The Crinan Canal is known as ‘Britain’s most beautiful shortcut’ and when you escape to Bannatyne Cottage, you’ll quickly find out why! This spectacular 9-mile waterway link through the Kintyre Peninsula is completely surrounded by incredible scenery, and connects to the white sands and clear waters of the Inner Hebrides and Western Isles. Despite it’s beautiful location, Bannatyne Cottage is still easily accessible from the major Scottish cities, yet you’re so far from everyday routine that it’s hard to remember they exist!
A 19th century, former lock-keeper’s cottage carefully refurbished to 21st century standards, Bannatyne accommodates up to four people in the king-size and twin bedrooms. The living/dining room has a cosy wood-burning stove, as well as a TV and CD players. The well-equipped kitchen features a fridge freezer, microwave and washer/dryer, with the modern conveniences providing a nice contrast to the traditional charm of this 200-year-old home.
Bannatyne Cottage can be found on Lock 11 of the Crinan Canal near Cairnbaan, a small village with a lot to offer. Walking and cycling routes, boating and fishing, island-hopping and wildlife-spotting – it’s all here. Cairnbaan’s history goes back more than 5,000 years – prehistoric ‘cup and ring’ marks carved into the rocks of Kilmartin Glen have been puzzling archaeologists for generations. Nearby there’s the impressive Iron Age Dunadd Fort, from which the ancient kings of Scotland surveyed their realm.
There’s also plenty to see in the wild – eagles hunt overhead as seals bask on the beaches, and nearby Knapdale is home to the Scottish Beaver Trail, so there’s always the chance of seeing one gnawing on a tree trunk somewhere! Out on the waters, you can also spot Scotland’s sea life from the Oban and Kennacraig ferries (keep an eye out of dolphins, diving birds, puffins and even the occasional basking shark!).