Oystercatchers is a charming self catering cottage with grounds running down to the shore of Loch Fleet, feeling as though it is on the edge of the wilds yet just three miles from Dornoch, one of Scotland’s prettiest villages. Guests often say that time slips away just watching the light changing on the hills that fill the view across the loch.

The cosy kitchen with its open fire at the heart of the cottage provides a welcoming refuge from any “weather” that happens to blow by (it occasionally does in this part of Scotland) and opens into the large, sunny sitting room with sofas drawing you to simply sit back and drink in the view. But this lovely corner of Sutherland isn’t just the ideal place to relax and soak up the peace and quiet of idyllic scenery. The landscape offers a host of opportunities to launch into activity and adventure; from climbing hills or mountain biking to kite surfing or pony trekking, nature has provided the perfect invitation for you to be as active as you could possibly wish. It’s all so close to home.

And the natural wonders are right on your doorstep. Oystercatchers sits within the Loch Fleet national nature reserve; an amazing collection of habitats - sand dunes, rocky shores, pebbly shores, sandy shores, mudflats, salt marsh, woodland, heath – each attracting remarkable wildlife at all times of the year. In spring and summer you can sit in the garden and watch ospreys fishing over the loch. In winter thousands of geese form patterns across the wide skies. Every day a large clan of seals beach themselves on the sandbanks to snooze away the low tide hours, as intrigued by you as you’ll be by them. Even if nature isn’t your thing, the ever changing tides and the fluctuating soundtrack of birdsong that they bring provides a very lovely backdrop to any holiday.

Walking down the mown path from the large enclosed garden through the pasture in front of the house brings you to the loch shore from where it is a short, beachcombing stroll to the open sea, sandy beaches and sand dunes running to Dornoch; you may even see dolphins cruising by.

Dornoch is unique. Not many villages can boast miles of sandy beaches, a cathedral, a bishop’s castle, an array of cafes and restaurants and, during the summer months, a pipe band parading on the main street every Saturday evening to provide a truly Highland welcome. But Dornoch isn’t just picture-postcard perfect, it’s also practical for shopping and supplying the things that you find yourself needing on holiday.

And Dornoch has a world famous golf course, invariably ranked as one of the finest in Great Britain and a place of pilgrimage for golfers from across the Atlantic. It is a wonderful course but it isn’t the only one. For the visiting golfer, Dornoch’s two courses combined with those at Brora, Tain and Golspie make up a set of seaside golfing gems all of which are very visitor friendly and all within ten to twenty minutes drive from Oystercatchers.

Or if your life is already overloaded with activity you could just stay at home. Lie on the lawn and read (there are loads of books). Play in the garden. Skim stones. Beachcomb for treasures. Look out for marauding Vikings. Toast your toes in front of the open fire, talk about the day’s adventures and plan tomorrow’s.

Accommodation & Facilities

Oystercatchers is a welcoming mix of old and new that we hope will feel like a home from home.

Access is via two steps to the front door.

Ground floor

Kitchen. With open fire (wood and coal provided), breakfast table, electric oven and hob, fridge/freezer, microwave, coffee maker, toaster, food mixer, washing machine, extensive collection of cookware, radio.

Sitting/dining room. Large, bright, triple aspect room with views of loch and hills. Dining table, comfortable lounge area, tv, dvd player, cd player, library of books, cds, dvds and collection of toys and games.

Twin bedroom. View towards loch.

Shower room with wc. Seat in shower, tumble dryer.

First floor

Double bedroom. View across fields.Twin bedroom. View across fields.Bathroom with wc.

The house is heated throughout with storage heaters and convection heaters. All electricity use is included in the tariff as is wood and coal for the fire.

All duvets, pillows and bed linen are supplied as are bath towels, hand towels and flannels. No beach towels are supplied.

There is a stair gate at the top of the stairs, a travel cot, high chair and bed side (please let us know if you need the baby stuff).

Garden furniture and picnic plates are there to make the most of.

The wood store is a dry and secure lock-up for bikes or any other equipment.

The large garden is enclosed by a dry stone wall and a fence. It is mostly lawn with flat bits for ball games, a slope for rolling down and a tall tree stump perch for spotting invaders.

There is flat, firm parking for 3 or more cars and there are no bumpy tracks to negotiate on the way to the cottage.

There are no midges.

And sadly we can’t accept dogs as there is frequently livestock in the neighbouring fields.


