Located in an area with royal connections past and present, Perkhill Holiday Cottages provide a comfortable base for a rural retreat in Aberdeenshire. We asked owner Pippa Davie about the self-catering accommodation and her tips for visiting the area.
Can you tell us a bit more about Perkhill Holiday Cottages?
We renovated the cottages from redundant farm buildings having moved here in 2006. They are located on our farm which is a couple of miles outside Lumphanan, the village in Royal Deeside where the real Macbeth, King of Alba lost his life to Malcolm 3rd. There a various historical sites in the village linked to his demise so we named the cottages Macbeths Retreat, Lady Macbeths Rest and King Duncans View. Ours is a family run working farm with a prize winning herd of Aberdeen Angus cows and some sheep. All the cottages are rated grade 4 by Visit Scotland and have all the comforts including free Wifi, underfloor heating provide by a Biomass boiler and log burning stoves. The beds are very comfy and we have been commended on the level of cleanliness. We use Eco friendly products and the wind turbines help produce the power to the cottages. We are dog friendly and all cottages have a garden, two of which are enclosed.
Take a look at our Trip Advisor reviews, we are rated top of Banchory cottages.
Your accommodation is located in the heart of Royal Deeside, what are a few of the highlights of this area?
Prince Charles has just opened a new restaurant in nearby Ballater, Rothesay Rooms and a HighGrove Gift Shop. He and Camilla are frequent visitors to the area and a trip to Balmoral is a must. There are several lovely villages to visit in Deeside, Aboyne, Banchory, Ballater, Kincardine O’ Neil and Braemar to name a few. Each village has a variety of shops and cafes selling local produce. In the summer there are several Highland Games and Agricultural Shows to attend. The queen always goes to the Braemar Gathering in August.
Aberdeenshire is known for its Castle Trail – what are your favourite castles?
The nearest castle is Craigievar which is 10 minutes away and is pink! It is my favourite as it is so close by, it is not too big and it is fun finding all the cockerel pictures hidden in the castle. There is also Crathes, Drum and Braemar castles all of which are worth visiting and the gardens at Crathes are beautiful. The most spectacular is Dunnoter castle near Stonehaven.
We love to share ‘Loved by Locals’ tips. Do you have a favourite hidden gem that you tell your guests about?
Park at the Burn O’ Vat near Loch Dinnet and walk to the waterfall where Rob Roy was meant to have hidden. You can even go behind the waterfall into the wee cave but you will get wet!
The cottages are ideally located for exploring a number of areas, with Aberdeenshire, Moray Speyside and the Highlands on your doorstep. If you had to choose three ‘must-do’ day trips what would you suggest?
That is tricky!
- Newburgh beach and the Forvie Nature Reserve where you can always see seals and an amazing variety of bird life. It is so peaceful and unspoilt.
- The Lynn of Dee and Mar Lodge near Braemar where the river Dee is born and there are gorgeous walks. You can climb Ben Macdui from here if you are fit! If not, Braemar Highland Safari is a wonderful way of reaching high places that you otherwise couldn’t and the guide knows everything about the area.
- Loch Muick on the Balmoral Estate where see red deer and can walk around the loch or climb the Munro Lochnagar. Just stunning scenery.
What kind of things can four-legged guests enjoy around the area?
There are plenty of lovely walks either on the farm or further afield. My personal favourites are Crathes Castle woods, Bellwood in Aboyne, Drum Castle forest and the Deeside Way which follows the old railway line from Aberdeen to Ballater. Also we are less than an hour from some beautiful sandy beaches like Balmedie, Newburgh and Stonehaven.
What one thing should guests make sure they do during a stay at Perkhill?
Get plenty of rest. Our beds are really comfy and it is so peaceful and quiet. The clear Scottish air and spring water will do wonders to your general wellbeing. Look out for local wildlife, buzzards, deer, pheasants, woodcock, snipe and the occasional otter and osprey.