Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Best place to camp In Scotland?

With the forecast looking great and the camping gear itching to get out Jess and I took a little trip up the west coast of Scotland to the stunning white beaches of Arisaig and the Hogwarts Express.

Stunning beaches of Arisaig where clear blue waters are met by white sandy beaches , www.calmctravels.com

Its quite a long drive from Glasgow (3.5 hours) but the scenery along the way is incredible, driving through Glencoe with the sun shining made for some pretty dramatic shots. Surprisingly the road was quite straight and we arrived in Arisaig just before dinner.



Don't like reading or want the quick story? Check out a one minute Youtube Video to see what we got up to.


Our first mistake, we didn't book a campsite and forgot that the whole of Scotland takes the day off when the sun comes out so everything was booked up. Luckily for us we found a tiny campsite on a farm which was un-signposted and lay just feet from the stunning white beach of Arisaig. The only way I can show you this campsite is with the GPS coordinates since I couldn't find a name and its not mentioned in Google maps (56.925204, -5.869055), there is a couple of tiny camp sites along the coast so should be room at at least one of them.

Campsite in Arisaig where the cows are almost in your tent, ww.calmctravels.com
Drinking some Pimms at the campsite with fruit, www.calmctravels.com
Cooking a meal in a Trangia Stove at a campsite in Arisaig, CalMcTravels

The site is very basic and contains just a little toilet block in the middle of the site, but the view and surrounding area well makes up for the lack of facilities. Added to the fact you can have campfires on the beach and it wasn't crowded (probably due to the lack of signage) we found it perfect.

A bunch of cows on the beach of Arisaig going for a swim in the sea, cal mctravels

The local beaches in Arisaig are quite famous for their white sand and crystal clear waters and I can see why, if you watched our Youtube video you will see just how incredible this place is.

Stunning beaches of Arisaig where clear blue waters are met by white sandy beaches , www.calmctravels.com

After a quick swim in the sea we took to the hills to hunt out the Hogwarts Express, actually called the Jacobite steam train. You can hike up to the Glenfinnan Viaduct made famous by the Harry Potter films to watch the train steam past.

having lunch while we wait on the Hogwarts Express (Jacobite steam train) at the Glenfinnan viaduct
Hogwats Express at the Glenfinnan Viaduct, Cal Mctravels

If you park in the carpark you can take a short walk to watch from a distance or take the longer walk to the bridge which loops around and back to the carpark (1 hour walk). The train passes during the summer months and the best time to watch is 3pm when you will see both the steam trains pass in opposite directions. If you prefer the comfort of riding the train rather than walking you can book yourself a seat here for the 2 hour journey from Fort William to Mallaig (2nd class return = £35 or 1st class return = £59).

Glenfinnan Viaduct, Jacobite steam train passing along the bridge, CalMcTravels
Jacobite steam train and Hogwarts Express passing the bridge in Glenfinnan, CalMcTravels

Burnt to a crisp and baking in the heat we finished off the 1 hour hike and swiftly fell into the car blasting the AC on max to cool down. Best cure for a little afternoon sunburn? A swim in the sea! So we headed back to the campsite to cool down before dinner.

Cal Mc enjoying a dip in the sea in Arisaig

It's not just the beaches that Arisaig is famous for, the sunsets here are epic too and lucky for us the weather was perfect for watching the sunset from the beach. With some fire wood, marshmallows and whisky we took to the beach to watch one of the most in incredible sunsets ever.

A bottle of old pulteney sitting by the camp fire just itching to be drunk
Stunning red flames of the campfire in Arisaig
Incredible sunset views of the sky glowing orange and red accross the west in Arisaig, www.CalMcTravels.com

Next morning, we packed up the tent and set of on our long trip back to Glasgow. I highly recommend a trip to Arisaig to camp or just check out the stunning beaches, it's quite easy to get to being just 40mins from Fort William and has plenty of walks within the surrounding area.

I hope you enjoyed this post, keep tuned for our next camping adventure, Islay! Where we hiked some wild landscapes and visited one too many distilleries.

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2 comments

  1. Great post! Next week we will travel to Scotland (from Italy) and our plan was to visit Morar which is actually really close to Arisaig, but now I think we maybe should just go to Arisaig as it seems so beautiful! I hope we will be just as lucky as you were with the weather!

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    1. Hey thanks for reading my blog and glad to hear you liked the post! Morar is a lovely place but I would highly recommend a visit to one of the beaches in Arisaig and a visit to the Glenfinnan Viaduct to see the train since its on the way (just make sure your there at 3pm to see both steam trains go past). I really hope you guys do get some great weather but I'm sure you with have a great time nonetheless.

      If you need any travel advice or suggestions for Scotland feel free to drop me a message on calmctravels@gmail.com and il try help out.

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