Rothiemurchus Caravan Park was closed to tents until the following month and I was informed by a stroppy attendant at Glenmore that it would be £20 per night just for me and a tent.. Stay in a luxury cottage near Aviemore and explore vast and beautiful Rothiemurchus right from your own doorstep Discover vast mountains, enchanting forests and stunning lochs - the quintessential Highland escape Loch an Eilein Car Park – open (please note the toilets temporarily closed) Rothiemurchus Clay Shooting Ground IS OPEN on Saturdays and Sundays – please visit the Rothiemurchus Clay Shooting Ground page of our website for more information and to book. Planning ahead makes everything less stressful and gives you more time to enjoy your surroundings. Willing to risk the changeable Scottish weather for the best possible views, we opted for wild camping, treating ourselves to an Airbnb mid-week to keep things civilised. There were a couple of other wild campers further along the beach, but we awoke in our sheltered spot with the sense of being completely alone. Forest Cottage sits amongst pine, birch and bracken on Loch an Eilein’s wooded north-east shore, in the heart of Rothiemurchus - one of Scotland's most picturesque Highland estates, near Aviemore. Intermediate. It has also long been a much loved favourite of countless thousands of visitors. 8.59 km. The Rothiemurchus Camp and Caravan park is a beautiful and fairly wild campsite, ideally situated at the start of the Lairig Ghru trail. For the sake of this guide, we started at Loch Aa Eilein. Contact Info Reviews/Comments. Next day, follow a good track for 13 miles through Glen Tromie and on to Kingussie where you can rejoin the Lochs & Glens route and cycle 13 miles to Dalwhinnie Station or 38 miles back to Blair Atholl. Bring warm clothes – and lots of layers. Whatever you go for, make sure you feel comfortable driving it; the North Coast 500 majors on narrow, twisty roads. , so you can pitch up in some dazzlingly remote locations, from beaches to mountainsides – just make sure to leave no trace when you head on your way. You are completely alone in nature, open (apart from your tent) to all the elements, carelessly free to witness … I'm in two minds about the VFM, since, altho' a fiver is minimal, I didn't expect there to be a charge for a "wild" camp and there is nothing provided other than a car parking space and a patch of (well-drained) grass in a scenic location. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. The first designated area is at Loch an Eilein next to the car park. Campers should therefore prepare for there being no facilities. The loch is considered to … Dotted with remote beaches, dramatic mountain passes and hidden lochs, you could spend weeks on the route and still not scratch the surface. Please click ok to confirm you're happy to continue using our site. I was less than keen at the prospect of this spot for camping having previously experienced it in summer , and it would be completly sheltered from the wind which would very likely add midges and a flotilla of anchored yachts into the mix. Cooking should only be undertaken on supervised stoves away from potential flammable materials. Please treat both these areas with respect as they exist in an area of outstanding natural beauty and are situated in the midst of the Caledonian Pine Forest. Wild campers are welcome for one night only while back packing. Where: South of Aviemore is Rothiemurchus, follow the A970 South past Spey Lodge and turn left toward Loch an Eilein. Then we headed on to the remote Bay of Skaill on the far-west coast, home to the Neolithic village of. I could’ve even done with a little hat for my nose. Wild Camping on the North Coast 500. Photograph: Damian Waters/Alamy Author and wild swimmer Joe Minihane fantasises about plunging into the cold water of Loch an Eilein in the Cairngorms Photo: Getty Images. We packed up and headed North to John O’Groats, with a quick pit stop at. Our first stop was Orkney’s one-of-a-kind Italian Chapel, two Nissen huts transformed into a beautiful place of worship by Italian prisoners of war interned in Orkney. Low clouds streaked across the sky, bringing distant squalls. Created: 25/08/2007 :: Updated: 03/04/2019 :: To report an error please your message and data to this form or simply click the submit button below. It has a basic toilet block which is open during the summer but may close at other times. Sometimes at night – especially on Orkney and Sandwood Bay, it got very cold. Arriving for lunch at Loch an Eilein, it felt as if we’d stumbled into a fairy-tale; a glassy loch surrounded by forest with a castle island in its centre. It was one of the most memorable sunsets I’ve seen; looking out to the horizon – and towards Canada, with very little in between but ocean – it felt like we were camping at the edge of the world. The local ranger woke us up and made us pay 5 punds per person and then showed us a tiny sign showing the prices. I then continue to Loch an Eilein where I spend the second night wild camping at Loch an Eilean. Our one stop along the way – discounting, of course, the photo opportunities at every turn – was Smoo Cave, a majestic sea cave with a 50ft high entrance, three chambers and a vast natural waterfall. ;-) Loch an Eilein (loch of the island) with its island castle ruin and stunning surroundings of forest and hill, has seen human use for many centuries. Situated a mere 10-minute drive from Aviemore, a 35-minute drive from Inverness through stunning Highland scenery and