during your stay.

Reviews

Always read reviews of the property you are looking at. These will give you a good idea of how other visitors have found the property and reveal any shortcomings that are not explained in the listing or which you may not have considered to be an issue. Always remember that some people will complain about anything and that a property must be considered in the light of what you are paying for it. You can’t expect a budget apartment to have a private pool but you can expect it to be clean and safe.

Gut Feel

If something doesn’t sit right or you have suspicions that something is wrong about a property then listen to your inner voice and look for somewhere else. There are scams out there and they are not always easy to spot but if you check every detail of a listing you can often uncover anomalies that are clues that you should move on. For extra peace of mind contact the owners and get a dialogue going and you may be able to sense trouble before it is too late.

By doing your homework, asking the right questions and sticking to your priorities you can land yourself the perfect home from home at a price that you can afford. Don’t be tempted to rent a house in the country if you want to be close to the beach and if you are a skier don’t choose a lodge in the mountains that has nowhere to store your outdoor clothing and equipment. The perfect place is out there somewhere you just have to find it!
Sally Stacey is a keen writer and business owner who divides her time between writing, running her shop and travelling.

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Advantages of Booking a Holiday Cottage in Scotland

  • Posted: Aug 30, 2013
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Scotland has an enormous amount of Holiday cottages, so finding the right Holiday Cottage in Scotland for you has never been easier. So why do many people prefer to book a Holiday in Scotland staying in Cottage accommodation.

Many cottages in Scotland are located in excellent locations usually by a lovely Loch or with a view of Stunning Mountains and forests. With the rise of accommodation available particularly growing in the past 10 years Cottages in Scotland are now more available as ever, there are many modern architectural versions rising up within Scotland’s countryside, with wide glass fronts and eco friendly living, but you can still find the traditional old crofters house renovated to a high quality built out of charming stone and looking like they have been around for hundreds of years, personally I find the latter much more enjoyable as these are usually located in prime areas of Scotland’s beauty, and many are secluded if you want the feeling of living within the countryside. But these new style contemporary cottages with all the trimmings of Boutique hotels and modern luxuries are increasingly becoming very popular.

Find The Right Holiday Cottage For You

Book holiday cottages in ScotlandFinding the correct cottage for you and your family is now a very easy task with the modern day internet available, gone are the days of sending of for a broacher advertised in the local newspaper or advertised on TV. You can now enjoy looking at many pictures and floor plans of cottages advertised on the many websites now available. You can even read reviews now of past holiday makers who have stayed at the cottage recently, giving you peace of mind when booking.

If you prefer to be within a community or around people the choice is growing very fast, many purpose built resorts are being built with the holiday visitor in mind, these are built of a high quality and open planned, many are located close to a popular town or Golf Course. But these new built holiday resorts are not to everyone’s taste, some have been shunned by locals for taking up prime countryside and blotting out lovely views from the local villagers, although other people have welcomed them as they bring in more business for the local shops and pubs.

Cottages are available for everyone, even for people who prefer to take their dogs on holiday with them, many cottage owners accept dogs as long as they are well behaved and trained, so leaving your dog at home or in kennels are a thing of the past, you will also see in many accommodation website sections available for dog friendly cottages in Scotland. Cottages with hot tubs are also becoming popular and you will now find many cottages advertising that they have a hot tub available and this seems to be a good selling point recently.

Scottish Property Locations

For me the location is more important than the cottage itself, everyone is different but I feel if the location is right then I will have a good holiday. People with different interests will look for suitable cottages for their hobby, this includes walkers who like to ensure there are many available walks around the cottage with easy access to mountains and trails, Fishermen will look for a holiday cottage in Scotland that’s close to a good river or loch, some cottages are even advertised as waterfront locations to attract people with fishing or sailing hobbies.

Scotland; The All Year Tourist Destination

The great thing about booking a Holiday Cottage in Scotland is the fact you can book these all year round, Scotland is not just a summer destination but a winter one too. Winter is great in Scotland for people who enjoy activities like skiing and mountain walking, but you don’t have top be a sporty type person to enjoy winter in Scotland, just getting away from it all during the winter for a peaceful holiday in Scotland is ideal for people who want to see Scotland at its most beautiful during winter, with snow capped mountains and Christmas card settings, Scotland is a must during this time of year, and sitting by an open fire with a burning log drinking a glass of your favourite dram is delightful.

