We really enjoyed staying in your cottage, it was so comfortable, well equipped and ideally situated. We also loved the garden – we spent a long time sitting on the red seat in the sun watching the seals!

Berneray is beautiful, the bird life and walks are fantastic and we also enjoyed meeting some of the locals, including Meg from Birlinn Yarn (what a great enterprise) and the ladies in the shop and bistro (had a delicious dinner there).

We would definitely love to return to Berneray and hopefully stay in your cottage again.

Claire and Gary, June 2024

My third visit to this well thought out, well located, beautiful, comfortable cottage. This time at a season of longer days and hopefully warmer weather. Well, sleet, hail, bright sunshine I’ve experienced it all and my time here has been great. New to me, a day trip on the ferry over to Harris, the Grimsay Boat Museum and a memorable wildlife excursion on the Lady Anne, from Kallin. Wool purchased at Uist Wools to knit a jumper to remember and a return to Balranald RSBP Reserve where, as well as birds, the late spring flowers of the machair were wonderful in the sunshine. On my doorstep, I got to see the Nurse’s House museum at last and was reminded once again of how much Berneray has to offer this side of the causeway! The views and the wildlife action, especially through binoculars, at any window is sometimes enough. Friendly residents will also enlighten you. Fishy food delights and sweet bakery will tempt. Walking the length of the East or West Beach will justify it.

This place both expands life and focuses the detail, 30 Backhill is the perfect place to experience it.

Maureen, June 2024

Your cottage is lovely – we were a little late arriving as we caught the evening ferry which was a tad late leaving Uig. It didn’t matter. We found your cottage easily, stepped inside and immediately felt at home. Wow what a gorgeous place you have.

Awaiting us was a clean, luxurious, home, with everything we could imagine needing. The treats in the fridge were an added surprise – I felt very spoilt. The large comfortable bed, pillows and quilt gave us fantastic nights’ sleep. The bathroom provided a luxurious shower together with local liquid soap, which we loved: I will even add my sheer delight at watching the seals from the loo! The living area was perfect with sumptuous sofas, feather cushions with aqua themed covers, table and chairs that gave us endless views through the windows of the changing tides and seal activities. The stove was great, ready to light for us: we bought a bag of wood and enjoyed the fire most nights. The kitchen area had everything. The heating system was simple and most effective. What can I say about the books? Gosh we were thrilled with so many to browse through, what an incredible collection! We had the best ever holiday here that we could imagine. It is such a special place that we wanted to look after it. We also felt the peace, tranquillity and ‘just being’ from the moment of arrival. So many birds to enjoy, the starlings nesting in the bothy started to fledge, we witnessed a new-born common seal pup, the walk around the island spoilt us with close up encounters of harbour porpoises and otters. Could we stay again? Most definitely we could, this is a home that we could live in and cherish. We feel privileged to have had a week there. Thank you for sharing your cottage.

Di and Bri, May 2024

We had a very relaxing break in 30 Backhill. The blackhouse is very well maintained & clean, and everything we required was on hand. As others have commented, the bed is suitably huge! The views out to sea are wonderful, and the seals performed as expected, with one pair engaging in a playful exchange of splash! We have explored Berneray many times, and never short of anything to do or places to go, even in the April showers we had. Coming “home” to a cosy cosseting cottage was a joy after being out in the wilder weather. While our arrival was delayed by a few days due to ferry cancellations, Hilary offered great flexibility in accommodating our slight change in dates at late notice. Communication with Hilary was straightforward, with responses received quickly. Can’t wait to return, especially to enjoy some longer summer evenings. Bravo.

Richard and Kirsten, April 2024

Our week at 30 Backhill exceeded expectations. Such peace and tranquility so close to the ocean and the gentle wildlife of the seashore. The seals were regular visitors and we unexpectedly became twitchers as we spotted many birds each with their own characters. The cottage is luxurious with many personal touches. Nothing has been left to chance – all ones needs catered for in an unassuming and considerate way.

The beaches, the stars, the sea, the hills, the people – all lovely.

We are already planning  a return visit.

Jane and Rosemary, March 2024

Cannot recommend this lovely cottage enough, it’s incredibly well equipped and exceptionally maintained. Clean and tidy with some lovely homely touches. The owners Anna and Hilary are always on hand if you need anything and were very helpful during the booking process ensuring we got our ferry crossings booked well in advance and also gave us good advice in relation to things my husband who is disabled could enjoy during his stay. The view from the cottage is indescribable and we spent hours watching the waves, the seals and some unique birds too, the log burner heats the place up instantly and the thick walls of the cottage hold the heat in for a long time. The bed is also absolutely huge and extremely comfortable. A very tranquil retreat that we will be sure to return to.

