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Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance +44 (0) 800 917 5992
Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance +44 (0) 800 917 5992

Luxury Fisherman's Cottage in quiet Highland Village Location.

Bedrooms 3
Property type cottage
Minimum Stay 3 - 4 nights
Popular Features
  • Washing Machine
  • Internet
  • Parking


About the property

Cottage in Balintore, Tain, Easter Ross, Scottish Highlands - Minutes from Beautiful Blue Flag Beach, Harbour and Stunning Countryside

Our lovingly renovated Fisherman's cottage is in the picturesque village of Balintore, Easter Ross. 8 1/2 has been extended to offer luxury holiday accommodation. Situated in the historic centre of this Highland village, the cottage retains its original charm yet comes with modern facilities and offers a real Scottish Highland home from home. The cottage is located on a quiet side street and is an excellent place to relax while you explore the Highlands. The charming village pub and hotel are just a short walk away. Accommodation is on two floors and the property has views across the village to nearby Nigg hill. Outside, there is a large rear garden with lawn, barbecue and seating.

Christel Johnstone
Member since: 2011
Premier Partner

This partner has demonstrated and is committed to fast response times, the best rates, and a great guest experience.

Speaks English
Response time:
Within an hour
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
18 June, 2018

About Christel Johnstone

8 1/2 John Street is run by Christel Johnstone. Her husband, David, works away and renovated 8 1/2 over two years. David was born in the village of Balintore and met Christel when she owned one of the local hotels. They married several years ago and still live in the village.

Christel Johnstone purchased this cottage in 2010

Why Christel Johnstone chose Tain

Balintore is one of the Seaboard villages situated on the east coast of Ross-shire, in the Scottish Highlands.

Over looking the Moray Firth, Balintore was a traditional fishing village. The centrally located harbour is just a minutes walk from the house.

The peaceful village location offers essential amenities and is an ideal base for exploring the Highlands.

Although Easter Ross is a remote rural area the city of Inverness is only 40 minutes by car.

We have lived in Balintore for many years and love the area.

What makes this cottage unique

Centrally located in the picturesque village of Balintore, Easter Ross, 8 1/2 is a recently renovated fisherman's cottage, extended to offer 3 bedroom luxury holiday accommodation.

The cottage is situated in the centre of the village but is also minutes from the beach, harbour and open countryside.

The newly renovated and extended cottage offers the character of a traditional cottage with the convenience and luxury of contemporary fittings and design. There is full central heating, a modern kitchen and bathrooms.

After spending a day at the beach or on long country walks, take an evening stroll to the local pub for your nightcap and a chat before settling down in front of the log burning stove for a snooze.

8 1/2 is an ideal base for exploring the Highlands.

Guestbook comments from the owner

"Staying at 81/2 John St was like a home away from home. We had everything we needed and it was very comfortable. We will definitely return to Balintore and recommend this as a holiday home to anyone. Thank you Christel and David for making our stay so enjoyable." Chelsey Tunbridge, Kaitlyn Parrott, Kailah King and Kat Mercer, Perth, Western Australia. July 2011

"We spent so happy days in this house during the marriage of my sister. We also had so good sunny weather and a wedding ceremony at the lighthouse like in a fairy tale. We wish you many gentle guests in this house and that they spend as luck days here as us." - Gabriela and Robert Maettner, Ulm, Germany, August 2011.

"For the wonderful days which we spent here on the occasion of our daughter's wedding we would like to thank you dear David and dear Christel cordially." Mr & Mrs Maettner, Darmstadt, Germany, August 2011
Apr 2011
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Accommodation and facilities for this holiday cottage in Tain in Highland

