Highland refuge: Scotland’s serene, socially-conscious hideaway

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A beautiful new holiday let with an unusual ethos offers solitude, space to reflect, brilliant walks and views to the Isle of Skye

As I totter across a little footbridge in the gloaming, the water below takes on a treacly sheen, slithering out to sea in the fading light. Ahead, over marshy tussocks, the outline of a ruined barracks looms out of the mist and some lights flicker on in the little red-roofed cottage beyond it. A bank of rain is chasing me over the bog. It catches me just as I reach the village’s (closed) inn so I turn and sprint back to my holiday cottage, Taigh Whin, as the deluge draws a soggy curtain over the landscape. I’ve come to Glenelg, in Scotland’s north-west Highlands, to connect with nature and it’s seeping straight in.

Fortunately Taigh Whin is the ideal place to shelter. It was opened in June by garden designer Sarah MacLaren and her partner, artist and writer Sophie Howarth primarily for letting out to people working for the common good in Scotland, be they campaigners, carers, community leaders or volunteers, public servants, artists or activists.

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