… So, admittedly the term ‘wild camping’ is used inaccurately throughout this post. We decided that a swim may not be the safest idea. Wishing you continued happy travels in Old Smokey! The trail descends gently across open, grassy terrain but evolves into quite a steep, stair-assisted plummet in the middle. Great article! Have a wonderful time. Recently, we set out on an epic 12-day campervan road trip through some of the most beautiful regions in Scotland. We found the campsite prices in Cairngorms National Park to be a bit high when compared to the rest of the country. We had a full day of luxurious food planned (lunch at The Oyster Shed in Carbost, a tour of Talisker whiskey distillery, and dinner at the famed Three Chimneys – all stories to come in the next post! We didn’t get to go to Scotland when we were last there. Ok, I’m convinced!! This sounds like a wonderful trip and a great way to discover Scotland. Every person we told we were going to Skye said that we had to make sure to visit the Fairy Pools. Wild Camping Scotland . The lake looked just like the lake at the end of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, when Rey travels afar to a green and rocky island on a distant planet and finally finds [MC Ed. Butterfly Butterflies. The USB ports still run off of a back-up battery when the vehicle isn’t on, but we never really needed to charge our phones at night. Neist Point and the Promise of Flying Sheep. Maryport, United Kingdom We're visiting Skye at the start of April and Neist Point is on the list of places to see. There were camper vans parked in lots of the bays that are for passing even tents set up in passing bays. INCREDIBLE VIEWS – I think for us, our favorite benefit of wild camping was the incredible views we came upon during our stays, including Loch Morlich and the River Dee in Cairngorms National Park, along with our personal favorite- Neist Point on the Isle of Skye. So, there you have it! There were three structures on the bay – a house (pictured below) that seemed to be occupied judging by the few lights that were on, although there were no vehicles in sight and hardly any drive-able paths on which to travel to and from this house; an abandoned structure on the western rim of the bay; and what looked like a brand new bothy. ), and set out for the peak. Two other campervans/motorhomes were parked in the same area, but nowhere near our vehicle. The lighthouse itself is unmanned and owned by the Northern Lighthouse Board, built back in 1909 and fully automated since 1990. We planned on parking at the Peninsula of Elgol, but when we arrived we found out, just as you have, that there was no overnight parking. This individual further explained that the chemicals used in chemical toilets kill bacteria whereas a reticulated sewage system needs the bacteria to break down the sewage. Check out the video below! While wild camping at an overlook along Loch Carron, we went outside to photograph the stars and got much more than we expected. Locally, try Jann's Cakes in the village for breakfast and a great selection of home made cakes. Hopefully you were good and bundled! While the succession of waterfalls was beautiful, the photos we took of it don’t depict reality. There is a car park here and also places for wild camping… It’s an ideal base if you enjoy hill-walking and climbing or sea-kayaking. The weather didn’t stop us from getting out of the car, though it did prevent us from doing the full hike recommended by Walk Highlands. Hi there! This isn’t necessarily the case in other parts of the UK and Ireland, however, so do your research if you’re hoping to do some wild camping with Bunk Campers in those countries. When we arrived back at the campsite to cook dinner, the skies opened up and the winds began howling. There is a disabled persons toilet and shower. We decided to seize the opportunity for clear weather and try climbing Bla Bheinn (pronounced “Blaven”), a Black Cuillin peak in the east of Skye. Neist Point is fantastic. The second half of the trip was spent at my Uncle Andy and his partner Dorothy’s beautiful home on the southern tip of Skye, where we were welcomed by warmth, comfort, and incredible home cooked meals. These views caused our jaws to drop. which was situated right on the head of Loch Dunvegan, overlooking the loch and MacLeod’s Tables, two table-top mountains defining the northwest skyline. There was a single gannet in the Minch off Neist. From afar, we noticed a lake to the east and decided make our way over to explore the lake and enjoy our beers. Talisker Bay was stunning, but the storm had kicked up so much that we could barely stand still against the wind. Neist Point was our favorite! Arrive late, leave early, keep the noise down, and you shouldn’t have any problems. We packed our bags with day-hike necessities, including water, extra warm clothing, maps, and sustenance (bread, cheese, and nuts…and beer, of course – what’s a