So, Scotland's your next destination? Prepare to hear bagpipes echoing through the glens and crashing waves kissing the shores of the Hebrides. Or, get ready for Edinburgh's lively pubs and comedy clubs, along with reams of medieval history. This guide is a handy accompaniment for when you're searching for cottages to rent in Scotland, with inspiring destination tips and some information of the various sorts of stays.

Scottish cottages to rent on the beach

The draws are strong on Scotland's coastline. Like Norway and the Faroes beyond it, this rock-studded land meets the sea in truly dramatic fashion. Cliffs dive straight down, while mountains rise up to face the waves, all encircled by pods of cetaceans. It's easy to see why cottages in these reaches are so popular.

Discover boltholes on the Isle of Skye

Skye's cottages are taken straight from former centuries. They stand firm against the lashing winds and storms that roll in off the Atlantic Ocean, their hardy shells glowing white under the rises of the craggy Cuillin Mountains. A pad by the water here is a treat for wildlife lovers, what with dolphins, seals and even the occasional orca gracing the currents.

Live by lighthouses on Lewis and Harris

You should find an abundance of Scottish cottages for rent on Lewis and Harris. A gem of the Outer Hebrides, it's both large and packed with jaw-dropping beaches. There's just something primeval about the way the slopes dip into the waves at Luskentyre and Seilebost on the south-west coast.

Venture to the Shetland Isles

The far-flung Shetland Isles might not be the easiest place to get to – they are almost midway between Scotland and Norway – but those who do take the overnight ferry are richly rewarded. A speckling of coastal cottages in remote corners put the sands of St Ninian's Isle or Yell on the menu. Leave your footprints on those and they're likely to be the only footprints around.

Where to get mountain cottages to rent in Scotland

It's impossible to speak about Scotland without mentioning the mountains. Raw and ancient, they might just be the feature that defines the country the most. Thankfully, many a rental cottage is primed for those eager to enjoy the Highlands, allowing pooches to come along and packing in bubbling Jacuzzi baths for when your done on the trails. Here are a few great places to look for them.

Self-catering cottages in Scotland's Cairngorms

This protected swathe of the soaring Grampian Mountains is where you'll find trekker-trodden Aviemore and the rare UK ski field of Glenshee. The rentals in these parts are a haven for hikers and mountain bikers. They are regularly dog-friendly and could even come with a few post-walk treats – think hot tubs and crackling fireplaces.

Scottish cottages near Loch Lomond

The waters of wide Loch Lomond are usually credited with marking the spot where the Lowlands give way to the Highlands. Better than that, they are surrounded by more rental homes than you can shake a haggis at, each a ticket to the countless 3,000-footer mountains that lurch in the surrounding national park.

A cottage in the Great Glen

The Great Glen is aptly named. It carves a deep trough through the Scottish Highlands, running from the city of Inverness in the north to Fort William down south. A rental home in this vast tract of peak-shrouded wilderness offers access to some truly challenging summits, not least of Ben Nevis – the tallest in the whole United Kingdom.

Different types of cottages to rent in Scotland

Before you book that Scottish escape, it's worth running through the variety of cottages that are on the menu in these parts. That should help you pinpoint the precise sort of stay you're, whether it be a luxury pad with a pool or a rustic dwelling shrouded by nature.

Uncover cheap cottages to rent in Scotland

If you're eager to save those Scottish pounds for whisky tasting and haggis, you should home in on value cottages. They tend to be compact and cosy, preferring to let the landscapes around them do the talking.

Find luxury cottages for rent in Scotland

After arduous treks up Ben Lomond and Ben Nevis, you might just deserve a slice of the high life. Cue a whole medley of deluxe Scottish cottages, which come with sprawling kitchen spaces, fire-warmed lounges and perhaps even a swimming pool.

City cottages in Edinburgh and beyond

It's not all rural getaways here. You can discover some elegant Georgian homes in the capital city – perfect for roaring on the rugby team in Murrayfield or glimpsing exotic critters in Edinburgh Zoo. Cottages in Glasgow are also a possibility. They open up to the winding River Clyde and all the grand Victorian spires that loom around it.