4 Quality Self-Catering / Vacation Rental Properties within easy reach of Edinburgh, Glasgow and Livingston 


With so many alternative local and regional attractions beckoning, a week at Crosswoodhill can race by without our guests putting a foot in a field!
But for an added-value holiday, why not set aside a little time to explore our 1800 acre livestock farm just outside the boundaries of the Pentland Hills Regional Park and see a little of what goes on?
From May to October our beef herd roam our hill. We have about 100 cattle with their calves. Watch them contentedly chewing the cud or, just sometimes, gazing despairingly heavenwards when their coats receive an unexpected soaking. At 1000 feet above sea-level and rising, we are just that little bit closer to heaven!

In wintertime, make the acquaintance of our cows and their gentleman friends at closer quarters. Cosseted under covered barns near to Steading Cottage and over the road from the Wing, they munch away happily on home-grown silage (pickled grass) and supplements. 

cows on farm
Tup on hillside Admire our hardy flock of 1000 or so ewes and rams (or "tups" as we call them in Scotland) which roam all-year-round over 700 hectares of hill. Wander our heather-clad hillsides, treading the criss-cross of paths created by our Blackfaces, Texel and Beltex breeds of sheep and wonder at their healthy life-style! Sheep with Lamb
Smile at the antics of new-born lambs gambolling in the fresh-green fields in the months of April and May, never far away from their mobile-milk-bar-mothers!
Grazing Cows
All year round, watch John our shepherd at work gathering or rounding up his flocks, on foot or astride his rough-terrain bike, his specially trained collie dogs never far away.

View seasonal activities like sheep-dipping, dosing, or wool-clipping up at the pens at Midcrosswood. Learn how it's done and marvel at the speed with which a sheep can lose its woolly fleece.

Watch the pleasure on young childrens' faces as they gaze in awe at our tractors and machinery. For a non-arable farm Crosswoodhill is quite mechanised.

Or perhaps you are more interested in birds, flora and fauna?

Pull on your boots and experience the serenity of our hill, the freshness of the air, that wonderful away-from-it-all feeling.

Picnic beside the burn ( Scottish for stream ) 

Stride out to the far-away summit of Craigengar (1700 feet), perhaps lingering a while at the small waterfall enroute. Or venture even further afield on the public footpaths which traverse the Pentland Hills (but if so, bring a compass with you; we can provide the map.)

Feel the silence. But don't be surprised to be startled by the sound of curlews, migrating geese overhead, or even the kowk-kok-kok-ok sudden sound of a grouse disturbed by your footfall in the heather. Buzzards and kestrels are regular visitors to our moors. And back at the Wing of Crosswoodhill Farmhouse, lots of garden birds, including the occasional woodpecker, come surprisingly close. As well as pheasants in the woods close by.

Approach our SSSI's with care (Our SSSI's are Sites of Special Scientific Interest designated by Scottish Natural Heritage to protect and preserve the unique varieties of sphagnum mosses and bog flowers to be found side by side in our often squelchy bogs. Glorious colours and patterns).

Newly gripped by a fascination for peat bogs? Explore one closer to the house where we have extracted fuel peat in the past. Jump and feel the earth move beneath you.

Hares, rabbits, foxes, badgers, squirrels - all can claim our EH55 8LP postcode. So, too, can the unwelcome midge at certain times of year.

Looking for something less energetic than a hill walk? Take a gentle evening stroll through our roadside fields. Maybe Mr. Mole will be covertly at work underground. More likely, you'll encounter some of the over-ground friendly work-force: farming partners Hew and G ( your hosts ) or our shepherd John and his sons.

Below are some frequently asked questions:

FAQ 1: Can we help on the farm? Sadly no, our farm insurance does not cover this. Nor does it permit guests riding on farm machinery or quad bikes, so please don't raise your children's expectations on this.

FAQ 2: Do you milk your cows? No, ours is a beef suckler herd, with each cow nursing a calf instead. What about hens, then? Do you have chickens at Crosswoodhill? Sadly no, much to the annoyance of resident Mr. Fox and his large entourage. But at least you won't be woken early in the morning by a cockerel!

Click here!  For a large image of mapFAQ 3: Do you have a map showing the farm boundaries? If you click on the thumbnail here, one will come up. ( scale 1:25,000 ). However please have patience, (perhaps let your imagination roam as the place names unfold) as the map will take a while to download. To return to this page afterwards, click on the back arrow button at the top left hand side of your screen.

Please note you will not see Steading Cottage, Orlege or Craigengar shown on the map. Steading is immediately to the left of Little Moss Plantation forming part of the cluster of buildings beside the road and Orlege is part of Crosswoodhill Farmhouse. Craigengar Lodge is in the field adjacent to Midcrosswood Cottage.

FAQ 4: What sort of footwear should we bring? If you bring waterproof boots with you, this extends the boundaries of where you can explore as parts of our land can be boggy even at the height of summer. Although we do offer a limited supply of Wellington boots rarely can we fit everyone in a party (we can however recommend a cheap farm supplier locally).

FAQ 5: You mean it rains in Scotland? Sadly more than we would like, so packing waterproof clothing also seems a good idea. Binoculars for bird-watchers are useful, too.

Farming is a way of life for us: we hope to share just a little of it
with you during your stay.

These Boots are made for Walking
Footnote!  These squeeze with ease into most car boots!

general information page

© Copyright Crosswoodhill Farm Holiday Cottages 2005
Tel. 01501 785205