We stayed at the Garalapin House when we visited Scotland in Oct 2013. This was our first visit to Scotland, and the Isle of Skye was on our must-see list, so we did some research and found Garalapin House.
We hoped that they would be open during our stay and that we weren't going to run into availability issues. Everything was smooth from the get-go. I think we booked a month out or so. It was off-season. I'm not sure how far ahead you should book for in-season dates. Note also that we are a family of four and we found it pretty difficult to find a B&B to accomodate 4 people in one room. I guess it's weird, it's normally a 1 or 2 person deal? First time B&Bing. I guess first lesson learned.
Email communication was fast and pleasurable, Sam was quick to reply and answer questions, as well as suggest places to see and things to look forward to.
Directions given were perfect, GPS coords may have been a better way though. It is out a bit from Portree, about 5-10 min drive. I wouldn't do the walk with kids but it would have been nice to walk it like the many walkers who do that thing regularly in Scotland.
Also note Portree was really nice, I highly recommend it, and definitely hit up the tourist info center, they were well equipped and we even did some unexpected shopping there. Really nice place. But I digress...
Sam and Clive have a wonderful home, and wonderful kids. Our boys were the same age as their boys, and they immediately hit it off. Our boys didn't listen at all to our instructions though, and just strolled into Sam and Clive's section of the house like it was no big deal, but Sam has absolutely no problem with it, and for that we were thankful. I've imagined running a B&B myself, and that is one thing you're just going to have to be okay with, you know? Kids...just walking into your house.
Clive was out on business during our 2 night stay, I'm sure he's a wondeful guy to get to know, but I suppose we'll just have to go back sometime and catch him then. :)
The house was great, very great location, fantastic sunrise breakfast window, cute little decor all around, some even handcrafted by Clive (and Sam maybe?) All that and still kid-proof, with bunkbeds. They get it. They had some DVD's and a tv in our room, several kids movies that entertained the boys while we plotted our plans for visits while in Skye.
Speaking of planning visits...we had a plan, and then we read the Garalapin's welcome book. It basically shattered all the plans we had because there were such great recommendations and it really set us straight. I think next time we go back it will have to be for 4-6 days to really take it all in. Just an amazing amount of stuff to do for such a small part of Scotland. 2 days was a tease.
Oh yeah...the breakfast! I tried Haggis and Black Pudding for the first time and they were great! I know my Dad would have loved the black pudding because he loves peppering everything til it's black. A great breakfast to start the days in Skye. Scottish breakfast, yogurt, cereal, juice, I think the boys had waffles. I don't remember, but they were happy, and they ate, and that's all that mattered. And then they fed the chickens.
The chickens that laid our eggs were also presen, and the boys loved feeding them. I knew one of my boys would enjoy that a lot, he's into animals, but my oldest liked it even more. A great free attraction at the Garalapin House.
I know this review was all over hte place, but I hope I've validated why I gave it 5 stars. Thank you Sam and Clive for opening your home and showing us your hospitality. We'll never forget it. Best B&B experience. You've set a bar, and it is very high.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Garalapin House is a warm and welcoming B&B located in the small crofting township of Woodend, Portree. Surrounded by beautiful scenery and wildlife and home to our chickens. Offering two well equipped and furnished rooms; a Family Room (2 adults, 2 children) with Private Bathroom and a Double Room Ensuite. A relaxing location & only 5 minutes drive from Portree. Child friendly facilities and play area. Each room has Flatscreen TV,DVD Player & Free WIFI. ... more less
- Also Known As:
- Garalapin House Bed & Breakfast Isle Of Skye, Scotland - Portree