NO. 20 BOUTIQUE B&B | Helensburgh

It wasn’t easy finding this B&B.

Looking for a place to stay in Scotland proved to be the most difficult to the point of exasperation. It had to be beyond Glasgow or Edinburgh but couldn’t be too far from our previous accommodation in Cumbria to make the drive an endurance test – as well, it had to be as north in Scotland as possible without being too far from our next destination in York. It was just too much to balance especially considering there weren’t that many qualified places to stay, unlike in other regions like Kent or the Cotswold where there are more high-quality lodgings to choose from. When I saw No. 20 with its exceptional classification and decent price-quality I knew it was worth keeping track of, though I continued looking for other options. In the end after weeks of checking, the rooms at this Helensburgh B&B won out. The welcome tea and scones were a nice touch.

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Our host couple are both lively and restrained, eager to know our plans for the day, and are the most accommodating couple ready with advice on anything to do with Scotland. Our room on the top floor, a challenge for less able-bodied men with luggage, and despite a slight hot water challenge as well as a not completely functional toilet – the seat wouldn’t stay up and it was constantly pouring water into the reservoir – afforded a lot of privacy as it was the only room on the floor and with an en-suite at that.

Sadly, there isn’t much to do in Helensburgh town apart from some interesting dining options and as a base to see the Loch Lomond area and beyond. It’s a quiet neighborhood, though, and just the place for getting away – I haven’t seen what the other rooms look like in person but ours, with it’s cozy sitting nook facing the River Clyde estuary – with a USB plug nearby! – large bathroom, and rustic, earth-tone furniture was perfectly suitable for what we needed. As for the food, if breakfast is any indication, it’s delicious, and definitely perfected for this Instagram world we live in.

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