Clare and Mark, September 2023

We had a really wonderful week on Berneray. From the first day we felt away from it all but very much at home in the beautiful cottage. The  seals on the nearby rocks were a lovely welcoming committee. Most days we did a walk from the cottage to explore the island, with its beautiful and varied scenery. Each time we discovered a new treasure, be it a flower, a bird a rock or a view. In the cottage we found everything we needed and were especially pleased about the comfortable bed and bedding, the well-chosen interior fittings and little things like the CD and book collections. We would love to come back one day.

Nigel and Andrea, August 2023

It would be hard to think of a more perfect place to spend a week on the beautiful and peaceful island of Berneray.  Though the cottage is small the rooms are spacious and light, and luxuriously appointed.  We loved the art on the walls and the fine selection of books, and appreciated the comfortable bed.  The location is just superb, with endlessly changing views across the water, and we liked the fact that we were not isolated but part of the community.  We would love to come back!

Nicky and Mark, August 2023

We would just like to say how much we enjoyed our stay in your delightful cottage during the last week of June. It felt like stepping into the world of Gavin Maxwell – and we noticed that you have his complete library!

It was something else to get up at 5.30 in the morning, let our Labrador into the garden and watch the seals basking in the early rays of the sun.

Your cottage is such a special place and a great place to return to after a day exploring or walking. We loved how comfortable it was and were very impressed with your attention to detail. The bed was particularly magnificent with its Harris Tweed accessories. We even appreciated perusing your collection of DVDs and browsing through the collection of books. We share similar viewing and reading tastes.

30 Backhill proved an excellent base for our week on Berneray and our visits to North Uist and Benbecula. We spent our time walking on the beaches, birdwatching and wildlife spotting and discovered some interesting archaeological sites by following the Uist Unearthed App trails. We would heartily recommend the cottage to our friends and hopefully will return one day ourselves.

Carry and John, June 2023

Just to say thankyou so much for sharing your lovely cottage. It is by far & away the best holiday cottage we have ever stayed in-just lovely.

Meg and John, June 2023

My wife Simone and I had visited Berneray before and had decided that for my 65th birthday we wanted to return to the island for a romantic getaway. We were searching for a special place and  ‘ Backhill cottage fitted the bill perfectly. It was totally unique and in such a wonderful situation. The house itself was ideal for us both and waking up every morning to sit on the garden bench outside in the sun and watch the seals playing while we had our coffee was magical. The space was perfect for us both and we even managed to have a few friends around for dinner one night in what was an ideal and cosy evening round the wood burning stove with appropriate wines and a meal we cooked ourselves in the kitchen.’Backhill’ is really quite inspiring and the decor and interior design makes you feel you are in an up market hotel suite rather than a wee converted thatched blackhouse on a Hebridean island. The Harris tweed curtains were my favourite touch and in particular at the small corner kitchen table that had dynamic views outside to the bay through two deep windows sunk in the old stone walls. We both loved our stay there and had a marvellous week on an incredible island that we will remember for a very long time.

Derek and Simone, April 2023

‘We have had excellent autumn breaks on Berneray.

Although in other places the trees may have lost their leaves and the bleakness of winter be approaching as colours fade, the island holds the same appeal because the scenery changes less and the mild climate is very pleasant.

The long white beaches beckon – you hear the breakers long before you reach the dunes, to find the sea still colourful, and can appreciate the big skies, rainbows, birds and seals.

I found this poem came to mind, perfectly illustrated by Berneray at this time of year.

November Skies by John Freeman 

Than these November skies
Is no sky lovelier. The clouds are deep;
Into their grey the subtle spies
Of colour creep,
Changing that high austerity to delight,
Till ev’n the leaden interfolds are bright.
And, where the cloud breaks, faint far azure peers
Ere a thin flushing cloud again
Shuts up that loveliness, or shares.
The huge great clouds move slowly, gently, as
Reluctant the quick sun should shine in vain,
Holding in bright caprice their rain.
And when of colours none,
Not rose, nor amber, nor the scarce late green,
Is truly seen, –
In all the myriad grey,
In silver height and dusky deep, remain
The loveliest,
Faint purple flushes of the unvanquished sun.