Property Type:
  • cottage
  • Self-catering
House Rules:
  • Check-in: 16:00
  • /
  • Check-out: 10:00
  • Max. occupancy: 7
  • Min. age of primary renter: 21
  • Children welcome
  • Parties/events not allowed ...
  • Pets not allowed
  • Non smoking only ...
Location Type:
  • beach
  • near the sea
  • rural
  • village
  • waterfront
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Historic
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating ...
  • Internet ...
  • Iron & Board
  • Linens Provided ...
  • Living Room ...
  • Parking ...
  • Towels Provided ...
  • Tumble Dryer
  • Washing Machine
  • Wood Stove ...
  • Coffee Maker
  • Dishes & Utensils ...
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Kitchen ...
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items ...
  • Refrigerator
  • Hob
  • Toaster
  • Child's Highchair
  • Dining ...
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 8 people
  • 3 Bathrooms
  • Bathroom 1 - Toilet , Bath with Shower , Toilet, Basin and Double ended Bath with Hand-held shower.
    Shower room 2 - Toilet , Shower Enclosure , Toilet, Basin and Shower Enclosure
    Shower room 1 - Toilet , Shower Enclosure , En-suite with Toilet, Basin and Shower Enclosure
  • Ground floor - Fully tiled shower room with basin and WC. First floor - Large family bathroom with double ended bath with hand-held shower, wash basin and WC. Master en-suite fully tiled shower room with basin and WC.
  • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 7
  • Bedroom 2 - 1 Double Bed , 1 Single Bed , Travel Cot available.
    Bedroom 1 - 1 Large Double Bed , King Size Bed, Travel Cot available
    Bedroom 3 - 2 Single Bed
  • Description of sleeping capacity: Sleeps 2 to 7 Notes on bedrooms: Bedroom 1 Master suite with king size bed and en-suite shower,WC and basin. Flat-screen TV, views over village to open countryside. Bedroom 2 Spacious Family room with 1 double and 1 single bed - Flat screen TV, Garden view. Bedroom 3 Twin room with 2 single beds - Flat screen TV, Garden view
  • Books
  • DVD Player
  • Games
  • Television ...
  • Video Library
  • Golf ...
  • Garden
  • bay
  • churches
  • forests
  • museums
  • playground
  • restaurants
Leisure Activities:
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • golf
  • hiking
  • pier fishing
Notes on accommodation: Newly refurbished and extended fisherman's cottage upgraded to provide luxury accommodation for seven people. The property has all the comforts of home including a well fitted kitchen, a comfortable sitting room, TVs in all bedrooms, living room and kitchen. The bedrooms are newly carpeted, the kitchen and bathrooms have tiled floors and the sitting room and hallways have solid oak flooring. All essential household and kitchen equipment and accessories are provided for your stay. Picnic equipment is also provided for your day trips. There is roadside parking at the front of the property which is situated on a quiet side street. 8 1/2 John Street is run by Christel and David Johnstone. David was born in the village of Balintore and met Christel when she came to run the local hotel. They married several years ago and still live in the village. Children are very welcome. Out of courtesy for others we are unable to allow smoking in the property and we ask you not to bring pets. Outside: Outside, the cottage has a large shared rear garden with lawn and shrubs together with a seating area and BBQ. There is also a clothes line. The garden has wooden fencing but is not fully enclosed having pathways to the side of the house and from the bottom of the garden. There is a patio area with steps to the lawn. The garden is open and sunny. Utility Room: Washing machine, tumble dryer and freezer. Fitted units stainless steel sink / drainer, iron and ironing board, clothes airer, torch, vacuum cleaner, food mixer, baking tins and trays, cafetiere, cleaning equipment and materials. Picnic equipment. Cleaning / Towels / Linen / Maid service: Towels and linen will be provided (1 set per bed per week). Additional towels and bedding can be provided on request. Cleaning equipment and materials are provided. Please contact owner for details. Other: Large hallway with solid oak flooring and oak staircase to upper floor. Coat rack.


Wonderful! 4.9/5 -
(31 traveller reviews)

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Luxury Fisherman's Cottage in quiet Highland Village Location.
average rating of 4.935484 based on 32 reviews

Absolutely amazing Surpassing all expectations.

  • 5 of 5

This is by far the best property we have ever rented.It was perfect in every way.

  • Review Submitted: 21-May-2018
  • Date of Stay: May 2018
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
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Cottage looks small in the picture, but its like stepping into the TARDIS !

