Our lovely cottage is situated on the west coast of the small Isle of Colonsay in the Inner Hebrides. A small, white rendered cottage situated on the coastline with magnificent views of the setting sun.
We are Adam Ali and daughter Sorrel Eden, owning this cottage has been a dream come true for us; it is very much a loved family home and we hope that you will come to love the island and our house as much as we do.
If you would like to enquire about availability please call or mail Adam and Ali at home in Dorset
Downstairs you will find a large double bedroom with a king size bed. A wardrobe and large drawers will give you plenty of storage space. There is a comfortable armchair if you need to get away from everyone else and there are views to the sea and garden.
The bathroom is down stairs with shower over the bath and a separate toilet with washing machine and dryer.
The kitchen dining room has a hand built wooden painted units and a butlers sink. The oak plate rack is great for showing off my lovely china, some might say mismatched, but I call it my harlequin set! Collected over many years with loved teacups from great Aunt Betty and items collected from auctions and flea markets.
Practicalities like a new fridge/ freezer, cooker and microwave are recently installed.
There is a large oak table and 6 wooden chairs.
A restful sitting room with a large L shaped sofa and two armchairs. A multi-fuel stove makes the room cosy even in the coldest of nights. This room has a huge glass wrap around window giving you panoramic views to the sea as the sun sets.
Up the steep stairs you will find two bedrooms, one with a double bed and one with twin singles. Both rooms have a small wardrobe and drawers, and most importantly views of the sea.
Ali’s job is as a landscape designer and so her garden at Garta is a holiday labour of love, influenced by Beth Chatto and Derek Jarman a little more is added every year...including a growing herb bed which you are free to plunder. There is a comfortable set of timber garden furniture and the fenced garden makes it great for dogs and children.
Garta has oil-fired central heating making the cottage perfect for all year round holidays. The price of the oil is included in your rental. The oil boiler also heats the water and there is an electric immersion for days when you need lots of baths! Electricity is also included in the price
Bedding, we have lovely feather pillows and duvets, and good quality white cotton bedding, the beds will already be made up for your arrival by our wonderful housekeeper Rhona. The linen and towels are included in the price.
The coalbunker will be filled with anthracite for the stove and there will be some kindling and fire starters for your use, again all included in the price.
One thing to note....the stairs in the cottage are wooden, very steep and uneven, for this reason we do not take children 5 or under or the elderly or infirm.
Please write in the visitors book and in the thought for the day book, we love to hear you....and we also love a photograph, I am making an album of all our guests so lease send me something on your return.
When we bought Garta Cottage some of our friends were horrified....’its so far away’ they cried.....’yes’ we said ‘that’s the point’
We love the journey onto the island, it is an adventure in itself. The drive though the Scottish highlands is beyond breathtaking, some days the lochs are so still they could be made of glass and on some days, after the rain, alongside each winding road springs a crashing waterfall.
You will need to end your drive at the port of Oban, a good little town with all the amenities you need and where you can buy anything you have forgotten! It is always worth popping onto the quay to pick up some freshly caught seafood from the open-air café.
Then onto the Calmac ferry; the port is easily negotiated, just follow the signs to the ferry terminal and you will be directed into the right queue. Do make sure you are there an hour before departure. In our experience the ferry leaves on time
After a voyage of about two and a half hours you will arrive on the quay side at Scalasaig, the bustling heart of Colonsay....only now will you realise just how far you have come.
I suggest you revel in the melee of the disembarkation, lots of islanders coming and going and of course every item needed by the islanders will also be arriving on the ferry from loo roll to fencing posts!
This is the most people you will see all week...unless you join the Ceilidh on Saturday night!
Drive off the ferry and straight on, the island has one circular road...a bit like the M25 only with more cows and sheep!
Follow the road for about 2 miles, past the hotel and in a moment the sea will appear on the horizon ahead continue on, the sea should be on your left, or you are going the wrong way round!
On your right you will see two white cottages set back from the road....Garta is the one on the left.
If you are travelling without a car, the train journey takes you through the same beautiful landscape. From south England you need to get to Glasgow where you can pick up a transfer to Oban, the train will deposit you about 10 meters from the ferry so its not far to walk.
