What better way to travel in the United Kingdom than in a motorhome or campervan? Forget the big cities and make for the great British countryside, unlike anywhere else in the world. Head to all the amazing places to visit in the UK, in the comfort and safety of your home on wheels, following these motorhome routes.
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Whether you own your own motorhome or are looking at first time campervan rental for a fantastic UK staycation, Great Britain and Northern Ireland are full of incredible places to visit and touring the UK by motorhome is a great way to see them all.
With foreign travel potentially difficult post-coronavirus, now is the time to think about exploring these Great British isles in your motorhome or campervan. From the hidden coves and glorious weather of Cornwall to the drama and mountains of Scotland, the UK has all the elements needed for a great motorhome holiday.
We have recommended camping sites for motorhomes in the UK in this travel guide because right now we want to support campsites where we can, as many will have struggled to cope financially during the lockdown and subsequent loss of business.
We know people also like wild camping when travelling in a motorhome and there are some incredible places to spend nights for free in your campers around the UK. You can find free camping spots on various motorhome apps, along with accessible motorhome parking and free camper parking spots for day trips and visits.
Use our popular motorhome route planner for the UK to help plan your trip. Whether you’re looking for motorhome holiday ideas, motorhome tour routes in the UK or just how to holiday in a motorhome, you’ll find what you need here, in our choice of the best ten motorhome and campervan trips in the UK.
This glorious part of the UK has some of the best beaches and campsites the country has to offer. Along with quaint sea-side towns and harbours and some great attractions, Cornwall is one of our favourite amazing places in Britain and has all the makings of a great motorhome trip in the UK.
The drive down the M5 or A303 can be unpleasant, especially at the weekends when everyone seems to go on holiday. Try and head down mid-week and break up the journey if you can before you get to the A30, the main arterial road through the county. The Eden Project is a fantastic stop and not to be missed if you’re passing. Cornwall has lots of narrow lanes and many towns and villages are unsuitable for large motorhome traffic, be mindful of this when travelling and route planning.
Highlights & Where to Stay
The Camel Estuary
With trendy Rock on one side of the estuary and pretty Padstow on the other, this is a fantastic destination. Try your hand at surfing in Rock or just have fun in the waves on a body board. Eat amazing fish in Padstow and enjoy strolling the harbour and town.
Stay at the popular Padstow Touring Park for great facilities and fantastic views. It’s within walking distance, or a short bike ride, of Padstow and an excellent base for exploring the area. This is one of the most popular places to go in the UK, so holiday there out of season if you can. If not, book your pitch early!
The quintessential Cornish holiday town, St Ives is blessed with a couple of fantastic beaches and a vibrant atmosphere. With shops, bars and restaurants open into the evening and several world renowned galleries, St Ives has a cosmopolitan feel. It can get busy here in the high season, visit before UK schools break up if you possibly can.
Stay at the simple and family run Ayr Holiday Park which has a coastal path down to Porthmoer beach (where I’ve spent many happy hours as a child and adult with a body board!) and from there into St Ives itself.
Porthcurno & Around
The end of the Cornish peninsula has some amazing coves and beaches. Porthcurno is one of my all-time favourite beaches, overlooked by the spectacular and must-see Minack Theatre. Explore Sennen Cove and the tin mines at Botallack, for a taste of Cornish history and head east for charming Mousehole (pronounced Mouzle), Penzance and St. Michael’s Mount
Stay at Trevedra Farm Campsite for a back to nature feel, great beach access and a warm welcome for motorhome travellers from the farm owners.
Snowdonia & Anglesey, Wales
Head for spectacular Snowdonia in north Wales for drama, huge skies and outdoor adventures. Cross the iconic Menai suspension bridge in your campervan, to reach the Isle of Anglesey. Home to some of the best beaches in Wales, fantastic coastal hiking and cycling paths and with a good dose of remoteness, this is one of the best travel routes in the UK to escape the hustle and bustle of urban life.
The A5 is easily accessible from the M6 and brings you right into the buzzy climbing town of Betws-y-Coed, on the edge of one of the UK’s best national parks and the gateway to Snowdonia. From there, its a hop and a skip on to Anglesey.
