Camping & Glamping
Mix it up a little!
The North Coast 500 is home to so many beautiful, remote campsites – in some locations, you’ll feel as though you’re wild camping, yet you’ll have all the conveniences of a fully maintained camp site within easy reach. Whether you’re looking for full facilities or you’re happy to keep things minimal, you’ll find plenty of inspiration in this article.
If you haven’t done so already, read our camping itinerary to make the very most of your North Coast 500 trip, whether you’re touring the route in a caravan, campervan or planning to camp. Mix things up a little with a range of different camp sites and facilities – why not swap the tent for a glamping pod or wigwam one night or perhaps try the converted vintage horse trailer or luxury eco-friendly bunkhouse or treehouse!
Camping and glamping pods
Depending on what type of facilities you’re looking for, you may find that a camping pod – or a glamping pod! – fits the bill for one or more nights during your travels around the North Coast 500.
At the start or end of your NC500 travels, try Black Rock Campsite, Evanton beside Glen Glass, offers family-sized camping and glamping pods with spectacular views – or alternatively, choose to stay in one of the glamping pods at North Coast Touring Park. Sands Caravan & Camping Park, by Gairloch, offers a range of fully heated wigwam cabins, while Highland Bothies’ two micro-lodges – An Teallach and Beinn Ghoblach – are located just a short drive from Ullapool, comfortably sleeping three adults, or two adults and two children.
Photos: Black Rock Caravan Park & North Coast Touring Park
A converted vintage horse trailer
Glamping with a difference! At Arda Glamping by Bonar Bridge, take the opportunity to stay overnight in a converted vintage horse trailer – beautifully restored and upcycled, and surrounded by woodlands.
A rustic retreat
The rustic cattle byre steading at ACE Adventures & Hideaways is perfectly located at the beginning – or the end– of your North Coast 500 travels! Featuring a small kiosk to collect hardwood for camp fires and a large banqueting table, this is the perfect camping experience for families.
For smaller groups or back-to-basics campers, why not try staying in a traditional no-frills bothy among the deer at Ben Damph Estate? The new ‘sitooterie’ is cosy, with spectacular views over Loch Torridon and a wood-burning stove.
Looking for a mix between traditional wild camping and glamping? Bell tents are the solution, and ACE Adventures & Hideaways has them in abundance! These canvas tents sleep up to 7 people comfortably, featuring rustic fire pits complete with removable grill for cooking.
For a glamping experience with a touch of added luxury, why not book a shepherd hut with ACE Adventures & Hideaways? These traditional, hand-built shepherd’s huts feature a full-size double bed complete with a heavy-duty steel campfire with barbecue skillet – so you’ll be sure to enjoy a comfortable night’s sleep and minimal fuss involved in cooking your evening meal.
Fionn Croft is also home to a cosy shepherds hut, new for 2018 and boasting incredible views out towards the Isle of Harris. Put your feet up, relax and enjoy the scenery!
Stay a while and go off the beaten path in Achiltibuie at Port Beag Chalets – sleeping groups of four to six people comfortably, these well-equipped chalets sit on adjacent crofts, only a short walk from the white sandy beaches that the west coast of the NC500 has become renowned for.
A short drive further north, you’ll find Caisteal Liath, offering quality redwood holiday chalets with private balconies in their own well-kept grounds, while ‘The Squirrel’s Leap’ chalet at Loch Broom Chalets offers a fully-furnished home away from home, with all of the conveniences that you would expect to find in a self-catering property. Moving towards the east coast, Highland Glen Lodges are fully furnished and upgraded, making for an idyllic holiday base.
When you’re travelling as part of a larger group, bunkhouses make the ideal accommodation base. Sanachan Bunkhouse, on the coast of Wester Ross, can accommodate up to 15 guests in two dorms, while Sail Mhor Croft Hostel can sleep up to 16 people in a former croft house. For a luxury eco- friendly bunkhouse on the north coast, choose BB’s Bunkhouse – great for motorbiking groups too!
As you explore the interior of the route, try out Cornmill Bunkhouse sleeps up to 14 people in a renovated former mill – the mill’s old grinding wheel now serves as a unique coffee table! Black Rock Campsites‘ bunkhouse is the perfect start or finishing point of your NC500 travels.
Looking to explore the NC500 from a base? Black Rock Campsite, by Evanton and Dornoch Firth Caravan Park, near Dornoch offers a range of static caravans available to book for longer periods, as does Shore Caravan Site in Achmelvich – surely one of the most spectacular camping locations along the North Coast 500 route! For something a little different, try The Hideaway – tucked away in the Caithness countryside, this wood-panelled traditional static caravan boasts wonderful views towards the village of Skarfskerry.