Wild Motorhome Camping In The UK – A Guide

In 2021, the UK set a new record for motorhome and campervan sales, according to the National Caravan Council. Following Covid lockdowns, more and more of us are embracing the freedom of spontaneous trips and weekends away provided by caravans, campers and motorhomes.

With the summer fast approaching, what could be better than exploring the country and embarking upon a wild motorhome camping adventure? In this article, we’ll discuss the ins and outs of wild motorhome camping, covering popular destinations and highlight the rules and guidelines to be aware of.

What is wild motorhome camping?

The concept of wild motorhome camping may be new to some. The word camping usually conjures up images of tents and campfires, but it is also possible to go camping if you have a campervan or a motorhome.

Motorhome wild camping in the UK involves visiting sites that are off the beaten track and avoiding dedicated commercial campsites. It’s very common for campers to have limited access to amenities, such as mains electricity, waste disposal and running water when wild camping.

For adventurous souls and those looking to disconnect and escape, wild motorhome camping offers an opportunity to discover new places away from the crowds and enjoy a simpler life. 

family camping next to a motorhome

Is wild motorhome camping legal in the UK?

If you’ve never been motorhome camping before, you may be wondering if it’s even legal to wild camp in the UK. The UK has stricter rules and regulations than other countries, but there are ways to explore less well-trodden paths without getting into trouble.

In most cases, motorhome owners who are looking to enjoy the benefits of wild camping visit privately-owned plots of land. If you get permission from the landowner, you can camp in the wilds without worrying about any legal implications. 

It is beneficial to note that the rules are slightly different if you are going camping in Scotland. The Scottish Outdoor Access Code permits wild camping where access rights apply. This means that campers can stay in areas where permission has been granted. 

Some people chance their arm and park in rural places without asking for permission. This is not recommended, as you could be trespassing on private property. 

Tips for a fun, hassle-free wild motorhome camping trip

When you find a destination for wild motorhome camping, it’s beneficial to follow some basic rules to make your trip as fun and stress-free as possible and maximise the chances of being able to return in the future. Here are some guidelines to take on board:

  • Treat the land with respect and be proactive in protecting wildlife and preventing damage to trees, flowers and plants.
  • Take litter away with you. 
  • Be respectful of other people if you are staying on private land.
  • Make sure the landowner is aware of how long you plan to stay and check that your plans work for them.
  • Keep the noise levels down. 

It’s always a good idea to prepare in advance when you’re going wild camping, and remember that access to amenities may be restricted. Here are some essentials to pack for your holiday:

  • Warm clothing, layers and weatherproof jackets and shoes
  • Bottled water, snacks and food to cook
  • A first aid kit and any medication required
  • Toilet paper and cleaning products
  • Tyre repair kit
  • High-vis jackets
  • Phone charger
  • Map and sat nav
  • Torches
  • Mud mats

Popular destinations for wild motorhome camping in the UK

Popular destinations for wild motorhome camping in the UK include:

  • Lake District
  • Cornwall
  • Wiltshire
  • Snowdonia
  • Trossachs National Park, Scotland
  • Loch Lomond
  • Cairngorms

Before you choose a location, it’s wise to do some research to find suitable places and make arrangements in advance to ensure that you can park and stay overnight without breaking any rules. 

In Conclusion

Wild motorhome camping is a brilliant way to explore the UK and escape the crowds. If you are thinking about planning a trip, and you want to get off the beaten track and venture off-piste, it’s wise to research destinations, make sure you have permission to stay and write a list of essentials to pack. Read up on locations, plan a rough itinerary and get ideas from fellow camping enthusiasts.

If you dream of owning a motorhome and having the freedom to get away for a weekend or plan spontaneous holidays in the wilderness, why not take a look at our motorhome finance offers to help you embrace your inner adventurer?

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