just over an hour’s flight from London, you can be at the heart of the Scottish Highlands quicker than you may think. There’s something for everyone, whether you fancy Munroe-bagging, history touring, wild swimming, whiskey tasting, fine dining, wildlife spotting or views to die for. Loch an Eilein: Wild and recreational - See 1,350 traveler reviews, 644 candid photos, and great deals for Aviemore, UK, at Tripadvisor. The last section of the East Highland Way passes the impressive sculptures of Frank Bruce before heading through the Inshriach National Nature Reserve en route to picturesque Loch an Eilein. Before you go wild camping in Scotland, it’s worth familiarising yourself with the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.It’s a bit like the Highway Code, but with an emphasis on outdoor activities. Kind of ridiculous. The day held a whistle-stop tour of other must-see beauty spots on Orkney’s west coast – Birsay, with its tidal island; Yesnaby, home to majestic rock formations (with what looked like fantastic wild swimming spots, but sadly we didn’t have time for a dip), and the mysterious. Loch an Eilein (loch of the island) with its 13th century island castle, was voted Britain's Best Picnic Spot. Stretching 516 miles around the coast of Scotland, the North Coast 500 is not just one of the best road trips in Europe, but one of the most spectacular destinations in the world. Start Point. p.s. Sometimes at night – especially on Orkney and Sandwood Bay, it got very cold. The River Feshie The gorge was formed by a feeder stream in winter spate The sky was greying and the wind was picking up it was a dramatic change in such a short time since we’d left Loch an Eilein. The above are opinions of Adventurous Little Legs. For the next week we explored Glenelg and the surrounding area; plenty of wonderful wild swimming spots (including a huge waterfall just 10 minutes away), walks and tasty meals at the Glenelg Inn, plus a sunny day trip to Skye. Camped a Friday night recently (in November) as I'd become aware of this place via this site. The loch is surrounded by native forests. Next stop was Portmahomack, a small fishing village; we arrived as the evening light set in, and watched the sunset over the next headland. It turned out okay in the end, but we could easily have been washed away on the first night if we’d pitched a bit closer to the water’s edge – which might’ve put a bit of a dampener on the trip. The second area is for wild tent camping only and is located about 1/2km beyond Iron Bridge Grid Ref NH 933 074. Grid Ref NH 897 084. 27. The site provides an idyllic location, close to the pines on the shores of Loch an Eilein, right next to the car park which serves visitors to the loch and information centre. Warmth comes in bursts now rather than blasting heat all day long. The walk was worth it; as we rounded the final hill, 1.5 miles of pale pink sand, dunes and rugged cliffs opened out ahead of us. As the last rays disappeared, reality suddenly set in; it was dark, and we hadn’t yet found a place to camp. Unfortunately, I only had 6 days; a wild, whistle-stop road trip with three friends. Loch an Eilein, Rothiemurchus. A highlight was Ardvreck castle, a striking, tumble-down ruin jutting into Loch Assynt, framed by the surrounding hills. It’s touted as Scotland’s answer to Route 66 (without the guaranteed sunshine), but having driven the North Coast 500 this summer, I would disagree; it’s a unique experience of its own. The low level route around the loch is perfect for families, even if they're pushing off-road buggies. Basically a low effort campsite, if you want wild camping find somewhere else. Rothiemurchus Estate Wild Camping: Rothiemurchus estates have established two wild camping areas in order to encourage responsible wild camping. We set up camp in the sheltered dunes and fought the cold with hot pasta as the sun went down. The air felt heavy and sticky. Campers should therefore prepare for there being no facilities. Stay in the tranquil heart of the Rothiemurchus Estate, "One of the glories of wild Scotland" - Sir David Attenborough. Like our night on Orkney, the drive left us wishing we had more time on the North Coast 500; even that one stretch of coast held days’ worth of mountains to climb and bays to explore. The first designated area is at Loch an Eilein next to the car park. Planning ahead makes everything less stressful and gives you more time to enjoy your surroundings. Camping here meant we could organise our gear as a group the night before and start our hike bright and early. Chris Bowness Landscape The site is over three miles walk from the nearest car parking. The path is wide and fairly flat although quite muddy! Its beside a rushing Highland Burn and there are red squirrels running around. It has a basic toilet block which is open during the summer but may close at other times. The cabin at the entrance to the car park was un-manned on Thursday and Friday (with no info about overnight stays) and it wasn't until I returned from a walk on Saturday to drop my tent, that I encountered a (very helpful, friendly) attendant who advised that I owed £5 for the night (£5/adult/night; £2/<16/night; camper vans £10 + 2&pppn). Loch an Eilein is a beautiful loch with a rugged ruined castle sitting on a small island. Not free, you have to pay to camp and to park!!!! This area is open to tent campers and motorhomes. Loch an Eilein, Aviemore: "Does anybody know if there is a wild camp site at..." | Check out answers, plus see 1,299 