Littlehouse Media

An appetite for adventure in the North West Highlands

In celebration of Scotland’s Year of Stories 2022 and to promote sustainable active travel and food tourism through hostelling, Hostelling Scotland has again teamed up with The Adventure Syndicate for a bike and hostelling adventure of the North West Highlands, with some of the finest locally sourced food and drink Scotland has to offer at its heart.

From Monday 20 to Friday 24 June 2022, the 250-mile, two-wheeled hostel packing adventure will see Lee Craigie, Alice Lemkes, and Phillipa Battye from The Adventure Syndicate, a group of female adventurers and storytellers who promote mental and physical wellbeing through their outdoor endeavours, ride from Strathcarron in the south to Durness Smoo on Scotland’s north coast.  This specially chosen route features some of Scotland’s most remote and iconic sites, majestic landscapes, environment, and natural heritage.  The team is particularly looking forward to experiencing the remote Fisherfield traverse from Poolewe to Dundonell and the old drove road that bisects the Kenmore peninsula at Applecross.

Scotland’s world-class food and drink will take centre stage on this highland adventure. The Syndicate will move away from the busier tourist roads to explore the off-road trails of the North West Highlands, experiencing the best of Scotland’s natural larder as they go.  Each day the cyclists will visit some of the best local producers, community food hubs, cafes, and restaurants on the route. The top-quality, locally produced food collected on the go will be the source of their evening meals and will be prepared in the self-catering kitchens at Torridon, Gairloch Sands, Achmelvich Beach, and Durness Smoo Youth Hostels, their comfortable, affordable, and bike friendly accommodation on this journey. 

Hostelling Scotland and the Adventure Syndicate have also joined forces with Scotland-based writer, broadcaster, and food anthropologist Ghillie Basan.  Dubbed ‘The Original Spice Girl’ and ‘World Food Expert’ Ghillie has written 40 books on different culinary cultures, some of which have been nominated for the Glenfiddich Award, Guild of Food Writers Award, and the Cordon Bleu World Food Media Award.

With an extensive knowledge of leading food and drink producers in some of the remotest parts of Scotland, Ghillie has compiled a list for the Adventure Syndicate to visit each day.  As an occasional cyclist, Ghillie is joining the Syndicate on part of their journey and tackling the miles on an e-bike. Ghillie will stay with the team at Gairloch Sands, Achmelvich Beach and Durness Smoo Youth Hostels.  In the hostel kitchens, she will bring her love of food to life, demonstrating her cooking skills with some original and accessible recipes conjured up from the fresh produce the team has sourced each day.

In recognition of VisitScotland’s Year of Stories (2022) this journey of exploration and adventure, that has been designed, for the most part, for the amateur adventurer and food enthusiast to emulate, will be documented in a film to be released later this year. Produced by accomplished cycle filmmaker Maciek Tomiczek, together with Ghillie Basan’s son Zeki, the film will capture the true spirit of hostelling that has continued for more than 90 years – affordable and flexible accommodation, shared spaces, and shared experiences, discovering the real Scotland through sustainable active travel, and enjoying the benefits of being an integral part of the local community with access to world-class local food and drink on the doorstep.

This collaborative film project will not only be used to share The Adventure Syndicate’s travel and food experiences, it will also promote both positive mental health through outdoor adventure, activity and cycling, and inspire sustainable active travel and food tourism through the use of Hostelling Scotland’s accommodation network.

Margo Paterson, CEO of Hostelling Scotland, said: “Youth Hostels have long been associated with sustainable budget travel, offering a warm welcome, a sociable and informal atmosphere, and a comfortable bed for anyone looking to explore and discover all that Scotland has to offer, but they’re also an integral part of the local communities in which they operate.

“This adventure will bring together sustainable travel and adventure with locally sourced food and drink and the unique and informal hospitality that hostelling offers its guests. During the pandemic, the ability to self-cater was one of the core aspects of hostelling that was really missed by our guests so it’s fantastic to be able to showcase this key element of the hostelling experience.”