And when the darkness falls, the Backhill cottage is as cosy as can be! ‘

Guests, November 2022

“The cottage will appear familiar from its photos but it will surpass all your expectations. Every last detail is attended to and to top it all it is immaculately clean. Hilary is the perfect host. This cottage has everything required for a self-catering holiday including freshly laundered bed linen, hot towel rail in the bathroom and an exceptional selection of kitchen utensils and extras. Nothing has been overlooked. The views across the bay from the windows are mesmerising. The seals in the bay are addictive viewing. And books! There are loads of guidebooks on the local area and a fantastic library of reading material. We walked, sometimes just short walks to the harbour or to the East Beach, other times walking around the entire island taking in all its beauty. This holiday will reinvigorate all your senses. We cycled to Clachan Sands and swam in the sea at the East beach on a glorious sunny day. Once you see and smell the machair you will know what it means. Wildlife sightings included a short-eared owl, minke whale, dolphins, white-tailed sea eagle and deer. The sunsets at West Beach are out of this world and we saw a porpoise jumping near the shore and loads of scallop shells. We drove to Eriskay, took the ferry to Leverburgh in Harris then onto Luskentyre Beach (loads of star fish), walked to Eilan Glas lighthouse on Scalpay and bought some lovely souvenirs from the Harris Tweed shop.  The Berneray shop, Co-op at Sollas and Bayhead shop are so well stocked and will cater for all your self-catering requirements. Backhill in Berneray is a magical place. The raw beauty of the Outer Hebrides coupled with the luxury of the cottage makes for a perfect holiday. I can’t wait to return!”

Margaret, July 2022

“30 Backhill is a lovely cottage and perfect for a couple. It is well equipped, with a large comfortable bed and a nice pair of comfortable sofas to lounge in. The absence of a TV is a very pleasant change and watching the seals out of the window is a great alternative. Whilst the kitchen is not huge it has all that you need to enjoy the many local delights you can find in the Western Isles. With good chopping boards and sharp knifes it is well equipped for a holiday. Despite having a week of poor(ish) weather we still had a great time and hope to visit again.”

Tom and Isla, July 2022

“We had a lovely, unforgettable holiday, everything was perfect ! We spent many happy hours in the garden, watching seals and otters and being entertained by a very friendly starling , who we think is nesting in the bothy roof, who seems to mimic sounds … we were convinced he could talk!

Berneray is a special island, the Machair and West Beach, seeing is believing! Listening to Corncrakes and Skylarks, we watched the Hen Harrier from the doorstep.

The locals are so friendly and always happy to chat, we loved the Coral Box gift shop , and the shop and Bistro.”

Brian and Jean, June 2022

“30 Backhill is a glorious escape, where you will relax and immerse yourself into this wonderful part of the world. With the cottage having everything you need for your break, perfectly kept, with the highest standards of cleanliness and care for your comfort.

If you can pull yourself away from this cosy retreat, you will be able to enjoy the scenery around you, from beaches, wildlife (not forgetting the seals and otters in the bay by the cottage), with easy access to explore the other islands of the Outer Hebrides.

If there was a 6 star cottage rating, this would be awarded it … highly recommended.”

Neil and Graham, May 2022

“It speaks volumes that there are so many returning guests to the cottage, we were considering when we could return before we left. It is the whole package that is so attractive; the location of the cottage is ideal if you enjoy breathing in and out with the tides, the wildlife and the weather; the cottage itself is well and thoughtfully equipped and very comfortable. Not having a TV is an added attraction, it just means you spend even more time with the camera and binoculars. Being able to walk from the cottage without taking the car is great, allow extra time as most locals like to stand and chat which is also nice. The east and west beaches are wonderful, as is the walk on to the machair and the west beach via Loch Bhrusda which is a personal favourite. The Berneray Shop and Bistro is excellent, the Wee Cottage Kitchen too and Namara is a must. And finally the seat at the gable end of the Cottage at dawn with a cup of coffee is just perfect.”

