4-Night Scottish Highlands Outdoor Escapes

AT8TDB
Duration: 4 nights
Walking Grade: 2, 5 & 6

Get away from work for a short break's walking (or stay for the week) and be surprised! By the range of guided walks, from a meander through the wooded Nevis Gorge to Streall Falls to a stroll through Glen Coe's history in the company of an NTS Ranger or harder mountain routes such as Ben Starav, a traverse of the mighty Mamore mountains and the Ben Nevis horseshoe, magnificent mountain days one and all. By how much you can do in a weekend when your guides know their stuff, from a cruise on Loch Shiel, to an ascent of the north face of Aonach Mor in a mountain gondola and a trip to the Nevis Distillery for a tour and a tasting of a wee dram or two. By the camaraderie and craic that comes from making discoveries and having adventures in a small group of like-minded people.

Holiday Highlights

Moment of the Holiday

When you lose yourself in west coast beauty and channel your inner Burt Lancaster with a walk along the sublime Silver Sands of Morar, whose beaches featured in the classic film, Local Hero. Most people have forgotten the film, so we'll likely have the string of pristine white-sand beaches to ourselves - Camusdarach Beach is an arc of white glistening sand and crystalline water, with spectacular views west over the sea to Skye and the nearby Isles of Eigg, Rum, Muck and Canna.

What’s included

  • High quality en-suite accommodation in our Country House
  • Full board from dinner upon arrival to breakfast on departure day
  • 3 days guided walking
  • Use of our comprehensive Discovery Point

Trip Notes

Trip notes are detailed, downloadable PDFs for each holiday.

Download Trip Notes

On our Guided Walking holidays, we believe that choice is key. Our walks descriptions will help you choose according to your interests and fitness. The walks are grouped together with care by local experts to give the best experience. While every effort will be made to adhere to the described itinerary, we may occasionally vary the sequence shown here or substitute an alternative route to suit local conditions or for other operational reasons, potentially at short notice.

Join us at our Alltshellach Country House for an action-packed short break. If the weather is fine we can take a short pre-dinner stroll down to the shores of Loch Leven to help get your bearings. After a delicious 3-course evening meal, there's time to relax with the rest of the group and look forward to the adventures ahead.


Enjoy the choice of 3 guided walks. We'll take the Corran Ferry across Loch Linnhe to discover the Ardgour Peninsula.

Option 1 - Inchree & Ardgour

Distance: 8½ miles (13.5km) - in two walks.

Total ascent: 1,250 feet (380m) between the two walks.

In Summary: We've two short walks today. Either join one or both, or use our transport and try some of the activities at the Inchree Activity Centre (payable locally). Our first walk explores Inchree's spectacular waterfalls, we then cross to Ardgour for a woodland walk. 

Highlight: The chance to spot red squirrels.

Option 2 - Maclean’s Towel

Distance: 6 miles (10km)   

Total ascent: 2,450 feet (760m)

In Summary: Hop on the Corran Ferry to the Ardgour Peninsula, then climb up the side of the spectacular Maclean’s Towel waterfall to the summit of Meall Breac.

Highlight: An opportunity to walk in the tranquil mountains of Ardgour. Great views over the immense Loch Linnhe, with the mountains of Glen Coe beyond.

Option 3 - Garbh Bheinn

Distance: 6½ miles (10km)

Total ascent: 3,200 feet (980m)

In Summary: Follow the fine west ridge from Glen Tarbert onto the 'Corbett' summit (a peak over 2,500ft high) of Garbh Bheinn.

Highlight: Garbh Bheinn, meaning 'rough mountain' is an apt name for this rugged peak. Look out for the Great Ridge, first ascended by J H Bell and W Brown in 1897, and now regarded as a classic rock climb.


Three outstanding walks in the shadow of Ben Nevis.

Option 1 - Steall Falls & Whisky

Distance: 7 miles (11.5km)

Total ascent: 1,450 feet (440m)

In Summary: Walk through the Nevis Gorge below towering Ben Nevis. Our route meanders through the wooded gorge where the torrent churns between giant boulders, to emerge into the wide vistas of the Steall Meadow.

Highlight: Magnificent An Steall waterfall is the third highest cascade in Britain. It's then the Nevis Distillery* for a tour and some tasting of a wee dram or two (*payable locally).

Option 2 - The Mountain Gondola

Distance: 4½ miles (7km)

Total ascent: 2,000 feet (600m)

In Summary: The Nevis Range Mountain Gondola carries us effortlessly up to the north face of Aonach Mor, the eighth highest mountain in Britain. We head onto the summit plateau to explore.