  • 5 of 5

Cristel greeted us for our 7 night stay in Balintore, she showed us around the house which is huge inside with all the items you require and a few more that my wife and I hadn't thought of. The area is a walkers delight with sandy beaches nearby and loads of places of interest in a 40 mile radius. We spent the day at Dunrobin Castle and thoroughly enjoyed the falconry show (highly recommended) The Balintore Inn is 5 minutes from the house and serves evening meals and has great selection of beers wines etc. The village Spar shop is well stocked if you require any last minute items, Spend an afternoon in Tain with supermarkets Tesco/Asda + petrol stations and visit Glasstorm see the glass being blown and they also have a shop with beautiful glass on sale. We will remember our week in Balintore fonldly and the friendliness of the locals. The only downside to our break was on the last couple of days the WI-FI crashed it turned out the BT had cut a wire that served the dwelling and it was no fault of Cristel, although it did not detract from our stay. I would score this property 10/10 and would recommend it for a break if you want to get away from it all ! Many thanks again Cristel for providing a fantastic stay.

  • Review Submitted: 17-Apr-2018
  • Date of Stay: April 2018
  • Source: Owners Direct, from HomeAway
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Perfect home away from Home

  • 5 of 5

Wonderful tardis of a cottage set in the Highlands that far exceeded our expectations!

3 big bedrooms, 2x big bathrooms and a great en-suite.

Massive, well stocked kitchen and utility room and a cosy living room with a log burning fire.

Owners were lovely and helpful, area was nice and quiet and literal 2 minute walk to the beach.

Only issue we had was the Wi-Fi wasn't working but this was down to BT (BT engineer admitted this to us) and the owners done their best to try and have it fixed in time for our arrival. Turned out to be a blessing as meant we weren't all stuck on our phones! :)

Will definitely look to return!!

  • Review Submitted: 08-Apr-2018
  • Date of Stay: March 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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You won't believe your eyes!! Perfect in every way possible! Immaculately clean! Perfect stay! ❤

  • 5 of 5

Luxury doesn't even describe this beautiful cottage. This home comes complete with everything you could ever possibly need while on vacation...heck it has more here than at my own home ! It is so much better than a 5 star hotel BY FAR. Plenty of room for us (family of 6 with 4 teenagers), cozy, comfortable, every amenity thought of in advance. We wanted for nothing while we were here. The scenery here was simply breath taking..words cannot do it justice. We are coming from Maryland in the United States, and could not have been more pleased with everything!! The town's people and neighbors were the loveliest, warmest people.

Christel is the consummate host, a kind, loving, warm person who goes above and beyond to make sure your vacation is one to remember! We will be taking a piece of Tain and Christel with us in our hearts back Home! We would NEVER STAY ANYWHERE ELSE and will be back next year!

Thank you so much for everything Christel! We love you!!! ❤

Fondest wishes... and see you next year,

The Priddy's

  • Review Submitted: 15-Mar-2018
  • Date of Stay: March 2018
  • Source: HomeAway
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A beautifully restored property with helpful owners in a lovely location!

  • 5 of 5

Three of us booked to stay over Christmas. We arrived to find the property festively decorated, including a lovely tree (and one or two treats besides). Christel made us very welcome and was on hand if we needed to ask any questions. The house has been beautifully restored to make it a warm, spacious and well-equipped home. Balintore has a busy Spar and a chemist with nearby Tain providing supermarkets and other facilities if needed. There is a lively inn just a few minutes away. Balintore and the surrounding area has much to offer by way of walks, scenery and history. We thoroughly recommend this property. Thanks Christel (and David) for making our stay over Christmas so pleasureable.

  • Review Submitted: 08-Jan-2018
  • Date of Stay: December 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Charming, well equipping home

  • 5 of 5

We loved staying here! The house was lovely and had everything we needed. The nearby beach was great - we saw dolphins on the first day. This was a great location for exploring north and exploring Inverness.

  • Review Submitted: 08-Aug-2017
  • Date of Stay: July 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Nearest Airport
45 Miles
Nearest Barpub
100 Metres
Balintore Inn
Nearest Golf
7 Miles
Nearest Train
7 Miles
Nearest Restaurant
7 Miles
Balintore Inn
Nearest Beach
100 Metres
Car: necessary


Sandy beaches less than 5 minutes walk from the cottage. There are also beaches at Nigg, (10 mins by car), and Portmahomack (15 mins by car). Further afield beaches can be found at Golspie (30 mins) and Dornoch (20 mins).


