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“We came for the aurora and found it !”
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Very good
8 reviews
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Overview
Holiday Rental House -
4 Bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms, Sleeps 9
Durness, Caithness and Sutherland, Scottish Highlands, Scotland

Reviews from our community

Very good - based on 8 reviews
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Reviews from our community

Date | Rating
  • English first
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English first
English first
Any
English first
bigglad
Scarborough, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
125 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 120 helpful votes
“We came for the aurora and found it !”
Reviewed January 25, 2013 for a stay in January 2013
1
person found this review helpful

I was invited to join a group of people to stay a week at Transvaal in Durness and what an incredible week it was. The main reason for the trip was to see the aurora and we did do on 4 out of the 7 days we stayed.

The house was brilliant. It was clean and there was enough coal/kindling to light each of the two fires (kitchen and lounge). In addition, there were storage heaters but it was a balancing act working out which was the cheaper as electricity was extra and the coal/kindling costs started to add up quite a lot by the end of the week.

Rooms were very adequate and comfortable but too cold without any heating when the temperature outside drops.

The kitchen was fabulous complete with Morsoe fire and enough cutlery, cups, pans to keep several coach loads of people happy. There was also a dishwasher, washing machine and separate fridge and freezer with a cloth hanger over the fire.

The garden was super - laid to grass with a compost heap to put the fire ashes on and the view out to the horizon was enough to capture the aurora without needing to travel far.

Area itself was beautiful and most people very friendly indeed. The local Spa was well stocked and the owner "John" could not do enough for us. Prices were well above the normal but hey, we were on holiday and it was remote - no complaints. Filling the car up was quite a shock at £1.56 a litre ;)

A nice beach less than a mile east from Transvaal - zero pollution and a great vantage point for the aurora. Smoo cave a little further down with "Caveman Colin" who was a wealth of information and a real top bloke. One pub which was open serving food - again, prices a little higher than normal and we ended up buying food from the Spa and cooking it ourselves. A shame, it would have been good for the pub to agree a cheaper price if the 4 of us ate there every single night - still, nevermind.

About 400 metres to the west of Transvaal along the same road is Cocoa Mountain, an incredible chocolate factory with hand made chocolates and a "dribbled" hot chocolate drink that is to die for. We did spend over £140 between ourselves on chocolate and yes, it really was that good.

A further half a mile down the road is another beach again, with spectacular views of the aurora over a graveyard and part demolished church.

It was a 14 hour drive for us to get there but will we return ? You bet and would happily stay at Transvaal again. It was very comfortable and there was a very warm community spirit evident that was very noticeable.

There was no wifi and none picked up around the house. O2 and Orange had a marginal signal and GPRS was hit and miss. Half a mile west and you lose both. Vodaphone did have problems during our visit.

Steve BB

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Bedding & mattresses Kitchen & utensils
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Service
Liked best: The aurora
Liked least: costs to keep the place heated - would have been cheaper sticking with electric
Travelling group: Friends
Your age range 35-49
Would you recommend this hotel to a friend?   Yes.
Recommended for:
Friends getaway People with disabilities
Older travelers Families with young children
Large groups People with pets
  • Was the property as advertised?
  • Would you recommend the location of this property?
  • Was it a good value for the price paid?
  • Was your security deposit returned on time?
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
kilmarnock
Reviewed January 5, 2012 for a stay in November 2011

Value Rooms
Location Cleanliness
Check-in / front desk Service
Would I recommend this holiday rental to my best friend?  
Recommended for:
A romantic getaway People with disabilities
Older travelers Rugged travelers
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveller and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.
Hexham
Reviewed October 24, 2011 for a stay in August 2011

Value Rooms
Location Cleanliness
Check-in / front desk Service
Travelling group: Family with young children
Your age range 35-44
Would I recommend this holiday rental to my best friend?  
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveller and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.
North Wales
Reviewed October 21, 2011 for a stay in August 2011

Value Rooms
Location Cleanliness
Check-in / front desk Service
Travelling group: Family with young children
Your age range 35-44
Would I recommend this holiday rental to my best friend?  
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of an individual traveller and not of TripAdvisor LLC nor of its partners.
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2 guests
Adults2
Children0
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