Alan and Julia, April 2022

“We’ve been to the Outer Hebrides and Berneray many times now, but this was our first out-of-season visit.  Initially booked for Easter 2020, COVID meant a couple of reschedules which Hilary and Anna were very flexible and understanding about, and in the end we decided to go in December rather than wait until 2022 – and what a great decision that was!  Miles and miles of sandy beach all to ourselves and only a short walk from our front door, a well-stocked local shop and cafe offering warm baked potatoes for lunch filled with the freshest of crab meat, and then the day was topped off with a evening in the most comfortable well-furbished of cottages with a roaring wood burner; a glass of wine; and a great in-house DVD collection!  Exactly what we needed after a very challenging 18 months
Our stay at the cottage gave us everything we needed, space to relax and unwind, plenty of fresh air and good walking and a warm and cosy place to return to at the end of each day. When the weather was changeable, which it often was, it was lovely to stay in the warm cottage enjoying the books, doing my crafts and spending time enjoying the views across the bay. I would highly recommend Berneray Cottage.”
Stephen and Ross, December 2021
“We had a wonderful stay on Berneray. The silence was really affecting and the calm and comfort of your beautiful cottage soothed us.
We loved having absolutely nothing particular to do and nowhere to be. A walk could take all day or just an hour; utterly refreshing to let the day take us.
The view from the window was arresting and the light… I now get what artists mean about light!
We quickly stopped pointing out seals as they were such flirts and were always there, splashing around for attention. I even managed to catch sight of an otter from the window, in my slippers with a glass of wine in my hand!
A stay at 30 Backhill should be available on prescription. After 18 months of using phrases such as: ‘pandemic’, ‘virus’, ‘deaths’, ‘isolation’, ‘furlough’… to have a change of vocabulary was transforming. I relished using, ‘bothy’, ‘machair’, ‘croft’, ’causeway’, ‘marram’ etc.
I bought some wool from Meg at Birlinn and have finished my hat as a perfect souvenir.
Thank you so much for the treats we were delighted to find in the fridge and I can honestly say there wasn’t a single thing missing from the cottage inventory for our needs.
The books in the cottage were so special and I got stuck in, with Kathleen Jamie being my author-of-choice for the week. Everything at the house spoke of generosity and the love of this place.
We would love to return and really appreciate your kind offer of a discount for fans of Backhill. It was worth the wait.”
Kerry and Jon September 2021

“It was our third visit to this lovely cottage and it did not disappoint. As soon as we walked in we relaxed and soaked up the views in the ever changing light. The location on the sheltered side of Bays Loch is hard to beat in a cottage that is very well appointed, warm and comfortable. The furnishings reflect the island heritage and there is a wealth of books to while away the hours if the weather is inclement, on Hebridean life, natural history, fiction.
On our first day we made the mistake of going out in the rain, heading for a beach that should have been sheltered, but by the time we got there, the wind had changed and we were walking into the full force of the weather, at Queen’s Beach.
Suffice it to say I had to wring out both pairs of my socks afterwards.
It was our first visit with our dog, Ruby, 11 months old today. She had a fantastic holiday, swimming, exploring on the rocks at low tide and rooting through the long grass on the banks, all this just in the garden. East and West beaches were almost deserted as was Clachan Sands so she could run in and out of the sea, until we were worn out.
We saw a Golden Eagle on the headland between Queens Beach and West Beach and also from the coast road on North Uist going in the direction of Sollas.
This time we couldn’t eat out because of leaving Ruby, but the local shop was more than adequate for our needs. Everyone was very friendly and helpful.
I bought some local Hebridean wool from Birlin Yarns, the red roofed house round the bend with the black sheep, to knit squares for a throw, there’s a good discount just now.
Our week came to an end all too quickly.
There is something different and special about living on a small Island and we hope to be able to make our fourth visit.”

John and Antonia, September 2021

“Thank you for a great place to stay and place to visit.  The cottage is fantastic, very comfortable and with everything you need.  The welcome pack was appreciated particularly the smoked salmon pate – I brought some home with me.

We did a lot of walking mostly locally.  The beaches are just fabulous.  Interesting to see the local croft farming.  Good birds, nice to see lots of Golden Plovers, waders and seabirds – lots of Gannets.  Sadly, no Eagles.  I did see a Minke whale on the crossing from Skye.  I took my moth trap up and did a couple of nights moth trapping and had a number of moths that we don’t get locally including a nationally scarce one that is described as uncommon on the Outer Hebrides – the Chestnut Coloured Carpet.

We had fish & chips and pizza from the Bistro and a lovely meal on Thursday night.  By far the best meal we had in Scotland during the whole trip!

And both ferry crossings were very smooth!”

Miles and Ruth, September 2021

“We loved your cottage, and would thoroughly recommend it as a ‘prefect get-away’ for a holiday. It is luxurious yet homely. So much thought has gone into making it easy to live there, that you feel immediately relaxed. The cottage blends with the setting of Berneray, which is itself unique. The facilities are excellent and the furnishing is carefully and beautifully designed, harmonising with the setting. We will certainly return! Many thanks.”

Anon, November 2019

“The cottage at Backhill in Berneray was exceptionally good. Right on the shore and meticulously restored, it was everything we had hoped for and more. We hope to stay again before too long and would recommend it to anyone looking for a luxury break in a superb island location.”

Geoff and Liz, November 2019

“After our recent 7 night stay in your wonderful thatched cottage on the island of Berneray, I can confirm that it is in a beautiful location right next to the sea, with great views and seals basking on the rocks close by. The property is maintained to a very high standard with Harris tweed cushions and curtains as well. We really enjoyed our stay in this cottage and would not hesitate to recommend it. The island itself has two of the best beaches anywhere in Scotland, with fantastic lighting for those of us who love landscape photography. We hope to return soon.”

