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House | 2 bedrooms | sleeps 4

Key Info
  • Beach / lakeside relaxation
  • Great for children of all ages
  • Car advised
  • Some pets are welcome - please contact the owner
  • Private garden


Built by the famed Scottish engineer and architect Thomas Telford in 1815, this former lock keeper's house stands proud on Neptune's Staircase, a stunning flight of eight locks on the Caledonian Canal. With superb views along the canal and across to Ben Nevis, it's a great base for four to explore the Scottish Highlands and Western Isles.

Telford House East is a semi-detached property which was restored by Scottish Canals in early 2012 and now provides high quality holiday accommodation in a sought after waterfront location.

To the left of the entrance is the well equipped kitchen which leads through to the comfortable sitting room, complete with a wood-burning stove. Also downstairs, there is a spacious family bathroom and a dining room with a grand bay window overlooking the canal. Upstairs there is a double bedroom and a twin bedroom. The front of the property has a lawned garden with outdoor furniture where guests can view the boats as they pass through the locks.

Turn your stay into a touring holiday through the Highlands by combining a short break at Telford House East with a stay at one of our cottages further North.

Size Sleeps up to 4, 2 bedrooms
Will consider Corporate bookings, Long term lets (over 1 month)
Access Car advised
Nearest travel links Nearest airport: Inverness Airport 119 km, Nearest railway: Fort William 2.5 km
Family friendly Great for children of all ages
Notes Some pets are welcome - please contact the owner, No smoking at this property

Features and Facilities

Luxuries Log fire, DVD player
General Central heating, TV, CD player
Standard Kettle, Toaster, Hair dryer
Utilities Clothes dryer, Cooker, Microwave, Fridge, Freezer, Washing machine
Rooms 2 bedrooms, 1 bathrooms of which 1 Family bathrooms
Furniture 1 Sofa beds, Double beds (1), Single beds (2), Cots (1), Dining seats for 6, Lounge seats for 4
Other Linen provided, Towels provided, High chair
Outdoors Private garden, BBQ
Access Parking

About this location

The Lochaber region

A route for a ship canal through the Great Glen was considered as early as 1726, but it was not until 1773-4 that it was surveyed for the same reasons, and by the same engineer, as the Crinan. Further plans were produced, but in assessing the wider problem of Highland emigration ('The Clearances') in 1801-2, Thomas Telford recommended that, as well as helping fishing, agriculture and industry, a canal would provide much-needed employment.

Work began in 1804 as a government initiative managed by a board of commissioners; uniquely amongst the Scottish canals, the Caledonian has always been a public venture. Experienced foremen (from the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct for example) were brought in to oversee the works but had to manage a local workforce absent during harvests and fisheries. This, coupled with rising costs and lack of funds, meant slow progress. In order to permit the largest ships the locks were 170 by 40ft (52 by 12 m) and 'clustered' to save money - thus the magnificent lock flights at Banavie (Neptune's Staircase), Fort Augustus and Muirtown (Inverness) were built.

As well as over 21 miles of man-made canal, Lochs Oich and Dochfour had to be deepened and, to assist the passage of masted vessels, swing bridges rather than draw-bridges were planned. The canal was finally opened in 1822 and although the Baltic Trade it was built to serve had already declined, it was of immediate benefit to the fishing industry. Journey times improved after the lock gates were mechanised in 1964-69 and cruise businesses have responded to interest in the Loch Ness Monster.

The Caledonian represents a triumph of British civil engineering innovation, is littered with iconic features and makes a significant contribution to the breath-taking landscape of the Great Glen. Its cultural significance should be regarded as being of international, not just national, importance.


Banavie is a couple of miles outside of Fort William, the 'Outdoor Capital of Scotland'.

Overlooking the spectacular Neptunes Staircase, this Thomas Telford-designed house affords all the luxuries a holidaymaker or tourist could ever want.

Use as a base for a Highland tour, or as aprt of your journey along the Great Glen Way

About the owner

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13 reviews Excellent 5/5

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Review 1-10 of 13

6 Dec 2014



A really cosy and comfortable place to stay. Nicely located right next to the historic Telford locks.… More

5 Nov 2014


"Great base for young family"

My wife and I and our 2 children, 5 and 3, enjoyed a great half term break here. Well located, clean, spacious and easy to find. Some nice touches included - log fire ready on arrival, tea and biscuit… More

1 Sep 2014


"Nice location, property needs updating."

We had a lovely week in the area, there is so much to do and see- a walk on the beach at Silver Sands near Morar is a must (about 45min drive away). Just across from the cottage is a bike hire place, a half day ride along the canal is wonderful and only cost £15. Glen Nevis is beautiful and if you make it to the top of Ben Nevis you are rewarded with stunning views all the way up.
Telford House East is warm, spacious and well equipped however it is not all of the house as shown in the picture, there is a second section currently being renovated for hire. The interior decor is tired and in need of refreshing, the furniture is an odd selection of this and that and we felt the whole property was in need of a deep clean and new flooring. However, if the weather is kind you will be happily occupied exploring this majestic area of western Scotland.

7 Jul 2014



Beautiful location - Ben Nevis was right out the living room window, as was Neptunes Staircase. Really great to watch the boats go up and down the lock system.Houe extremely comfortable and well appoi… More

27 May 2014



I have be meaning to write a review on this property for a while. Despite an unexpected start to our stay, the lady who runs this cottage went out of her way to sort the problem out and the cottage is… More

12 Jan 2014


"Cosy winter stay"

We loved the location of the cottage and enjoyed watching the boats travel along the canal. The views from the house were amazing, and it was a pleasure to wake up to these each morning. The location … More

16 Dec 2013


"fantastic place to stay"

This is a fantastic property with exceptional views of the hills and surrounding countryside ,you can just relax and watch the boats going up the canal from the window or go for a walk . the rooms are spacious ,kitchen has every thing you need for cooking ,as well as a washer dryer for those wet days out walking.
I would highly recommend a stay here

24 Nov 2013


"Amazing views"

We stayed here for a week in November when there was a brief dusting of snow. The view over Ben Nevis was out of this world, waking up to that everyday was something special. The cottage was well equi… More

16 Oct 2013


"Perfect location for an autumn break in Scotland"

We had a lovely break.Waking up to views of the Ben and boats making their way down Neptune's staircase just added to our experience.The cottage was well appointed and the decor suited the house.The wood burning stove was ideal for the time of year. I liked the fact that the fuel and heating were included in the price.
This was a great base for cycling and walking..
We hope to go back to this house in the future.

26 Aug 2013


"This is an absolute gem of a house and location all rolled into one."

We had the most fantastic time at Telford House East. Sitting at the dining table having breakfast, watching the boats negotiate Neptune's Staircase, with the breathtaking Ben Nevis and Aonach Mor as the backdrop – well, what can we say except it just couldn't get better! Seeing the Jacobite steam train pass over the river at the bottom of the canal locks each day was a bonus.

The welcome hamper was a wonderful touch, along with the flowers! Although we didn't need to light it, having the fire set was most welcoming too And it was all so immaculate! All these wee touches helped us feel right at home.

I think the nicest compliment we could give it would be to say that because we felt so at home we could have happily stayed for far longer. We will be back!

Review 1-10 of 13

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3 Nights min stay


Sleeps 4

    from £65 /night help

    Estimated nightly price based on a weekly stay. Excludes fees (if applicable). Enter your dates to see the total cost.


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    You're booking with

    Esther M.

    100% Response rate

    Calendar last updated:29 Mar 2015

    Based in United Kingdom

    Languages spoken
    • English

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