Balintore is 40 miles from Inverness airport, 36 miles from Inverness rail and bus station and 7 miles from Tain. Trains and buses are available from Inverness to Tain or Fearn (3 miles) and there is a local bus service from Tain to Balintore.


The cottage is in the village of Balintore. Hilton and Shandwick are villages adjoining to the north and south of Balintore and are easily reached on foot (approx 5-10 mins). Tain 7 miles. Portmahomack 6 miles. Dornoch 17 miles. Inverness is 36 miles.

Further Details:


Birdwatching - Good birdwatching at the RSPB nature reserve and hide at Nigg Bay (4 miles) star species include lapwing, redshank, pink-footed goose, widgeon and pintail. The area also has large colonies of sea birds, buzzards are a regular sight and red kites are now breeding in the area.

Cash machine - There is a cash machine in the village shop available during opening hours. There are also four major banks and 6, 24-hour cash machines in Tain.

Children very welcome.

Eating Out -Saint Duthus Hotel Tain – good pub grub (7 miles).

Greens Market Restaurant (7 miles away).

Grocery delivery - Tesco, Asda, and Lidl in Tain. Tesco and Asda Shop n Drop delivery available.

Pictish Trail - Balintore lies at the heart of the Highland Pictish Trail – The Clach a’ Charridh or Shandwick Stone is at the edge of the village and traditionally the stone of sorrows marks the place where the unbaptised infants of the village were buried. There is another stone in the Old Church at Nigg.

Post Office - There is a PO in the village.

Sculpture -Mermaid of the North and the Balintore Sculpture Park – see the 10ft bronze statue the ‘temptress on the shore’.

Walking - Coastal walks from Balintore extend several miles north to Rockfield and south to the North Sutor. Many more walks are available a short drive away including forest walks at Auldie Burn, Tain and Tain Hill.

Wildlife - Dolphin watching at Nigg with boat trips from Cromarty.

Day trips from Balintore.

Dornoch – beach, golf course, cathedral, museum, cafés and restaurants, Dornoch Jail Gifts – 25-minute drive.

Golspie – Dunrobin Castle and gardens, beach and forest walks – 50-minute drive.

West coast beaches and mountains – 1 hour 30 minute drive.

Orkney Islands – day sailings – 2-hour drive to ferry.

The Black Isle – dolphin watching cruises, golf course, wildlife farm, cross-country mountain biking trail – 40-minute drive

Inverness – Aqua-dome leisure pools, restaurants and live music pubs – 45-minute drive, shopping centre.


Prices & Availability

Prices for this holiday cottage in Tain, Scotland

Rental Basis:
per property
Owner accepts payment in:
Convert Currency
Rental Period Minimum Price Additional Nights Weekend Night Weekly Monthly Event Price
1 May 2018 - 30 Jun 2018
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
1 Jul 2018 - 9 Sep 2018
4 night minimum stay
for 4 nights
10 Sep 2018 - 30 Sep 2018
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
1 Oct 2018 - 31 Oct 2018
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
2018/19 Festive Season
19 Dec 2018 - 7 Jan 2019
4 night minimum stay
for 4 nights
My Standard Rate
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights

Additional pricing information

Fees No additional mandatory fees

Booking Notes:

See owners website for offers.
Your booking is secured with £100 deposit.
Full payment is expected 28 days before arrival and a refundable housekeeping deposit may be taken against possible damage and non-return of keys. Payment can be made by all major debit and credit cards via PayPal offering increased security to our clients.

Changeover Day:
Our usual changeover is Saturday and you would be expected to vacate the property by 10am. We can, however be flexible regarding changeover and will endeavor to accommodate your needs.

Bookings of less than 5 nights may incur a £30 Short Stay Cleaning supplement.
A Winter Heating supplement of £30 may be charged from 1st of November to the end of February

Notes on prices:
We aim to be flexible with our prices and encourage you to contact us with your requirements.
We welcome any number of visitors from 1 to 7. Ask us about possible discounts for partial occupancy.

Visit our website for full pricing details and Special Offers...

Owner's Cancellation Policy

  • 100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date.
  • Service Fee fully refunded on cancellations that qualify for 100% refund.
Ask Owner a Question