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Local tips: Things to do in Sutherland - Alan & Yvonne, Ceol Mor Highland Lodges

Alan & Yvonne West live in the Kyle of Sutherland, Northern Highlands of Scotland where they have luxury holiday lodges. They kindly agreed to share their favourite things to do in Sutherland including watching pine martens, sunsets and, most importantly, where to get “fabulous” cake.

Ceol Mor Lodges Sunset

About us

We are Ceol Mor Highland Lodges, a pair of premium lodges that sleep up to 4. We are in a super peaceful location overlooking the flood plains of the Kyle of Sutherland river, bang in the middle of the NC500. We enjoy exploring our beautiful scenery, loving the wildlife and amazing fresh air. We get out into our area as often as we can to enjoy all aspects of the nature. Alan is a keen amateur photographer and videographer. Yvonne just loves to find a new venue for an afternoon tea. Yvonne’s mother lives with us and we have two old Bengal cats that are just like teddy bears in their dotage.

Alan and Yvonne Ceol Mor Lodges

How long have you lived here?

We have lived here since October 2020 – well, Alan started living here and Yvonne followed in July 2021. We used to live in Sussex (although Yvonne originates from the North East coast of Scotland) and during COVID several events merged to drive us into a new life 650 miles away up here in the Northern Highlands.

Favourite beach in Sutherland

Sandwood Bay Sutherland - turquoise sea surrounded by white sand and cliffs

Sandwood Bay is our favourite beach. This is an enormous stretch of golden sand bordered by cliffs and a sea stack. Behind are amazing dunes and freshwater loch. We love this as it is a really decent walk (4.5 miles) and it is truly deserted when you get there and the rewarding view as you come over the hill looking over the whole vista is stunning.

Best walk in your area

Our favourite walk in the area is a circuit by Cassley Falls (aka Achness Falls). This is just a short walk (up to an hour) but it changes so much with the seasons and the weather. The river is a spate river and can be raging or very gentle. You can see frozen falls in the winter and jumping salmon in the summer. There’s a mix of little paths and open space and we love it.

Most special time of year in Sutherland

Our favourite time of year are the shoulder seasons – ie late spring and early autumn. The colours at these times seem so vivid after a dark winter and the amazing golds and bronzes are awesome in the autumn. There’s no midges and a sunny day at this time is pretty difficult to beat.

The one thing every tourist should do when visiting Sutherland

We recommend a stop at Loch Fleet Nature Reserve to see the seals at mid to low tide all stretched out on the sandbanks. It is an easy stop to add into an itinerary and our guests always love it.

Your best wildlife encounter in your area

pine marten sat on gravel

We have Pine Martens visit us every night and we love watching them from our living room window. They are so playful and very intelligent animals. It’s fun to watch them when they tease our cats through the window – taunting them.

Favourite road in Sutherland

The Drumbeg loop is our favourite road. It’s a mini road trip really and covers mountains, white sand beaches, the ocean, great waterfalls, wildlife, and ancient history. We often recommend it for our guests as it gives such a glimpse of all the wonderful scenery that can be found near us.

Most loved view

The sunrise and sunset right from our lodges are our favourite views. They just cannot be beaten.

Favourite place to eat and drink

The Pier in Lairg is our favourite place to eat or have a snack and drink. It is inexpensive and good quality. The cakes are fabulous.

Holiday Scottish Highlands & Islands says…

Thanks to Alan and Yvonne for some really useful tips for things to do in Sutherland and we’re always happy when these include cake recommendations. Having spent a few weeks on holiday in the Drumbeg area, we agree that Sutherland is well worth exploring. We need to go back!

Find out more about Ceol Mor Highland Lodges

Ceol Mor Lodges with tulips in foreground

If you’re interested in exploring the Sutherland area, take a look at the Ceol Mor Highland Lodges website. The lodges look amazing and check out the views you can enjoy from the decking.

Want more local tips for things to do in Sutherland?

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