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Tigh Mairi (Mary's Cottages)
Tigh Mairi is a traditional thatched “blackhouse” cottage with a curtained box bed, fully-fitted kitchen and underfloor heating. 1-2 dogs welcome (no extra charge). Elgol is 20 minutes drive from Broadford, with stunning views, walking, wildlife watching, boat-trips and sight-seeing opportunities.
REVIEWED BY DOGFRIENDLY MAGAZINE SEE BELOW.
Tigh (meaning house or home) Mairi was originally a croft dwelling house, then a hay barn in the 1800s, named after the daughter of Andrew and Mary Sim who combined both modern and traditional when rebuilding the cottages. Cross a stone bridge over the stream separating Tigh Mairi from the other three cottages on the croft to reach this perfect self-catering accommodation.
Views to the front take in the Strathaird peninsula across to Glasnakille and beyond to Sleat and the Isle of Rum.
Sleeping four people with a traditional veiled boxed king size bed downstairs and a gallery room with two single beds upstairs (accessed via a foldaway ladder). Travel cot available.
Tigh Mairi has all the comforts you need whether you want a base for exploring the beautiful Skye wilderness, dark skies, or a tranquil retreat to relax and recharge.
We are dog-owners ourselves, so are genuinely pet-friendly, can give you suggestions for dog-friendly walks of various lengths, and welcome up to two well-behaved dogs, by prior arrangement. The area around the cottages is enclosed by fencing.
• Boxed Double Bed; Gallery Bedroom; Underfloor Heating; Oil Burner Fire; Outdoor Picnic Bench; Shower; Hairdryer; Fresh towels and linen;
• Fully Equipped Kitchen: Fridge Freezer, Microwave, Oven, Dishwasher, Dining Area, Washing Machine, Coffee maker
• Free Wifi; Smart TV And DVD Player; Books, CDs, DVDs and board games
• Welcome pack (eggs, milk, bread, biscuits, wine, Yorkshire tea and ground coffee)
• Dog throws, dog bowls, tick remover & Dog Welcome Pack
Dogfriendly Magazine Review
Read our comprehensive review of this listing printed in our bi-monthly magazine.
Tracey Radnall and Bertie head-off on tour to the Isle of Skye to stay in a traditional croft.
Like most, the past four months have been confined to home, so Bertie and I were naturally chomping at the bit for a change of scenery. As lockdown was announced on 23 March, we were driving back from Saddell Castle on Kintyre (see issue 60). So, in similar spirit, adopting the ‘Last in, First out’ policy, it’s mid July – officially lid-off day in Scotland.
We depart for the Isle of Skye. There can be no more dramatic locations in Scotland, if the mountains on Skye were a musical genre, they would surely fall into the Rock ’n Roll category.With the dramatic and renowned Red and Black Cuillin ranges vying for attention – these hulking former volcanoes were active 60 million years ago. Let that sink in. Our route through the spine of Scotland is a familiar one, turning left at Laggan and stopping at Glengarry Forestry for a comfort break and to get a brew on.
Eventually passing the romantic setting of Eilean Donan castle – possibly Scotland’s most photographed location in what must be said is a competitive field – before crossing the bridge from the mainland to Skye. We headed towards Broadford – an ideal place to fill-up up with fuel and any forgotten supplies at the well stocked Co-op. From here the roads narrow, arching around Loch Slapin where there’s a John Muir managed lay-by with facilities. Possibly the most perfect views for a picnic stop, under the shadow of the main Cuillin ridge.
This is the far south western end of Skye, the road concludes at the small fishing village of Elgol. The backdrop of the Cuillin ridge across Loch Scavaig – a stage-set of rock of such epic proportions that KT Tunstall spent her honeymoon here. Arriving at Elgol as you pass over a cattle grid and spot the unmistakable group of Mary’s thatched cottages on your right. Driving through the electric gates, cross a stone bridge over the stream separating Tigh Mairi from the other cottages on the croft.
