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  • Challenger Bothy - Scottish Highlands - 1128585 - photo 1

Challenger Bothy

(Ref. 1128585)

Lairg, Northern Highlands & Cairngorms National Park Show on map


Sykes rating

  • 5 Guests

  • 2 Bedrooms

  • 1 Bathroom

  • Pets Yes


  • Hot tub
  • Off road parking
  • Ground floor accommodation
  • Ground floor bedroom
  • Open fire
  • Garden / Patio
  • Washing machine
  • Dishwasher
  • Broadband / WiFi

Reviews & Ratings

Accuracy of the listing
Facilities and Maintenance
  • All reviews
  • bothy (3)
  • back (3)
  • garden (3)
  • plenty (3)
  • everything (3)
  • lovely (3)

5 Customer Reviews

  • "The bothy is a lot bigger than it looks on the photo, plenty of room in all the rooms."

    The heating is lovely and cosy. I espesuly loved the gift that was left for my dog

    thanks for your positive review. Property Owner

    Reviewed by Jane5.0Mar 2024

  • "Just back from a wonderful week in the most beautiful, perfect place to get away to!"

    We absolutely love this place! From arriving to the Challenger estate, it is clear you're in a very special place. Set in the most picturesque environment, its impressive to say the least! Once on the estate lane, the drive to the Bothy is smooth, straightforward and you soon become absorbed in the stunning surroundings. The Bothy itself in its position is really welcoming. We arrived in the evening and it was lovely and warm inside and we very soon felt at home. It is really cosy yet also perfectly spacious. The decor and quality furniture really add to the character of the very charming Bothy. It is clean and fresh throughout. The log fire in the living area is perfect for the evenings and we were welcomed by a generous amount of breakfast items and plenty of wood for the fire. The Bothy has everything you could need or think of for your stay, from games and books to helpful kitchen items, more than can be mentioned, lots of extras. More photos or maps of the estate and area are the only thing that we could possibly find to say that could be added to celebrate this wonderful place! The garden to the Bothy is just beautiful! It is the perfect place for day and night activities, particularly wildlife spotting and star gazing. There is a bench to soak in the stunning views and the garden is lit by lights between the trees at night, which is so pretty, we enjoyed this every night! The views from the Bothy and the estate are superb, with lochs, mountains and ruins within easy walking, and numerous other places of interest a short drive away. Communication with the owner was great from start to finish, always prompt and really helpful. We would absolutely love to stay at the Challenger estate again, in fact we cannot wait to go back!

    Reviewed by Scott5.0Feb 2024

  • "Had a wonderful stay at the cottage."

    Wonderful open views from the front of the cottage, and the back garden was delightful, loved the fairy lights. Cottage nice and clean, very well equipped, wonderful kitchen with everything you need, welcome basket was a nice surprise along with the milk etc. in the fridge, and the dog treats/ball went down a storm with Sali, our border collie. Initial issue with hot water was resolved, thank you. Fabulous shower. Many thanks to the gentleman who came to dig us out with a snow plough on our last day, it was very much appreciated. It may be useful to have some maps of the local area/walks etc. but that is no slight on the wonderful week we spent there, just a suggestion. Really hope to visit again in the future..

    Reviewed by Robert3.8Feb 2024

  • "Absolutely stunning location & the Bothy could be equally as stunning if a little bit more TLC was carried out by the maintenance team."

    As the bothy is surrounded by trees (very close on 3 sides), it is naturally dark & cold inside, but there was no heating switched on to welcome us. After fathoming out how to work the heaters we had to buy new batteries for all 4 of the sensor controllers as theirs were all flat (& no replacement ones left where it said in cupboard). The gutters were totally choked up with pine needles etc. & shortly after we arrived when it was raining quite heavily, it was like a waterfall falling over the front door until my husband cleared that gutter. Also 1 of the downpipes on the outside corner of the living room was lying on the floor until husband slotted it back into place. There is a lovely picnic bench in the 'garden' but it would be a lot more useful if the grass was trimmed around where it sits. There is a gorgeous state of the art kitchen with just about everything you need (except maybe a can opener). Would have been nice if the vacuum cleaner had been emptied. It was totally choked up & wouldn't even pick up a feather until it had been cleaned out. Bathroom is equally as good with a great heated towel rail & plenty of hot water (switch is in the study) Bedrooms & sitting room were adequate but don't expect the logs for the burner to last long ( about 4 hours). As we were there for a fortnight, the owner rang to say she would send Allen to replace bedding & towels mid stay (which he duly did). Overall it's a great little cottage that could be as fantastic as the scenery with a little more care & attention to detail.