It is possible to fly onto Colonsay, www.hebrideanair.co.uk operates a service twice a week from Oban, the air terminal on Colonsay is the small timber building next to the beach about a mile from the cottage!
Welcome to Garta cottage, the door is open...in fact it is never locked!
Price List for Garta Cottage 2019
The rental price for garta cottage includes lovely white bed linen, bath and hand towels. Please bring your own beach towels.
We now include all the utilities (electricity and oil) and a big bag of solid fuel in the rental price and we no longer take a security deposit
We also provide toilet rolls and cleaning items for your use and a few of tea towels.
Change over takes place on a Friday.
November, December, Jan, Feb and March.......£570 per week
April, May and June...........£730 per week
July and August.........£990 per week
September and October.......£730 per week
Christmas and New Year weeks which are £880 per week
We ask for 50% of the fee on booking and the remaining 50% a month before your holiday begins.
STAIRS……Please note that the stairs at Garta are very steep and the cottage is not suitable for children under the age of 5, the elderly or infirm.
DOGS…….We are happy for you to bring well behaved dogs- we charge £25 per dog, to a maximum of two. Dogs are not allowed in the bedrooms.
We hope you don’t mind this small rule, we bring our terriers and they love the beach so much they seem to bring half of it back into the house, so we try to keep them off the furniture!
Please make a note of small breakages so that we can replace items for the next guest we don’t charge for these as accidents happen! (for larger breakages we may ask for a contribution)
We are sure you will leave our lovely cottage clean and tidy on your departure and please note that the next guest will be arriving on the same ferry on which you leave, so we do ask that you vacate the cottage 5 hours before your ferry departure so that Rhona has time to make the cottage beautiful for the next guest
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Letting the children ride their bikes to the shop without grown ups...they go off exploring alone....the single track roads mean cars drive slowly and the only danger is sheep!
Collecting driftwood and making camp fires to cook bacon butties on the beach.....you will find a scruffy frying pan under the stairs especially for beach adventure cooking
Messing about in Machrins bay where at high tide the whole bay is only waist deep.
Fishing in rock pools and off the pier, Mackrel is the usual catch, although Adam has done quite well with a colapsable lobster pot...lots of crabs but no lobster!
Climbing Mountans.....ok the highest peak is only 469 feet but when you are 4 that IS a mountain! The mountains on Colonsay are called Mcfies and if you are feeling energetic you can ‘bag’ all the Mcfies which means climbing all 12 peaks in the shortest time....just under 3 hours is the top time....good luck!
Reading books....yes really..... once guests get over the no telly issue, a world of opportunities opens up.
Go seal spotting...and some times even otter spotting.
Spending hours collecting scallop shells ...known in our family as mermaids bras!
Eating cake at Colonsay House gardens
Enjoy the fact that there is no phone signal....no television.......no internet connection in the cottage!
There are miles of unspoilt beach and cliff walks...we often have the beach to ourselves,
Just enough folks to be sociable but not enough to make it crowded....here’s a good comparison.......
Colonsay’s land mass is 15 square miles and has a permanent population of about 120 people.
Guernsay’s land mass is 30 square miles, so twice the size, and has a population of......wait for it......65 thousand..................QED
Spotting corncrakes, choughs and golden eagles you can see both with ease and it is said that you can spot over 50 species of bird if you sit at any point on the island with a pair of binoculars.
The wildest golf course we have ever played....dodging the sheep, cows and rabbit holes whilst coping with the gusting on shore wind requires skill and patience!
Dancing at the Celidh on a Saturday night to live Scottish music....quiz night at the hotel (we never ever win!) .....food, music, art and rugby festivals happening all year.
This island is simply the most beautiful, calm and restful place we know. Our visits seem to recharge us, we feel our worries melt away on the island...could be the whisky, could be the landscape, who knows
The easy way on and off the island by ferry
Book Supper in the hotel or find another cottage if ours is full.
Pre order your grocery shopping by email to be left for you in the cottage. It’s the only grocery store on the island, Keir and Grace are friendly and helpfull people with a well stocked shop!
For flying on and off the island...a treat in itself
These chaps designed and built the timber extension...good aren’t they!
The Colonsay Service Point
Behind the village hall is the hub, where you can get information on the island.
www.colonsay.org and search amenities and then service point.