Where to Stay in Scotland
Accommodation in Scotland will be your greatest expense. It ranges from hostels and cheaper Bed and Breakfasts (B&Bs) to upmarket hotels, many of which are converted castles and country mansions. If you'd like to stay in a Scottish castle as a paying guest of the owner, contact Scotts Castle Holidays, Tel. 0131-2297111, www.scottscastles.com
Tourist Information Centres will help find accommodation for you. They can recommend a place within your particular budget and give you the number to phone up and book yourself, or will book a room for you. Some offices charge a small fee (usually £1) for booking a room, while others ask you to pay a deposit of 10% which is deducted from your first night's bill. Most tourist offices also offer a Book-a-Bed-Ahead service, which reserves accommodation for you at your next destination. This costs £3 per booking and is particularly useful in July and August, or if you'll be arriving in a town late.
Note that single rooms are in short supply and many places are reluctant to let a double room to one person, even when they're not busy. Single rooms are usually more than the cost per person for a double room and in some cases cost the same as two people sharing a double room.