Graham and Sylvia, October 2019

“Coming to 30 Backhill for the third time in 5 years shows how much we like it. The cottage is a holiday home of the highest quality situated just feet away from the waters of the bay with its colony of seals providing daily viewing pleasure. Wake up to the sound of the sea literally on your doorstep.  Berneray is a lovely island with walks from the door as well as easy access to the Lochmaddy Arts Centre, Museum and cafe ,the Co-op at Solas and the RSPB reserve at Balranald. The beaches on Berneray are spectacular, the  machair is rich in flowers and birds, and the excellent shop and Bistro on the island means you don’t have to go anywhere else. It was good to meet Hilary this time and to learn more about the island from her. We hope to be back again next year.”

Rosemary and John, June 2019

“Our third visit to this wonderful cottage, it was good to see that the cottage had not changed apart from the useful addition of the heated towel rail in the bathroom. The rooms were immaculate, carefully furnished with quality like the Harris Tweed and the super kingsize bed is still the comfiest in the land, all just to our liking. The weather was very kind to us, it was dry and sunny all week with a cool easterly breeze – the west beach was the warmest place. Due to the weather we did not have to leave the island for the duration, we walked all around and the wildlife did not disappoint. As well as the seals we saw dolphins, golden eagles and sea eagles, numerous other species including a snow bunting. After the walk, the return to the cottage is just as rewarding, cook a stew, light the peat stove, put your feet up and stare over the water to the Isle of Skye, and if it’s clear, the snow capped Cuillin mountains. On the way home before we caught the ferry, as recommended in the visitors book, we tried the Monkfish Scampi at the Westford Inn, which was delicious as was the Isle of Skye ale. It was a shame to leave, as it was a real tonic to unwind, and we would love to return next year. Thank you.”

Nathan and Suzanne, April 2019

Walking into the cottage was like returning home. We spent much of the time just enjoying the view and seal watching. Our most energetic activity was walking on West Beach, top priority on our list, braving the wind but we were so lucky with the weather – sunshine every day.”
Barry and Marilyn, March 2019

“30 Backhill is a wonderful place to stay…tastefully renovated and beautifully decorated throughout.  The luxury furnishings, beautiful artwork and fabulous collection of books and maps add to the whole experience.  Every morning when we woke to see seals playing just a stone’s throw away in the bay we felt incredibly privileged to be staying in such a fantastic place.  Would definitely stay again.  Thank you.”

Sally, October 2018

“Our week in your delightful cottage on Berneray was the highlight of our Scottish trip.  Backhill surpassed our expectations and we loved every moment of our time there.  The cottage provides everything you could possibly need.  Many thanks for the bottle of Prosecco and delicious pate and biscuits, which provided a wonderful start to our holiday.  We felt very much at home from the moment we arrived.  The views from the cottage were breath-taking, and we spent many happy hours watching the seals so close to us.  Everyone on the island was so friendly, and it was great to meet Billy who was extremely helpful.  The island itself is simply magical.  Berneray Bistro was excellent – food delicious,  and we were also fortunate to be entertained each evening we were there by a beautiful short-eared owl who came to visit!  We would not hesitate to recommend 30 Backhill to anyone, and indeed have already done so to a number of our friends.  It is five stars across the board.  We hope very much to return and perhaps stay longer.”

Roger and Trish, September 2018

“I had a delightful week in the Berneray cottage with the extra surprise on finding the oatcakes, pate & Prosecco in the fridge when I arrived.  The cottage was beautifully appointed, warm and comfortable.  The weather was mixed … well it was August in Scotland!  But it did not stop me having many enjoyable walks around Berneray and also one visit to Clachan Sanda on North Uist.  The seals were regular as clockwork arriving on the rocks as the tide ebbed and I still can hardly believe how close to the cottage they were.  I also had great evening meals at the Berneray Bistro (Monday to Friday) and the staff were very helpful and friendly.  Although I have been to the Western Isles on many occasions, this was my first visit to Berneray and I am so glad that I made the visit and that I found your cottage.”

John, August 2018

“We have now arrived home and our week in your beautiful cottage is a happy memory. The weather wasn’t kind to us but it really didn’t matter too much. The location, the cottage and all the scenery couldn’t be spoiled by drizzly weather, all were stunning.

You have a very comfortable and beautifully appointed cottage there. It was amazing to sit at the window and see the sea and the seals coming and going. As you warned the binoculars were a real temptation to just see what was going on. We were very impressed with the size of the bed and how comfortable it was, I was reluctant to move when the weather outside was a little gloomy!