Highlights & Where to Stay
Snowdonia National Park
Test yourself by climbing to the peak of Snowden, the highest mountain in England and Wales, some 1,085m above sea level. If you still want to enjoy the views but don’t fancy the hike, take the train up and hike down!
Stay at Bryn Gloch Caravan and Camping Park, surrounded by nature and right at the foot of Snowden itself.
Newborough Beach & Llanddwyn Island
Newborough beach is our favourite beach on Anglesey, backed by the tranquil Newborough Forest, where you might see red squirrels. Take a walk through the forest and dunes and out to the peninsula of Llanddwyn Island to see the fascinating pilots cottages and lighthouse. Newborough is a great start point to head off around the coast in a campervan!
Stay on the grassy meadow of Awelfryn Caravan Park, a mile away from the beach after a good walk through Newborough Forest.
Set in a beautiful valley, Betws-y-Coed is a typical mountain town, full of shops selling outdoor gear and companies offering outdoor adventures. Pubs are full of climbers talking about the day’s exploits and adventures. The town is a great base for outdoor sports and activities such as climbing, hiking, abseiling, zip-lining and mountain biking. You’ll also find natural beauty spots such as Fairy Glen and Swallow Falls to visit on your much needed rest days.
Stay at the Riverside Touring Park for five star facilities and easy access to Betws-y-Coed itself.
The Lake District, England
This rugged and scenic national park in Cumbria has something for everyone. Head for the busy towns of Ambleside and Keswick or find remoteness by one of the sixteen beautiful bodies of water and tarns in this stunning part of the UK.
The Lake District lies to the west of the M6 and is easily accessible to motorhomes but be prepared for some narrow and twisting country lanes which may be congested in summer once you come off the main A roads. There are some spectacular mountain passes but they are not all suitable for large vehicles and you should check this prior to your trip, or go in a camper van! Otherwise head for the the stunning Peak District, which is motorhome friendly and perhaps a road a little less travelled.
Highlights & Where to Stay
The second largest lake, Ullswater is nestled amongst some of the best fells the Lake District has to offer and is home to the stunning Aira Force waterfall. With water sports and hiking amongst the lush green landscape (the setting of Wordsworth’s ‘Daffodils’ poem), on your doorstep, this is a perfect spot for motorhomers and campervanners to enjoy nature and outdoor activity and some of the best Lake District hikes.
Stay at the family owned and run Hillside Farm at the foot of Helvellyn and close to the pretty village of Glenridding for excellent access to the surrounding fells and Ullswater itself.
Keswick is a busy market town with a mining history. Keswick lies between the imposing Skiddaw mountains and the natural beauty of Derwentwater. Take a cruise on the lake and head up to the prehistoric Castelrigg stone circle, literally surrounded by fells and sky in every direction. There’s also lots of great hiking in the area, including many easy trails like Catbells, which also has the added benefit of incredible views of the surrounding mountains and lakes.
Stay at Derwentwater Camping and Caravanning Club Site, one of the best sites for motorhomes in the Lake District. You don’t have to be a member to stay, although the cost is discounted if you are. This friendly and popular site is a few minutes walk from Keswick and Derwentwater.
Wild Camping in the Lake District for motorhomes is possible in the more off-the-beaten-track parts, but around the lakes and towns it is likely you will be moved on pretty quickly, especially in summer.
Honister Slate Mine
At the southern end of Derwentwater is the valley of Borrowdale, leading to the Honister Pass and the home of the Honister Slate Mine, the last working slate mine in Europe. The mine has a visitor centre which provides underground guided mine tours and a range of adventure activities including a Via Ferrata (by ropes) course which is not for the faint hearted! The Honister pass is not suitable for large motorhomes and has a width restriction of 6’6″, although it is possible to get the bus there from Keswick.
Stay at Chapel House Farm Campsite in the Borrowdale Valley, surrounded by rolling hills and rushing streams to lull you to sleep at night.