Lee Craigie from The Adventure Syndicate said: ‘We’re so excited about this trip! We often choose to travel by mountain bike in the wonderful north west of Scotland so we can spend more time in wild places and stay off busy roads.  However, we don’t always extend our adventuring mindset to the food and drink we experience along the way. Having Ghillie Basan to guide us and educate us on the excellence of local produce and the importance of buying local will add a very welcome dimension.

“As usual, having the warm, dry, affordable, welcoming, and midge-free Youth Hostels in which to cook at the end of the day will bring us all together to share stories and enjoy each other’s company. Perfect! ‘

Ghillie Basan said: “I feel honoured to be invited by this elite group of cyclists to join them on this trip and help to showcase some of the fabulous food producers and comfortable youth hostels along the way. I am also looking forward to the camaraderie that comes with travelling together, dipping into local communities, and sharing food, experiences, and stunning views. The trip will also give me the opportunity as one of Scotland’s Food Tourism Ambassadors to promote the importance of shopping local and learning about the local food and drink landscape.”


Media contact:

Paddy Cuthbert | Littlehouse Media | E: [email protected] | M: +44 (0)7913 951717

Images attached:

The Adventure Syndicate on their bikes in the Highlands and chilling at Torridon Youth Hostel

Notes to Editors:

The planned route (subject to change) can be viewed here:

Hostelling Scotland

Useful links:

Hostelling Scotland –

Hostelling Scotland on Twitter – #ourplaceisyours

Hostelling Scotland on Facebook –

Hostelling Scotland on Instagram –

Hostelling Scotland on LinkedIn –

Hostelling Scotland is a self-funding charity operating a network of nearly 60 exceptional youth and affiliate hostels for the benefit of all those wishing to learn and experience what Scotland has to offer. Their unique sites provide affordable, comfortable, safe and quality-assured accommodation with a warm friendly welcome, local knowledge, activities and services for guests travelling around Scotland.

Following a strategic review of the organisation, early in 2018, the much-loved hostelling accommodation provider is now known as Hostelling Scotland. The new identity follows on from extensive marketing research and reflects the organisation’s commitment to understanding the needs of its members, guests and employees as the modern face of Scottish Hostelling.  The name also more clearly indicates its representation of Hostelling International within Scotland.

Both the changes in trading name and logo highlight a commitment to ensuring Scotland’s leading hostelling organisation remains relevant in the modern context.

The Adventure Syndicate

Useful links:

Adventure Syndicate Website –

Instagram –

Twitter –

Facebook –

Adventure Syndicate Mission –

The Adventure Syndicate are a not-for-profit organisation made up of female adventurers and storytellers whose ambitious endurance endeavours inspire, encourage and enable others (especially women and girls) to adventure sustainably for the good of their health and happiness and that of the environment.

The Adventure Syndicate is led by Lee Craigie, the former British Mountain Bike champion, child therapist and the Active Nation Commissioner for Scotland

Ghillie Basan

Useful links:

Website –

Twitter –

Instagram –

“Ghillie Basan is an exceptionally talented individual and an unsung hero of the culinary world in Scotland and beyond. A gifted and prolific writer, cook, presenter, recipe developer, storyteller, tourism provider and so much more, she plays a key role in the country’s food, drink and tourism landscape.” Fiona Richmond, Head of Regional Food, Food and Drink Scotland

Full biography –

You Might Also Like

Media Advisory – Images – The Ultra Tour of Edinburgh

Scran Academy on ‘foodwill’ tour of Edinburgh

Lochaber community is pulling together to give Nevis Range a lift after lockdown!

