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Scotland for the Independent Traveller

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Lochside Hotel, Bowmore, Isle of Islay
Small, friendly hotel in the centre of Bowmore, with over 200 Islay malts in their bar. Small terrace on the edge of the sea.

Bowmore Hotel, Bowmore, Isle of Islay
Nice, family run hotel, with excellent deck, garden and views over the sea. Impressive menu with great specials and Sunday Barbecues. Good Islay malt selection.

Harbour Inn, Bowmore, Isle of Islay
Upmarket, central Bowmore hotel, with excellent restaurant, by the sea. Cosy wee bar, with lots of Islay malts.

Bridgend Hotel, Isle of Islay
Centrally situated, nestling in Bridgend Woods, with a short riverside walk to the sea. Comfy and friendly, with one of the best restaurants on the island.

Port Askaig Hotel, Isle of Islay
Beside the Sound of Jura, with stunning views across the Sound. Lovely little bar and great garden for lunches and afternoon refreshments. Warm and comfy.

Port Charlotte Hotel, Isle of Islay
Right beside the sea and the harbour and has a great bar menu and selection of malts. Good restaurant and nicely furnished rooms.

The Machrie Hotel and Golf Club, Isle of Islay (Unfortunately currently closed)
The golf course is one of the best in Scotland and has an excellent reputation. Largest hotel on the island, it is midway between Bowmore and Port Ellen and only a mile from the airport.

Harris Hotel, Tarbert, Harris
A Victorian hotel, with fascinating feel to it, classy old furniture and creaky stairs abound. Tremendous atmosphere, good food and very comfortable. The village bar is the perfect place to meet the islanders.

Cuillin Hills Hotel, Portree, Isle of Skye
This is a lovely place offering excellent service and extremely high standards. There is a price to pay, but it's worth it.

Toravaig House, Isle of Skye
A small, contemporary Hebridean gem offering an intimate atmosphere, attention to detail, refreshingly welcoming staff but above all, delicious, innovative cuisine.

Duisdale House, Isle of Skye
Perfectly situated in the area known as Sleat on the southernmost tip of Skye, the Hebridean hotel has been completely transformed into a chic boutique retreat in recent years with an award winning restaurant.

The Beverly Hotel, Edinburgh
This is our fave in Edinburgh. Judy keeps a really nice hotel and is extremely welcoming to all our guests.

The Old Manor Hotel, Lundin Links
The Old Manor overlooks Lundin Links and is next door to Leven and Elie golf courses. Nice bistro (and fine dining restaurant) and bar. Try for a room with a balcony overlooking the golf course and sea.

Glengarry Castle Hotel, Invergarry
Great food and real affordable luxury, set in wooded grounds by a loch. Very popular, so book as far in advance as you can.

The Gordon Arms, The Square, Huntly
Probably the best accommodation in a wide area, with good bar menu. A short walk from majestic, 14th century, Huntly Castle and in the other direction from possibly the best whisky shop in Scotland, Duncan Taylor' Whiskies of Scotland.

Orkney Hotel, Kirkwall Orkney
Situated in the warren of little stone paved streets in the centre of Kirkwall, 200 yards from the cathedral. Good locals bar and comfy rooms.

Kildonan Hotel, Isle of Arran
Our favourite hotel on Arran. Beautifully situated by the sea at the Southern tip of the island. Great restaurant, breakfasts and bar with regular music, plus fabby rooms! Pure silence at night, apart from the occasional bark of the seals on the rocks offshore.

Isles Inn, Portree, Isle of Skye
Smack on the Square, in the centre of Portree, with great bar, huge fireplace and excellent bar food. Good rooms.

Royal Hotel, Tain
Very friendly hotel, with comfy rooms, very good food and bar.

Eagle Hotel, Dornoch
New owners just taken over and will surely keep up the standards of food and rooms. Popular with golfers as only a 2 wood from the 1st tee at Royal Dornoch. One hundred yards from Dornoch Cathedral.

Garth Hotel, Grantown on Spey
Very friendly, cosy, comfy hotel with very good food and definitely the best fruit salad in the world, for breakfast. Great Winter deals.

