Alladale Wilderness Reserve

Scotland, UK

Alladale Wilderness Reserve

Scotland, UK

‘Discover a luxury escape in the heart of the mountains renowned for its wildlife conservation. Experience the Scottish Highlands like nowhere else.’

Scroll down to see the ultimate top tip when staying here and to explore the nature-based activities on offer. Click on the leaf-rating tab to reveal this eco hotel’s efforts across Energy, Waste, Biodiversity, etc.


  • Highlights

    From £150 pp per night, accommodating groups from 2 to 26 guests.

    Experience one of the UK’s largest rewilding & nature restoration projects.

    23,000 acres of dramatic mountains, forests, rivers, & lochs to explore.

    Go wild swimming, take a hike, or connect to the land with wild foraging.

    A celebration of sustainable, local, seasonal & high-quality ingredients.

     The inviting log fire, generous armchairs, libraries, and snooker room.

    The breathtaking scenery and remoteness make a memorable stay.

  • Top Tip

    ‘Don’t skip the 4 x 4 guided tour. With a knowledgeable ranger at hand, it’s the best chance to meet the local wildlife.’

    Disconnect To Reconnect

    Take a hike through the old-growth Caledonian forest, embark on a leisurely stroll to the historic Croik Church, or climb Alladale’s middle ridge for views that’ll take your breath away.

    Fancy hunting for wild mushrooms? Alongside an expert foraging guide, take the chance to slow down, and simply reconnect with nature.

    Explore the Scottish Highlands on two wheels, with 15+ well-maintained mountain bikes, and 6 e-bikes available for guests to rent. Alladale boasts miles of track and wild terrain for the perfect biking adventure.

  • Rooms

    Choose from either Alladale House, a refurbished Victorian home-from-home, or one of the two more remote lodges: Ghillie’s Rest or Eagle’s Crag. In both, you’ll find a charming and cosy retreat perfect for any business or family gathering. Also available for exclusive use, Alladale welcomes groups of between 2 and 26 guests

    A therapist to offer relaxing treatments in the comfort of your own room.

    Warm throws and organic toiletries made from wild ingredients.

    The free use of the billiards room, sauna, and gym in the main house.

    Refurbished by Laura Ashley, with a grand but traditional Scottish feel.

  • Meet Your Host

    Meet Paul Lister, custodian and founder of Alladale Wilderness Reserve in Scotland. Paul also founded The European Nature Trust in 2000, which is dedicated to the protection and restoration of nature across Europe.

    “During my travels, I’ve seen many inspiring conservation and rewilding projects around the world. These trips inspired my vision for the land at Alladale because I know the impact of restoring natural processes, habitats, and native species.

    The landscape today is very different from what it was when I first bought Alladale. Guests will see the evidence of lots of restorative work, more trees, and fewer deer. Alladale provides visitors with 23,000 acres of rugged beauty, where the balance of nature is slowly returning.

    Read the full interview with Behind the Green here. 

  • Need-to-Know

    As you might expect Alladale closes for the winter season. It reopens on the 1st of April and is available for the festive period until the 6th of January.

    A stay includes all soft drinks, meals by Alladale’s private chef, free use of mountain bikes, and a thrilling 4×4 tour of the nature reserve.

    Due to its remote location there’s no mobile signal here, hooray! With this in mind, plan ahead packing any medication and personal extras, as there’s no popping down to the shop.

    Although Alladale has its own micro-climate, with above average (for Scotland) sunny, clear, and rain-free days, be sure to pack for all seasons, whichever time of year you choose to visit.

  • Location

    Set against the country’s most northerly ancient Caledonian pine forest, Alladale is the ultimate getaway. Alladale Wilderness Reserve is 23,000 acres of dramatic mountains, glens, rivers, and lochs. An hour’s drive north of Inverness, it’s located in a remote part of the Scottish Highlands in an area called Ardgay.

    How to get there

    As one of the most remote locations in Scotland, the journey to Alladale is an experience in itself. Driving from Edinburgh, you’ll pass through much of Scotland’s beauty. There are also trains running from Edinburgh. The average journey time from Edinburgh (Waverley) to Ardgay is 6 hours 57 minutes. If you must fly, Alladale is approx. 1.5 hours from Inverness Airport.


Leaf Rating

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2-leaf status

  • Design
    The most sustainable design is restoration before construction. And at Alladale the main house has been restored from when it was originally built in 1887. Deanich Lodge has also been restored. There...

    are two further cottages which were both built in 2010, using local stonework which comes from Alladale reserve. All wood materials were sourced from sustainable sources in Scotland.

