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I thought that I would summarise my experience of the smaller sites in Northern Scotland. There are a relatively limited number of CLs in Scotland and they are decreasing, especially in the Highlands. I will give you our experiences as we have used some but often find that we use small, faily run commercial sites due to the lack of CLs. I will start at the South West and then go clockwise around the North Coast. The information is based on visits in the last 3 years. I have not bothered with CC sites as these are well described elsewhere and we rarely use them.

 

Corran Farm CL

Near Tarbert on the Argyll peninsula we've used the Corran Farm CL. Very basic CL but has beautiful views all round as it is on higher ground. Good place to explore down to Campbeltown and the Mull of Kintyre or go across on the ferry to the lovely little island of Gigha with beautiful gardens. Lovely beaches with great waves down the peninsula.

 

Highfeld Benderloch CL

For Oban we have stayed at the CL at Highfeld Benderloch. Very well maintained CL with 2 separate areas but it is about 10 miles to the North of Oban. When this has been full, and for more convenience we have used the small commercial Roseview site in a lovely valley location about a mile South of the town of Oban. This site's facilities are excellent and it has a small stream running down through the middle of the site. We use Oban as a base to catch the ferries to Mull, Tiree, Lishmore etc with our bikes. You can go to Tiree for a full day on a Thu.

 

Portnadoran CL

On the Road to the Isles (Fort William to Mallaig) we stay at a super small site at Arisaig which has access directly onto the beach. The site is Portnadoran where the facilities are a little bit tired but clean. It is cheaper than the nearby CL with more facilities. Stunning views, steam trains go through Arisaig station to Mallaig every day - the steam train is normally fully booked weeks ahead.

 

Dunvegan - Kinloch SItes

On Skye we have used the commercial sites at Dunvegan - Kinloch site (friendly owner, facilities were ok and stunning views across the water), Uig by the ferry to the Outer Hebrides (OK for a couple of nights) and Portree about a mile out of town - very busy site even early in the season but facilities were OK. The only CL on Skye is in a very remote part and we have not used it.

 

Invermoriston CL

In Apr 2009 we stayed at the CL under Highland, Invermoriston. It is located right on the road from Loch Ness to the Isle of Skye and it actually appears to be a small area of the old road that has been by-passed on the approach to Torgoyle Bridge: it is hidden from the road. It is a small CL with EHUs and all on hardstanding. We stayed for 4 nights but it seems to be used as a night stop by motorhomes on their way to and from Skye. We used it to cycle on the towpath along the Caledonian Canal and enjoyed the nearest small town of Fort Augustus where boats go up several locks from Loch Ness into the Caledonian Canal: nice pubs to sit and watch the boats go by.

 

Gairloch Caravan Park

For Gairloch in Sep 2009, we used the Gairloch Caravan Park - a small commercial site with views over the bay. Very handy for shops and local hotels and restaurants. This is a lovely part of the West Coast with the Inverewe Gardens nearby. Again lots of sandy beaches and some lovely walks.

 

Ardmair Point Caravan Site

When visiting Ullapool we have used the commercial site at Ardmair Point which is about 3 miles out of town but right by the sea with stunning views. The commercial site in town is level and very convenient for shops, restaurants etc but can be busy and noisy with tenters. There is a CL at Elphin about 10 miles to the North which is a little bit out in the countryside - the views from it are stunning as it is on the top of a small hill and surrounded by lovely mountains. It is very popular in season and has been full when we tried to use it.

 

Achmelvich and Clachtoll Caravan Sites

Further North near Lochinver, there are two commercial sites about 5 miles apart on beaches. These are at Achmelvich and Clachtoll. Both are in super locations and Clachtoll is very popular due to the excellent owners - wardens. They make you very welcome but you will be very lucky to get a EHU pitch once the Scottish schools start holidsys at the end of June. The approaches to both are about 5 miles down single track roads with passing places. Lovely, sandy beaches and some good walks including to the Old Man of Stoer.

 

Scourie Touring Park

The site at Scourie which we stayed at in early May 10 is in a super location. Mainly hardstanding for vans and motorhomes, there are 8 pitches that look straight out over the bay giving wonderful sunsets. The EHUs for these are only 8 amps and have a strange reset system switch - 14 amps further back on the site. Facilities are good with lots of hot water. Ideal location to take the ferry from nearby Tarbet and visit Handa Island to walk around seeing the masses of birds. It does not take reservations but the owner does not see this as a problem if you arrive soon after lunch as many visitors are touring motorhomes.

 

Kinlochbervie CL

Kinlochbervie has a CL with EHUs on top of a hill with stunning views over this large fishing harbour and the surrounding hills. The owner has dug out and levelled the pitches and I do not understand why the entry in CC book says levelling blocks required - maybe for slight adjustment. These individual pitches are relatively small but well spaced out and I think most of the customers are motorhomes - the rocks would make awning erection interesting. The road into Kinlochbervie is, surprisingly, twin track - the result of lots of fish lorries taking the catch South. If you have limited facilities in your van, there are showers (£1) and toilets at the Harbour Master's office.