Highlight: Plenty of choices today - after the gondola ride, either kick back and relax, enjoy the views from the cafe, hire a mountain bike and explore, or stretch your legs and head to the summit plateau with our guided walk.

Option 3 - Stob Ban

Distance: 8 miles (13km)

Total ascent: 4,100 feet (1,240m)

In Summary: A challenging traverse over the mighty Mamore mountains. We'll ascend steeply on the northern spur to the airy summit of Stob Ban then follow the ridge to the neighbouring summit of Sgurr an Iubhair.

Highlight: Stob Ban, meaning 'White Peak' takes its name from the quartzite rocks on the summit. The terrain is rough, but there are great rewards when you reach the peak.


Discover two of the Highland's most famous landmarks: the curved Glenfinnan Viaduct and the towering summit of Ben Nevis, Britain's highest mountain.

Option 1 - Glenfinnan & Loch Shiel

Distance: 5 miles (8km) - in two walks

Ascent: minimal

In summary: A couple of cracking short walks today - explore the beautiful Silver Sands of Morar, before a chance to stretch your legs for a fantastic photo opportunity at the famous Glenfinnan Viaduct (think Harry Potter!).

Highlight: A cruise on Loch Sheil too. Discover its historic connections to Bonnie Prince Charlie. Keep your eyes peeled for some of the wildlife as well.

 

Option 2 - Below the North Face

Distance: 9 miles (14km)

Ascent: 2,600 feet (800m)

In summary: Ascend to the climbers’ hut below the mighty north face of Ben Nevis. We then contour below the massive Castle Ridge buttress and descend via the Pony Track to Glen Nevis.

Highlight: An opportunity to see the towering cliffs of the 'Ben's' North Face up close. These mighty cliffs provide some of Britain's best rock and ice climbing.

Option 3 - Ben Nevis

Distance: 10 miles (16.5km)

Ascent: 4,500 feet (1,380m)

In summary: Our objective today is the summit of Ben Nevis, Britain’s highest mountain. Starting from Glen Nevis we follow the Pony Track which zig-zags up to the summit plateau. We return by the same route.

Highlight: This is a big walk with lots of ascent, however there's great satisfaction in reaching the top and momentarily becoming the highest person in Britain.


Time to head home. If you've still time or energy to explore further then why not borrow one of our self-guided route cards from our Discovery Point and enjoy a further walk independently.


Alltshellach

Situated in a stunning location on the shores of Loch Leven, Alltshellach is a stately Scottish house set amid a rugged landscape. The house is a picture of Highland solidity, with spectacular views of craggy mountains and grassy slopes beyond the loch. This pocket of domesticity lets you admire nature at your leisure though, sipping tea or G&T as you watch clouds scud across the sky. In fact, this one-time home of the Bishop of Argyll & the Isles has been recast as a hiker’s hotel, with an air of old-world splendour, excellent accommodation, a generous indoor pool, three lounges and a supremely cosy Highland Bar that’s well-stocked with local beer and whisky, all of which is (almost) enough to distract you from the vast vistas over the waters. But it’s the great outdoors you’re here for and the house is ideally situated for accessing the Mamores, the mountains of Glen Coe and tackling Ben Nevis as well as bagging munros and spotting local wildlife.

 

Need to know

Important Covid-19 steps we have taken for guest safety: Please Read

As we slowly reopen in the wake of the Coronavirus lockdown, our country house stays are set to be organised a little differently; extra steps have been taken to keep our guests, house teams and leaders safe while we return to action. We ask all our guests to respect the measures put in place.

Initially the overall capacity of the houses has been reduced. Guests must wear face coverings in public spaces. To adhere to social distancing guidelines, we have taken the necessary steps to space out furniture and seating in public areas. In addition, a one-way system will be in place around the house. Adequate signage will be displayed to support the direction of travel to be followed by guests and house teams.

As a temporary measure, we will not be servicing rooms during a stay. Extra tea, coffee, milk, and toiletries will be made available on request for all guests. It is recommended that guests bring their own toiletries for the duration of their stay. We have removed all non-essential and reusable items from our rooms for the meantime including cushions, hairdryers, bathrobes, bed throws, and printed materials to reduce the number of items that need to be disinfected. Hairdryers will be available on request. Clean towels will be available on request. We will though be increasing the frequency of cleaning in our public areas providing particular attention to frequently touched items including door handles and handrails.