  • Energy
    Alladale is 100% self-sufficient, using only clean energy. All made possible with its on-site Micro Hydro scheme, which produces up to 90KW. This covers all Alladale's electricity needs...

    and any excess production is sold back into the national power grid. A Micro Hydro system uses a turbine, pump, or waterwheel to transform the energy of flowing water into rotational energy, which is converted into electricity.

  • Waste
    Alladale exercises zero tolerance to single use plastic. Compost is created on-site from garden waste, and vegetable food waste is given to Alladale's hens. There is an extensive set...

    up and well-trained team for the sorting and recycling of any solid waste. All waste water goes through Alladale's septic tanks and on-site sewage treatment facilities before being returned to the rivers.

  • Community
    Alladale plays host to HOWL (highland outdoor wilderness learning) which is an environmental journey that blends ecology, outdoor learning and expeditions for local, young people. Since the...

    programme started in 2007, thousands of children have taken part. It is designed to improve their understanding of the natural world, as well learn key life skills. In terms of the team behind the scenes, Alladale provides clothing, quality, comfortable staff accommodation to those living on-site. And every year the staff get to enjoy an annual team building retreat.

  • Biodiversity
    Alladale has planted over 1 million native tree species on-site to date. They've reintroduced the threatened red squirrel, and play host to a critical Wildcat captive breeding program. The hard-working and...

    passionate team at Alladale have also restored 12ha of peatland, and protect the rivers with conservation riparian work. Reducing red deer numbers is a costly but critical part of the conservation work here. The reserve aims to keep deer numbers down to below five per square kilometre, allowing for natural tree regeneration. Alladale ceased commercial stalking to create a blueprint for other estates to replace this damaging revenue stream with nature-based tourism. Alladale is one of a number of projects which make up TENT - The European Nature Trust.

  • Food & Drink
    Local and seasonal is what inspires the menu at Alladale. Wines are only sourced from European countries, and are from organic vineyards. You'll not find pork, beef, chicken, or farmed salmon served here...

    as they are considered unsustainable and environmentally damaging foods. Food miles are significantly reduced by Alladale serving venison sourced from the reserve, as well as trout and plenty of vegetables from the aquaponic garden. The Hydro-powered Aquaponics Garden at Alladale was launched in Summer 2020. It’s a vegetable and herb production system, powered by the hydro scheme, which enables the production of healthy, fresh, organic, low-carbon food for guests with zero food miles. When the chef serves fish other than trout it is from local sources individuals and not from global fisheries.

  • Water
    Alladale is 100% self-sufficient in terms of water. Due to its location it is not connected to the national supply. Instead there are various boreholes on-site. Tap water is cleaned using...

    effective UV filters.

  • Housekeeping
    Guest toiletries are sourced from a local highland soap company. Although organic, and handmade they are provided in plastic bottles :( The housekeeping team proudly use...

    non-toxic, biodegradable cleaning products by Method UK.

  • Engaging Guests
    All guests are encouraged to connect with the natural surroundings through a myriad of activities including wildlife spotting and foraging. Creating a sense of space and time for...

    guests to create a deep personal connection with nature and a sense of place, is at the heart of Alladale's mission. Through the conservation and educational projects on-site, guests are informed and enlightened about humanity's impact on nature, and the solutions to reverse the damage already done.


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    "Unique, beautiful and peaceful... "

    "Like others, I watched the videos of Alladale and viewed the photos at the website. But the sheer beauty of the reserve totally took me by surprise. Waking up each morning surrounded by such a stunning, wild landscape was a gift which kept giving."

    Brenda Hutchings, Tripadvisor

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    "Utterly breathtaking... "

    "We stayed at Ghillie's Rest towards the end of March 2022, a postponed trip that had originally been planned for my 50th. It was well worth the wait and surpassed all our expectations. The scenery was stunning, with fantastic walks and incredible views."

    Kirsten P, Tripadvisor

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    "Nothing compares to Alladale... "

    "My husband and I recently got married here and it was a completely unforgettable experience! Not only was the lodging well stocked and equipped with anything we needed, but the kindness of the staff at Alladale also took it to another level."

    Lisa F, Tripadvisor

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    "All is well at Alladale... "

    "The Alladale Wilderness Reserve is a first class getaway from it all destination. The staff and rangers are professional and all contribute to making the whole experience even more enjoyable. Staying in Gillies Rest was first class. All facilities were excellent."

    Geoff M, Tripadvisor


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