How to choose environmentally-friendly accommodation on your next trip to Scotland
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- 22 October 2019
Loch Ossian Youth Hostel / credit: Kathi Kamleitner,
Green accommodation is endless and easy to find, with options including glamping pods, eco-lodges and cosy cottages
Scotland's stunning landscapes, natural heritage, wildlife, castles and historic buildings are what makes our country so fantastic to visit but they need protecting for future generations. Help make your next trip to Scotland more sustainable by choosing environmentally-friendly accommodation.
Being eco-friendly no longer means getting off the grid and bathing in rainwater – unless you want to that is! Green accommodation in Scotland is easy to find, and options range from cosy cottages, quirky hostels, modern glamping pods, and self-catering eco-lodges, to grand castles and luxury hotels – the choices are endless. Here are just a few to choose from …
Looking for a budget-friendly and social way to see Scotland? Choose an eco-friendly hostel. Loch Ossian Youth Hostel on the banks of Loch Ossian, guests can now enjoy a welcome hot shower, thanks to the development of locally sourced hydro power. There is no vehicle access to the hostel, so the best way to get there is by rail, bike or foot so best call ahead for availability.
Got the family, the dog and the kitchen sink with you? Pitch up at an environmentally-friendly holiday park. Seton Sands Holiday Village in Port Seton, East Lothian has adventure trails and a beach onsite. It's got nature at its heart and a Green Tourism award to prove it.
Combine a little luxury with traditional camping and you get glamping! Go green and stay in a luxury 5-star glamping pod on the estate of Dundas Castle in South Queensferry for an eco-friendly holiday. The pods are completely sustainable with composting toilets, and solar and propane power, whilst still being glamorous.
We love B&Bs in Scotland, and at The Dulaig in the Cairngorms National Park you can tuck into eggs for breakfast from their very own flock of chickens, admire an array of wild birds in the garden, and relax in the knowledge that the B&B has a Gold Green Tourism award.
If you fancy feeling right at home, book into self-catering accommodation in Scotland. Try the Green House in Ettrickbridge which was built on low carbon principles and designed to be as energy efficient as possible. Located on a smallholding farm, you can even try the farm's own honey from the shop – you don't get more local than that!
Lodge holidays in Scotland offer a way to get back to nature. Designed with the environment in mind, the Eco Lodges at the Mains in Croy fuse state-of-the-art green technology and luxury living to ensure that you have a fantastic break without harming the earth.
Many of Scotland's castles offer the opportunity for you to stay the night. On the Mull of Kintyre, Torrisdale Castle invites all their guests to plant a tree to off-set their carbon emissions – remember to come back and see how it's doing!
Looking for luxury without harming the planet? The plush Grand Central Hotel in Glasgow city centre plays its part in being sustainable through its efficient boiler system, recycling initiative and use of local suppliers, to name a few green touches. But whatever your budget, Scotland has plenty eco hotels to choose from.
Fancy getting off the beaten track? If you don't mind sacrificing the usual day-to-day comforts and conveniences and want to explore the areas of Scotland that very few visit, then wild camping is for you. If you're planning a wild camping trip, be sure to familiarise yourself with the Scottish Outdoor Access Code. It's not complicated – basically, campers should follow a policy of 'leave-no-trace'.
Conservation Holidays in Scotland
These are holidays with a twist, sure to give you that feel-good factor. Who says holidays can't be productive? Feel good while doing good with the National Trust for Scotland Thistle Camps or Trees for Life conservation holidays.
So, for your next trip around Scotland, consider accommodation that examines its environmental footprint, and is looking to give a little bit back so that Scotland's natural beauty will still be enjoyed for generations to come.
For more information and inspiration, go to visitscotland.com