For now, there is no cream tea on arrival day. We have also adapted our food offering to remove all buffets and open food items. Different sittings may be required for breakfast and dinner due to the occupancy and size of the house. Picnic lunches will now be pre-ordered the night before from an order form in the room. The bar in each country house will be open, and we will be offering a table service for drinks. At this time there is no, or only a very limited, evening social programme available. Outdoor swimming pools at those houses that have them will re-open throughout August, except at Freshwater Bay House, where the pool will remain closed for 2020. Indoor swimming pools will remain closed.

For more information and to see all the steps taken, visit our page on how house stays will be adapted.

Rooms

Tea & coffee-making facilities, TV, Hairdryer, Toiletries, Wi-Fi

There are 38 comfortable bedrooms, all in the main house, with a range of ‘Good’, ‘Better’ and ‘Best’ options to choose from. Rooms radiate cosiness thanks to little touches – a remedy for even the dreichest day. Those with a view are worth the extra spend, as you’ll be overlooking the gardens and loch. The Best rooms include Room 21, a spacious corner room with lovely views of Loch Leven, while Room 23 is a stately showstopper that was once the official Bishop’s bedroom, complete with original features and cracking views.

All ‘Good’ rooms are ensuite and furnished to a high standard. There are also several ‘Better’ and ‘Best’ Rooms that are either larger or have a desirable view, a more luxurious mattress and larger televisions – upgrade your stay for just an extra £15-25 per person per night. You can choose a specific room for an extra £30 per room, subject to availability. Upgrade supplements still apply

Facilities

Free Wi-Fi, boot room and drying room, extensive gardens, heated indoor swimming pool, multi-purpose ballroom, library and board games to borrow

After a day exploring, return to the house and its specially tailored walkers’ facilities. Stroll the gardens that dip down to the loch. The small peninsula at the bottom of the lawns is called An Dunan and often becomes an island at high tide – look for prehistoric rock art cut into the slabs on its side. Make time too to plunge into the heated indoor swimming pool (currently closed) and do a couple of lengths under the watchful eye of the mountains through the panoramic windows. Inside the house, head for one of the communal areas: you’ll have three to choose from and can kick back, relax and catch up with other guests. Later, stop in the Highland Bar for a nip of whisky or a nightcap – the comfy seats make a fine spot for a dram and there’s a range of good single malts to choose from that’ll have you believing you’re living a laird’s life.

Food & Drink

As at all of our country houses, holidays are full board, from afternoon tea served as a welcome treat through that evening’s meal to a hearty breakfast on the day of departure. Lunch is a chance to stock up on our famous picnic snacks. Food at Alltshellach is full of Scottish flavours and focusses on locally sourced and seasonal produce. Once a week the dining room hosts a Local Food Night, when you might be treated to Cullen Skink Soup and a trio of smoked salmon, mackerel pate and steamed mussels with Highland oat cakes, while mains may include Highland game and ‘Barlotto’, a type of nutty risotto made from barley instead of rice. Finish off with a spoonful of Iron Brew Ice, chocolate and marmalade mouse and Atholl brose, a luxurious blend of honey, whisky and carefully selected herbs for a flavour of the Highlands.

Accessibility

For accessibility and assistance information, please contact our expert team on 020 3974 8865

10682_0005 - Alltshellach - Exterior

Getting to Alltshellach

Find out more about this location including travel details and room types.

More Information

What to Bring

“There’s no such thing as bad weather, just the wrong type of clothing!” goes the adage. Come prepared for all eventualities and you’ll walk in comfort as well as safety. Britain’s famous for its changeable weather, so here’s our advice on what to wear and bring.

Essentials

  • Waterproof walking boots providing ankle support and good grip.
  • A waterproof jacket and over-trousers
  • Gloves and a warm hat (it can be chilly at any time of the year)
  • Rucksack
  • Water bottle (at least 1 litre capacity)
  • A small torch (everywhere in winter, year round in mountains)
  • Sun hat and sunscreen
    Denim jeans and waterproof capes are not suitable on any walks.

Recommended

  • Several layers of clothing, which can be added or removed
  • Specialist walking socks to avoid blisters.
  • A first aid kit inc plasters– your leader’s first aid kit doesn’t contain any medication
  • Sit mat (insulated pad to sit on when you stop for a break)

You might also want

  • Walking poles, particularly useful for descents.
  • Insect repellent
  • Flask for hot drinks
  • Rigid lunch box
  • Gaiters
  • Blister kit (eg Compeed) just in case
  • Waterproof rucksack liner

Guest Reviews

Duration:
4 nights
Walking Grade:
2 & 5

4 nights from 0pp

...or call 020 3974 8865

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