Seafield Lodge Hotel, Grantown
Nice, welcoming hotel. Good food and very reasonably priced.

Mansion House, Elgin
A very smart, elegant and welcoming hotel with a high standard of food.

Moulin Hotel, Pitlochry
Has it's own brewery. What could be wrong with a hotel with it's own brewery? Nice rooms, good food and excellent bar. Lovely site in Summer with the front festooned in huge, colourful flower baskets.

Scotland's Hotel, Pitlochry
Very central, friendly bar and good rooms and food. Walking distance from theatre, salmon leap and loch.

Merchant City Services Appartments, Glasgow
Gives you all the luxury of a fine hotel plus the freedom and space that comes with having your own apartment. Located within walking distance of the best attractions, amenities and transport links in Glasgow.

Car Hire

Islay Car Hire
Well priced car rental for those flying to Islay. Will meet all flight arrivals. Ferries too.

Shetland Car Hire
Locally owned and long established car rental.

Orkney Car Hire
Locally owned car rental, from possibly the largest fleet in the islands. Reliable and friendly service.



Caledonian MacBraynes Ferries
Ferries to the Western and Clyde islands.

P&O Scottish Ferries
Ferries to the Orkneys and the Shetlands.


Easyjet offer the cheapest fares from London to Glasgow, Edinburgh, Inverness and Aberdeen.

Ryan Air
Flights to Italy, France, Belgium, Sweden, Germany, Spain, Norway, Ireland and England from Prestwick Airport.

American Airlines
Fly direct to Glasgow from all over the US.

Edinburgh Festivals

Edinburgh International Festival

Edinburgh Festival Fringe

Edinburgh International Tattoo

Edinburgh International Book Festival

Edinburgh Jazz & Blues Festival

Edinburgh International Film Festival

If you are planning to come to Edinburgh at Festival time you need to make plans well in advance. It is very busy and difficult to get accommodation.



Edinburgh University Summer School

Colonsay Gaelic School
If you want to learn to speak Scottish Gaelic, then Alastair is the man and I can think of no better place to do it than on Colonsay!


Leith Walks
Walking tours of Edinburgh and surrounding areas from extremely knowledgable and entertaining guides.

SS Explorer
Restoration project of steam powered fishing trawler built in 1955 and used as a research vessel. Moored in Leith near the Royal Yacht Britannia and a much more interesting visit for those interested in the sea!

Celtic Trails Day Trips
Mythical and magical Scotland.

Crinan Canal
The waterway which links the Upper Clyde with the Atlantic. Just a good place to visit and an interesting thing to see.

Famous Scots
Of course, Scots invented or discovered almost everything and this site tells you who did the deed (things like Pennicillin, telephones and television).

Historic Scotland
Historic Scotland's web site is reasonably useful. The university site (see "famous people" above) is probably the best site.

Whitewave activities and holidays, Kilmuir, Skye
Fabby cooking, great people and good value. We like it. Also lots of water type things to do!

Passport Renewal
ETS passport renewal requirement services provides expired passport renewal application form and step-by-step passport renewal information.

Travel Chat Lines

Scot Chat
The best and most informative chat and help line on Scotland and all things Scottish. There are thousands of entries on this site, so be sure to book mark it and keep coming back until you have read them all. The trouble is, there are always new ones being posted. You can clear off all the messages once you've read them all, pressing "Mark all Read". Very useful.

Electric Scotland
A chummy sort of site, with lots of daily postings, but probably not so much travel info as scotchat.

All Experts
A vast site with questions on all sorts of subjects.

Travel Directories

iTravelnet Travel Directory
Comprehensive directory for travel related web sites. Destination guides, travel news and travelogues. Book cheap airfares, discount hotels and car hire.

Travel Notes
Extensive travel directory

Travel Links Directory - Hotels Flights Destinations
Directory of travel related web sites with links to – flights hotels vacations destination guides travel agents agencies and travel information.

Adventure Travel Tips

Travel Directory

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If you're looking for personal tips, insight, and recommendations as you plan your trip to Scotland, check out Traveling Savage's blog.

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