It is an idyllic setting. Tigh (meaning ‘home’) Mairi was originally a croft dwelling house, before becoming a hay barn in the 1800s. Named after the daughter of Andrew and Mary Sim who combined both modern interior and traditional materials when rebuilding the cottages. The cottage is made from solid local stone with all the aesthetically pleasing characteristics of highland croft architecture, including tapered walls and rounded corners. Topped off with a substantial thatch, resembling my own barnet after four months sans haircut! Stones are used to weigh and protect the thatch from wind and nesting birds. The stunning views to the front take in the Strathaird peninsula across to Glasnakille and beyond to Sleat and the wonderful Isle of Rum. Inside the open-plan format features a well-equipped kitchen, dining area, sitting room with an oil burning stove. Sleeping four people with a traditional veiled boxed king-size bed in the downstairs bedroom. A gallery room with two single beds upstairs (accessed via a foldaway ladder) is ideal for children. A separate shower room completes the cottage facilities. A substantial welcome-pack for your best pal consists of biscuits, poo-bags, bowls, and a throw for the furniture in case your dog feels the need to try out the sofas as a change from the underfloor heating. Yes, that is written in the welcome pack!
The following day we head back along the road to the car park we passed yesterday to take-on a 9km trail with views of both the Cuillin range and the outlying isles of Soay and Rum. It’s a fine sunny day and the path is popular with enthusiastic walkers. On reaching the cliff-top we are rewarded by
180° views – absolutely breathtaking. Tigh Mairi has all the comforts you and your hound could possibly need. Thanks to underfloor heating, double glazing, as well as a terrific location. Making it a perfect base for exploring on foot, enjoying cosy evenings under dark skies, or simply a tranquil retreat to relax and recharge. Fantastic walks from the door guarantee your canine companion will love it too. The proprietors are not simply dog-tolerant but extremely dog-friendly.
ABOUT TIGH MAIRI
Getting there When you reach Elgol, Mary’s Cottages are the first on the right hand side after the cattle-grid as you enter the village. You will cross a little bridge over a stream. Fuel The Co-op fuel station in Broadford is the largest on the island and the cheapest. Mobile. There is no mobile reception outside the cottage or locally. However, the cottage features wifi which works perfectly.
The cottage includes a welcome pack including bread, milk, butter and eggs. There is a small shop in Elgol, behind the village hall for essentials.
The Coruisk House Hotel restaurant next door is listed in the Michelin Guide. Advisable to book as soon as you are able. The telephone number is 01471 866330 or email [email protected].
The cottages are fenced off from the road and neighbouring properties, there is moorland behind the cottage, with sheep and red deer, so I’d recommend you keep your dog under close control.
The Old School Vet Practice, Broadford IV49 9AQ, 01471 822922, oldschoolvet.co.uk. Mon–Friday: 9am–5pm; Saturday: 9am–3pm
Coast path from Elgol, look out for the honeycomb rock formations in the limestone cliffs. Please note it is illegal to remove any rock from the location. Car park three miles on the return road from Elgol for a longer elevated route and amazing views of the Cuillin ridge.
Get a map Ordnance Survey, www.ordnancesurvey.co.uk/shop • ref. Skye – Sleat Broadford, Kyleakin &Armadale, 412 Explorer, 1:25 000 scale
Boat trips from Elgol harbour
Elgol is served by the 55 bus to Glasnakille. Timetables: lochalsh.com
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Michelle Stark, October 2020
The perfect warm, cozy and safe place for the dogs to recover after climbing challenging beautiful mountain trails. The dog holiday dream.
Caroline Cooper, October 2020
Cater so well for our dogs. On arrival we had a lovely welcome pack and so did our dogs! bowls, toys, treats and even a cuddly blanket to cosy up on the settee. The best dog friendly cottage we have been to. Highly Recommend.
David Bird, October 2020
A truly beautiful location next to some incredible dog walks (the Cuillin Mountains are next door) and the sea (our Border Collie joined us on the boat to see the nearby seal colony), with everything catered for, both for humans and for dogs (milk, eggs, dog treats...).
There's a heated floor which dogs love, and large a fenced boundary so they can roam freely in safety - we opened the door to find one of the neighbouring cottages' dog on the step asking if ours could come and play : )
I never leave reviews, but I am very happy to recommend Mary's Thatched Cottages. 5 stars - go there
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