All to yourself: 10 of the best remote hotels in the UK

Sarah Turner
·5-min read
<span>Photograph: Alamy</span>
Photograph: Alamy

Wasdale Head Inn, Lake District

If you manage to scale Scafell Pike, you might just be able to make out the giant letters spelling out INN on the side of this building. In the Lake District’s isolated valley, the Wasdale Head has transformed itself over the centuries from a farmhouse to a no-nonsense hotel aimed at walkers and climbers. There’s a bar with hearty meals as well as a posher restaurant. Wasdale may be remote, but it’s also very popular; there are now a handful of cottages attached to the inn, and camping is allowed, with breakfast thrown in.
Double rooms from £120, including breakfast,

Moor of Rannoch, Perthshire

&#x002018;One of the UK&#x002019;s last great wildernesses&#x002019;: Moor of Rannoch.
‘One of the UK’s last great wildernesses’: Moor of Rannoch. Photograph: Murdo MacLeod/The Guardian

Luckily for non-drivers, you can reach one of the remotest parts of the UK by train. The Caledonian Sleeper will take you to Rannoch in time for breakfast, a much safer option than driving – the hotel’s website warns drivers not to rely on Google maps to get you there. However you arrive, this is one of the UK’s last great wildernesses – 80 square miles of lochs and rivers teeming with wildlife. The hotel is next to the station and includes five rooms with a whisky-filled bar and restaurant supplied by its own kitchen garden.
Doubles from £320, including dinner and breakfast,

Elmley, Kent

The Isle of Sheppey is Kent’s wilderness. Family-run for two generations, this off-grid farm is part of a wider nature reserve. With six bedrooms in the main house and Elmley Cottage, there are also cabins – including Saltbox, which offers superb views of the Dickensian marshes through floor-to-ceiling windows. What sets Elmley apart from the average farm stay is its barn bar and restaurant.
Double rooms from £180, including breakfast,

Baltasound, Shetland Islands

Safe haven: Baltasound harbour, Unst.
Safe haven: Baltasound harbour, Unst. Photograph: Alamy

There is no hotel further north in Britain than this one on the isle of Unst. With a tiny population of 500, it’s difficult to get more remote. Cosy up in one of the 24 rooms of the Baltasound, with its log cabins and tasty fresh produce. Walking trails nearby come with Shetland ponies; the nature reserves, including Keen of Hamar, feature rare plants – look out for frog orchids and moonwort.
Double rooms from £130 a night,

White House Hotel, Guernsey

&#x002018;Gloriously remote&#x002019;: the White House Hotel is on the car-free island of Herm, three miles off Guernsey.
‘Gloriously remote’: the White House Hotel is on the car-free island of Herm, three miles off Guernsey. Photograph: Alamy

The car-free island of Herm (not actually part of the UK) is gloriously remote. It lies three miles off Guernsey and is only reachable by intermittent passenger ferry. The island’s only hotel, the White House, is just metres from the beach, although it has its own swimming pool, too. At the local Mermaid Inn, feast on moules and frites – close your eyes and you could be in France.
Double rooms from £145, including breakfast,

Tan Hill Inn, Yorkshire Dales

Spring weather at the Tan Hill Inn &#x002013; Mar 13 2021.
Early spring at the Tan Hill Inn – Mar 13 2021. Photograph: Danny Lawson/PA

Remote yes, but also notably convivial – with a fanbase that includes Mark Ronson and the Arctic Monkeys – Tan Hill Inn’s reputation reaches far beyond its locale on the Pennine Way. At 528 metres above sea level, this is the highest pub in the UK. Regularly snowed in (often with guests) in winter, preparations for re-opening include a stretch tent sourced from South Africa that’s designed to offer protection in high winds.
Double rooms, including breakfast, from £156,

Garvault House, the Highlands

This hotel likes to describe itself as the remotest hotel in Britain, and it has a point. In the far northeast of Scotland, miles from the nearest village or even petrol station, it’s firmly off-grid, powered by solar panels and fed by spring water, with a reed bed for wastewater, plus homemade food that’s sourced as locally as possible. Summer sees daylight linger until nearly midnight, but when the sun finally sets, the lack of light pollution means it’s a great spot for star gazing.
Double rooms from £130, including breakfast,

Gliffaes Hotel, Powys

It’s a steep drive to the top of the hill, 25 minutes from Hay-On-Wye, but well worth the journey once you make it. Nestling in a curve of the River Usk, this wisteria-clad mansion is set in 33 acres of woodland and surrounded by the rolling hills of the Black Mountains. It is reassuringly old-fashioned, with Roberts radios in each room and squashy sofas to sink into. Great for fishing and spotting otters, too.
Double rooms from £115,

Kylesku Hotel, Sutherland

On the banks of Loch Glendhu&#x002026; Kylesku Hotel, Sutherland.
On the banks of Loch Glendhu: Kylesku Hotel, Sutherland. Photograph: Alamy

Tanja Lister and Sonia Virechauveix, two French-born former Waitrose executives, have created this award-winning hotel on the banks of Loch Glendhu. This idyllic remote wilderness is a wildlife paradise with deserted sandy beaches, kayaking and hiking trails for those who love an active holiday. Gentle and serene, the 12 bedrooms don’t go in for tartan overkill, but the food makes the most of locally sourced ingredients, with haggis pakora and gin-cured Wester Ross salmon on offer.
Double rooms, including breakfast, from £137,

Colonsay Hotel, Inner Hebrides

There may only be a population of 135 people on the tiny Inner Hebridean island of Colonsay, but they still have a primary school and a microbrewery here, plus a bookshop, a cafe/pantry and a shop that stocks 60 different wines, as well as their own gin and local honey. The island’s whitewashed hotel, a low-slung building dating from 1750, has eight rooms, some with views across to Jura, wood-burning stoves and a convivial bar and restaurant. The quiz nights are very popular.
Double rooms from £105, including breakfast,

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