As we drove to the ferry on Saturday morning at 6 o’clock we found deer waiting for us on the side of the road. A wonderful parting memory. It was only in the queue at Lochmaddy we realised that we had been so busy looking that neither of us had taken any photos! Ah well, you can’t take the memories away and I think we finally stopped waving to other drivers on the M8 around Glasgow!

Thank you again for the use of your beautiful cottage and we would love to return sometime.”

Helen and Richard, July 2018

“Perfect! Superb accommodation for two.  Magnificent views out of the windows. Thoughtfully and tastefully appointed.  Good selection of books and music. Loved it.”

David, June 2018

“Holiday finished and back to reality with a big bang! Your cottage is beautiful and in a superb location. You were right about looking out the windows. Every window had a different picture even the best ever from the toilet. Unbelievable. Haha! We both had the best time and were happy to meet Billy and Ann who were very welcoming. Lovely touch on arrival with some goodies. We would certainly have no hesitation in recommending your unique gem of a Blackhouse. Thanks so much.”

Angela and Joe Logue, June 2018

“Our stay in the cottage was fantastic. Everything was perfect! Once the mild wet weather cleared we had some amazing sunny days, cool easterly winds but clear, always seems to favour NW Scotland. Very lucky! The weather was so good we did not leave the island for the entire duration, preferring to wander around the island rather than drive anywhere. Some good wildlife too. We did not book our return ferry as we left our  plans open. We ended up going to Stornoway and across to Ullapool on the way home, as this was the only available ferry to book. Nice to see Harris and Lewis. Stopped in Ullapool and saw some amazing scenery on the way back through the Highlands.  An excellent trip, we will definitely be back.”

Nathan and Suzanne, West Yorkshire, March 2018

“We’ve had SUCH a lovely holiday! It was lovely to spend time in your second home, and the cottage was just beyond all our expectations, so cosy and comfortable. We loved the fact that it was so close to the sea. Thank you for suggesting the special music and poetry events and it was a treat to meet your Berneray and North Uist friends. The weather in the second part of our week was more mixed but it didn’t stop us getting out and about and when the sun came out on our last day, we just felt so lucky to be enjoying Berneray and East beach in the sunshine.”
Ann and Kathy, Shropshire, March 2018
“We just wanted to drop you a note to say that we had an absolutely lovely stay at the cottage and on Berneray. The cottage is so lovely and cosy and we had the absolute luck of having two or three days of bright sunshine, so much that we got sunburnt on our walk along the West beach.
We really loved our stay and will be coming back to the Hebrides again and again!”
Philip B, February 2018

“Beautiful cottage in super location, the owner and the housekeeper both are very friendly and helpful, nice place to calm down , perfect beaches to discover maritime wildlife!”

Ulrike, November 2017

“If you are looking for a base to explore the Outer Hebrides, Backhill Cottage should be on anyone’s shortlist and it is only a short walk from the Berneray ferry and a 20 minute drive from the ferry terminal in Lochmaddy. First impressions surpassed all our expectations – especially the location – only metres from the sea, which is perfect for bird, seal and otter spotting, and there was something very restful about tuning into the rise and fall of the tides. The cottage is really well laid out for 2 people and incredibly cosy and tastefully decorated – the stove that was set for our arrival didn’t have to be lit in the week we spent there. The massive bed with a sea view was special as was the power shower that set us up for each day. We arrived to find chilled prosecco and nibbles in the fridge – a gesture much appreciated. The bookshelves are full of guides, maps and literature which complement the island experience. The beaches on Berneray and the neighbouring islands are up there with the best in the world and we spent a lot of time exploring the dunes, surf and rockpools – the closest only a short walk from the cottage.
As seasoned cottage renters we could find absolutely nothing to fault about Backhill Cottage and would thoroughly recommend it to anyone looking for accommodation on the islands.”
Colin, October 2017
“We were there at the end of September 2017. The cottage itself is delightful and beautifully furnished. The bed is very wide and very comfortable ~ the views of the sunrise from the bedroom window were exquisite. Watching the seals from inside or out in the garden was a wonderful experience. Walking on either East or West beach with our dog exported us to other parts of the world – the beaches are so very beautiful! At times it was very windy and so to be tucked up inside listening to the elements was a special pleasure. We found the people on the island very friendly, offering us suggestions on walks and places to visit. Altogether a holiday which will stay with us, giving us wonderful memories.”
Pat and Janet, Shropshire, September 2017
“Enjoyed the stay and while it’s our third time on the islands, we’ve never stayed on Berneray before and glad we did. Otters, seals, red-throated divers all from the sitting room window. Hen Harriers on the way to the Co-op! The house has a Lobster wind-vane!”
Chris, September 2017
“Well equipped, very comfortable and fantastic views from the lounge.” Maria, August 2017
“30 Backhill is the most wonderful cottage I have ever stayed in. It has everything you could want or need, windows that look over a seal colony, and is a walk away from some of the most beautiful beaches in the Hebrides. It was almost impossible to leave and I’ll be booking my next stay as soon as possible!”
August 2017
“The house is sitting right on the water’s edge in the most peaceful location. Everything inside is top quality with lots of local art work and Hebridean touches. The biggest bed we have ever slept in with lovely duvet and sheets. We wouldn’t change a thing about it – a cosy home from home. The house was spotlessly clean when we arrived and beautifully maintained. We were very lucky to see the Island in wonderful sunshine and spent every day walking and biking in the fabulous countryside. The 2 beaches are perfect and almost deserted. If you are looking for a quiet holiday then this is the place for you.”
Anne M, July 2017

