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Discover the Most Beautiful Estate in the Scottish Highlands

By Meike Burgess, Content Editor
More by Meike

Glen Affric Estate

Glen Affric is often described as the most beautiful glen in Scotland. Picture a vast Highland loch stretching out into the distance with rugged mountains fanning out from either side of the water. The foothills are blanketed in pine, birch and oak trees, all remnants of the ancient Caledonian forest. Above the tree line, atmospheric moorland dominates the view. It couldn’t be a more Scottish sight. It couldn’t be more wonderful.

It’s one of those places that suit any weather and any time of year. In summer, the hills are impossibly green, and the vegetation is lush, dense, and fragrant. In autumn and winter, browns and reds take over. Misty and moody, the hills loom above the water and it’s all drama.

Now imagine making this incredible landscape your home, if only for a small number of days. For a lucky few, this is possible.

Perched seemingly in the epicentre of the loch you’ll find Glen Affric Lodge, the jewel of Glen Affric Estate. The main house was built in the late 1800s on the loch’s edge. It sits on its own little headland with a smattering of Caledonian pine trees for company. With 180-degree views, the lodge undoubtedly has the best vantage point for taking in one of the most awe-inspiring panoramas that Scotland has to offer.

Glen Affric Lodge

glen affric lodge

The Main House

Completed in 1872, this Victorian house is a classic example of a Highland shooting lodge. It was modernised at its most recent purchase in 2008 and has seen several loving refurbishments and interior redesigns since.

Comfortably sleeping up to 16 guests; the main house comprises of a dining room, sitting room, whisky room, wine cellar, and cosy reading room.

The house was built to take in the raw beauty of the Glen Affric Estate. The windows are large and aplenty, allowing residents to even enjoy the great outdoors from the comfort of a plush arm chair next to a roaring fire.

It’s obvious that care has gone into the furnishing. The interior is stylish, colourful and purposefully reminiscent of the house’s Victorian past. Most notable is the vast variation of artwork and family pictures viewable throughout this Highland home. Some of the art is done by the lady of the house herself, but one of the best pieces of art is the reading room itself, with walls painted by famous artist Sir Edwin Landseer. Landseer was best known for his lion sculptures in Trafalgar Square and The Monarch of the Glen. Remarkably, the mix of old and new, and different styles works perfectly with the character of the house. It’s eccentric, warm, and welcoming. You could easily imagine making yourself at home there.

Guests are able to enjoy elaborate breakfasts, catered luncheons, and fine dining, all at the hands of the in-house chef. The menu can be set and agreed upon before arrival. The estate prides itself on sourcing as much as possible fresh and locally, often from the estate itself.


  • 10,000 acres
  • 7 double bedrooms
  • 1 twin room
  • 5 bathrooms
  • Kitchen with chef
  • Whisky room & wine cellar
  • Dining room
  • Reading room
  • Sitting room with views over the loch

The People

A small team will be on hand during any stay at the Glen Affric Estate. This generally includes a main host, as well as a chef, chauffeur, stalker and other support staff to ensure a pleasant stay. For the ultimate experience, James Middleton hosts on the estate. Welcoming guests, arranging activities and entertaining at dinner.

The Wider Glen Affric Estate

The Stable Cottage

The Stable Cottage sits across from the main house and shares the equally grand view of the estate. The cottage is attached as the name implies to the stables, but also to the equipment stores, grill room, and further buildings on the one side, and to the estate’s greenhouse on the other. The cottage is not available to be rented separately and is only available together with the house. It extends the guest list – as it houses two further double bedrooms and one twin room. All the bedrooms in the cottage are en-suite and luxuriously decorated. The cottage has its own kitchen and living room, so perfect for guests that may require more of their own space.


stable cottage

Boats, Buggies, and Ponies

Guests of the house will be able to enjoy multiple outdoor pursuits. A lot of activities are included with rental of the property and others at an extra expense with early booking. You can take to the water; rental of the house includes usage of various SUPs, sailing boats, fishing dinghies, canoes, and kayaks. Other outdoor pursuits include guided hiking, overland buggies, clay pigeon shooting, photography, deer stalking, mountain biking, or pony trekking.


glen affric estate

Bar & Grill

The pièce de résistance? Guests will be surprised and delighted by an evening in the Glen Affric Bar and Grill room. Adjacent to the Stable Cottage, this additional perk really raises the bar. It comes complete with a stocked bar, large dining table which seats 30 guests, and an Argentinian grill. The Grill Room provides an additional indoor space to escape to. It’s perfect for lunch after a shoot, or for hosting a larger dinner party during your stay. If you’ve got the weather with you, there is a large outside balcony begging for a summer barbecue and fruity cocktails.

Glen Affric Argentinian Grill

German Spa

2020 will see the completion of a German Spa on-site on the Glen Affric Estate. The spa will feature a gym, sauna, jacuzzi, yoga studio, and treatment rooms. At present, the estate already offers massages, hot waxes, and other spa treatments within the lodge.

More About Scotland's Most Beautiful Glen

The Caledonian Forest

A large part of Glen Affric is a National Nature Reserve run by Forestry and Land Scotland. The forests found in the glen are the remains of the ancient Caledonian Pine Forest that once blanketed most of Scotland. The forest is very varied here, but the most common trees found are Scots Pine, Birches, and Oaks. Glen Affric is at the heart of reforestation and regeneration in Scotland, with work going on to restore Rowan trees, Juniper, Hazel, and Aspen to the area. The landscape can be explored on foot, with guided hikes, or from the water. Guests at the estate have the opportunity to traverse the length of the loch by boat to a private beach and prime fishing spot.

Wildlife in the Glen

The valley is teeming with wildlife, and the eagle-eyed can spot otters, red squirrels, deer, pine martens, and several different birds of prey. Golden eagles, osprey, hen-harriers, and merlins have all been seen in the area. Find out more here.

Meet the Author: Meike Burgess

Having grown up travelling across the world I’ve developed an addiction to all things spice and to travel! When it was time to go to university I wandered off to Scotland for a new adventure and have not managed to leave yet!

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