Young people invited to collaborate in Muckin’ good summer festivals

Scottish Enduro Series confirms POC as headline sponsor for fifth year

World teams heading to Edinburgh for OVO Energy Tour of Britain

No Fuss for Kinlochleven, the UK’s only Enduro World Series Qualifier

‘Death Zone’ mountaineer, Nirmal Purja, to headline Fort William Mountain Festival 2020

Nevis Range to turn back the clock to 1989 to celebrate 30 years of adventure

Hostelling Scotland opens four summer youth hostels in 2018

Paul Merton Visits SYHA’s Loch Ossian Hostel – Paul Merton’s Secret Stations

Loch Ossian and Torridon Youth Hostels shortlisted in TGO Reader Awards

A new mucky duathlon for the Eliminator Weekender in Fife

Victory Over Japan Day 2020 – The Royal Scots commemorate their fallen comrades from the Far-East Conflict

Outdoor Capital Activities and Attractions Expo open for tourism business

Best seat in the house! Where to catch Stage 1 – The OVO Energy Tour of Britain

Jura, the Border Collie, trains to become the first Ski Patrol rescue dog at Nevis Range

Muckin’ good mountain bike events launched for 2016

Young volunteers wanted to run IRONKIDS Scotland running events

Fort William has all the Mòd cons

SYHA opens new summer youth hostel in Edinburgh

SYHA Hostelling Scotland – building Scottish hostelling for the future

Gold and Silver gongs for Torridon and Loch Ossian Youth Hostels in TGO Reader Awards

The Ultra Tour of Arran, a big draw for international adventure tourists

Cream O’ The Croft – far more than just a bike festival

Danny MacAskill launches video, ‘Danny Daycare’. Best ‘uncle’ ever?

Run Scotland on The Ultra Tour of Arran

Archibald urges Edinburgh locals to sign up for HSBC UK City Ride

No Fuss serve up a vindaloo of an off road bike festival

Edinburgh Mountain Film Festival 2018 – The Long Road To Adventure

Lochaber Ideas Week returns to Fort William after a two-year covid hiatus

Fort William Mountain Festival 2021 goes Covid-19 safe

Lochaber Tourism Day with Cal Mac – Debate, Engage, Network

Danny MacAskill is ‘Doing the Dubhs’

Dukes Weekender, a catalyst for Aberfoyle’s rise in gravel cycle tourism

Epic Halloween tale of ‘Ned vs Monster’ in the Outdoor Capital

New European partnership to upskill adventure tourism in five countries

Muckin’ good discounts for a muckin’ good 2019 event programme

Nevis Range is making it snow all season long!

IRONKIDS Scotland – 3,000 kids to take part in global running series

Elite mountain bike racer, Mikayla Parton, wins Youth Mountain Award

Go Swim Loch Lomond – a new open water event for Scotland

Three female adventurers to take on epic 1936 cycling trip

Halloween fancy dress mountain bike Enduro returns to Perth

VisitScotland’s Lord Thurso to deliver The Charles Kennedy Memorial Lecture

‘What would Mary do?’ at the Fort William Mountain Festival

Cameron McNeish wins 2018 Scottish Award for Excellence in Mountain Culture

UK’s first Team Enduro event comes to Comrie Croft, Perthshire

New Lochaber website aiming high

Big Biking October – two International bike events for the Outdoor Capital

Hostelling Scotland fully open for business after two years

Route announcement confirmed for HSBC City Ride in Edinburgh

Frazer Coupland appointed Chair of The Highland Tourism Partnership

Gravelfoyle – Gravel Cycling at the heart of Aberfoyle’s new tourism brand

SKI-AN-DURO, a new ski and mountain bike Enduro for Scotland

Finance and Economy Secretary, Kate Forbes, opens car park and off-grid toilets at Skye’s Iconic Fairy Pools

No Fuss add two International MTB events to 2018 programme

Developing for the future at Nevis Range!

Scran Café – Youth powered café launched by Scran Academy

Expose yourself the No Fuss way

Enduro World Series Qualifier, Kinlochleven – Race Report

Hostelling Scotland, a new brand identity unveiled

Nevis Range moving forward with interim CEO Rod Pashley

Are you hard enough to take on The Double Stalker?

