The hostels on this map of the Northern Highlands of Scotland are in the northern most counties of the Scottish mainland, Caithness, Sutherland, Ross & Cromarty and Inverness-shire. Providing self catering accommodation for those on the Lands end to John o Groats routes and for outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy the wilderness and mountains. Drying rooms and cycle shed make these hostels ideal accommodation for walkers and mountaineers. Sutherland contains many splendid mountains providing some of the best mountain scenery in Scotland. There are also beautiful glens and this was once clan country, with a history of the Mackay, Rose and Sutherland Clans. A drive around the North Coast 500 road route is a great way to see this area.
Highlands of Scotland
Click markers to view hostels and bunkhouses
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Thurso is the northern-most town on the UK mainland. The cliffs are alive with guillemots, kittiwakes, fulmars and puffins, while the sea is home to seals and porpoises. The 4* hostel has en suite facilities in all rooms, (some have TVs). Using their own backpacking experience, the owners ensure you will enjoy a level of comfort and service second to none. Surfing, pony trekking, fishing, quad biking, coastal walks and boat trips are all available in the area.More details
Loch Ness Backpackers Lodge
This 18th century Highland farm house provides warm & friendly hostel accommodation. Ideally situated within walking distance of Loch Ness, Urquhart Castle, on the Great Glen Way and with pubs, restaurants and supermarket close by. Residents only bar offers over 70 Scottish beers and 25 Scotch whiskies. Horse riding, fishing, watersports and mountain biking can all be arranged locally. Free parking and free WiFi. Bike storage available except in Jul/Aug.More details
Great Glen Hostel
Located between mountains and lochs 20 miles north of Fort William and 10 miles south of Loch Ness, the Great Glen Hostel is your ideal base. Perfect for touring the Highlands, bagging Munros or paddling rivers and lochs. It's only a short walk to the Great Glen Way. The hostel provides comfortable, well appointed accommodation in twin, family and dormitory rooms and has a shop where you can buy your essentials.More details
Inchnadamph Lodge has been tastefully converted to provide luxury hostel accommodation at a budget price. There's a large self-catering kitchen, a games room, a lounge and a dining room. Food is usually available at the Inchnadamph Hotel just across the river. Based at the foot of Ben More Assynt, and overlooking Loch Assynt, explore one of the wildest areas in the Highlands from the door.More details
Sanachan Bunkhouse, in Kishorn, is the perfect base for walking, climbing, kayaking, cycling & sailing in Wester Ross. After a fun filled day, your group can return to a warm fire, comfy bunks, hot showers and simple living. There is parking for six cars and beds for fifteen, split between two rooms (bring a sleeping bag).The bunkhouse is well equipped for self-catering, with enough tables & chairs for everyone. Laundry/drying, outside recreation and BBQ.More details
Kyle of Tongue Hostel & Holiday Park
Kyle of Tongue Hostel is a stone lodge, magnificently situated on the romantic shores of the Kyle of Tongue on the north coast of Scotland. It has supreme panoramic views of Castle Varich, Ben Hope and the queen of Scottish mountains - Ben Loyal. Beautifully furnished, like a boutique hotel, but with all the friendliness of a hostel. There are comfortable private bedrooms, roomy shared dormitories and relaxing communal areas. Camping also available.More details
Walkers, climbers and mountain bikers enjoying the Torridon Mountains and wilderness areas will be warmly welcomed at the Kinlochewe Hotel and Bunkhouse. Situated on the North Coast 500 road route, within 20 miles of over 20 Munros, the bunkhouse boasts a well equipped, self-catering kitchen, an efficient drying room, hot showers and a 12 bunk dormitory. The hotel bar serves excellent home-made food and is in the 2018 Good Beer Guide.More details
Gerry's Hostel is situated in an excellent mountaineering and wilderness area on the most scenic railway in Britain. It is on the Cape Wrath Trails, The T.G.O Challenge Route and is 0.5 miles from the Coulin Pass at Craig. It sleeps 20; 10 in a large dormitory with comfy beds, the rest in 5/6 bed family rooms. Meals and draught ale are a 15 min drive away. Your perfect base for many activities including walking, climbing, fishing, cycling, golfing and wildlife watching.More details
Set in the scenic coastal village of Helmsdale, the hostel offers spacious en suite accommodation including a fully equipped kitchen and comfortable lounge area with log burning stove. On the main NC500 and Lands End John O'Groats route, the hostel is popular with 'end to enders' and walkers exploring the Far North Marilyn Hills. It is also a perfect stop on the way top Orkney. Dogs welcome on request. Groups welcome, discount for sole use. (Currently closed - reopening June 2018)More details
