Scottish brochs and blackhouses

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  • The spectacular coastal view from Blue Reef Cottages at Scarista, Isle of Harris.
    Brochs at Scarista, Isle of Harris © Blue Reef Cottages, www.stay-hebrides.com
  • The thatched blackhouse, Taigh Thormoid 'an 'ic, at Gearrannan on the Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides
    Taigh Thormoid 'an 'ic, a traditional Hebridean blackhouse © Iain MacArthur

A prehistoric abode made of stone, brochs are unique to Scotland. In most cases, broch ruins litter the hills and glens of the Highlands and islands, but more recently they have inspired a new kind of accommodation for visitors to Scotland. Built in a similar way to those constructed thousands of years ago, staying in a Scottish broch is a truly unique experience.

Part of Scotland’s rich heritage, brochs were built millennia ago by the country’s first inhabitants. These Iron Age roundhouses, many of which are thousands of years old, are still standing tall like the Broch of Mousa on Shetland. Others on the island, like Jarlshof near Sumburgh Head, were forgotten by time only to be discovered preserved underground.

What would have been high, circular towers unique to the northern and western Highlands and the islands, these prehistoric structures are now inspiring a new generation of brochs, modern recreations based on an ancient design.

Rather than their dark and perhaps cold predecessors, Scotland’s modern-day brochs are bright, spacious and warm, equipped with high-spec kitchens, under-floor heating, wood burning stoves and even a sauna.

Head out for a brisk morning stroll along the beach on your doorstep; enjoy having it all to yourself while working up your appetite for a hearty breakfast. With huge observation rooms with floor to ceiling windows, there are few places in the broch where you won’t be able to appreciate spectacular coastal or mountain panoramic views while you eat.

Most are even made with recycled materials; for instance, making use of stones from ruined dry stone walls and wooden beams from disused piers and so on. Finished off with turf, they seamlessly mould into the landscape in some of Scotland’s most stunning and remote locations.

As well as brochs, there are other traditional homes in Scotland which are also seeing a renaissance. Blackhouses, a type of thatched croft or bothy found on the Outer Hebrides, were once the home to the islanders and now welcome visitors for a truly Hebridean stay.

Browse the listings to plan your stay in traditional Scottish houses.

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5 results, currently showing 1 to 5
  1. Borvemor Cottages

    Type

    Self Catering

    Gradings

    Scarista

    Welcome to Borvemor Cottages

  2. The Brochs Of Coigach

    Type

    Self Catering

    Gradings

    • 5 Self Catering
    5 Self Catering

    Achiltibuie

    The Brochs of Coigach, artistic and architectural gems in one of Britain's most outstanding National Scenic Areas and finalists of the 2013 Highlands and Islands Tourism Awards, sit entirely secluded within four acres of their own ground.

  3. Blue Reef Cottages

    Type

    Self Catering

    Gradings

    • 5 Self Catering
    5 Self Catering

    South Harris

    Luxurious accommodation with panoramic views of local beaches. Ideal location to star gaze, or from the comfort of your cottage you can watch the sun set or the Atlantic Ocean crashing on the shore and beaches below.

  4. The Broch & Rock House

    Type

    Self Catering

    Gradings

    • 5 Self Catering
    5 Self Catering

    Harris

    The Broch & The Rock House are Borve Lodge Estate's premier self-catering properties. These award winning designs offer luxurious accomodation for couples seeking the perfect retreat overlooking the Harris Beaches and the Atlantic beyond.

  5. Gearrannan Blackhouse Village

    Type

    Self Catering

    Gradings

    • 3-4 Self Catering
    3-4 Self Catering

    North West Lewis

    Quality Refurbished Original Blackhouses Original Blackhouses refurbished tastefully and retaining Theme character.

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