  • Charming country cottage
  • Sleeps 6. 2 twins. 1 double.
  • Open fire in cosy kitchen
  • Fabulous, peaceful location
  • Wonderful views of loch and hills
  • Abundant wildlife on the doorstep
  • In national nature reserve/SSSI
  • Grounds running to the loch shore
  • Large enclosed garden
  • Easily accessed
  • Ample parking
  • Minutes walk from beach
  • Minutes drive from Dornoch
  • Convenient for eating out and shopping
  • Well equipped yet full of character
  • Secure storage for bikes and kit
  • Ideal as touring or sporting base
  • 50 minutes drive from Inverness

A refundable security deposit of £50 will be required as part of your final balance.

Sorry but no smoking in the cottage.

Arrival time 4pm, departure time 10am.

Short Breaks available outwith summer season. Please enquire for further details.

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Tariff & Prices

Prices shown are standard prices. Late availability or other discounts may apply at certain times and are not shown on this table. To check Availability and Prices, with any applied discounts, click on Check Now button and choose your desired dates with number of guests staying. The pop up box will provide a final price quotation.

Dates Price for 7 nights from Short break prices from
10 Jun 2017 - 07 Jul 2017 £650.00
08 Jul 2017 - 08 Sep 2017 £750.00
09 Sep 2017 - 16 Sep 2017 £650.00
17 Sep 2017 - 29 Sep 2017 £550.00
30 Sep 2017 - 27 Oct 2017 £500.00
28 Oct 2017 - 22 Dec 2017 £400.00
23 Dec 2017 - 05 Jan 2018 £650.00

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Location & Directions

Oystercatchers is situated on the east coast of Sutherland on the south shore of Loch Fleet, 3 miles north of Dornoch, 50 minutes drive north of Inverness, 1 hour from Inverness airport. Its address in Skelbo will be of little use as Skelbo consists of 4 houses and a ruined castle and appears on no signposts.

Approaching from the south you follow the A9 past the first right hand turning to Dornoch continuing for a further one and a half miles until at a left hand bend at the top of a long straight hill you pass a second sharp right turn signposted to Dornoch. Slow down and indicate right as you’ll need to take the unsignposted right turn 100 metres further on opposite the Trentham Hotel, (beware of oncoming traffic on this A9 bend).

Stay on this single track road for 1.5 miles until after coming down a small hill through trees you give way at a crossroads. Oystercatchers is facing you on the left with a timber garage and a prominent tree stump in the garden. Park in front of the garage.

Or, if visiting Dornoch prior to arrival, turn left at the east end of the main street, (Castle Street), and keep going for 3 miles, passing a turning to Embo and heading down hill towards Loch Fleet before turning ninety degrees left and reaching a crossroads – Oystercatchers is the house on your right.

Approaching from the north you follow the A9 across The Mound at the head of Loch Fleet, (4 miles south of Golspie), and after half a mile on a right hand bend take the left turn signposted “Visit Embo and Dornoch, Scenic Coastal Route”. Continue for 2 miles along the shore of Loch Fleet and pass the ruins of Skelbo Castle after which the road begins to rise away from the shore. Half a mile further on you will see Oystercatchers on your left on the edge of the dunes with a timber garage and a prominent tree stump in the garden.

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Independent reviews


Guest Comments

The location, views and walks from the property. The peace and tranquility. The birds and wildlife we saw, even from inside the cottage. The closeness of Dornoch and Dunrobin Castle.
Debbie, Wigan : 16th August, 2016

Location of property was perfect. Originally from Dornoch and love Loch Fleet. Angie was great. Good communication, before, during and after stay.
Amy, Stirling : 16th July, 2016

The Cottage was as described, ideally located by Loch Fleet. There was a lovely walk down to the side of the loch and out through the dunes to sea with lots of birdlife. The area around the cottage is beautiful and it's location makes it an ideal base for touring Northern Scotland.
Keith, Southport : 18th June, 2016

We liked - The excellent situation and the comfort of the property.
David, Banchory : 4th July, 2015

Beautiful location with stunning walks on the doorstep. The cottage was very tastefully decorated and provided everything we required. Thoroughly recommended!
Swanson, Brighton : 3rd February, 2015

Very cosy with exceedingly tasteful furnishings throughout the property. The living/dining area should come in for special mention. The large windows offer excellent views down to to the Loch. Fantastic area for walking and bird watching and a wealth of Pictish history close at hand.
Dugald, Coupar : 27th October, 2014

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Guest Rating
7 review scores

Availability & Prices


Property Information

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