Cornmill Bunkhouse is situated on a traditional croft. The mill was built in the early 1800s and was active until 1920s. It is now 4* accommodation for individuals or groups. Guests are reminded of their historic setting; the smaller bunkroom has a patio door looking onto the workings of the old mill with its large wooden cog driving wheels. Activities can be organised for groups including laser tagging & shooting. Hen and stag parties welcome.More details
Stay on a first class train in Rogart in the heart of the Highlands, halfway between Inverness and John O'Groats! Two railway carriages have been tastefully converted. One sleeps 9, and one is subdivided to sleep 4 and 2. There are two beds per room, a kitchen, dining room, sitting room, showers & toilets. All bedding is included. There is also a showman's wagon sleeping 2/3. Close by you will find a shop, post office and pub with restaurant.More details
Morags Lodge Loch Ness
A multi-award winning 4* hostel with a range of rooms to meet all needs and budgets in the bustling village of Fort Augustus on the banks of Loch Ness. Your perfect base to explore the Loch Ness area and an ideal stop off on the Great Glen Way. Surrounded by stunning mountain scenery and set in wooded grounds the hostel boasts 24 hour self-catering facilities, excellent home-made cheap meal options, a rustic bar, free WiFi, bike hire and ample car parking.More details
The Lochside Hostel
Perched right on the banks of Loch Ness, the Lochside Hostel has amazing views up and down the loch and can give you direct access to the water's edge. Why not go for a dip in Scotland's largest water body? Take a walk to watch for wildlife? Or even hunt the elusive Nessie!? The Great Glen walking route passes the front door and the End to End cycle route is nearby. Drumnadrochit is just 12 miles away by boat. Recently opened by MacBackpackers, an award winning tour company who also own 3 hostels in Edinburgh, a great stay awaits!More details
Inverness Student Hotel
The cosy and friendly Student Hotel enjoys panoramic views of the town and the mountains beyond. Your perfect place to unwind, just yards from the city's varied night-life and a few mins' walk from bus and train stations. Relax in the fabulous lounge with real log fire and drink as much free tea, coffee & hot chocolate as you like. Visit the beautiful ancient pine forest of Glen Affric or the Culloden Battlefield. Famous Loch Ness lies just a few miles upstream and of course has its own special wild animal.More details
Sharing a car park with the Speyside Way, the converted Nethy Station offers all that a group of 12-26 could expect from a bunkhouse. It is well equipped and fully central heated. Most rooms have triple bunks and there is a 2 bunk room with unusual access, known as Narnia, as you get there through a wardrobe! Self-catering or catered options. Close to winter sports areas. The bunkhouse is only 200 yards from the local shop, butcher and pub.More details
Knoydart is a remote peninsula on the west coast of Scotland reachable only by boat or long hike. A community enterprise, the bunkhouse runs on green principals and is just 2 mins' walk to a quiet west-facing beach and 10 mins to Inverie with its pub, post office, shop and ferry. You are minutes away from wild, remote terrain. There are 4 bedrooms and comfy communal areas. Bed linen and duvets provided. Ranger-guided service and deer stalking available. Bring a torchMore details
The Sail Loft Bunkhouse
Overlooking the beach and the Moray Firth, The Sail Loft bunkhouse has a stunning location. Newly converted from a former sail making loft the bunkhouse is modern and well equipped. It provides self-catering accommodation for 25 in a mixture of single accessible, twin, triple and bunk rooms, with secure cycle storage, cycle wash-down facilities and an outdoor wood fired hot tub. The Sail Loft Bunkhouse is a short easy walk from the historic harbour and town of Portsoy with its wide range of amenities and 10 mins' drive from the eastern end of the Moray Coast Trail at Cullen.More details
Bunkhouse @ Invershin Hotel
Situated within a small hotel in the north Highlands the bunkhouse consists of 4 rooms which share a shower room and toilet. Guests can enjoy all the hotel facilities; the cosy bar with it's roaring fire and real ale. Cyclists, walkers, bikers, fishermen, Munro baggers, families and lone travellers are all welcome and the bunkhouse is on the North Coast 500 road route. No self-catering facilities, but breakfast and a small selection of home cooked evening meals are available.More details
Saddle Mountain Hostel
Saddle Mountain Hostel is a small and friendly 4* hostel in Invergarry, between Loch Ness and Fort William and at the junction with the road to Skye. The delightful hostel sleeps 24 people in 5 rooms. It has a large kitchen, dining room and lounge, free WiFi, a purpose-built drying room and bike storage. A Great location for Munro bagging, walking, cycling, scenic tours, water sports, fishing, and wildlife watching.More details
The Ceilidh Place Bunkhouse
The Ceilidh Place, in the centre of Ullapool, is a unique small complex, consisting of a music venue/performance space, restaurant, hotel, bar, bookshop, coffee shop, gallery and bunkhouse. There are regular ceilidhs, concerts & plays. The bunkhouse (group only) does not have self-catering facilities but the coffee shop is open from 8.30am to late evening, all week including weekends. Rooms are also available in the hotel. The village of Ullapool is a small exciting port and fishing town, with ferries from the Outer Hebrides. Hill walkers and families especially love staying here.More details
