This article contains gifted stays however this is in no way influenced our opinion on the accommodation.
The NC500 is a well-known road trip around the northern coast of Scotland, boasting some of the most incredible scenery in the country.
It is commonly toured by bike, motorbike or campervan, however there are many beautiful accommodations to discover on the NC500 too.
In this guide, we share some of our favourite accommodations around the North Coast 500 and why you should book a stay there whilst you are visiting this beautiful part of the world.
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Ness Lodge is located a short walking distance from the city centre of Inverness on the banks of the River Ness.
Zoe and Billy have two extremely comfortable lodges on their land that are the perfect place to unwind away from the hustle and bustle of the city centre.
Apart from the interior being stunning and very comfortable, the fridge is also stocked up with necessities, including beer and prosecco and there is a welcome basket with some goodies waiting for you on arrival as well. There is nothing that Zoe and Billy haven’t thought about for Ness Lodge.
Ness Walk is a luxurious 5 star hotel in Inverness. Located on the banks of the River Ness, Ness Walk is within close walking distance to the city centre of Inverness.
On arrival, guests are offered a glass of complimentary champagne and are then shown to their room by the friendly staff.
The hotel has 47 beautiful rooms and 2 suites, all with Arran aromatics toiletries.
The food in the Torrish restaurant is absolutely delish and there is a huge focus on the food being locally sourced.
Wifi, accessible rooms, EVC
Black Isle Pods and Chalet
The Black Isle Pods and Chalet is a beautiful place to stay on your journey north through the Black Isle.
This remote accommodation has an outdoor seating area and firepit as well as a private hot tub.
On arrival you will be welcomed to plenty of fresh produce in the pod for your stay. There is also an honesty shed where you can purchase food and drink from the freezer.
Wifi, dog friendly
Brora NC500 Pods
On the north east coast of Scotland, nestled in amongst nature near the small village of Brora are the NC500 Pods. The NC500 Pods offer luxurious glamping accommodation on the North Coast 500 road trip.
There are currently four Pods on site at the Brora NC500 Pods. One luxury Honeymoon Pod and three regular pods (that still feel luxurious, just a different layout). A small sauna is also available to use onsite with a glass window and fantastic view towards the coast.
If the weather is nice, this is a perfect place to have a BBQ in the communal area and relax in the serenity of your surroundings. Each pod also has a large bean bag outside for your comfort when watching the sunrise from outside your deck.
There is free wifi in all the pods. No password is required to access this.
Each pod is fully equipped with a small kitchen, double bed and bathroom.
Wifi, dog friendly
Destination North Coast Map
Make sure you have all the resources you need to make the most of your trip to the North Coast of Scotland. Our Destination North Coast Map is the perfect addition to any traveller’s toolkit. With detailed information on all the best spots, along the NC500, this map is your ultimate guide to exploring the rugged beauty of Scotland’s north coast.
The Melvich Hotel is well known around the north coast for its delicious selection of wood-fired pizzas, however, we also thoroughly enjoyed our stay at this hotel too.
Many of the rooms overlook Melvich Beach, one of the most beautiful beaches on the NC500, and are very spacious with a bathroom and shower.
We would recommend booking dinner in the restaurant and trying one of their pizzas, I am sure you won’t be disappointed!
Wifi, dog friendly, EVC across the road.
The Bettyhill Hotel has one of the most incredible views on the whole route in our opinion. The restaurant area and many of the rooms have windows overlooking Torrisadle Bay and on a clear day it is absolutely stunning.
There are 16 rooms which have recently been renovated and have a very modern feel to them.
Wifi, dog friendly, EVC across the road.
Achmelvich NC500 Pods
The NC500 Pods in Achmelvich are wooden glamping pods located next to one of Scotland’s most beautiful beaches, Achmelvich Beach. There are 4 pods on site, each named after a nearby mountain. There is also a communal, social area with outdoor seating and a fire pit.
There are pet free and pet-friendly pods onsite making it suitable for everyone. A parking space is available per pod a short walk from the pods themselves.
The NC500 Pods is an incredibly popular place to stay and we would recommend that if you are thinking about booking a trip here, you book now to avoid disappointment as they book up so quick!
Wifi, dog friendly
A beautiful cottage situated in the Ben Damph Estate area of Torridon. Four people can sleep at Ferroch and enjoy extended views across Upper Loch Torridon from the cosy front room.
There is a fireplace to snuggle up to after a day walking in the beautiful surrounding area and if you are lucky, you may even get to see a herd of deer meandering around the open area in front of the cottage.
The Gairloch Hotel is part of the Bespoke Hotels group and offers seafront views over Gairloch Bay. The comfortable bed in addition to the delicious breakfast spread makes for a very comfortable stay in the Gairloch area.
The Gairloch Hotel is relatively central and within walking distance to beaches and the town of Gairloch.