“This was our third visit to Berneray, and to this beautiful cottage. Only a short drive from the ferry at Lochmaddy the property is set in a lovely location, very close to a rocky shore and you can watch the seals from the living room window!

The owners were extremely helpful and responsive during the booking process, very pleasant to deal with, and keen to ensure that we enjoyed our holiday. The cottage is furnished to a very high standard, is in excellent condition and was spotlessly clean. There are lots of Harris tweed accessories (rugs, curtains, cushions) and lovely Denby crockery. I’m a keen cook, and the kitchen had everything I needed. The bedroom is beautiful – lovely crisp white bed linen and a very comfortable bed.

For colder days there is a lovely log burning stove, two very comfy sofas and a fantastic selection of books.

The cottage is very well situated for exploring Berneray’s beaches – East Beach can be reached on foot and West Beach is a short drive away. West Beach is especially lovely. On North Uist there are further beaches – we especially liked Clachan Sands. There is a great array of wildlife – great for birdwatchers and those, like me, who love wildflowers. We had great weather and spent at least half of our days on the beaches – and even came away with a tan!

Berneray has a little local museum located just along the road from the cottage, a small (but perfect) craft shop (The Coral Box) situated at the harbour and a well-stocked grocery (Ardmaree Stores) – with a cafe attached. In Lochmaddy the arts centre – Taigh Chearsabhagh – is excellent. We saw two great exhibitions there, and also looked at some of the archive material. It has a nice little shop and cafe too.

Staying at 30 Backhill is a wonderful, relaxing experience – the cottage is luxurious and a joy to stay in. You won’t be disappointed!”

Jane A, July 2017

“Beautiful, cosy renovated black house on the lovely, peaceful island of Berneray. As mentioned previously, photos don’t do it justice! We spent the week with binoculars glued to our eyes as we watched the seals and local bird life. Only regret was we didn’t see any otters…..maybe next time!”

Edinburgh, June 2017

“This cottage was perfect. It has been renovated with taste and attention to detail, relaxation and comfort. Huge bed, great bathroom, serious shower. It is also prepared for the new arrivals to a very high standard, spankingly clean, with nice touches such as candles, fire ready to be lit, storage heaters on so it’s warm as you walk in. If the tide is in in the morning it is like waking up on board ship, you look out of the bedroom window and just see water, it is that close to the sea. When the tide is out, there are always seals on the rocks just a few metres away. Views from the garden seat to Skye and Harris. Simply wonderful.”

Jill D, May 2017

“Superb cottage in an idyllic setting overlooking the sea. Beautifully furnished and well equipped, as well as spotlessly clean throughout. Very warm and cosy inside. Excellent beach walks nearby. Seals bask on the rocks in front of the cottage, and bird life is also abundant. We found Berneray a very friendly island. Cottage owners Hilary and Anna were extremely helpful and well organised. Would highly recommend this cottage.”

Gordon G, Edinburgh, April 2017

“This was an excellent cottage to explore Berneray and North Uist. We were extremely comfortable in the cottage and enjoyed long evenings in the warmth of the stove which meant it was warm and cosy when we woke. The cottage was spotless and is well maintained and we did not want for anything. We did not have a need to contact the housekeeper as all was good.

We spent many an hour watching the seals or bird spotting from the window with the field binoculars. The maps and abundance of books were excellent and helpful. We were pleased to have a bike cover for our bikes.

We loved walking the West Beach loop where we spotted the otter and the Udal Peninsula where we saw a Gyr Falcon and Golden Eagles were seen on a number of our outings.

All information from owners was helpful and very prompt and we felt welcome in their second home.

The Ardmaree Stores was well stocked and friendly and for local seafaring Hebridean wool we would recommend The Birlinn Yarn Company.

We would not hesitate to recommend.”

