GOING FORWARD WITH HEATHERLEA - updated 31 July 2020
We are pleased to announce that Mountview Hotel has earned the accreditation 'We're Good to Go', and is ready to welcome guests. Our home in beautiful Nethy Bridge, will re-open on Monday 3 August, and will initially at least, be for the exclusive use of our resident clients. Read our detailed precautions for both hotel and field operations. We will initially open for B&B only, though from Saturday 15 August will begin ‘Self-drive’ short breaks including all meals, and expect to recommence minibus tours from Saturday 29 August. Welcome back to Scotland's wide-open spaces!
In Scotland, Heatherlea have a wealth of holiday choice both here at Mountview and around the Highlands and Islands, and we are currently planning to run all scheduled departures. Until further notice, our minibuses will carry a maximum of five passengers each, with everyone guaranteed a free seat next to them. Please contact us for up-to-the-minute status on any departure. Read the detail in our latest ENews, or go directly to our 'Self-Drive', ‘Short Breaks’ and ‘Birders Blast’ pages to see our ‘welcome back’ special prices!
As many of you know, our Hotel is small and very private, and we will keep the building secure for our clients by closing our Restaurant to non-residents, until the end of August at the earliest. With three large public rooms, and extensive COVID precautions in place, we intend to keep our clients and staff as safe as we possibly can. We are also in contact with partner hotels throughout the region to extend this service wherever you travel with us.
If you are booked on a tour here in Scotland during 2020, please continue as normal unless we contact you. This means you should make your balance payment when due, and rest assured if we need to cancel, then your money will be protected 100% by either re-allocation or refund. Should you be unable to attend a UK holiday which has not been cancelled by Heatherlea, our normal terms and conditions will apply, though we will be sympathetic and try to reallocate your booking if we can. You may be able to claim back our cancellation charge from your insurer.
We are now in the process of cancelling all overseas tours for the remainder of 2020. Please be patient as we work through the passenger lists. Again, your money is fully protected.
Looking forward to 2021 and beyond - NEW BROCHURE!
Our brand new 2021/22 Brochure is now available online, and 'new horizons and old favourites’ is our theme. We feel it important to show all our clients that Heatherlea mean business despite the current crisis, and we are ready and willing to run holidays around the world. As situations develop we will of course be flexible, and if any tour is cancelled by ourselves for any reason, you will be entitled to a full refund our transfer to another departure. In Scotland, some island trips are already full, and many 'Mainland’ holidays based at Mountview Hotel are also close to capacity. Availability is limited, as we know you will understand. Also, with the help of our local agents and friends across the world, we have developed new practices to modernise for the ‘new normal’, this is a vitally important development to the Heatherlea service.
To summarise the key points:
* Should we feel that a tour is at risk before your balance payment is due, we will contact you to chat through the options.
* If we have to cancel a tour due to FCO Travel Advice, we will either refund you in full within 14 days, or transfer to a different departure. This applies to all tours, anywhere in the world. (Please note that if you choose to cancel your holiday before we officially cancel a tour, our booking conditions will apply, though you may be able to claim back our cancellation charge from your insurer).
* For holidays in 2022 or later, you can book any tour without paying any deposit. When the holiday is one year ahead, or earlier should it become full, you will be invited to pay a deposit in the normal way to secure your place on the tour.
NEW! The HEATHERLEA Five-Year Holiday Planner
Our clients are planning ahead more than ever before. To help, we are delighted to introduce our ‘Five-year Holiday Planner’ (available late-August). This allows you to construct a personal forward diary of Heatherlea holidays, which you can then reserve without initial obligation for those more than one year ahead.
Additions, changes and developments to the Planner will be advised every month, so you are fully up to date. Remember, for holidays over one year ahead you may reserve your place without deposit, and as the holiday approaches we will keep in touch before you pay your balance.
Our 2021/22 Brochure is now available electronically, just click here to see a copy. Heatherlea fully intend to forge into the future stronger than ever, and we look forward to taking you birding again!
Kevin, Caryl and all the Heatherlea Team
Mr Jonny Pott
With deep sadness, I have to report the passing of our dear friend and much-loved Heatherlea Guide, Jonny Pott. Jonny died peacefully in Raigmore Hospital, Inverness, late on the evening of Thursday 16 April, with his family around him.
Jonny had been suffering for some time with an incurable condition which he bore bravely and with great dignity. His optimism for life never departed, and even when retiring from Heatherlea on health grounds earlier this year, his only thought was to return in some role where he could be involved with wildlife and our clients. Very sadly, this was not to be.
My heartfelt sympathies to his family, and to all friends in the wider Heatherlea family, many of whom had known and loved Jonny for years.
Sustained by his strong religious faith, Jonny was an inspiration, not least to those who joined him in enjoyment of our wonderful Scottish natural history. His tales, good humour, and caring personality will always be remembered by everyone who knew him. Jonny was committed to many good works, and his effort for the poor in Haiti is worthy of mention on this saddest of days.
Jonny Pott was perhaps the kindest and most humane person I have ever met. I am privileged to have known him.
Kevin Shaw, 17 April 2020
Welcome to Heatherlea, your natural destination for wildlife!
Birding & Wildlife Holidays in Scotland and Worldwide
Heatherlea are your natural choice! We specialise in friendly holidays to see birds and mammals in the wild. Our fully inclusive tours include comfortable en-suite hotel accommodation, all food, transport and the services of top quality experienced Leaders. Everything you need!
We have recently launched all our dates and destinations for 2021 holidays, with many exciting new tours in both the UK and further afield. Read all about our tours on this website, and please also see our new 2020/21 Brochure!
Click here to read our 2020/21 Brochure, all holidays now booking!