We looked at the site when staying at Scourie and intend coming back in future to stay.

 

Sango Sands Camp Site

At Durness there is the Sango Sands camp site which again is in a spectacular setting, high above the beach from which it takes its name. Pitches are mainly hardstanding and shaped to make the most of the level ground. Shops and fuel in the village and you can take a short ferry ride and then a mini bus ride to visit Cape Wrath. Exciting, bumpy journey but worth it (£15-50 per person return for both ferry and bus in 2010) for the experience - small cafe at the Cape.

 

We have not stayed at sites along the rest of the North Coast or the far North East coast for some years and so will not comment.

 

Davohfin Farm CL

Coming down the East Coast at Dornoch, is a very nice CL at Davohfin Farm; good sized field behind the farm with EHUs. Lovely beaches at Dornoch and this is a great site to explore inland and see the salmon leaping at Shin Falls or the scenery around Lairg. Lots of birds to see in the estuaries.

 

Brahan EstateCL

The CL Brahan Estate under Dingwall is a basic CL. You simply park along a lovely avenue of old trees on the flatish areas between the trees with water etc at the Estate offices. Nice walks around the estate and along the river banks.

 

We have not used any of the CLs near Nairn as they are too close. Forres where I live in the last 3 years has been voted the most Beautiful Town in Scotland, won Britain in Bloom, and an Entente Florale Gold Medal representing the UK in the European Competition. There are a couple of sites nearby at Alves and Findhorn which is a lovely village on a beautiful bay.

 

FindochtyCaravan Park

Along the Moray Coast, we have stayed at the small commercial site at Findochty. This small site with good, clean facilities is by the harbour and looks out over the sea. A pub is at the entry and shops and other facilities are all in walking distance. The site is busy in season and normally full at weekends. There is a small CL on the hill above the town on the front lawn of a house. It has fabulous views out over the town ad the Moray Firth but we like to be by the sea and walk into the town.

 

Smithy Croft CL

At Fraserburgh, we have stayed at the CL Smithy Croft, Boyndie - field plus small hardstanding. Good location to visit NE beaches and small, old fishing ports and Fraserburgh has superb, prize winning lighthouse museum - the only one in the UK.

 

Backhill Farm CL

For Aberdeen, we have stayed at the CL at Backhill Farm a couple of times. It is up a very bumpy farm lane off a main road into Aberdeen; slighty sloping field on top of a hill with EHUs. We have only used it as a base to visit Aberdeen but it would be suitable for visits to Royal Deeside and the other countryside but I would rather stay somewhere up the valleys rather than near Aberdeen.

 

Quarry Hill CL (Adults Only)

In Perthshire we have stayed once at the CL under Blairgowrie at Quarry Hill. This is restricted to Adults and is on a hillside with nice views. It hss facilities and feels like a very small commercial site.

 

Monturpie CL

In April 2010, we had a super week in Fife staying at the CL at Monturpie listed under Fife, Upper Largo. This was an impressive CL with facilities you would expect on a full site, EHU, toilets, and shower (20p). The site was at the top of a hill so a bit breezy but with stunning views looking out across the Firth of Forth. The site sloped a little but was manageable. We had great weather and walked miles along the Fife Coastal Path visiting some very pretty small harbours and fishing villages of the East Neuk of Fife: prize winning fish and chips in Anstruther. The delightful university town of St Andrews (famous for golf I understand) is nearby and well worth a visit. We had a couple of days in Edinburgh by driving to Ferrytoll Park and Ride at the North side of the Forth Road Bridge where parking is free and taking the very frequent buses into Edinburgh (£4-70 adult return as I suspect you do not have a Scottish bus pass). Queensferry on the South side is well worth a visit to see both the Forth Road and Rail bridges.

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Thanks for your info, much appreciated and very useful, one of our favorites is on the Sound of Mull in Morven near Loch Aline Fiunary

 

Kevin

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Stayed at a few of those . .. but great to see some others.

 

We have stayed at Smithy Croft at Boyndie even although its only about 6 miles from our house . .. handy for a get away when we need to be close to home for family/school/church stuff.

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Excellent review, many thanks. We made our first trip to Scotland in 2008 and plan to return next year. This was all on Club sites (Bunree, Grummore, Culloden and Edinburgh) but this time we are looking for something a bit more remote and off the beaten track (although Grummore fits the bill of course). Will be consulting this again when the time comes.

 

GMC

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Posted (edited)

I must say that’s a fantastic overview of CLs in Scotland, Burstneraddict we will be planning our third trip to the Highlands next June and will find your notes very useful. Thank you for your posting.