Findhorn Village Hostel
Findhorn Village Hostel is just a stone's throw from the beautiful Moray Coast. Great wildlife sites and the Speyside distilleries are within reach. The hostel provides newly renovated self-catering accommodation for groups or individuals. There are shared bunkrooms, a two person room and an en suite family room. A new annex (6 beds) has a small kitchenette and en suite shower rooms.More details
The mainland's most northerly hostel. In East Mey on the highly praised NC500, BB's enjoys magnificent views over to Orkney and Dunnet Head. A perfect base for walking, cycling, surfing, fishing & stargazing. BB's provides everything you need to relax and recharge. Gill's Bay ferry terminal (regular Orkney crossings) and the Castle of Mey are a few mins' drive, John O' Groats and Dunnet Head are close by. Experience a switched off, yet modern, take on hostel accommodation - affordable & luxurious.More details
Part of the award-winning Craggan Outdoors activity centre, Ardenbeg offers good value, well appointed bunkhouse accommodation with the extra benefit of a large private garden with BBQ, picnic tables & a children's play area. The property is situated on a quiet residential street in Grantown-on-Spey, the historic capital of Strathspey, just a 15 mins' drive from Aviemore and all its amenities. For adventures even closer at hand you can organise a whole host of activities through Craggan Outdoors.More details
Badrallach Bothy and Campsite
On the tranquil shores of Little Loch Broom overlooking one of Scotland's finest mountain ranges, Badrallach Bothy and Campsite offer a fine base for walking and climbing. Fish in the rivers, hill lochs and sea or simply enjoy the flora and fauna. Hot showers, spotless accommodation, an unbelievable price, and total peace makes the Bothy and Campsite a firm favourite. There is also a holiday cottage for hire.More details
Sail Mhor Croft
Sail Mhor Croft is a small rural hostel which is perfectly situated at Dundonnell on the shores of Little Loch Broom and on NC500 route. The mountain range of An Teallach, which has the reputation of being one of the finest ridge walks in Great Britain, is right on the doorstep and the area is a haven for walkers of all experience. Whether you wish to climb the summits, walk along the loch side, visit a beautiful sandy beach or just soak up the tranquillity you will love it here.More details
Black Rock Bunkhouse
Situated in beautiful Glenglass and sheltered by Ben Wyvis, this comfortable bunkhouse is an ideal base for touring the Highlands. The bunkhouse is at the eastern end of a hikers' route across Scotland and on the Lands End to John O'Groats route. The village has a general shop, Post Office, bus service and an inn (serving good bar meals and breakfasts) 250m away. There is also a camping ground. All areas of the bunkhouse are easily accessible by wheelchair and suitable for the disabled.More details
This map shows the location of hostels in the Northern Highlands of Scotland. They are all part of Independent Hostels UK, the largest network of hostels and bunkhouses in the UK.
The Northern Highlands are a geographically vast and diverse area. From the Cairngorms National Park to the sea cliffs and Flow Country of Caithness. From the huge valley of the Great Glen to the sea lochs and islands of the West coast. From the imposing mountains of Sutherland to the beautiful sandy beaches and surf of the North coast. All of these are linked by the common denominator of stunning scenery and some wonderful winding roads.
The North Coast 500 route is an increasingly popular way to see the best that the area has to offer. Many others come to walk in the some of Scotland’s most scenically imposing mountains, such as Foinaven, Suilven and the hills of Torridon. Some walk through on the long distance Cape Wrath Trail (which requires wild camping on some nights). Others still cycle through it on the last few days of LeJoG, or the beginning of JoGLE. See the quaint village of Cromarty on the Black Isle, visit historic Dunrobin Castle, stay in the bustling port at Ullapool or try fine dining in some of the great local restaurants in lpaces like Applecross and Lochinver. In an area this big, there are literally too many things to see and do for us to mention here.
The hostels in the Northern Highlands of Scotland are well equipped for those taking part in outdoor pursuits, and are well used to catering for walkers, cyclists and those who have been out on the water. Those in the towns offer an affordable alternative to budget hotel chains for those on a tight budget, or those who just want to stay somewhere less impersonal. Independent hostels are privately owned, like B&Bs, but are different in every other way. They typically offer a mix of private rooms (many en suite) and beds in shared dormitory rooms. They provide self catering facilities and a warm and buzzing communal atmosphere. They will generally have WiFi, drying rooms, laundry facilities, bike storage, and sometimes catered food for those who want it.