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“Clean, welcoming, great location”

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The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul
Reviewed November 21, 2013

Stayed for a single night whilst doing a mountain bike tour of the Cairngorms. Great for us as it was right on the route.

The new owners had only been in a short while but were really helpful, had secure bike storage, and sounded like they had big plans for the place.

A few things that were missing but on their to-do list - outside tap for washing bikes, power sockets in the rooms for charging phones, improved shower facilities but these are really just "nice to haves".

Also would be good if they could offer breakfast, but I understand this is to do with having to get a food hygiene certificate first.

Anyway, would go back for a return visit and would recommend to anyone.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled with friends
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Review collected in partnership with this hotel
1  Thank antcooper
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SmugglersHostel, Manager at The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul, responded to this reviewResponded November 22, 2013

Thanks so much for your review of The Smugglers Hostel. We're glad you found the Smugglers to be in such a great location for mountain biking! You'll have to visit again and blast the new BikeGlenlivet MTB trails - great fun!

Since your stay in May Ant, we have installed an outside tap and hose for washing down muddy bikes and now offer a hearty breakfast to all guests including cereals, muesli, fruit, breads, eggs, fresh orange juice, teas, coffee and hot chocolate!

We always listen to the suggestions we receive from our guests and those items you mentioned that were on our to-do-list will be ticked off this winter as the Hostel will undergo some exciting renovation work! We are installing a new eco-friendly biomass heating system and charging points in all the bedrooms and refurbishing the shower and toilet areas, allowing greater privacy and doubling the number of shower units available.

We would love to welcome you back next time your in Tomintoul!

Take Care,

The Smugglers Team

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67 - 73 of 86 reviews

Reviewed November 2, 2013

Stayed at The Smugglers Hostel whilst visiting the Glenlivet MTB Trails. What a fantastic base!! Friendly, knowledgeable and helpful staff. Great facilities for bikers (secure storage, bike wash facility, tools etc), hot showers, comfy beds and a fantastic wee common room. Free wifi is a bonus. Breakfast was superb. Has the ideal atmosphere for friends MTB trip but can't wait to come back with the family. Loved it!!

Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
1  Thank DMMiller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SmugglersHostel, Manager at The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul, responded to this reviewResponded November 5, 2013

It was great to have you and the guys Donald so it's fantastic to hear you enjoyed your stay at The Smugglers - thanks for the review! We will have a dedicated family room next year so please do come back with the family, it will be a pleasure to have you!

Take Care,

The Smugglers Team

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Reviewed October 27, 2013

This is my favourite hostel in the Cairngorms! I was already a bit sad last year when the staff from the SYHA said that they might have to close it. Thankfully it's under new ownership and even better now.
Myrddin welcomed us on Saturday evening and all the staff are very friendly. The hostel is cosy and clean.
I visited here for the last five years on my motorbike tours 'round Scotland and this year twice in the same week.
Hope to be back next year!

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled solo
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1  Thank Ulrike M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SmugglersHostel, Manager at The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul, responded to this reviewResponded October 31, 2013

Hi Ulrike, thanks!! We loved having you and look forward to seeing you again in 2014! You're going to be impressed when you next visit next with the renovations we are planning!

Here's to the next five years!

The Smugglers Team

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Reviewed October 22, 2013

What a great place! Great facilities and very comfy. 10 of us rode up for the motorcycle convention and the staff were waiting for us to show us the ropes. Can't really think how they could make this place any better... Great showers, excellent kitchen. We had the place to ourselves but it would have made no difference to our stay if we were sharing as the place is big enough for everyone to enjoy. We had a great stay and were very well looked after. Will be back for sure...

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank BlackWindies
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SmugglersHostel, Manager at The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul, responded to this reviewResponded October 23, 2013

Thanks for your great review of The Smugglers Hostel Alan! It was a pleasure to have you! We hear that the Motorcycle Convention is set to be another great event for 2014 so you will have to visit us again then, if not before!

Take care,

The Smugglers Team

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Reviewed October 22, 2013

I stayed here with a bunch of friends in August whilst cycling round the Cairngorms, this was our third day of hard cycling and it was a real pleasure to find such an inviting and friendly place. The staff were very friendly and helpful, the kitchen area was well equipped and very clean with a comfortable sitting area to relax in. The rooms were also clean and well decorated. Plenty of hot water in the excellent showers. The facilities for the bikes was also excellent with a shed to secure the bikes in and a shed with repair /maintenance tools as well as oils and lubricants , there was also a wash area for the bikes and a drying line to hang our wet gear up. The smugglers hostel really did tick all the right boxes for us and i would recommend it to anyone wishing a stay in this area

  • Stayed: August 2013, traveled with friends
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Thank Paul M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SmugglersHostel, Manager at The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul, responded to this reviewResponded October 23, 2013

Hi Paul, many thanks for your excellent rating! We're really happy that The Smugglers ticked all the boxes for you. We all hope you enjoyed the rest of your cycling trip around the Cairngorms - the scenery is spectacular!