Edited by Luping98

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On 12/05/2010 at 15:11, burstneraddict said:

I thought that I would summarise my experience of the smaller sites in Northern Scotland. There are a relatively limited number of CLs in Scotland and they are decreasing, especially in the Highlands. 

Indeed, and when you see the number of motorhomes illegally 'wild camping' you can see why!:(

 

The last time we stayed at Ardmair (near Ullapool) every night there were 5 or 6 motorhomes freebie parking for the night in the lay-by at the entrance to the site! :angry:

 

BH

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On 12/05/2010 at 14:11, burstneraddict said:

I thought that I would summarise my experience of the smaller sites in Northern Scotland. There are a relatively limited number of CLs in Scotland and they are decreasing, especially in the Highlands. I will give you our experiences as we have used some but often find that we use small, faily run commercial sites due to the lack of CLs. I will start at the South West and then go clockwise around the North Coast. The information is based on visits in the last 3 years. I have not bothered with cc sites as these are well described elsewhere and we rarely use them.

 

Corran Farm CL

Near Tarbert on the Argyll peninsula we've used the Corran Farm CL. Very basic CL but has beautiful views all round as it is on higher ground. Good place to explore down to Campbeltown and the Mull of Kintyre or go across on the ferry to the lovely little island of Gigha with beautiful gardens. Lovely beaches with great waves down the peninsula.

 

Highfeld Benderloch CL

For Oban we have stayed at the CL at Highfeld Benderloch. Very well maintained CL with 2 separate areas but it is about 10 miles to the North of Oban. When this has been full, and for more convenience we have used the small commercial Roseview site in a lovely valley location about a mile South of the town of Oban. This site's facilities are excellent and it has a small stream running down through the middle of the site. We use Oban as a base to catch the ferries to Mull, Tiree, Lishmore etc with our bikes. You can go to Tiree for a full day on a Thu.

 

Portnadoran CL

On the Road to the Isles (Fort William to Mallaig) we stay at a super small site at Arisaig which has access directly onto the beach. The site is Portnadoran where the facilities are a little bit tired but clean. It is cheaper than the nearby CL with more facilities. Stunning views, steam trains go through Arisaig station to Mallaig every day - the steam train is normally fully booked weeks ahead.

 

Dunvegan - Kinloch SItes

On Skye we have used the commercial sites at Dunvegan - Kinloch site (friendly owner, facilities were ok and stunning views across the water), Uig by the ferry to the Outer Hebrides (OK for a couple of nights) and Portree about a mile out of town - very busy site even early in the season but facilities were OK. The only CL on Skye is in a very remote part and we have not used it.

 

Invermoriston CL

In Apr 2009 we stayed at the CL under Highland, Invermoriston. It is located right on the road from Loch Ness to the Isle of Skye and it actually appears to be a small area of the old road that has been by-passed on the approach to Torgoyle Bridge: it is hidden from the road. It is a small CL with EHUs and all on hardstanding. We stayed for 4 nights but it seems to be used as a night stop by motorhomes on their way to and from Skye. We used it to cycle on the towpath along the Caledonian Canal and enjoyed the nearest small town of Fort Augustus where boats go up several locks from Loch Ness into the Caledonian Canal: nice pubs to sit and watch the boats go by.

 

Gairloch Caravan Park

For Gairloch in Sep 2009, we used the Gairloch Caravan Park - a small commercial site with views over the bay. Very handy for shops and local hotels and restaurants. This is a lovely part of the West Coast with the Inverewe Gardens nearby. Again lots of sandy beaches and some lovely walks.  Had a lovely 10 days at a small but lovely site in Laide....About 12 miles from Gairloch......Can't wait to return.

 

Ardmair Point Caravan Site

When visiting Ullapool we have used the commercial site at Ardmair Point which is about 3 miles out of town but right by the sea with stunning views. The commercial site in town is level and very convenient for shops, restaurants etc but can be busy and noisy with tenters. There is a CL at Elphin about 10 miles to the North which is a little bit out in the countryside - the views from it are stunning as it is on the top of a small hill and surrounded by lovely mountains. It is very popular in season and has been full when we tried to use it.

 

Achmelvich and Clachtoll Caravan Sites

Further North near Lochinver, there are two commercial sites about 5 miles apart on beaches. These are at Achmelvich and Clachtoll. Both are in super locations and Clachtoll is very popular due to the excellent owners - wardens. They make you very welcome but you will be very lucky to get a EHU pitch once the Scottish schools start holidsys at the end of June. The approaches to both are about 5 miles down single track roads with passing places. Lovely, sandy beaches and some good walks including to the Old Man of Stoer.