The North Coast 500, Scotland
This iconic motorhome route had to make the list! The NC500 is a 516 mile spectacular route around the north coast of Scotland, starting and ending at Inverness Castle and passing through some of the most beautiful places in Scotland. Tackle the whole route, for which you’ll need at least several weeks, or do a bit of it. Whichever, you’ll find incredible landscapes, legendary Scottish hospitality and the thrill of the open road. This is surely one of the best motorhome routes in the UK and one of the best driving roads in Scotland.
Highlights & Where to Stay
Both the start and finish point of your motorhome holiday in Scotland, this cultured and ancient cathedral city is full of history and interest. Go monster hunting on Loch Ness, take a trip to the haunting battlefield at Culloden and visit Inverness Castle. Fans of the book and tv show ‘Outlander’ can also visit bucket-list destinations in this region.
Stay at Bunchrew Caravan Park on the edge of Beauly Firth, in twenty acres of mature woodland and advertised as being free from midges, pretty unusual for motorhome holidays in Scotland!
One of the last great wilderness’ of Europe, a large chunk of the NC500 passes through this raw and beautiful county. With the sea always on your right, the coast of this part of the route is unspoilt and diverse, from huge sandy beaches to the rugged and aptly named Cape Wrath cliffs.
Stay at the stunning Clachtoll Beach Campsite right on the edge of the beach, which boasts crystal clear water and amazing snorkelling; we think it’s one of the best campervan sites in Scotland.
There is a lot of wild camping for motorhomes in this part of the UK, Scotland seems to be more tolerant than other areas. Use Park4Night to find a great spot with a fabulous view and follow our wild camping tips for the best experience.
Home to John O’Groats and Dunnet Head, the most northerly village and northerly point respectively, Caithness is right at the top of the UK! It is so far north that in favourable conditions, it’s possible to see the northern lights from here. The coastline features soaring sea-stacks and towering headlands, home to puffins and other sea birds.
Stay at Dunnet Bay Caravan and Motorhome Club Site. You don’t have to be a member to stay, although the cost is discounted if you are. This is a site for those that enjoy solitude, sublime views and long beach walks.
The New Forest, England
This historic forest in Hampshire, planted in 1079 by William the Conquerer, retains a strong sense of history and tradition. Home to New Forest wild ponies, roaming pigs, Highland cattle and deer, this haven for wildlife offers peace and tranquility to all who visit. Also a hub for outdoor activity, including water sports, cycling and hiking, you can find the top New Forest outdoor activities here.
Easily accessible via the M3 and M27, the main roads through the forest are all suitable for large motorhomes and there are lots of designated car parks and places to stop for lunch or a walk. You cannot wild camp in the New Forest, there are active rangers who move on all vehicles at dusk.
Highlights & Where to Stay
A charming village to the south of the forest and and an excellent base for cycling and walking. With a few good pubs in the village and an seriously good takeaway fish and chip shop, this is a great place from which to explore. You can hire bikes in the village or bring you own; download this helpful map for routes.
Stay at Hollands Wood Campsite run by Camping in the Forest, who offer some of the best motorhome sites across the forest. Within walking distance of the village, this mainly wooded site is on the edge of the open forest.
New Forest Water Park
At the western edge of the forest, the New Forest Water Park offers wakeboarding and a giant inflatable aqua park, the best fun you can have in a wet-suit! Try your hand at wakeboarding, kayaking and stand up paddle before running the gauntlet on the aqua park course…its a lot, lot harder than it looks!
Stay at the Red Shoot Camping Park a few miles away and on the edge of the open forest. Situated behind the highly rated Red Shoot Inn, this is a friendly and family run site.
Not technically in the New Forest, but right on the south-western edge, Lymington is a charming and bustling market town. With a busy harbour and easy access to the Solent, this is a haven for sailors. From your base in Lymington, take a trip to Hurst Castle, built by Henry VIII and situated in a shingle spit stretching towards the Isle of Wight. On hot days, take a dip in the seawater swimming baths on the edge of Lymington town.
Stay at the tranquil retreat of Harry’s Field and enjoy their camping philosophy, complete with roaming deer, ponies and donkeys. A stay in a campervan here is good for the soul!
