Snowboarding in Scotland: Where To Camp

Snowboarding in Scotland: Where To Camp

Snowboarding in Scotland: Where To Camp

Heading to the Ski slopes

 

Fancy hitting the slopes this winter, but don’t want to have to leave the country? Well, have no fear as there are plenty of opportunities to hit the piste north of the border in Scotland.

Whether you are a complete novice or think of yourself as snowboarding god, you will be able to find slopes and trails to suit your level of expertise at one of the five main snowboarding resorts in Scotland:

  • Nevis Range
  • Glencoe
  • Glenshee
  • Cairngorm
  • The Lecht

It doesn’t take long to trek across the length breadth of Scotland, so it’s easy enough to visit all five resorts within a week or two. The weather is infamously unpredictable up north, so you’ll need to be flexible if you are hoping to make the most of snowboarding in Scotland.

For complete freedom when hitting the snow this winter, why not hire a campervan instead? This way you can move on to a new resort whenever you like, without having to worry about cancelling pre-booked accommodation or hunting for a place to get your head down at short notice.

So, where is best to park up?

 

 Nevis Range

 

In the West Highlands just around Fort William, you’ll find the Nevis Range, which reaches almost 4,000ft on Aonach Mor. You should find a good coating of snow here late into the season, so it’s a good choice if you can’t get away until the New Year, but there’s an artificial slope if things get too desperate.

Blackwater Hostel & Campsite is situated in Lochaber, so is a great base if you’re snowboarding in the Nevis Range. Price: £7 per night for camping.

A warm nights sleep

 Glencoe

If you’ve had a few trips out on the snow before, Glencoe will suit you as it has a reputation for being a pretty tough resort. However, saying that, there has been a lot of work done on the beginner area recently, so that the whole family can enjoy snowboarding in Scotland’s Glencoe.

The Campsite at Glencoe Mountain Resort is in an ideal location for snowboarding at the resort. Price: £15 per pitch per night.

We’ve heard of having a big dump at night but bet they weren’t expecting this

 

 

Glenshee

 

For a magical snowboarding experience in Scotland, head to Glenshee, which Gaelic for ‘Glen of the Fairies’. Glenshee is the biggest resort in the UK, so there are plenty of runs to try out, regardless of your snowboarding ability.

Just a few miles outside of the actual snowboarding resort is The Invercauld Caravan Club Site (previously known as Braemar). Price: £5.20-£8.40 per pitch & £4.45-£6.50 per adult.

DJ decks on the slope

Cairngorm

Cairngorm Mountain is home to perhaps the most famous of all Scotland’s ski and snowboarding resorts: Aviemore. It offers some of the best snow in Scotland throughout the winter, so if it’s a bit light elsewhere, Aviemore should be your next port of call. One of the main attractions is the freestyle park, where you can just have fun with your board.

High Range is the place to stop if you’re enjoying a few days snowboarding in Scotland’s world-famous Aviemore resort. Price: £23-£25 per pitch per night.

Looking out the window of campervan in the snow

 The Lecht

Although it’s the smallest Scottish snowboarding resort, The Lecht does have pretty consistent snow and when it dries up they have facilities to make their own. Also in the Cairngorms National Park, the Lecht is not too far from Aviemore.

There is a large car park at the lift station at The Lecht, which allows you to park up overnight. This means you are ideally situated and it won’t cost you a penny.

A Guide to Kayaking in Scotland

A Guide to Kayaking in Scotland

mirrored water

 

Kayaking in Scotland is so popular because of its diverse waters, whether you are looking for a thrilling white water experience or a gentle paddle on the waters of one of the famous lochs. Scotland is now seen as one of the top destinations for kayaking in the UK due to the vast choice of waters combined with its spectacular scenery.

There are three different types of kayaking; flat water, white water and sea kayaking – and Scotland is able to cater for them all. Many of our customers are looking to go kayaking in Scotland and ask us for the best places to go, so we’ve compiled a guide to help you out.

 

White water kayaking

 

Scotland has some excellent white water, perfect for kayaking, but knowing where and when to find it can be a challenge. To find out more about the conditions for white water kayaking in Scotland, check out Where’s The Water, a website which collates data from SEPA on river levels and provide kayakers with up to date information and advice.

The River Tay is the longest river in Scotland and the most popular destination for white water kayaking in Scotland. You will want to head to Grandtully near Aberfeldy for the best parts of the river. Luckily, the very handy SCA campsite is located just a few minutes from the Grandtully rapids.