 

Scourie Touring Park

The site at Scourie which we stayed at in early May 10 is in a super location. Mainly hardstanding for vans and motorhomes, there are 8 pitches that look straight out over the bay giving wonderful sunsets. The EHUs for these are only 8 amps and have a strange reset system switch - 14 amps further back on the site. Facilities are good with lots of hot water. Ideal location to take the ferry from nearby Tarbet and visit Handa Island to walk around seeing the masses of birds. It does not take reservations but the owner does not see this as a problem if you arrive soon after lunch as many visitors are touring motorhomes.

 

Kinlochbervie CL

Kinlochbervie has a CL with EHUs on top of a hill with stunning views over this large fishing harbour and the surrounding hills. The owner has dug out and levelled the pitches and I do not understand why the entry in cc book says levelling blocks required - maybe for slight adjustment. These individual pitches are relatively small but well spaced out and I think most of the customers are motorhomes - the rocks would make awning erection interesting. The road into Kinlochbervie is, surprisingly, twin track - the result of lots of fish lorries taking the catch South. If you have limited facilities in your van, there are showers (£1) and toilets at the Harbour Master's office.

We looked at the site when staying at Scourie and intend coming back in future to stay.

 

Sango Sands Camp Site

At Durness there is the Sango Sands camp site which again is in a spectacular setting, high above the beach from which it takes its name. Pitches are mainly hardstanding and shaped to make the most of the level ground. Shops and fuel in the village and you can take a short ferry ride and then a mini bus ride to visit Cape Wrath. Exciting, bumpy journey but worth it (£15-50 per person return for both ferry and bus in 2010) for the experience - small cafe at the Cape.

 

We have not stayed at sites along the rest of the North Coast or the far North East coast for some years and so will not comment.

 

Davohfin Farm CL

Coming down the East Coast at Dornoch, is a very nice CL at Davohfin Farm; good sized field behind the farm with EHUs. Lovely beaches at Dornoch and this is a great site to explore inland and see the salmon leaping at Shin Falls or the scenery around Lairg. Lots of birds to see in the estuaries.

 

Brahan EstateCL

The CL Brahan Estate under Dingwall is a basic CL. You simply park along a lovely avenue of old trees on the flatish areas between the trees with water etc at the Estate offices. Nice walks around the estate and along the river banks.

 

We have not used any of the CLs near Nairn as they are too close. Forres where I live in the last 3 years has been voted the most Beautiful Town in Scotland, won Britain in Bloom, and an Entente Florale Gold Medal representing the UK in the European Competition. There are a couple of sites nearby at Alves and Findhorn which is a lovely village on a beautiful bay.

 

FindochtyCaravan Park

Along the Moray Coast, we have stayed at the small commercial site at Findochty. This small site with good, clean facilities is by the harbour and looks out over the sea. A pub is at the entry and shops and other facilities are all in walking distance. The site is busy in season and normally full at weekends. There is a small CL on the hill above the town on the front lawn of a house. It has fabulous views out over the town ad the Moray Firth but we like to be by the sea and walk into the town.

 

Smithy Croft CL

At Fraserburgh, we have stayed at the CL Smithy Croft, Boyndie - field plus small hardstanding. Good location to visit NE beaches and small, old fishing ports and Fraserburgh has superb, prize winning lighthouse museum - the only one in the UK.

 

Backhill Farm CL

For Aberdeen, we have stayed at the CL at Backhill Farm a couple of times. It is up a very bumpy farm lane off a main road into Aberdeen; slighty sloping field on top of a hill with EHUs. We have only used it as a base to visit Aberdeen but it would be suitable for visits to Royal Deeside and the other countryside but I would rather stay somewhere up the valleys rather than near Aberdeen.

 

Quarry Hill CL (Adults Only)

In Perthshire we have stayed once at the CL under Blairgowrie at Quarry Hill. This is restricted to Adults and is on a hillside with nice views. It hss facilities and feels like a very small commercial site.

 

Monturpie CL

In April 2010, we had a super week in Fife staying at the CL at Monturpie listed under Fife, Upper Largo. This was an impressive CL with facilities you would expect on a full site, EHU, toilets, and shower (20p). The site was at the top of a hill so a bit breezy but with stunning views looking out across the Firth of Forth. The site sloped a little but was manageable. We had great weather and walked miles along the Fife Coastal Path visiting some very pretty small harbours and fishing villages of the East Neuk of Fife: prize winning fish and chips in Anstruther. The delightful university town of St Andrews (famous for golf I understand) is nearby and well worth a visit. We had a couple of days in Edinburgh by driving to Ferrytoll Park and Ride at the North side of the Forth Road Bridge where parking is free and taking the very frequent buses into Edinburgh (£4-70 adult return as I suspect you do not have a Scottish bus pass). Queensferry on the South side is well worth a visit to see both the Forth Road and Rail bridges.

 

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