Wifi, dog friendly
Fionn Croft – Shepherd’s Hut
Located in the rural Scottish countryside, just outside of the small village of Gairloch is the small Shepherd’s Hut at Fionn Croft.
This accommodation looks small from the outside but when you step inside this cosy hut, it feels incredibly light and spacious with all the amenities you could need.
The bedroom area has the most stunning views out to sea and there is a log burner fire to give you all of the cosy vibes.
Before You Leave on the North Coast 500
Before you head off on your trip around the NC500, there are certain things you will need to get organised to ensure a smooth trip. These include how to get around the route, including being aware of single track roads, etc., what to pack for Scotland, where to stay along the route and what travel insurance to book.
How Do I Get Around the NC500?
Given the remote location of the NC500 and the majority of the sights along the route, the best way to get around this road trip is by driving. There are of course other methods that are still popular, such as cycling and hiking, however, if you have a short amount of time on the route, neither of these are very suitable.
As for public transport, the use around the NC500 is understandably difficult due to how remote each location is, however, with the increasing problem of congestion along the route, this is a good option to research if you have time. If it is something that interests you, you can read a public formed itinerary of how to get around the NC500 by public transport over here.
If you are looking to rent a cosy, reliable, and luxurious campervan for your trip along the NC500, we highly recommend hiring through Spaceship Rentals.
What Should I Pack for the NC500?
When it comes to packing for a trip along the NC500 there is one item of clothing that you are going to need all year round: a waterproof. It rains in Scotland on average 250 days a year, meaning that during your 7-day NC500 road trip you will probably experience at least a drizzle of rain. Due to this, the number one item on any Scotland packing list is a good waterproof jacket.
As for the rest of the year, the temperature in Scotland and the central heartlands is reasonably mild for most of the year. During the winter months, you will most likely experience snow, however, temperatures usually sit around freezing, so it is not too cold. For your reference, the average temperatures in Scotland are listed below during each season.
Spring (March, April, May) – 5-10 degrees C
Summer (June, July, August) – 15 degrees C
Autumn (September, October, November) – 5-10 degrees C
Winter (December, January, February) – 0-5 degrees C
As you can see, the weather never really gets above the teens, with anything over 25 degrees C considered a heatwave. The best way to pack for your trip to the highlands is with layers that can be added and removed as you need them. You will definitely need a hat and gloves during the colder months and will most likely need sunscreen to protect you on the long days in the open.
It is also important to stay hydrated, especially when you are out exploring in the marvellous landscape of Scotland. We use Water to Go water bottles to fill up with water from running streams when we are hiking.
Given the beautiful sights and scenery that you are no doubt going to see around Scotland, we highly recommend packing a good camera for your trip. If you want to read more about the cameras we use and why we love them, check out the link below.
Where Should I Stay on the NC500?
The remoteness in the highlands of Scotland will leave you with little choice of accommodation in each location along the NC500, however, there are still enough options to choose from to ensure a comfortable trip. These are mostly in the shape of B&Bs, Airbnbs, converted cottages and other quirky accommodations.
Depending on how adventurous you are, there may be more accommodation choices than just the above, often with an even better view. Caravan and camping sites are abundant along the NC500, drawing camping enthusiasts from all over the world. For some of the most spectacular bedside scenery along the North Coast 500, we recommend packing a tent and getting in touch with nature for the week.
As we travelled along the North Coast 500, camped in our trusty Vango tent on a mixture of campsites and wild sites. Wild camping is a fantastic way to enjoy the beauty of the highlands, however, it must be done respectfully. Read our full guide to Wild Camping if you wish to give it a go so you know everything you need to for a comfortable and sustainable trip.
What is the Best Travel Insurance?
We know travel insurance is the least enjoyable thing to purchase and look at when you’re planning a trip, however, you wouldn’t want to be without it in the event that something happened. Accidents can happen anywhere and the extortionate medical bills will ruin your trip if you are not covered.
To ensure you have a stress-free trip with no worries about potential medical bills, make sure you cover yourself when you travel. We can recommend using SafetyWing, a backpacker-friendly and cheap insurance company that provides good coverage and support. It is also nomad-friendly, unlike most other insurance companies, meaning you do not need to worry about being out of your home country for too long.
So there you have it, our top accommodations on the North Coast 500. If you have visited the NC500 recently, let us know what you thought of your trip.
As always, sharing is caring so make sure to share this guide with your family and friends and inspire them to head off on their own North Coast 500 adventure. If you are planning the trip for yourself, make sure you have a look at the rest of our Scotland content for more inspiration to our beautiful home country.
When you set off on your own adventure, be sure to tag us in your photos on Instagram and we will share them with the rest of our community. In the meantime, why not follow us over there to see what we are currently up to and keep up with us on our Instagram Stories.
- Unmissable Things to do on the NC500 Route
- Unmissable NC500 Wild Swimming Spots – The Best Beaches for Swimming on the NC500
- 7-day North Coast 500 Itinerary – FREE, Detailed and Unforgettable!
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