For the best white water kayaking experience, we recommend signing up to one of the many courses and excursions around Scotland.  Take a look at Freespirits and the National Kayak School for availability.

 

 Sea kayaking

 

There are hundreds of places to go sea kayaking in Scotland, but a good place to start is the Sea Kayaking Trail, which runs from the Isle of Gigha up towards Ullapool. At 500km, the trail is long distance but the guidebook has been split up so you can tackle just one or two sections.

If you would rather attempt something a little less challenging, the Great Glen trail is another popular choice. This 60km trail takes kayakers from the base of Ben Nevis at Fort William across a series of rivers, lochs and canals through to Inverness in the east of Scotland. Boots ‘n’ Paddles is a great place for kayak equipment hire in the nearby area.

There are a few campsites along the way for those looking to get their head down, try out Gairlochy Holiday Park in Fort William, Cumberlands Campsite in Fort Augustus and Bught Park in Inverness.

In the other direction, in Arisaig in the West Highlands, you can hire a kayak from Sea Kayak Highlands to explore the islands and lochs. Hire from a half-day right through to a week, so they’re suitable whether you’re looking for a short paddle or a full holiday.

 

Flat water kayaking

 

As you can see there are plenty of opportunities to go kayaking in Scotland, but if you are relatively new to the sport, flat water kayaking is often the preferred choice.

The Forth & Clyde Canal is a favourite for paddling as it is suitable for both beginners and the more experienced. For the best places to start, head to the east end of the canal around Falkirk. Although it is possible to complete the canal in one day, most like to make a short break out of it and take advantage of their position to take in the spectacular scenery.

Fancy kayaking in Scotland? Contact us today to book your Rockin’van.

Munro Bagging and where to Camp

London to Scotland in a VW Camper Van

Munro Bagging: A Sport For True Champions

The view from the top of Ben Vain

 

Only in Scotland would there be a competitive sport known as “Munro bagging”. To non-Scots, even the name doesn’t offer a clue into what might be involved, but it’s nowhere near as bizarre as it sounds.

The Munros are Scottish mountains that reach more than 3000ft above sea level. The peaks are named after Sir Hugh Munro, who was a keen mountaineer and the first person to compile a list of these peaks in the late nineteenth century.

What exactly is it?

Munro-bagging – not to be confused with teabagging! – involves climbing each of these Scottish peaks. Those that have climbed all 283 Munros are now known as ‘compleaters’.  Munro bagging compleaters, of which there are around 4000, are put on a pedestal in the mountaineering community to recognise their impressive achievement.

It’s definitely not one of the most traditional sports, but even those that don’t usually spend their days slogging up the sides of mountain will struggle to avoid catching the Munro bagging bug. Once you’ve had your first bagging, you just can’t stop.

Due to their remote nature, finding suitable accommodation is not always easy. However, one of our state-of-the-art Rockin’vans is your ticket to successful Munro-bagging. Jump into one of these bad boys and head north for one of the most exhilarating trips you’ll ever experience.

At the foot of Ben Vain

 

 

The Munros by region

 

Cairngorms

There are numerous Munros in the Cairngorms, but a popular favourite is Lochnagar (1155m). This peak is the tallest of a cluster of mountains with spectacular views into the deep corrie. Others include Ben Macdui (1309m), Braeriach (1296m), Cairn Toul (1291m) and Angel’s Peak (1258m).

Stay: Rothiemurchus Camp and Caravan Park

Fort William/Highlands

The most obvious peak in the Highlands and one that thousands have ‘bagged’ is Ben Nevis (1344m), the king of Munros. Other challenges in the vicinity are Chno Dearg (1046m), Meall na Teanga (918m) and Sgurr na Ciche (1040m).

Stay: Glen Nevis Caravan and Camping Park

 Loch Lomond & The Trossachs

Ben Lomond (974m) is definitely one of the better known and more challenging Munros in the picturesque Loch Lomond region. Nearby Munros include Ben Vorlich (943m), Beinn a’Chroin (942m) and Sob Binnein (1165m).

Stay: Cashel Caravan & Camping Site

 Perthshire

This region is home to the ‘fairy hill of the Caledonians’ or Schiehallion (1083m), which is seen as a perfect cone shape from across Loch Rannoch. There are plenty of Munros to sink your teeth into in Perthshire, such as Carn Gorm (1029m), Carn Mairg (1042m) and Meall Greigh (1001m).

Stay: Kilvrecht Caravan and Camp Site

 Islands

All but one of the Munros are located on the Isle of Skye; Ben More (966m) is on the Isle of Mull. Bagging this peak will grant you access to incredible views of the Scottish islands.  Other mountains on Skye include Sgurr Alasdair (992m) and Am Basteir (934m).

