For Christmas 2018 we ventured up to the heart of Scotland and rented out a little 2 bedroom cottage in Aviemore. Located next to the Cairngorm Mountain range, we had crisp, clear views of the snow capped hills and access to beautiful lochs. Within easy walking distance of our cottage we found Loch an Eileen. A loch full of history with a castle that stands in the middle, alone. A short drive took us to Loch Morlich. Still, clear waters lined a small beach on which the kids ran freely and threw stones into the waters edge.
What Is Available?
Although we are a family of 5, Gardeners Cottage only has 4 beds. (The booking site allowed us to book though?!) There is a cot available, but our children are small enough that they can share beds. The duvets are large and warm, and the beds themselves are very comfortable. Heating is provided by small storage heaters which can be switched on and off at will, and there is a lovely wood burning fire in the living area. The bathroom has underfloor heating and a warming towel rack.
Gardeners Cottage is self catering and the kitchen is fully stocked with every utensil you could possibly need. Baking trays, measuring jugs, saucepans and even a cafetiere sit in the cupboards. There are a few basic supplies like tea and coffee, and the owners made a lovely chocolate cake for our arrival.
I loved the old pulley hanging clothes airer in the kitchen. Very quirky and old fashioned, but great for hanging sopping wet clothes from adventures in the outdoors! Wood is provided for the fire, as is a basic selection of towels. Everything is lovely, clean and presentable.
A Christmas Touch
As we went at Christmas time, the owners had put up a (very!) small tree and a few Christmas touches around the rooms. The whole ambiance of the cottage is very peaceful. The cottage is set near to Inshriach forest where wildlife runs in abundance. We saw a great spotted woodpecker, blue tits, pheasants, and even red squirrels.
We occupied the right hand side of the cottage and another family were in the left hand side. Along the drive is the main house where the owners of the properties live.
The cottage was very comfortable and we wanted for nothing. In all, we had a very quiet, relaxing break from school, work and Christmas at home!
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You will not be disappointed. The location is fantastic, situated next to many outdoor facilities. Including the Rothiemurcus activity centre, where you can partake in clay pigeon shooting, tree top adventures and many more endeavours. We visited the Reindeer centre, about 6 miles from the cottage, for some Christmas Eve magic.
I would definitely recommend the cottage, and Aviemore. A perfect destination for an outdoor holiday.