Ultimate Camping Road Trip Itinerary
The crème de la crème of British scenic drives taking you from one epic medieval city to another in two summer weeks.
Feast your eyes upon a great adventure that takes you on a meandering trail full of unmissable sights covering Edinburgh, the south-east coast of Scotland, the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales, the Peak District, Cheddar Gorge, the Cornish Peninsula, the Jurassic Coastline, the Isle of Wight, Brighton and London City.
From the stunning city of Edinburgh in Scotland to the bustling streets of London, this road trip guide will take you along incredible coastline, through jaw dropping mountains and breath taking valleys.
This 1200 mile adventure trail at a leisurely cruising pace can be comfortably achieved in two summer weeks.
By starting your trip in Edinburgh, the scenery and historical landmarks bar has been set exceptionally high. Luckily, the rest of the UK isn’t half bad either.
Leaving Edinburgh with a full tank and full fridge, head east until you hit the North Sea at North Berwick. After climbing the North Berwick Law and taking in the views, enjoy the fresh sea breeze and salt air as you hug the east coast through the Scottish Borders bringing you into England.
Holy Island of Lindisfarne is the next port of call. Keep your camera on high alert until you reach Alnwick with shamelessly photogenic sights on every corner. With stunning beaches lining this stretch of coastal road don’t hestitate to pull over for some picnicing and refreshing dips in the sea.
From Alnwich, our route turns inland towards the Kielder Forest Park where you can enjoy camping below the tree tops in complete darkness and experinece the night sky as nature intended. With plenty of walking and cycle routes to explore, Kielder Forest Park is a hub of outdoor pursuits.
On existing this enchanted forest, veer west with the Lake District in your sights. Renowned for it’s picturesque scenery, this national park as been inspiring writters and romantic poets since the 19th century with its postcard panorama of craggy hilltops, mountain tarns and glittering lakes. Driving through this area will require numerous stops for picture taking, hill hopping and basking in nature’s finest spoils.
After concuring as many Wainwrights as your fittness levels allow and checking out the local breweries, the next destination is Butter Tub Pass in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales. This famously beautiful pass is a high road from Simonstone near Hawes towards Thwaite and Muker. This unique trail snakes through a cavernous landscape featuring 20 metre deep limstone potholes called buttertubs. The name comes from early farmers who utilised the naturally cooler mini caves to store their butter on their way to market. The Yorkshire Dales hold claim to some of the finest examples of caves in the country and are definitely worth a day of exploring.
The infamous Cat and Fiddle Route linking Macclesfield and Buxton in the heart of the Peak District is next on your travel itinery. Make sure to take your time on this stretch of road as it has a bad reputation for accidents, however, if the appropriate care is taken, this road is noted to be one of the nicest drives in the country, made famous by motorbike enthusiasts and unfortunately, Top Gear presenter Jermey Clarkson. With plenty of gorgeous cycle and hiking routes to explore, the Peak District has a lot to offer campers and road trippers alike.
Leaving the extreme bends of the Peak District behind you, The Cheddar Gorge is the next stop on the map. At almost 400ft deep and 3 miles long, this is the UK’s largest gorge. With winding roads through this limestone landscape, this valley pass is home to a scattering of caves and secret passages for keen explorers.
From here our route goes completely west side story down the Cornish north coast. Stretching over forty stunning miles from Exmoor National Park to Land’s End this section of driving will make you fall deeply in love with the Bristol Channel. A combination of great weather, stunning scenery and ample outdoor activity centres, Cornwall is a dream journey from start to finish. Special attention from St. Ives to St. Just is needed to take in the full suite of beauty Cornwall has to offer.
At Land’s End after a well deserved break, continue your journey back up the south coast of this breath takingly beautiful peninsula towards Plymouth and Exmouth. The many headlands of the Cornish south coast are there to be explore if there’s time but the journey from Land’s End to Southhampton is full of stunning coastal scenery anyways.
Continuing along the coast will soon bring you to the Jurassic Coast. World heritage site and dream destination for many, this stretch of your roadie mission is very special. With sedimentary rocks dating back over 200 million years to the Triassic, Jurassic and Cretaceous eras, there are many amazing treasures to be found within these sandy layers of earth history. Incredibly scenic and well facilitated for campers, the Jurassic Coast is a great spot for camper vanning.
Your next destination takes you away from mainland Britain and onto the magical shores of the Isle of Wight. With frequent hovercraft crossings from Lymington to Yarmouth on the west coast of the island you can drive straight on with ease. Explore the fossil rich cliffs and beaches or catch a festival if you’re timing is on point. Once you’ve had your fill of islander life leave from the east coast at Fishbourne or Ryde and come ashore at Portsmouth.
The city of Brighton is your final stop before reaching the final destination of London City. Loose yourself to this fantasically romantic city by parking up and exploring the shingle beaches, historical wharfs and beautiful pier.
Treat yourself to some of Brighton’s finest cuisine before heading north to end your road trip in London City.
With easy to drive, comfortable camper vans at the ready what are you waiting for? Have the best staycation yet and challenge yourself to the Ultimate 1200.
Check out this UK wide list of the best camping trips to take with your family.