Stay: Sligachan Campsite

 Kintail

Here you will find the popular ridge called ‘The Five Sisters of Kintail’, three of the peaks are Munros, but it is definitely worth completing the five. The three Munros are Sgurr Fhuaran (1067m), Sgurr na Ciste (1027m) and Sgurr na Carnach (1002m).

Stay: Shielbridge Caravan Park & Campsite

 Loch Ness

One of the highest summits in the Great Glen region is Carn Eige (1183m), which is usually climbed along with its twin peak, Mam Sodhail (1181m).

Stay: Gairlochy Holiday Park

Argyll

Ben Cruachan (1126m) is one of the most popular Munros and has the highest summit of a range of peaks in the Argyll area. Another of the peaks include Ben Sgulaird (937m), whose ascent starts from seal level so you have to climb every metre of rock.

Stay: Crunachy Caravan & Camping Park

Maybe shorts weren’t the best idea.

Tips for successful Munro bagging

Take suitable equipment – including crampons and an ice axe
Always wear suitable footwear – snow shoes will come in handy
Take suitable equipment – including crampons and an ice axe
Always wear suitable footwear – snow shoes will come in handy
Don’t forget your map or compass
Study your route carefully before setting off
Don’t worry too much about the weather
Only tackle climbs that suit your level of expertise

The Tourist Trail – Glasgow to Oban, to Isle of Skye and back

The Tourist Trail – Glasgow to Oban, to Isle of Skye and back

The tourist trail – Glasgow to Oban, to Isle of Skye and back

The best way to explore Scotland, you say? Jump in one of our Rockin’vans and head out on a tourist trail. One of the most popular trips is the Argyll Coastal Route, but that wasn’t quite enough for us so we expanded slightly and created our very own tourist trail.

Transport museum at night

Glasgow

As the largest city in Scotland, Glasgow can be seen as the people’s capital. It is a city steeped in history with a strong industrial heritage. As well as being a top shopping destination, the city is home to some fantastic museums, galleries and parks. Excuse the cliché, but there really is something for everyone.

Check out:

Glenlee
Kelvingrove Art Gallery & Museum
Pollok House & Country Park

If you’ve had enough of wading through crowds of people in George Square, steer your camper on the M8 and head out of the city into the spectacular Scottish countryside.

Follow the M8 and M898 over the Erskine Bridge, then take the A82 up to Loch Lomond.

Loch Lomond

Balloch, the gateway to Loch Lomond, is worth stopping in as there are numerous centres for watersports and cruises to take on the loch. We’d recommend moving on from Balloch up the west banks of the loch towards Luss. This village is in a beautiful location, with spectacular views in every direction. After spending some quality time taking in the scenery, you’ll head to Tarbet – the start of the Argyll Coastal Route.

Check out:

Sweeney’s Cruises
Loch Lomond Boat Hire

Tarbet is a great place to park up for the night, before starting out on your roadtrip to Oban. It’s a popular stopping place for travellers, so there are plenty of places to get a bite to eat and put your head down.

The next morning you will head west on a 60 mile jounrye from Tarbet on the A83 through Argyll Forest Park and towards the infamous viewpoint, Rest and be Thankful. The memorial stone is just at the junction of the A83 and B828, just below Loch Bestil, the inscription reads:

“REST & BE THANKFUL

MILITARY ROAD REPD

BY 93D REGT 1768

TRANSFERRED TO

COMMRS FOR H.R & C.

IN THE YEAR 1814”.

Oban

 

The town is a popular resort town, often reffered to ask the Gateway to the Isles, which is no surprise as there are ferry links to Mull, Coll, Tiree, Barra, South Uist, Colonsay, Lismore and Islay. To book tickets on any of the ferries, visit the Caledonian MacIntyre website.

Although there are numerous potential day trips from Oban, there are plenty of things to do on the mainland as well. It’s easy to spend a day in Oban visiting local landmarks and taking in the town’s history or heading to some of the family attractions.

Check out:

 

If you plan to stopover here before continuing up to Fort William in the Highlands, Oban Caravan and Camping Park is a popular choice.

It’s just over an hour drive up to coast road (A828) to Fort William, you’ll pass over the impressive Connel Bridge and drive on the outskirts of Barcaldine Forest.

Fort William

 

Perhaps most famous for nestling at the foot of the UK’s tallest mountain, Ben Nevis, Fort William claims to be the outdoor capital of Great Britain. You could spend anywhere from a couple of hours to a few days in Fort William without running out of things to do, but climbing Ben Nevis has to be top of that list.