    Thank you for leaving such a detailed review. I appreciate the time and effort it took. We have only just recently embarked on this new journey of short lets. Firstly, I agree the Bothy is surrounded by large pine trees which some are over 60 years old. But we are in the process of having these trees trimmed and pulled back but as NatureScot does not allow cutting of trees during the nesting season we have had to wait till late December - early January to start tree cutting. I'm sure once that is done more light and warmth will naturally filter through. As for the gutters, it was cleared in July before we opened the doors of the Bothy to guests and as we have only just started the business had no idea how quickly the gutters filled. I'm pleased to say that starting in mid-October we are embarking on landscaping improvements behind the Bothy which will include new lawns, wildflower beds, tree fairy lights, and a wood burning hot tub. We hope that it will help us make the Bothy a more inviting place. As of May 2024, all of these improvements have now been made! Please see the latest pictures to see the difference between September 2023 and May 2024. We have also spoken to our estate manager on the point regarding the vacuum cleaner, batteries and heating on arrival of new guests. These will be rectified going forward. I thank you again for your review and constructive criticisms, I hope that we see you again in the future and maybe you will be able to write a more positive review. Property Owner

    Reviewed by Doreen2.8Sep 2023

  • "Excellent place to relax if you want to escape from the city life"

    Dear Sir Thank you for taking the time to leave such a lovely review. I'm so glad you had a restful and enjoyable stay at the Bothy. Please do come back and stay again as it would be great to host you and your family. Shanta Property Owner

    Reviewed by Sandeep5.0Jul 2023

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  • Single-storey
  • Two bedrooms: 1 x king-size, 1 x twin
  • Shower room with walk-in shower, basin and WC
  • Two-person Hot Tub, Kitchen/diner
  • Sitting room with woodburning stove
  • Snug with sofa bed.
  • Electric central heating
  • Electric oven and hob, microwave, fridge/freezer, dishwasher
  • Smart TV, WiFi
  • Fuel and power inc. in rent
  • Bed linen and towels inc. in rent
  • Ample off-road parking
  • Lawned garden with seating
  • Romantic, two person wood-fired hot tub (starter pack of wood provided)
  • One well-behaved pet welcome
  • Sorry, no smoking
  • Shop 1.9 miles, pub 2 miles
  • Note: No stag/hen parties
  • Note: Loch Dola is free to use by occupants
  • Note: Fishing in Loch Craggie is only allowed with a permit, obtained from the Lairg Angling Club
  • All wildlife is to be strictly left alone and watched only from afar
  • Holiday Let Licence number is HI-00141-F
  • Please note: Due to it being wood-fired, the 2-person hot tub can take 4-5 hours to fully heat up
  • Please note: This property can only accommodate 3-nights minimum.

The property

Lairg 2.2 miles.

This cosy, single-storey cottage lies in the grounds of Challenger Estate, just a single track from the village of Lairg.

Full of character, Challenger Bothy is a superb choice for a family looking to escape the rush of normality and uncover the beauty of Nothern Scotland.

Enter via the rear door into a reception area, leaving your boots and coats behind before getting comfortable.

The kitchen/diner features a contemporary finish with sleek appliances and a run of units, with the dining table inviting you to settle down and enjoy mealtimes together.

Gather together in the sitting room and keep warm beside the woodburning stove, with a Smart TV for entertainment.

Freshen up in the shower room before retreating to either the king-size or twin bedroom.