summit without a beer? Technically, our all-day parking privileges ran out at midnight, though we were prepared to put another £2 into the meter if need be. Even if it isn’t the season for the Northern Lights, these locations should be perfect for star gazing, provided you have clear skies! And there weren’t any other human beings in sight (just the way Mike likes it). That looks an awesome trip. How fun! Like the site at Sligachan, they don’t take advance bookings. The castle itself wasn’t much to write home about (this sounds absurd, but once you’ve lived in the UK for a while, a castle is a castle), but we enjoyed strolling around the gardens and taking advantage of the rare hour-long period of clear skies. ... Skye Camping and Caravanning Club Site, Situated near Portree and 14.1 miles away, as the crow flies from Neist Point. For our first night in the park, we found a spot right along Loch Morlich. Enjoy your summer in the UK. ... From Neist Point you could stay high from the car park and walk over the moorland to some incredible spots above the ocean. Late on Friday night we flew into Inverness, a small “city” on the northwest coast of Scotland, about two hours’ drive through the highlands from the center of Skye. Mike and I laughed, assuring her that we’d camped in blizzards and we’d be fine. We were pretty bummed since the forecast said it would be clear skies. Another awesome trip would be to do the same thing around the Wild Atlantic Way in Ireland. It completely worked out in our favor, because it was an amazing first night of wild camping, though you’ll have to keep reading to find out why! I love the concept of Wild Camping – living in Aus I see so many signs for ‘no overnight camping that it is refreshing that you can stop anywhere and bed down for the night – and even better you got to see the Northern Lights. Maybe it was simply because the weather was perfect the entire time we were there or maybe because it’s just that gorgeous! The site is terraced with pitches on grass amid banks of wild flowers. I was wondering if you had a location (maybe a pin point on google maps) for where you parked your car overnight when hiking to Camasunary Bay? This gas is also what powers the fridge on the evenings you are not hooked up to electricity at a campsite. Much of the structure was damaged, trash was strewn about, and creepiest of all: there was a human sized stuffed doll hanging in a noose, with some satanic red graffiti, “In God We Fail”. Since we were still getting to know the ins and outs of the campervan, we stayed at campsites for the first 5 nights. Prior to this adventure, we hadn’t heard much about wild camping, as it isn’t common practice in the States. The pools were teeming with people – hundreds of people. This basically didn’t stop for the next 48 hours. Wild camping (also known as free camping) basically means setting up camp away from an organized campsite. This error message is only visible to WordPress admins, Isle of Skye – Coffee, Oysters, Whiskey, and a Gourmet Meal (Part 2 of 3), https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/Camasunary+car+park/@57.1793341,-6.0651419,17.35z/data=!4m13!1m7!3m6!1s0x488c3ce98ccf5311:0xf7512e5487cc837d!2sCamasunary!3b1!8m2!3d57.194831!4d-6.114964!3m4!1s0x0:0x1878dd6264a86b76!8m2!3d57.1794445!4d-6.0633574. Sounds like you have a great itinerary planned out. Turns out it wasn’t the main house that was giving me the heebie jeebies. At any rate, there are many incredible road trips in Scotland, so I think it’s about time you had another campervan adventure!! Mike, the saint that he is, managed to cook our dinners on the camping stove while the sky dumped buckets of rain on him and I stayed warm and dry in the tent (seriously, he’s a saint, and I also think he didn’t want me to forever dislike camping so it was in his best interest to help me stay as warm and dry as possible). I considered it as a wild camping spot, (we'll just have 2 small tents) but was put off by the possibility of lots of other campers! For our second evening in Cairngorms, we secured an awesome parking spot overlooking the River Dee on the east side of the park. This parking area sits right off a road, but there was hardly any traffic in the evening. Cool, good to know about the app WikiCamps. Great web-space, We love “Wild Campervanning!” We have a self build Huge Sprinter van and often have a small canoe/Bike trailer in tow, we always find somewhere to park overnight and depart in the morning without leaving a trace of our existence ! It lies between the Black Cuillins and Loch Brittle beach and offers the feel of wild camping but with full facilities. Sadly, the general public and press have vilified our community to the point where some people have told us they are uncomfortable travelling in a motorhome, let alone wild camping. I have picked 2 up for our cameras. They each greeted us with friendly smiles as we passed, and I thought to myself, only