Plan your Trip
Once you’ve decided a route with the help of our Scottish Tours inspiration, it’s time to plan that essential detail of your trip. Where will you park for the night? A campervan adventure is a great way to explore the vast, rich and varied natural beauty of Scotland during the day, but when the sun comes down, you can have two choices: wild camping in the countryside or a campsite.
Wild camping is allowed in Scotland on most unenclosed land, although you must ensure that you leave the camping place untouched by the visit. Bear in mind the condition of the ground and its accessibility to ensure that the campervan doesn’t affect it either. Remember: take only memories, leave only footprints!
In England and Wales, there is no legal right to wild camp but there are plenty of remote spots.
Just be discreet, steer clear of farmers’ fields and private property and keep out of sight of houses and farms. Make sure that you don’t stay long or leave anything behind.
Where To Search?
We’ll give you some specific guidance on when you can and can’t camp wild, with an information sheet provided in your campervan. You’ll never find an approved list of these places, as that would direct too many people to the same site and risk damaging the landscape. It’s worth remembering that the further you are from any main roads, the more likely a suitable spot will be available.
A general rule is that the further north and west that you go, the more options you will have for genuine wild camping, with the Western Isles providing some of the best wild camping locations.
Finding a place be tricky but with a little bit of common sense (and a bit of luck!) there are endless beautiful places to park a camper van for the night.
Watch Out For The Insects!
Scotland’s wildlife is varied and exciting, but there is one less popular form that you’ll need to be aware of whilst wild camping. Insects can be irritating, with the Scottish midge a prime candidate.
They tend to gather around water, so bear that in mind should you choose to wild camp around a loch.
Also look out for ticks, which can hide in low grasses and bracken. If you’ve been out exploring, especially whilst wearing shorts and a short sleeved shirt, it’s a good idea to check when you get back to the campervan. The campervan has a tick hook and instructions on how to safely remove a tick should it latch on to you. In the uncommon case that you are bitten, and a ring appears around the bite, or you feel unwell – consult a doctor straight away.
There are plenty of fantastic campsites spread all over Scotland which provide great bases from which to explore. Even whilst wild camping most days, it will make sense to book a campsite in advance for some nights, especially if you’re arriving at the destination late at night. With amenities provided, they’re also a good choice for showering or topping up water. Plus, included in your hire is membership of the Camping & Caravanning Club so you get discounted member’s rates at all their affiliated sites!
You can also buy a Scotland Camping map from us which shows all the best sites, or check out our list of useful addresses below.