The ultimate off-grid hutting and camping retreat – in an amazing location in the Cairngorms National Park.
Lazy Duck Hostel Nethy Bridge Inverness-shire PH25 3ED 0131 618 6198
If you want quirky cool elemental living then the Lazy Duck is the place for you – just a short drive from Aviemore, with a variety of accommodation options that includes a waterside lodge, an eco-cabin, a lambing bothy and even a funky small hostel-cum-bunkhouse, as well as four tent-only pitches for camping purists. It's a compact, friendly site, covering 6 acres: hulking Scottish pines soar all around while the Cairngorms provide an epic backdrop. The name, incidentally, comes from the resident Aylesbury ducks - just spend a few minutes watching them round the pond and you'll see why!
The Lambing Bothy, Woodman's Hut and The Duck's Nest each sleep two people in romantic seclusion – the Hut is completely off-grid, with just candles and some low-level battery-powered lighting, the Bothy and Nest have limted mains supply - and all three have wood-burning stoves for warmth! The hostel hut sleeps 8 and is similarly basic, but perfect for groups of friends or extended families looking to kick back for a while and enjoy nature. Linen and towels provided in the cabins, as are logs for the wood-burners; in the hostel there are sleeping bags but no towels. There is fresh water and use of a fridge-freezer – and if you just can't do without the outside world, there is a phone-charging point and limited internet access too. There are the hammocks in the heather, a Tarzan swing made out of an old boat buoy, a wood-fired hot tub soothed by essential oils, an infra-red sauna with chill-out tunes and a private, warm-water bush shower each for the campground and huts - a brave attempt to bring a small slice of the Outback to the Highlands.
As for things to do, the site is close to the long-distance Speyside Way in Nethy Bridge, and also to the year-round delights of Aviemore; there are mountains and walks in all directions, and a hotel lounge bar within walking distance - plus lots of distilleries to visit if you want to travel that bit further afield. All in all it's pretty special; if there is a better place to enjoy a low-impact, slow living Highlands holiday, then we have yet to hear of it.
Organically evolved over four decades, these small scale, increasingly sustainable places to stay all have their own space in a six acre family homestead. Been active? Come home to slow living. Immersion in one of our range of elementally pristine accommodation, from a spot on our lightweight, 4 pitch campground, one of 3 cosy mountain huts for couples or our hut hostel, sleeping up to 8, is good for the soul. And our wood-fired hot tub and infra-red sauna are pretty popular with guests, too.
Our Favourite Spot
Each of our accommodation has its own unique charm - if you have trouble choosing then let us know and we can help you decide. One of our favourite spots on our six acres here has to be our welcoming bench at the duck pond. It's such a lovely thing to sit and watch the goings on on the pond, noticing the quirky interactions between species.
The local area
We are proud to be located in the heart of the Cairngorms National Park, an area of immense diversity and beauty in landscape and wildlife. When not chilling out back at the Duck, guests can choose from exploring the high peaks of the Cairngorm Plateau, the ancient Caledonian forest or join the Speyside Way, the long distance trail which follows the famous River Spey. Not to mention fishing, whisky distillery visits, reindeer trekking, zip lining, folk museum-ing and many more interesting attractions, as sedate or exhilarating as required.
Best local places to eat and drink
Ooh, we have a few favourite places to eat and drink around here. The Nethy House Cafe in the village is great for hot soup and cake, and the Mountview Hotel has great service and delicious dinners. Both within walking distance from here. In nearby Boat of Garten we love Anderson's Restaurant for its lovely atmosphere and amazing flavours (not forgetting the interesting ice cream flavours!). And in Grantown on Spey we are lucky to have High Street Merchants, an effortlessly elegant, modern coffee shop.
Why stay with us?
Come and be welcomed by our friendly team to our homestead in this ancient forest clearing. Leave your worries behind and let slow living soothe your soul and refresh your spirit.
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Places to eat & drink nearby
The Mountain Café
111 Grampian Rd Aviemore Inverness-Shire PH22 1RH
An iconic Aviemore café, particularly for outdoorsy types, serving cracking coffee, epic cakes and fantastic food, with a view of the Cairngorm peaks
Old Bridge Inn
Dalfaber Road Aviemore Perth & Kinross PH22 1PU
Traditional pub with live music, open fires and gourmet food.
Ben MacDui's Inn
72 Grampian Rd Aviemore Inverness-Shire PH22 1RH
New and very welcoming pub serving restaurant-quality food .
Things to see & do nearby
13 Allt Mor Aviemore PH22 1QQ
Classic tours in classic cars.
Dalfaber Industrial Estate Aviemore PH22 1ST
Craft brewery where 12 awesome ales are made in the shadow of the Cairngorms.
Stewart Mountain Skills
A mountaineering instructor who can equip you with the skills to explore the Cairngorms in any weather.
CairnGorm Mountain Resort
CairnGorm Mountain CairnGorm Ski Area Aviemore PH22 1RB
An all-year mountain resort offering snowsports, hill-walking and mountain-biking.
Cairngorm Reindeer Centre
Reindeer House Glenmore Aviemore Inverness-shire PH22 1QU
Hike with the UK's only free roaming reindeer herd.
Other Places to Stay Nearby
Eriskay Craig Na Gower Avenue Aviemore PH22 1RW
Cute and cosy glamping pods right in the heart of things in Aviemore.
Craig Na Gower Avenue Aviemore PH22 1RW
Good-value Aviemore B&B, tucked away in a quiet cul-de-sac in the centre of town
141 Grampian Road Aviemore PH22 1RP
Beautiful B&B close to the heart of Aviemore, with mega breakfasts and great hosts.
Find a bed in a place to sleep near you
- Getting Away from it All
- Something Different
Lazy Duck is on the Nethy Bridge–Tomintoul road, in the forest at the edge of the village – beside the Fhuarain burn & waterfowl ponds in a forest clearing homestead, looking south to the ‘northern corries’ of the Cairngorms in the heart of the National Park. From the centre of the village, find the Nethy Bridge Hotel and follow the Lazy Duck sign in the pub garden, pointing straight up the road to the village boundary.