It’s hardly surprising that many of Ballater’s fine Victorian Cottages are available for self catering holidays. This Scottish village is widely regarded as one of the best places for hiking in the surrounding area, with excellent route access to the Cairngorm Mountains. The Ballater Walking festival each May attracts many hill walkers of all levels. Beginner trails cover Craigendarroch, the small and odd shaped hill just outside of the village.
A large and spacious holiday retreat, Birch Cottage near Braemar has room for ten guests and an open plan living space with dazzling Highland views. An entire wall of windows admits plenty of natural light and offers panoramic views of the surrounding Cairngorms National Park. Sleeps 10.
For most experienced walkers, the prominent mountains or munros of Lochnagar and Ballater are home to some of the most challenging walks near the village. Bikes are also available for hire in the village, enabling you to get around quickly and see many of the nearby Scottish landmarks such as the Cairngorms, Balmoral Castle and the breath-taking Loch Muick.
The River Dee, which flows just past the village, is a very popular spot for salmon fishing, and the nearby Ballater Golf Club offers a beautiful area at which to play some golf at one of the Prince of Wales’ favourite golfing spots.
When visiting Ballater you will often see mentions of the Royal Family due to the Balmoral Castle, one of their residencies, being so close to the village. Shops proudly display pictures showing the Royals visiting their businesses, and The Old Royal Railway Station has been turned into a historic landmark displaying it’s 100-year history as the station where the Royal Family alighted for their holidays. The station is open to visitors, and still contains a unique royal waiting room built for the queen, along with one of the royal train carriages.
For day trips, Ballater has an hourly bus service that runs alongside the River Dee to Aberdeen. The city boasts a spectacular shopping scene with over 800 retail, unique, and independent stores. There’s also a great deal of restaurants serving delicious food, ideal for taking a break from cooking at your holiday cottage and enjoying a meal out.