Check out:

After a long day climbing over 1000 metres above sea level, you will need somewhere decent to spend the night. Glen Nevis Holiday Park is an obvious choice being located in the town itself, but nearby alternatives include Lochy Holiday Park and Linnhe Lochside Holidays.

This is the end of the Argyll Coast Route, but it would be a shame to skip a visit to the nearby Isle of Skye. So, the next leg of our tourist trail takes you on a rather beautiful journey through the West Highlands. From Fort William, you will take the A82 past Loch Lochy and onto the A87 past the shores of a number of lochs. You’ll eventually come to the vast Loch Alsh and cross over the Skye Bridge onto the island.

Isle of Skye

The largest of the Scottish isles, the Isle of Skye is an incredibly popular tourist destination. From gorgeous golden sands to the dramatic Cuillin, Skye is one of the most beautiful places on earth. If the scenery alone isn’t enough, there are plenty of visitor attractions and activities to enjoy.

Check out:

Finding a place to stay on the Isle of Skye before taking the trip back to Glasgow should be easy enough. Wild camping is a popular option on the island; there are some great spots of flat grassy land to park up on. Alternatively, try Torvaig Campsite near Portree; Staffin Campsite up north in Uig, or Glenbrittle Campsite near Talisker.

If you want to explore the west of Scotland, there really is no better way than heading on a roadtrip in one of our Rockin’vans. Call us today to book the trip of a lifetime.

Campervan Hire Edinburgh

Campervan Hire Edinburgh

Campervan Hire Edinburgh

Pick up your campervan at Edinburgh International Airport

Are you flying in to Edinburgh airport for a trip to bonnie Scotland? Do you fancy exploring the area in a completely unique way? Well, let Rockin’vans deliver one of our top notch campers directly to you. You don’t have to worry about finding a campervan hire Edinburgh company because Rockin’vans can hook you up on your doorstep.

So, once you’ve landed on both feet and hopped into your super-cool new camper, where should you head to? You’ve got the whole of Scotland and beyond to explore, but with limited time, you want to see the best bits.

Don’t forget that with Rockin’vans’ campervan hire Edinburgh you are lucky enough to be able to enjoy a spot of wild camping. The Lothians are ideal for spending the night in the wild rather than visiting a campsite. Experience Scotland as it should be, but make sure you respect the area you stop in.

As you started out in the capital, it makes sense to make the most of where you are and start out on a campervan hire Edinburgh adventure.

Edinburgh

 

The city of Edinburgh has some excellent attractions to visit, whether you want to stick to the traditional tourist trail or find some hidden gems. So, from the Castle, the Dungeons and the Royal Mile, to seeing the city from above the Salisbury Crags and the People’s Museum, you will find plenty to do and see.

After a day in Edinburgh, you’ll probably want to get in that camper and kick-start your road trip, particularly as you’ll struggle to find anywhere to camp in the city.  However, whole different world lies just a few short miles outside of Edinburgh in the sprawling countryside of the Lothians.

East Lothian

 

East Lothian is, well to the east of Edinburgh. It is a fantastic place to visit with your camper as you’ll be presented with some amazing scenery, from the beautiful coast of North Berwick to stunning Yellowcraigs beach.

As breath-taking as it can be, the views are not all East Lothian has to shout about; it also has a rich history to explore. It’s actually thought that the infamous Saltire flag was actually first adopted in Athelstaneford – to find out more visit the National Flag Heritage Centre.

Although it’s not strictly wild camping, Blinkbonny Wood Campsite is a fantastic place to park up your Edinburgh campervan. Set in acres and acres of woodland, this quaint campsite offers incredible views across the Firth of the Forth.

 

West Lothian

 

If you thought that East Lothian had given you an insight into Scottish history, you haven’t seen anything yet. The Linlithgow Heritage Trail in West Lothian is an absolute ‘must-see’ if you want to learn more about the area’s past. From the Cross Well to Linlithgow Palace and St. Michael’s Well to Annet House, this trail has everything.

West Lothian is also a fantastic place to sit back and relax. Whether you’d prefer to watch the world go by in Beecraigs Country Park or take in the amazing views at Linlithgow Loch, you’ll have plenty to see in your camper.

If you’re not up for wild camping, there’s a great campsite within the Beecraigs Country Park. It’s secluded and a great basecamp for exploring the rest of the area.

At the end of your trip, don’t worry about the hassle of returning your camper as Rockin’vans campervan hire Edinburgh will be there to pick up at the airport.