Paws for a Break 2016/17 Award Finalists

We asked the public to nominate their favourite pet-friendly self-catering property on EmbraceScotland for our Paws for a Break Award 2016/17 and we are delighted to announce our 6 finalists!  These self-catering holiday properties go the extra mile to make sure that pets and their owners are made welcome, with all the facilities and services you need for a comfortable, pet-friendly holiday in Scotland.  Here is some more information about the finalists and why they were nominated.

Ardtornish Estate Cottages & Apartments, Ardnamurchan

Located on the shores of Lochaline on Scotland’s west coast, Ardtornish Estate offers a range of self-catering options from stone built cottages to Victorian apartments in Ardtornish House.  Guests and four-legged friends can explore the estate and its gardens, with 20 miles of coastline, woodlands and lochs with golden sandy beaches, as well as many dog-friendly places to visit nearby.

You said: “Great location for country walks, on the loch side for dogs that like swimming, a sporting estate so dogs very welcome, slate floors, a log burner, a good drying room so damp dogs and wet walking gear do not cause a problem… And let’s not forget the beautiful countryside”.

Cologin Country Chalets, Oban

Cologin Country Chalets are family-run self-catering lodges in the picturesque Lerags Glen, 2.5 miles south of the seaside town of Oban.  These comfortable and practical lodges offer a relaxed pace of life in a lovely location with rural views – and a country pet-friendly pub on site.  There is a large fenced garden, and a big porch for towelling off muddy coats and wiping paws.

You said: “17,000 acres for dog walking, lochs to swim in, ducks to chase, warm welcome from resident lab Benjie and Great Dane Alfie, plenty of other canine companions to go sniffing with and cosy comfortable chalets to come home to at night. There’s even an on-site kennels for pet-free day trips and, even better, an on-site award winning pub which also welcomes pets”.

Mains of Taymouth Estate, Kenmore

Mains of Taymouth offers 4 and 5 star award-winning luxury cottages, houses, apartments and villas on this 120 acre estate in Kenmore, Highland Perthshire.  Tucked into the edge of Loch Tay, Mains of Taymouth is an idyllic spot for some rest and relaxation with your furry companion.  Dogs are also in the restaurant area and four-legged visitors are given a welcome bag with a map of walks, doggie bags and a doggie biscuit.

You said: “The accommodation is brilliant set in beautiful surroundings.  So very dog friendly; our spaniel was welcomed in the courtyard and was even allowed to join us on the golf course!  The walks around the area are amazing”.

Mansefield House, Arrochar

Situated 2 miles from Loch Lomond overlooking Loch Long and the Arrochar Alps, Mansefield House offers 4 star self-catering accommodation for up to 12 in a large, comfortable Victorian house.  The owner provides a pet welcome pack, including a collar tag with details of Mansefield House, dog walks on the doorstop and local pet-friendly pubs and restaurants.

You said: “I’ve stayed here many times and it’s a brilliant house in a very beautifully situated location.  The house is a great balance of being both a stunning space to stay in, but it is also very relaxed and pet friendly with every details thought of for your pet – including a collar tag with the properties address.  It has a brilliant choice of so many great walks on it’s doorstep and a friendly, knowledgeable host who has pets herself.  Would get my vote any time!”.

Perkhill Holiday Cottages, Lumphanan

Perkhill Holiday Cottages are situated on a family farm in the heart of historic Royal Deeside in Aberdeenshire, offering a quality rural self-catering experience.  The cottages are all dog-friendly with fenced gardens, dog towels and information on walks both on the farm and in Royal Deeside.

You said: “The warm welcome at Perkhill extends to all who arrive including our four legged friends.  The cottages are so luxurious but really easy to feel comfortable in without worrying the dogs are ‘allowed’ but not thought of.  They adore the under floor heating!  There’s great info about walks and you have Deeside, the coast, forests and the Cairngorms all within easy reach. There’s plenty of maps and info in the cottages too”.

The Steadings, Auchteralyth

The Steadings are four luxury self-catering cottages on the edge of Glen Isla in rural Perthshire welcoming dogs and their well-behaved owners.  Enjoy stunning views and a peaceful setting for a pet-friendly holiday, with lots of lovely walks nearby, including the Cateran Trail, which has sections that are suitable for a single day’s walk.   Bowls, towels, doggie bags and even organic dog shampoo are provided, as well as information on local walks and dog-friendly places to eat etc.

You said: “Such a fantastic place, it’s very difficult to find somewhere to stay when you have multiple dogs.  The most beautiful and peaceful setting, modern and first class accommodation with everything you could need for a self catering stay including dishwasher, coffee maker, all essential condiments.  Lovely touches such as the welcoming plaque on the cottage door with your dogs’ names on it and a basket of eggs from the Black Rock hens. Wifi, IPOD dock, satellite TV, so many beautiful walks with instructions on how to access them and the host Anne was so welcoming and made you feel right at home.  A place I would definitely visit again”.

Photo credit Adrien Benefro Hamilton Kerr Photography & Framing


The winner will be chosen by our judging panel (Marc Crothall of the Scottish Tourism Alliance, Torty Cocks of Scottish Field, Angela Torrance of Freckles Designs and Ali Campbell, ASSC Marketing Executive) and announced shortly.


  • Tracey Smith
    16th February 2017 12:00 am

    Our family stayed at auchteralyth steading last week for four nights. We have two boys aged 6 and 9 and our amazing dog Bailey. On arrival at the steading Anne greetings us with a warm welcome and showed us around our home for the next four days. Everything you could have wished for and more was supplied from fresh eggs to shampoo and a towel for Bailey. Anne was very kind in involving our children with the daily feeding and collecting of eggs with her hens. The cottage was spotless and was a very high standard. The bedding and towels were of high quality as with the toiletries supplied. We have stayed in many cottages with our children and dog but never experienced the high quality we did these last few days. We can always tell when going to a cottage that dogs are allowed as the cottage is smelly or signs of animals show but not in Thia cottage. We feel credit must be shown to Anne and all her attention to detail.

  • Emma Gibb
    16th February 2017 9:21 pm

    Thank you for the lovely comment, Tracey!

  • Lorna Petrie
    21st February 2017 6:12 pm

    Myself and my family have stayed at Auchteralyth Steadings many times. My first stay was when I was looking for a cottage that would accommodate my dog. Anne made us so welcome and Buffy was made exceptionally welcome. Everything was provided from fresh milk, eggs, coffee, tea, olive oil, magazines. It really was a home from home. Every little detail is thought of. It’s amazing. The towels, bedding etc are 5 star. Kashka (Anne’s dog) would pop round to see us and it was great that our dog had a play mate. The courtyard is so relaxing and we had a few nice evenings looking over the glens watching the sun go down. It is a fantastic area to visit the small towns or head into Dundee. We have been back again and again and love it every time. Good luck A nne. You deserve this with all hard work you do for your customers.

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