New massed ultra running tour to challenge Edinburgh’s visitors

Immerse yourself in Lochaber Ideas Week 2019

#myoutdoorcapital – OCUK to put visitors firmly in the frame

A muckin’ great Audax, perfect for Cream o’ the Croft road cyclists

Mark Cavendish to return at the OVO Energy Tour of Britain

Planning on holidaying at home? Give hostelling a go!

New hydro scheme powers Scottish mountain resort

Sporting legend Gavin Hastings to inspire Lochaber at Ideas Week 2017

100th Birthday of Scottish World War 2 Defence of Dunkirk Veteran (Royal Scots)

Bikes. Dirt. Downhill. Bike Night at The Fort William Mountain Festival 2016

Huge demand for ultrarunner Jasmin Paris at Fort William Mountain Festival

Discover Scotland’s ‘Braw Buildings’ with Hostelling Scotland

Inspirational athlete and adventurer, Karen Darke, wins top mountain award

Re-Defining the age of adventure as the EMFF returns in February

300 Dutch adventurers to run, bike and kayak across Scotland

No Fuss running events given Compression boost in 2018

Edinburgh’s Electric Cycle Company has been supercharged

Media Advisory – Cancellation of The Mighty Deerstalker, Saturday 03 March 2018, The Scottish Borders

Media Advisory – UK’s highest Shinty match to promote tourism in Lochaber

The Falkirk Funduro 2017: mountain biking fun with two capital F’s

Do we hear Muckwedding Belles in Fife?

Dr Liz Cameron, Scotland’s voice of business, to headline women’s networking lunch

Winner covers 319km at The UK 24hr Mountain Bike Championships

‘A Meeting of Minds 2’ celebrates innovation in Scotland’s aquaculture sector

‘Connect To Your Adventure!’ – big success in just 7 weeks

People are at the heart of SYHA Hostelling Scotland!

The UK’s first waymarked gravel cycling trails opened near Aberfoyle

No Fuss partnerships lead the way for Scotland’s Enduro

IRONKIDS activity programmes promote healthy and active lifestyles – SUN, FUN, RUN!

Tour De Ben Nevis and and Ultra Marathon De Ben Nevis – Race Report

Hostelling Scotland begins phased opening of Youth Hostel network

Young ‘Fifers’ invited to collaborate in Eliminator Bike Festival

A Mucky Duathlon for the Eliminator Bike Festival in Fife

Competition Climber, Shauna Coxsey, wins Scottish Youth Ambassador Award

Cream o’ the Croft: three Muckin’ good family festivals rolled into one!

Business Community Programme launched for Lochaber Ideas Week 2018

SYHA Hostelling Scotland assist in a Recovery Version

Fife farm to be transformed for a family bike and outdoor festival

Fort William Mountain Festival back to a live, multi-venue event in 2022

Glen Nevis Youth Hostel re-opens after major redevelopment project

Coast to Coast – run, bike ride and kayak 105 miles across Scotland

Muckin’ good festive discounts on Muckmedden 2018 bike events

Dunkirk – The Untold Story of The Royal Scots

Enduro riders, prepare yourselves for a Highland Clan battle!