Hope to see you back next year so we can show you the renovations that we are making this winter.

Haste ye back!

The Smugglers Team

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Reviewed October 21, 2013

We have just spent two nights at the Smugglers. We were welcomed on Saturday night by Simon who gave us a tour of the hostel and, after we were settled in, helped us plan our next day's hiking and even lent us a map and a book of walks. The kitchen area was huge, clean and convenient and there was lots of seating in the common area as well as books and local information including a daily updated weather forecast.

We stayed in a six-bed dorm which had three comfortable sets of bunk-beds with warm, clean bedding and a little leaflet introduction to the hostel. In the morning we had some of the breakfast buffet which was a huge spread and a bargain at £4 with fresh orange juice and eggs. We got good recommendations for local food in the evening and were able to use the wifi with no problems throughout our stay at no extra charge.

Checkout was very quick and easy in the morning. Thoroughly recommend this hostel to anyone visiting the Highlands, it's a great jumping-off point for some beautiful Highland hikes.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
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Thank Alex M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SmugglersHostel, Manager at The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul, responded to this reviewResponded October 22, 2013

Hi Alex, thanks for leaving some great feedback on your recent stay at The Smugglers Hostel! We are so glad you enjoyed the experience, from getting a hand to plan your day's hiking to the fresh eggs and orange juice on offer for breakfast - it's all part of the friendly service we love to give every Smuggler!

Tomintoul is a fantastic base for walking holidays with plenty of paths, glens, mountains and of course our very own Munro Ben Avon, to keep you busy! With the opening of the Glenlivet Mountain Bike Trails on November 2nd, you will have to come up to visit us again soon - there's is so many outdoor activities on offer here!

Best Wishes,

The Smugglers Team

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Reviewed October 20, 2013

Three friends and I cycled from Aberlour to Tomintoul, through a thunderstorm. We had only called to book a room earlier that day and we arrived late, tired and wet. We were greeted at the door by the host, who immediately offered to finalise the booking over a warm cup of tea. He put us up in the largest room at no extra charge, so we had plenty of room for all our stuff (we were on a two-week cycling trip through Scotland). Then we got the tour of the hostel itself and directions to the nearest pub for a good meal. The facilities are great, a fully-equipped kitchen, clean bathrooms, hot showers and free wifi. There is even a shed with a heater and dehumidifier which came in handy because our cycling gear could not be tumble dried. The breakfast was perfect, a wide selection of cereals, bread, eggs, etc.
One of us had had a fall the previous day which busted the front break, the host has a stash of bike repair tools and supplies and when we decided to fix the break next morning (because it was getting late) we found out it had already been done.
In short, best hostel ever.

  • Stayed: July 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank tberben
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SmugglerHostel, Marketing at The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul, responded to this reviewResponded October 21, 2013

Thank you for taking the time to review The Smugglers Hostel. I don't think we can do better than being termed the "best hostel ever"!!

We're so pleased that you thought the facilities we have to offer are great. We are constantly striving to further improve the Smugglers experience and so this Winter we will be making a range of upgrades to the Hostel, including installing a new efficient and eco-friendly biomass heating system, charging points in all the bedrooms and a total refurbishment of the shower and toilet areas, allowing greater privacy and doubling the number of shower units available! So next time you stay with us after a riding through a Scottish thunderstorm, you will be even more cosy and comfortable!

Glad you loved the bike shed and the breakfasts too! It was our absolute pleasure to repair the break on your bike!

We hope you had a great cycling tour and hope to see you again!

The Smugglers Team

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Additional Information about The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul

Address: Main Street, Tomintoul AB37 9EX, Scotland
Location: United Kingdom > Scotland > Moray > Tomintoul
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 Specialty Lodging in Tomintoul
Price Range: $107 - $484 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated in the picturesque village of Tomintoul, The Smugglers Hostel, the highest in the Scottish Highlands, is surrounded by stunning scenery. We offer friendly, comfortable and affordable accommodation for 20 'Smugglers' in our four cosy dorms, including two en-suite private rooms suitable for couples and/or families. The hostel has fantastic facilities: - Tea & Coffee - Bed linen (included in price) - A fully equipped kitchen with fridge, oven, hob and microwave - Bike shed - Outside hose to wash down those muddy bikes and boots - Drying room - Free Wi-Fi - 24/7 secure access - Lockers. As the northern gateway to the Cairngorm National Park, Tomintoul is perfect for outdoor enthusiasts. Climb our very own Munro, Ben Avon, get on your bike (or ours!) And enjoy the renowned cycling roads and mountain bike trails, follow in the footsteps of the first whisky smugglers and sample a local dram, try your hand at fly-fishing or explore the glens by horseback - the outdoor opportunities are endless. As an independent hostel, The Smugglers is run by the local Community Development Trust, so by staying with us, you're investing in the local community and making a difference to a rural economy! ... more   less 
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The Smugglers Hostel, Tomintoul Scotland

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