Media Release: Islay Youth Hostel gets gold

AS gold medal fever sweeps the country, the island of Islay has its own gold winner.

Its flagship Youth Hostel in Port Charlotte has been awarded gold in the Green Tourism Business Scheme Award.

The accolade is in recognition of the new Green initiatives put in place there.

Initiatives at Port Charlotte Youth Hostel include comprehensive green information for guests, a good waste management system and reuse of different materials.

The Youth Hostel has low energy lighting and guests are encouraged to use public transport.

This achievement can be accredited to Karl and Lorna who manage Port Charlotte Youth Hostel. Both are very aware of environmental issues and are committed to working as sustainably as possible.

Their commitment was also recognised by VisitScotland when last year the Youth Hostel was promoted from a three-star to a four-star VisitScotland graded Youth Hostel.

Appealing to a wide-ranging market, boosted by the attractions of outdoor adventure activities on Islay, Port Charlotte Youth Hostel is also doing its bit to educate travellers about making green choices from a young age.

Karl Wollinger, manager of Port Charlotte Youth Hostel, said: “We are absolutely delighted that Port Charlotte has won this award.

“With its beautiful beaches, wildlife and opportunities for outdoor adventure, Islay is a wonderful island to explore and a great destination for sustainable travelling.

“Almost half of our guests arrive without a car, and it’s a joy to get around the island by foot, bike or using public transport.

“Respect for the environment has been part of the ethos of hostelling long before the term ‘Green’ was invented.

“Here at Port Charlotte Hostel, we work closely with Re-Jig who greatly support us in re-cycling and re-using  as much as we can, thereby encouraging visitors to do the same.

“Carbon Savings at Islay Energy Trust is also advising us on ways that we can reduce the Youth Hostel’s carbon footprint.”

Feedback reveals guests value the eco-initiatives and the importance of travelling in a way that is sustainable, and more people are discovering how friendly and fun Youth Hostel holidays can be.

SYHA Hostelling Scotland is a registered charity dedicated to providing affordable, quality accommodation across Scotland.

The charity is committed to promoting the social, environmental and educational benefits of hostelling to all, from families to retired people, couples to groups of friends.

Port Charlotte Youth Hostel is open until 21st October this year.

Visit for information or to book on line


Contact: Roanna Laverty Tel: 01786 891400 Email:

Notes to editors:

SYHA is an 81 year-old charity which provides youth hostelling accommodation for the education, health and wellbeing of people in Scotland and beyond.

SYHA currently has a network of around 65 Youth Hostels, including 25 independently-run affiliate hostels.

As a not-for-profit organisation, any income generated from the provision of youth hostelling is invested back into the network of Youth Hostels in Scotland.

SYHA is open to all and offers free membership to young people under the age of 16 along with those in full time education.

We are part of the Hostelling International Network which offers affordable and accessible opportunities to visit locations in 80 countries across the world.

SYHA hosts on average 500,000 guests annually bringing people to Scotland from all over the world.

VisitScotland estimates that SYHA contributes over £24m pa to the local tourism economy.

The charity’s Youth Hostels serve most of the country’s most desirable destinations, from key urban locations to breath-taking rural areas, including some of Scotland’s most remote, and enticing, beauty spots.

SYHA Hostelling Scotland is part of the VisitScotland Hostel Quality Assurance Scheme and the largest participant in the Green Tourism Business Scheme in Scotland.

MEDIA RELEASE posted by SYHA Hostelling Scotland. You too can post media releases (aka press releases) on For more information, email here.

Contact: Roanna Laverty
Phone: 07759299475