For many people Scotland conjures up a vision of hills and lochs; at Merrylee Cottage you are surrounded by both. Situated in the west of Scotland, just south of Inveraray, the cottage stands on the shores of Loch Fyne and looks across to the hills of Argyll. The garden slopes down to the side of the loch and from the cottage windows you have the most amazing views. The light dancing on the water is a continual and ever-changing source of delight, as is the huge variety of wildlife.
Merrylee Cottage is a traditional, whitewashed Victorian cottage standing on the edge of the little village of Minard (shop/PO) on the road between Inveraray and Lochgilphead. Its new owners have beautifully renovated and refurbished it to a very high standard. There is a sitting room, separate dining room, a second den/sitting room with sofa bed and two bedrooms upstairs. Off-road parking is available for one car beside the cottage with more available just up the road past the Hall. Secure storage is available in a lockable shed.
This is an area sure to delight garden-lovers: the National Trust’s Crarae Gardens are a short distance away; the Ardkinglas Woodland Gardens are at the head of the loch and the Benmore Botanic Gardens are about a 40 minute drive away on the Dunoon road. The Brainport Heritage Trail is also very close, starting from the shore and twisting round the headland for more than two miles. On the trail you have a good chance of glimpsing otters, roe deer, seals and porpoises. There are also some beautiful sites for picnics.
At Merrylee Cottage you are centrally placed for touring north and south. Lochgilphead (shops, restaurants, swimming pool etc.) lies to the south as does the Crinan Canal with its towpath which is ideal for leisurely walks. From here you can head on down the Mull of Kintyre to Campbeltown and Machrihanish, the latter having a well-known golf course and a superb beach. Alternatively, you can take a ferry to one of the islands: Arran, Gigha or Islay. From Lochgilphead you can also strike north-west towards Loch Awe and Oban passing the prehistoric monuments in Kilmartin Glen. From Oban there are even more possibilities of boat trips, this time to Mull, Iona, Lismore, Tiree and Colonsay.
Inveraray with its castle and jail museum (both worth a visit) lies to the north. This pretty village is very popular with tourists and has a good selection of shops and places to eat. There is a golf course here and the possibility of many other activities. Walking is an obvious pastime but fishing, riding, cycling and sailing can all be had locally. However, you may decide to take advantage of the cottage’s beautiful setting and chill out in the garden with a good book and a pair of binoculars at the ready for spotting wildlife on the loch.
Bedlinen, towels, electricity and £20 of oil central heating are included in the rental. Sorry, pets are not accepted and smoking is not permitted in the cottage. A refundable householder's deposit will be required. Wi-Fi is available, subject to provider.
Accommodation (sleeps 4):
- Sitting Room with open fire, TV/DVD, etc.
- Kitchen with electric cooker, dishwasher, microwave etc.
- Dining room
- Den with double-bed settee
- Utility area with washing machine, tumble-drier and deep-freeze
- Bathroom with separate shower
- Double-bed room (king-size)
- Twin-bed room