in Scotland will volunteers go out to a trekking trail and happily move dirt from one side to the other just so others will enjoy their hikes. If you’re looking to rent a campervan/motorhome for your next camping adventure, Bunk Campers has pick-up locations in Edinburgh and Glasgow (Scotland), Dublin and Belfast (Ireland), and also in London (England). We passed by a few hikers at the very beginning of our journey, but otherwise didn’t see any other people for nearly a full 24-hours, which was of course heaven for Mike. Man, there is some gorgeous scenery there! I’m pretty sure it’s not widely accepted in the US where we’re from, so it was fun to be able to experience wild camping in beautiful Scotland! The Mumbles is where we spent our very first night ‘wild camping off-grid' in our motorhome. Nonetheless, there are still guidelines to adhere to. Spectacular sunsets here. SOLITUDE – I think more than saving money, the majority of wild campers choose to do so for the freedom and solitude that comes with parking (or pitching their tent) away from others in the great outdoors! So you know just how much we LOVE photographing the night sky, I will tell you that we planned our entire campervan trip around the phases of the moon in order to see the stars in the dark sky more clearly during a new moon. I also have a solar panel in case the sun comes out! Bookmarking this for when we spend a summer in the UK. Fortunately, the Bunk Campers vehicle we were in came equipped with two USB ports, so we were able to charge our cell phones during the day as we drove. While this news is fantastic, it also means that the peninsula is going to see a LOT more foot traffic as people hike to Brothers Point. (Kind of near where this photo was taken.) No heat, no toilets, etc!! Neist Point Lighthouse. And you simply MUST do some wild camping at Neist Point… one of our favorite memories to date. We checked into the Kinloch Campsite which was situated right on the head of Loch Dunvegan, overlooking the loch and MacLeod’s Tables, two table-top mountains defining the northwest skyline. Vanping! We spent the first half of the trip camping around the Cuillins [COO-linz], a harsh and dramatic volcanic mountain range that traipses across Skye from east to west, so we could experience Skye in its most raw form. We certainly apologize for our misunderstanding and for any misinformation we have provided. Ahhh, I would’ve been freezing in -4C!! What an amazing way to see Scotland – and hadn’t heard of Wild Camping before! Hopefully we’ve inspired you to do some wild camping on your next visit to Scotland! We encountered a group of people armed with hammers, shovels, and buckets, repairing and restoring a large portion of the path. The sun was just about to set behind the mountains when we arrived, so our timing was perfect! The Aero model we rented from Bunk Campers came equipped with everything we needed to survive a few nights of wild camping! Our Aero model campervan with Bunk Campers. With a choice of 3 set routes covering Storr, the Cuillin, and the Quiraing, as well as shorter DIY options. Want to know what else we did on our 12-day campervan adventure through Scotland? We’d like to thank Bunk Campers for providing us with a discounted campervan rental in exchange for this review. Seeing the Northern Lights was certainly an amazing addition! We simply showered on the nights we stayed at campsites and took sponge baths on the nights we wild camped. Wild Camping Scotland . Mike and I laughed, assuring her that we’d camped in blizzards and we’d be fine. We felt invigorated after our 2 night stay, having been the only tent there, with the company of a few passing camper vans. Looks like a fun trip. (Not a huge Star Wars fan?….I guess we can still be friends.) (Just be sure you’ve turned the gas off before driving.) The walking highlands website gives me a starting point location for the “Peninsula of Elgol” loop but it looks like there is no overnight parking allowed from your post. We woke up to blue skies and sun in Inverness in the morning, and saw that the weather was predicted to be similar on Skye. Skyewalker Hostel It struck us as odd how defined the tree-lines were. We’re certainly willing to admit our ignorance and pass along this helpful advice to our readers. My husband and I have already rented our campervan for our three week Scotland adventure September 2017. We are not the campervan company; just a couple who rented from Bunk Campers ourselves. The scenery was comprised of intensely vibrant blues and greens. Nice photos by the way! I suggested that we visit Dunvegan Castle after setting up camp, mostly because I wanted to take a photo of a Scottish castle for my friend’s eight year old daughter (mission accomplished). It's unique and one of these places where I could stay for hours just listening to the sound of the ocean and seeing the sun dip down below the horizon. We’ve been coming back to this concept