From time to time we need a place to retreat to in order to rest and reflect, free from pressure. Perhaps walk in calm and beautiful countryside, be fed and nurtured, maybe spend time with someone who will listen and help make sense of things that are happening in our lives.
This is what we offer here in Culrain, a small village in Sutherland in the Highlands of Scotland.
Balvaig is a lovely light-filled cottage on the edge of a forest, where you can walk by waterfalls up to a loch or wander on paths hearing only the song of the birds and running water and absorb the atmosphere of the woodland, amidst the grandeur of the Scottish Highlands. (N.B. the cottage also has a comfortable living room with a wood burning stove and relaxing views, available for use by retreat participants - though not shown on the Balvaig B&B website). Although we are in the Highlands, getting here is easy - there is a railway station less than a mile away and we can meet you there.
We tailor the retreats to suit you - anything from simple Bed and Board and time to yourself to a full programme including counselling, meditation, empowerment programmes and exploring creativity through photography. I also work with local artist, Louise Worthy, who can help you develop creativity in drawing and painting. We have also had musicians and writers benefit from our retreats.
The atmosphere here is friendly and informal, the food fairly simple but of high quality. We aim to keep our prices affordable.
Who ever you are, you are welcome here.
"I spent a delightful week on retreat at Balvaig Cottage with Sarah and her husband, who made me extremely welcome and took good care of me throughout. The house itself has a calming atmosphere, ideally suited to meditation and prayer, and the surrounding area is perfect for walks and communing with nature. The meals served were delicious, wholesome and healthy, and every effort was made to accommodate my dietary requirements. If you're looking for a small retreat centre, with a quiet, spiritual, atmosphere in a natural environment, this may well be for you; I can certainly recommend it."
"Thank you for treating me with such kindness and understanding at your unique retreat. It was excellent for me to retreat from "civilisation" to your lovely clean, ordered home. It has been awakening, energising, restful, interesting and freeing..."
"Balvaig cottage is a precious and wonderful place. It is a haven from the noise and stress of city life, and each time I return I feel energised and refreshed. I feel at one with nature here, the forests and lochs are simply breathtaking. It is a place where you can be alone and quiet, but I never feel alone, on the contrary I always feel a sense of positive energy and love radiating from all around. The local villages like Dornoch or Tain are also a joy to visit, the beauty of Dornoch Beach always takes my breath away!..."
"Sarah is a wonderful and kind host. Accomodation is simple, clean and more than adequate, what makes the place special is Sarah's empathic and open heartedness to all who come, be they a B&B guest or, like me, somebody on a retreat. And her ability to know really well how a person feels, several times I have been very grateful to her as we talk through a situation or problem that I have been dealing with, and always I find a new insight. Just in itself being the odd 600 miles away from said problem is a bonus, in a beautful natural environment, but there is something so amazing about Balvaig and Sarah that you can relax and truly find a way to release and detach from those issues...."
"Each time as I return home (even the train journey from Inverness to Culrain is brilliant and beautiful too) I reflect that a week there has given me space and time to be able to rest, relax and find a new and positive way to deal with the many stresses of city life. And to help me find my identity too!..."
"In short, for a creative, or anyone just wanting to get back to nature and to give themselves and some space and time, Balvaig Cottage is a wonderful place to do just that. It is simply a place I will always want to visit again and the place, and Sarah have helped me so much on my journey. I feel blessed to have been there!..."
"There are never enough hours in the day. At least that's how it usually feels to me. Here at Balvaig Cottage, time seems to expand, allowing me all the time that I need."
"The word retreat has connotations of withdrawal, hiding away, even losing or giving up in the face of defeat. At Balvaig, to retreat is to re-peatedly treat myself - to care, healing, comfort, empowerment, nourishment, rest and peace - in a most beautiful and tranquil setting - together with the warmth, wisdom, loving kindness and skills of therapist Sarah."
"This is a haven of peace, kindness, safety and natural beauty. I have enjoyed wonderful views, delicious and nourishing meals, walks in ancient woodland, easy yet stimulating conversation and all manner of relaxation and empowerment. There is no hurry, I'm free to savour, or revel in, each moment."
"It has been an adventure in self discovery and personal development. I've done lots of work yet felt no strain, only huge gain. I'm in awe of the whole experience. I keep catching myself thinking and exclaiming ... Wow!"
"I feel restored, replenished, revived, rested and relaxed. I won't go as far as to say that I feel reborn, but I do feel pretty darn fabulous."
For more information or to make a booking please contact me on 01549 421 210 or 07969 269 983, or email firstname.lastname@example.org, or use the enquiry form below.
"Balvaig is a wonderful place for a retreat-type break or if you are travelling alone. Sarah and her husband make you feel like part of the household - mealtimes are relaxed and flexible and you can also have your own space, but company when you need it. They are really accommodating and try hard to make sure you get what you want and need from your time away. A very peaceful and welcoming home-away-from-home. Thank you so much!"
View from the Living Room