Entries open for SKI-AN-DURO, Scotland’s new ski and mountain bike Enduro

Danny MacAskill celebrates Edinburgh anniversary with Fringe debut at Circus Hub

Lochaber’s Nevis Range becomes an accredited Living Wage employer

SYHA’s Glasgow Metro youth hostel awarded 3 stars by VisitScotland

OATS in search of a Fairy Pool of staff

Run Scotland in two days with the new Ultra Tour of Arran

Up to 350 riders will take on the Fair City Enduro when it returns to Perth

Nevis Range, Scotland’s highest snowsports destination, open for business

Inverness Youth Hostel gets a fresh new look

Scran Academy reach 100,000 essential meals delivery milestone

Noel Williams wins 2019 Scottish Award for Excellence in Mountain Culture

Rob Cochrane wins 2019 Scottish Youth Award for Excellence in Mountain Culture

The Cream of Enduro will rise to the top at Comrie Croft

Fife farmland to host the new Eliminator MTB Weekender Festival

Visit Moray Speyside launches their biggest ever UK marketing campaign

Keith Legge, CEO of SYHA Hostelling Scotland, steps down after 13 years

Youth development key to Edinburgh Central’s 10th Anniversary

Fort William – the perfect cruise destination

Edinburgh’s Electric Cycle Company sees 80% rise in Lockdown sales

Nevis Range partner with Disability Snowsport UK for Winter 18/19

Figurehead environmental campaigner, Dave Morris, wins top mountain award

SYHA collaborates with Glasgow Caledonian University

Fair City Enduro – The UK’s Most Spectacular Mountain Bike Race

Young event assistants invited to join the IRONKIDS Scotland event team

Summer Youth Hostel Returns to Glasgow

Another Muckin’ great line-up of mountain bike events announced for 2017

The Fort William Mountain Festival 2018 – Celebrate the great outdoors

Lochaber’s ‘Connect to Your Adventure’ digital marketing campaign, a huge success

Nevis Range looks forward to reopening in July

Start your Highland biking adventure at the new Nevis Range Bike School

Edinburgh’s Electric Cycle Company is being supercharged

Millburn Academy ensures a warm welcome to Inverness Youth Hostel

Lochaber Tourism Summit 2019, a must-attend event for Highland tourism businesses

Scotland’s mountain bike Enduro World Series qualifier sold out in record time

Cyclists Get into Gear for Angus Cycling Festival

Nevis Range and Trek announce a partnership for 2018/19

National Funding Boost for Cream o’ the Croft and The Eliminator

Fair City Enduro Confirmed As Scotland’s Only Enduro World Series Qualifier

New look Edinburgh Central Youth Hostel, new era of hostelling in the Capital

Get your adventure challenge on with Project: Explore

A bit of ‘This and That’ for stunt riders Danny MacAskill and Kriss Kyle

Margo Paterson appointed as CEO of SYHA Hostelling Scotland

Elite Freestyle Skier, Kirsty Muir (17), wins Youth Mountain Award

Hostelling Scotland to temporarily close Youth Hostel network

OCUK unveil their new branded gondola at Nevis Range

The new Pentland Trail Centre – The future for Edinburgh biking

Nevis Range team up with Endura

Nevis Range and Trek renew commercial partnership for 2020/21

Alex Dowsett confirms return to OVO Energy Tour of Britain

Celebrating 90 years of Scottish hostelling

Becoming a Conscious Host: Carbon Neutrality and Beyond

Haggis from Scotland’s first free-range Haggis farm goes on sale in Lochaber

Media Advisory – 500 runners to tame Edinburgh with the inaugural Ultra Tour

Nevis Range and Trek renew commercial partnership for 2019/20

Hot water on tap for Loch Ossian Youth Hostel

The ultimate runners’ sightseeing tour of Edinburgh returns

Mountain Bikers Gear Up for a Fun Day’s Night in Falkirk

Changing times at Nevis Range Mountain Experience!

Muckin’ good news for two wheeled Early Birds

Scottish Climbing Instructor, Tim Miller, wins Youth Mountain Culture Award

Two Scottish youth hostels celebrate landmark anniversaries

SYHA appoints Lois Marshall as Youth & Volunteer Engagement Manager

SYHA partners with Ayrshire College for valuable volunteer experience

Top award for World renowned Scottish landscape photographer, Colin Prior

Geraint Thomas and Owain Doull return to OVO Energy Tour of Britain

It’s all about head to head bike racing at Fife’s Eliminator

Chris O’Brien appointed Destination Manager for the Outdoor Capital of the UK

POC headline sponsor for Scottish Enduro Series for sixth year