of contradictions and extremes ourselves as we evolve in our travel habits. We are heading out of Inverness up to Orkney, back to Bonar Bridge for the Invercharron Games, over to Skye (we will DEFINITELY check out Neist Point!) Your van looks way more comfy than ours – although ours wasn’t bad just a bit cold during our adventure in New Zealand where the inside temperature reached a low of -4C one night…….brrrrr! Parking: spacious parking lot at the main spot. We appreciate the visitors who respectfully inform us of any falsities and provide us with corrected facts. Not having a pre-paid reservation at a campsite allowed us to stop for the night earlier than we had planned, so the next day we could continue along our route with better visibility. 51 45 6. We decided to drive a little ways down the road to another car park, and hike a few miles to Camasunary Bay. Gruinard Bay – We only stopped for lunch, but would totally wild camp here! Bluebell Flowers Blue. The gas is used for operating the stove top and oven and works just fine when you’re not plugged into electricity. Wish everyone would be as respectful, as to not give it a bad name, but not everyone is as conscientious as you. The contrast allowed us to appreciate each experience far more than if the whole week were dedicated to one or the other. Will I be able to take a shower and use the toilet? Sadly, no Star Wars characters appeared, but this was the first time that we really had a chance to sit still and appreciate that we were on.Freaking.Skye. I’d love to do another similar roadtrip and this looks amazing!!! We are vanping (I think it works!) Glenbrittle Campsite. It’s a lovely time to visit. An adult white-tailed eagle flew south past the tip of Neist Point. The great thing for us is, we always arrive late and leave early, so usually we cause no harm and it’s important to make sure we don’t give motorhomers a bad name ! Every year, Portugal, especially areas such as the Costa Vicentina, receive hundreds of people who exchange the comfort of a hotel for a caravan.. While our third day on Skye had been much less physically exerting, it had been none the worse for it. But as my friend Kyle pointed out later when I was telling him about our trip, it was probably a great mental exercise in appreciating the journey and not the destination. We’re very tall individuals! Honestly, it creeped me out to camp on the bay because the main house felt haunted to me (I know Mike is rolling his eyes again) [MC: Yep.]. The air was astonishingly crisp and smelled like moss and the sea. It is also a very good place for whale watching and catching a glimpse of porpoises and dolphins. for 11 days and I appreciate all the tips you have outlined here. What is the price out of season for a campervan 2 people from sky to north uist please. It’s such a beautiful country, I’ll have to pack up the kids and go wild camping soon . (We would eventually learn the moral of the story – listen to the local.). Hi there! Rome2rio makes travelling from Portree to Neist Point easy. The impressive view stretches across the ocean to the islands o… So, to answer the questions I know you all have about wild camping with a campervan/motorhome, here goes…. Who knows… maybe the Northern Lights will be out early and you’ll catch a glimpse! I hope this helps https://www.google.co.uk/maps/place/Camasunary+car+park/@57.1793341,-6.0651419,17.35z/data=!4m13!1m7!3m6!1s0x488c3ce98ccf5311:0xf7512e5487cc837d!2sCamasunary!3b1!8m2!3d57.194831!4d-6.114964!3m4!1s0x0:0x1878dd6264a86b76!8m2!3d57.1794445!4d-6.0633574, Your email address will not be published. The campervan looks cozy and quite comfortable. ADDENDUM: As mentioned at the beginning of this post, we’ve received quite a bit of feedback on this particular topic. So we set out with a map full of possible plans and plenty of flexibility, ready for an adventure! We hadn’t heard of wild camping either before we started to research ‘camping in Scotland’ to gear up for our campervan road trip! Billions of stars and Northern Lights over Loch Carron, Ok, so now that we’ve talked about the why and the where of wild camping, let’s talk about the how! I love it… it’ll catch on! 78 75 17. We set our bags down for a break in the hopes that the cloud cover might lift so that we could continue our climb. We need opposites. Our trip to Italy last year, for example, was extremely luxurious and out of the norm for us. Love your photos and really enjoyed watching your very inspiring video . Northern Lights as seen over Loch Carron in Stromeferry. My husband and I are planning a trip in two years and I just LOVE this!! Our first time wild camping near Loch Carron in Stromeferry. Now, it’s time for you to go start planning your very own road trip of a lifetime! As I signed us in for the next two nights, the cheery campsite owner asked if we were sure we would actually want to stay for two nights. 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