To the outside of this charming dwelling is a garden area with furniture and a wood-fired hot tub for two, so you can enjoy your favourite tipple whilst appreciating the mountain and lake views.

Choose Challenger Bothy for a relaxing and rejuvenating escape to Scotland.

Note: This property can be booked with Ref. 1128542, together sleeping 13 guests.

EPC Rating: Band G

Challenger Estate

These two cottages sit in a rural position, surrounded by an abundance of native wildlife on the The Challenger Estate, a privately owned estate with over 1000 acres of wild moorland. There is an abundance of wildlife to be seen. The Red, Roe and Sika Deer can be seen early mornings and at dusk. Their path cuts right across the garden of the Baddhu Cottage and towards the mountain behind Challenger Lodge. When you walk towards the mountain you will see settlements of sheep farmers and crop farmers from the 17th century. You will also see that people have lived on the Estate for over 5000 years. When you walk further, you can see the old homestead, as well as foundations of roundhouses from the Bronze and Iron Age period. Right in front of Baddhu Cottage is an Iron Age burial cairn, believed to be a person of status which can be noted by the large rock as a marker. If you want an easier walk, take the road to the right after the cattle grid and it’s a very easy 10km walk to Loch Craggie, which is owned by The Challenger Estate. Here you will see some of the United Kingdom's most endangered birds and wildlife, if you are patient. The highly endangered Hen Harrier with only 545 breeding pairs in the whole of the UK, we at Challenger Estate are proud to say we have four pairs that make Challenger their home during the breeding season. As you walk towards Loch Craggie you will pass the smaller Loch Dola which too is owned by The Challenger Estate, with its clean crystal waters serving as a healthy breeding ground for trout. Walk past Loch Dola and follow the signs to Loch Craggie, you will walk on the trail of The Pines. The forestry commission owns the forestry but you are welcome to walk the trail to Craggie. Craggie is privately owned by the Estate and is around 2.2 miles round. Loch Craggie is recognised as the cream of the lochs in this area, indeed one of the best in the Highlands. It is famous for both its mayfly hatch and the quality of its trout. Brown trout average around the 1lb mark, with many better fish in the 2-3lbs range caught each season. On Loch Cgraagie the bird life is extensive. The waters at Loch Craggie are as clean and crystal clear as Loch Dola. Fishing at Loch Craggie is strictly by permit only, which can be obtained from the Lairg Angling Club. For an unforgettable stay in Scotland, look no further than The Challenger Estate.

Note: This property has a Good Housekeeping bond of £250.

View on map

About the location


Inverness 50 miles.

Located 50 miles north of Inverness, Lairg is centrally placed for touring the remote and beautiful Northern Highlands. The area has much to offer the visitor, from fine golf courses to outstanding fishing, some of the finest hill walking and mountaineering country in the land and the grand castle at Dunrobin, the home of the Earls of Sutherland. The castle, overlooking the sea, boasts a magnificent formal garden inspired by the grandeur of Versailles in France. Golfers can enjoy a round at local courses in Bonar Bridge, Golspie and Ullapool as well as at the world famous Royal Dornoch Golf Club. Lairg provides a convenient base for trips to the West, North and East coasts with breath-taking scenery in every direction. Walkers are within range of the most northerly Munro in Ben Hope as well as the iconic mountains Suilven, Arkle and Foinavon. Whisky enthusiasts can enjoy visits to nearby distilleries such as Balblair, Clynelish and Glenmorangie. Keen fisherman are situated at the southern end of the lovely Loch Shin and have a wide choice of scenic trout lochs in the local area. In the immediate area are several other outdoor adventure activities including falconry, bird watching and photography, woodcarving, geology, kayaking, or even dry stone walling. For the true Highland experience you won’t find much better.

Please note: Due to it being wood-fired, the two-person hot tub can take 4-5 hours to fully heat up.
Please note: This property can only accommodate 3-nights minimum.

This property offers the following short breaks:

  • Winter
  • Off-season
  • Last minute
  • Christmas