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3 Ways to Stay Cosy

Stay cosy during your self catering stay here in Skye and Lochalsh – whatever the weather! During the winter months there will be snow on the hills. Yes, it may well be wet and windy, and the daylight hours relatively short. But, trust us, however hard it may be blowing a hoolie , make like a local, and follow our tips for making the most of your stay.

Here are 3 ways to stay cosy on your self catering holiday here in Skye and Lochalsh.

Coorie beside the fire

Locals know more than anyone, there is nothing better than being inside when it’s stormy. It often feels like we need to hibernate during these winter months. Staying snug by a fire, listening to the wind howling and the rain rattling on the windows. The Scandinavians call it hygge.  In Scotland we call it ‘coorie’.  This Scots word literally means “to snuggle, nestle, or crouch for protection“.

Here in Skye and Lochalsh, local Gaelic speakers might prefer the word seasgair meaning ‘cosy, warm. dry, protected, comfortable, snug’.

Of course, all our cottages will be snug and cosy, with heating of some sort. As well as oil or LPG gas fired central heating radiators, some cottages have an oil fired range and many cottages feature a wood burner or multi fuel stove. Some cottages even have an open fire. So use the weather as the perfect excuse to stay indoors! Catch up on the box sets. Grab some ‘me time’. Read a book – or get creative, and write your own!

Many cottage owners will supply an initial amount of fuel and firelighters for your first night. You can easily pick up your own additional supplies from the local garage or supermarket (Portree, Broadford, Kyle).

Choose a cottage with a warming fire and stay “cho seasgair ri luchag ann an cruach” – as snug as a bug in a rug!

Wrap up warm

Don’t let the weather stop you from getting out and about. As long as you have the right attire and are weather wise, winter walks can be bracing and rewarding. The wet weather, boggy ground and rushing streams won’t be a problem if you pack suitable clothes! Layers are always a good idea. A fleece and a waterproof jacket are essential. You will also need some suitable boots or walking shoes with a good grip (in case it gets icy underfoot) and ideally a pair of wellington boots.  Throw on a scarf, hat and some gloves and you are good to go!

Remember to check weather forecasts before you set off on any long walks in the hills. Temperatures at higher altitudes will be considerably colder than at ground level and conditions can change in a moment. Be sensible and stay safe.

Don’t forget your camera! Snow capped hills and gushing waterfalls make great photo opportunities.


Winter eating

It’s a well known fact that we all want to eat more in the winter! Our bodies need fuel to keep us warm and healthy. Hibernating on your self catering holiday is a great excuse to sample some traditional Scottish fayre. Head to one of the local hotels for the perfect lunch or dinner. Typical winter menu choices might include a hearty homemade soup, and locally caught fish (and chips of course!). Or what about that Scottish staple – macaroni cheese? Afterwards, we recommend the ultimate comfort food – sticky toffee pudding!  And a glass of whisky, of course.

Some suggestions for winter eating 

Skeabost House Hotel is ideally situated overlooking Loch Snizort just outside Portree. Take a seat in the Cocktail Bar whilst you choose from their varied lunch and dinner menu, then move to the West  Pier Conservatory to enjoy your meal. Delights include Pan Roast Fillet of Salmon, Smoked Mackerel, or Sticky Toffee Pudding!

Portree Hotel  Try the varied Antlers Bar menu, including delicious homemade soup, haggis bon bons in peppercorn sauce, and macaroni cheese! Ideally situated on the main square and good for people  watching too!

Hotel Eilean Iarmain in the south of the island. Am Praban Bar serves hearty food in a relaxed setting with an open fire. Menu highlights include venison casserole and traditional cranachan.



Photos: Wood burning stove at The Library Strathaird House; wood burning stove in the lounge at Katie Anne’s Thatch; The Cuillins in winter . All photos Islands and Highlands Cottages.