reviews, articles, and 622 photos of Loch an Eilein, ranked No.1 on TripAdvisor among 77 attractions in Aviemore. So, I've graded accordingly but would rather leave the impression that it's a great site overall, but just for one night! Balranald Hebridean Holidays Caravan & Campsite, Ardoch House and West Highland Way Campsite, Lazy Duck Camping, Hostel and Off Grid Huts. Hear all about Laura's north coast 500 experience. Use your own discretion when heading out to the hills. There are no facilities and advice on responsible wild camping should be followed - see Weblink above. Under no circumstances should open fires or campfires be lit anywhere on the estate due to the significant fire risk to the forest. We swam out to explore the ruins, then took the hour-long round walk along the shore. We went round Loch an Eilein twice, once on foot and the second time by mountain bike which we hired at the local bike hire place. We didn't knew this place costs money as it said WILD camping. Waterproofs are also a good idea; although we avoided the rain, we were constantly outrunning a storm – if we’d started even a few days later, it would’ve been a very wet holiday. Rothiemurchus estates have established two wild camping areas in order to encourage responsible wild camping. There is no road to this location. The first designated area is at Loch an Eilein next to the car park. We got chatting and he told me that the site was only supposed to be used as an "overflow" if other sites in the area were full, but I got the impression that anytime would be OK (inc. Christmas and New Year), but that there was only an attendant at weekends..he gave me a leaflet outlining the set-up which states the t&cs, specifically that stays of only ONE NIGHT are permitted. Loch an Eilein at the end of July was surging with windswept waves. The magnificent Caledonian Pines of Rothiemurchus are a final … I could’ve even done with a little hat for my nose. centre which is presumably locked overnight(?). We packed up and headed North to John O’Groats, with a quick pit stop at Dunrobin Castle for the history enthusiasts and breakfast in Wick. November 2020 Allgemein. After a fresh morning swim in the loch, we set off toward Loch Fleet on the east coast, armed with a four-man tent and small camp stove. Loch an Eilein: Quiet, wild, stunning - See 1,348 traveler reviews, 644 candid photos, and great deals for Aviemore, UK, at Tripadvisor. The day held a whistle-stop tour of other must-see beauty spots on Orkney’s west coast – Birsay, with its tidal island; Yesnaby, home to majestic rock formations (with what looked like fantastic wild swimming spots, but sadly we didn’t have time for a dip), and the mysterious Ring of Brodgar, a 4000-year old stone circle. For the sake of this guide, we started at Loch Aa Eilein. for the history enthusiasts and breakfast in Wick. The area around Gaick Lodge and Loch an t-Seilich is a good overnight wild camping spot, though again, please observe SNH’s wild camping guidance. In Scotland, you’re, permitted to camp on just about any patch of unenclosed land. We swam out to explore the ruins, then took the hour-long round walk along the shore. The practice of wild camping is simple – take a walk and plonk your tent down near enough wherever you fancy to, whether it’s next to a secret waterfall, or on top of a sketchy, rocky ridge overlooking a loch, or even on a remote beach where your only neighbours are passing seals. Not free, you have to pay to camp and to park!!!! It’s a great place for a swim into the slowly shelving loch, with surrounding forests. We agreed it would’ve made an unbelievable camping spot if we’d had more time – just another reason to return to the North Coast 500. Read more. Although at times a campervan would’ve made it easier to find a spot to sleep (and definitely would’ve been warmer), we were very grateful for our tiny car on the single-track roads. After breakfast, we explored Skara Brae, an impressively well-preserved 5000-year-old village perched on the edge of the beach; after our wild and windy night in the tent, it was strange to think that people had lived there so long ago, so exposed to the elements. Aviemore campsites are year round destinations thanks to the incredible snowsports in the area, a popular way to escape to the mountains. re the "other" wild camp 2.5Ks further on - I didn't come across it, as far as I could tell, altho' I wasn't looking that hard.. Rothiemurchus estates have established two wild camping areas in order to encourage responsible wild camping. Day 4 was as much about the spectacular drive across the top of Scotland as the destination; a landscape to rival New Zealand with magnificent peaks and white beaches stretching at every turn, from Dunnett Head to breath-taking Tongue Bay and Loch Eriboll. We started the journey from Loch Lomond – not technically on the North Coast 500, but a scenic stop-off on the way up from Carlisle. 5508, Please see our Terms and Conditions for more information. It is really very beautiful and the walk was just the right length for our four children (aged 10-15). There is an excellent Campsite in the ancient forest quite nearby at Coylumbridge, 1 - 11/2 hours walk from Loch an Eilein, where you can leave your tent up during the day for several days. Loch an Eilein, deep in the forest of Rothiemurchus is sheltered by ancient Caledonian pines and has lovely views of a 13th century island castle, winning the UK’s best picnic spot back in 2010. 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