Book Your Next Scottish Holiday

We have made things easier for you to book a Holiday in Scotland with an excellent search tool in the search box to below this article, browse the many cottages available in Scotland and experience a holiday staying at one of the many stunning locations in Scotland, If you require any help choosing a Holiday Cottage we can help you, visit our contact us page and send us a message and we will be happy to assist you finding the correct cottage for your holiday. We can also help you find tours to Scotland and advise you on great locations and attractions to visit.

 

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Wild Camping In Scotland, Facts and Tips

  • Posted: Aug 20, 2013
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Camping wild in Scotland is a great way to experience Scotland’s wild and wonderful countryside, it gives you the freedom to choose exactly where you want to stay away from the crowds. But camping wild does have some responsibility and you have to ensure you do this without any impact on the environment and to the land owners, Following the Scottish Outdoor Access Code will allow you to do this without any serious impact.

Choosing the Ideal Camping Spot

wild camping scotland

Look closely into finding your designated camping area, try and find a place away from any other people and away from Houses, keep the size of your camping group minimal to minimise any noise. If you are planning on staying more than a couple of nights, plan ahead to move your tent so you don’t damage any vegetation, try not to stay in the same place for more than 3 nights. Remember farmers work the land so please try not to camp in any areas that are likely to be worked on, this can cause disruption to the farmers and yourself. Also be aware of the local area and plan for emergencies, where is the local Hospital and village, be constantly aware and this will help minimise any situations.

When Camping Close to Water

It’s always nice to camp next to a river or loch and this also helps keep your supplies of water close by, protecting the water should be a priority, remember a burn could be a supply for a local cottage. Never use the water as a toilet stop and don’t contaminate any water with waste cleaning products, To clean your teeth or wash dishes collect your water in a container and clean them a few meters away from the water source.

Respect Wildlife

River banks and Lochs in Scotland are a vital part of Animal life, be aware that you are not camping next to any nesting birds and be prepared to move if you discover you are disturbing any wildlife. Noise will travel across water also disturbing wildlife, be aware where you pitch your tent you could be over an entrance to a burrow or warren, check the ground carefully before choosing your spot. Don’t leave any scraps of food when you leave, this could attract scavenging birds and animals that could prey on nesting birds and small mammals, leave the area how you found it. If you are near any farm animals please do not disturb them or leave any gates open.

Camp Fires

It’s not advisable to light fires inland, but acceptable to light fires in a tidal beach where your fire is below the normal high water mark. Lighting fires poses a huge risk on peaty soils and close to dry grass and heather. If you need to cook it is advisable to use camping stoves, if you use BBQ’s please use them on top of rocks and dispose of the waste sensibly.

camping in scotland

Toilet Hygiene

When you have the urge to go to the toilet always ensure that you are at least 30 meters away from any water source, bury any human waste in a small hole and cover back up, do not cover with any rocks or foliage. Be responsible and do not go to the toilet in sensitive areas like Machair on the West Coast and farmers crops. If you use toilet paper please take away and dispose of sensibly. Take all sanitary towels and tampons away with you in a closed plastic box and dispose of when you reach a public toilet.

Leave the Camping Area as you Found it

Minimise any potential litter before your arrival, plan carefully what you need to bring with you and what you don’t need, Remove all your litter before leaving camp and anyone else’s litter if you see that. do not bury any litter or hide, this can cause harm to wildlife, if you remove any rocks please replace them where you found them originally. Please bring with you suitable refuge bags to place any rubbish into, if left outside at night ensure the bags are tied up securely and not in any danger to blow away with any wind.

Safety Comes First

When choosing a place to camp always make sure that it is a safe area, Do not camp near any roads or any areas that may have farm vehicles. If you are camping by water ensure that you are not in any areas of high tide or a flooding area, when camping in mountain areas always make sure you are not near any cliffs or steep slopes, find a well sheltered spot away from any possible strong winds. When wild camping alone try and let someone know your plans and where you intend to camp and give them a time when you are expected to return. If you have a dog with you please make sure the dog is controlled at all times, especially near farm animals.

Wild Camping in Scotland can be fun and safe if you follow the simple rules in the Scottish Outdoor Access Code within this link are PDF files you can print out and take with you for reference, read carefully and respect the rules within the code. Scotland is there for all of us to enjoy,  if your camping or staying in a hotel, respect the land and the environment, so Scotland remains a beautiful area for many years to come.

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