Alison, March 2017

“Wonderful cottage right at the water’s edge. The property was immaculate, very well equipped with all the facilities you need for a wonderful relaxing holiday. It was also very warm and snug in the evenings. Berneray is a lovely island , the West Beach magnificent and the seal colony kept us entertained for hours. We will be returning soon!”

Hazel, September 2016

“Great property with a perfect location. Finished to a very high standard, very well maintained and a super comfortable bed. Good comms with owners for a couple of queries early on. Seals and wildlife, literally right outside living room windows, provided fascinating daily viewing. Local tea room very good and ferry terminal to Harris and Lewis only a mile away. The beaches of Berneray take some beating with 3 miles of the West beach the best I’ve ever seen! Would thoroughly recommend this property and location.”

Mike, September 2016

“This is a fantastic cottage in a beautiful location. The views of the sea and the sky from the windows are amazing. It is such a wonderfully comfy place, full of interesting books about local history and wildlife so that even a rainy day feels like a treat. The scenery is stunningly beautiful. I didn’t know such turquoise sea existed in Britain! Thank you for the most relaxing holiday we’ve ever had.”

August 2016

“We had a wonderful holiday in Berneray not least because of this truly extraordinary cottage. The house sits right by the sea, so much so, that gazing out of the windows from the living room sofa, you could easily imagine you were on a boat. We have never visited somewhere that so instantly felt like home, although our home doesn’t have seals swimming outside the window and Oyster Catchers swooping over the garden.

The house is clean and tidy, beautifully laid out and has all the modern facilities you need, but without losing the charm of the old stone thatched cottage. The bed is very large and comfortable, the shower hot and powerful and the cottage is well supplied with books and maps to let you adventure from the comfy sofa or head outside to explore. Berneray itself is a treasure, with long empty, white sandy beaches and clear blue seas. We loved our holiday and wish we had decided to stay longer. We will be back.”

Rob, Shropshire, July 2016

“Very comfortable and well-appointed. Wonderfully comfortable big bed, Harris tweed themed furnishings; user-friendly general layout; everything works well (including hot water); best view from a bathroom ever! Finest collection of books, guides and maps we’ve ever seen in self-catering accommodation. The property is very clean and well-maintained by Ann who lives nearby and is friendly and sociable. All booking arrangements were accurate, prompt and easy to use. We’re already recommending a stay at the property to family, friends and work colleagues. We’ve added some local trips to the good list available in the property; there’s plenty to see and do whatever the weather and time of year. Landscape exploration and wildlife watching are superb. Good cafes and restaurants and local sources of fresh food for self-catering – especially seafood.”

Nic, May 2016

“The cottage is old style outside but very comfortable and warm inside. Everything was tops; from the extremely comfortable mega kingsize bed to constant hot water whenever it was needed.

It is in a great situation for easy access and parking. And superb for seal watching and bird watching. We spotted a Great Northern Diver from the lounge window and plenty of red shank flitting about among the rocks….I just caught sight of an otter slipping into the water one morning; from the lounge window again.

There are plenty of walks not far away, over the flowering machair with interesting historical sites en route. And of course, the 3 mile west beach is iconic.

We thoroughly enjoyed our stay and would recommend this delightful little gem on Berneray.

Hopefully, we will be back sometime!”

Christine B, May 2016

“This is a peach of a property, in an amazing location right next to the sea in a sheltered bay.

It’s lovely to look out on the seals basking nearby on the rocks at low tide.

The cottage itself is beautiful and extremely well appointed and equipped. Get the log burner roaring and just sit back and listen to absolutely nothing, it’s heavenly.”

Nick B, April 2016

“Every detail of the cottage and its contents makes you feel welcome & cared for, the seal watching is as addictive as promised, the surrounding area is wild and beautiful, beaches as deserted and incredible as in the photos. Everything you could ask for on a holiday ( well if you think that sun is optional!). We had a really lovely week and feel refreshed and ready for real life again. Thank you.”

Andrew and Susie M, April 2016

“Located by the sea, what a lovely view to wake up to! Comfortable, well equipped, with all the pleasures of Berneray and North Uist on the doorstep. Highly recommended.”

Simon R, April 2016

“What a beautiful cottage this is. The pictures are great but to see it in real life is just that bit better. The owners had thought of everything. There was plenty of linen and towels with laundry facilities, entertainment, reading materials, internet access and just the most amazing view from the cottage windows. We totally switched off from our normally busy working life and went for daily long walks around the island. The locals are so friendly and welcoming and always wave when passing you. We decided to extend our stay a few extra days as we didn’t want it to end. We contacted Hilary by email and nothing was any trouble for her to respond to. We will definitely be back and have and will continue to recommended to friends and relatives.”

Simon P, February, 2016