Things You Need for a Motorhome Trip in the UK
The Antrim Coast, Northern Ireland
This gorgeous and unspoilt part of the UK may require a ferry crossing if you don’t live there, but it is a coastal road trip in the UK trip that’s worth making. From the breathtaking natural beauty of the Giant’s Causeway to the huge Benone Beach, the coastline is studded with Game of Thrones locations and pretty seaside towns.
We suggest getting the boat to the busy and fun city of Dublin before heading north, it’s not in the UK but if you’re crossing the water you might as well make the most of it. If you’re short on time though, depart from Stranraer to Larne, for the quickest route north once you arrive in Northern Ireland, unless you live there of course!
Highlights & Where to Stay
The Giants Causeway & Around
Forged by volcanic nature some 50 to 60 million years ago, these 40,000 columns of basalt spilling into the wild North Atlantic have to be seen to be believed. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is one of Northern Ireland’s best historic landmarks and an awe-inspiring place that really gets you thinking about man’s insignificance in the grand scheme of things.
Climb the Shepherd’s Steps and hike along the clifftop trail for an aerial view of the dramatic causeway coast or take the road less travelled on an active five-mile hike along the stunning cliff-top path. Don’t forget to visit the cute harbour at Ballintoy (also a Game of Thrones location) but be mindful that there is very limited parking and you may struggle to turn in a larger rig. Just along the coast, the Carrick-a-rede rope bridge will test your head for heights!
Stay At Craig House Campsite, situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty with magnificent sea views.
Portstewart & Portrush
Literally next to each other, both are pretty sea-side, bucket and spade type towns. With souvenir shops, restaurants and bars, Portrush is livelier and has a night club and amusements. Portstewart has a lovely, laid-back feel and has some interesting boutique shops along the prom. Both have great beaches and excellent golf courses. Take your pick depending on what you enjoy! If you like motorbikes, head here in May for the infamous North West 200.
Stay at Juniper Hill Holiday Park for access to both towns along the Port Path or catch the bus that stops right outside.
A favourite of surfers, this huge beach stretches from Castlerock in the east to Magilligan point in the west. From here you can visit the Mussenden Temple on the headland and the demesne at Downhill. The mighty Binevenagh mountain sits to the south and is excellent for hiking, with stunning views of the coast and Donegal from the summit.
One of the most beautiful areas of England, Norfolk enjoys an incredible and unspoilt heritage coastline and the famous Norfolk Broads, where you will find huge skies and tranquility, even in the height of summer. A national park and a haven for wildlife and birds, the Broads are a nature lovers paradise and can be explored on foot or by boat.
The roads to Norfolk don’t go anywhere else, one of the reasons the county has remained a peaceful holiday destination. Take the A11 or A47 to Norwich, right in the heart of Norfolk.
Highlights & Where to Stay
The historic city of Norwich is a hidden gem and a must-visit if you’re in Norfolk. Considered the UK’s best preserved medieval city, you’ll find a Norman cathedral with the second highest spire in England, a vibrant bar and restaurant scene and the Norwich Lanes, a tangle of pedestrian street full of interesting shops and independent boutiques.
Stay at the simple and relaxed Whitlingham Broad Campsite just outside the city, an easy fifteen minute bike ride away. If you want to enjoy the broad, then you can hire kayaks and canoes a few minutes away for the campsite.
This quaint coastal village lies in an area of outstanding natural beauty. The nature reserve is a fantastic spacious landscape with salt marshes, sand and shingle spit, sand dunes and horizons stretching far out to sea. Practice your crabbing skills on the harbour or take a trip out to Blakeney Point to to see the Common and Grey seals that breed here in winter.
Stay at the natural paradise of Highland Creek Camp Site which is surrounded by salt marshes, woodlands, mud creeks and beaches.
The royal estate at Sandringham is set in beautiful woodlands perfect for walking. Visit the house, gardens and transport museum before heading to see the St Mary Magdalene church where the Queen attends services when she is staying at Sandringham. There are often events here too, such as farmers markets and craft fairs, check the Sandringham Estate website for details and dates.
Stay at the Sandringahm Camping and Caravanning Club Site, set amongst woodland and with the royal estate on the doorstep.
The beautiful county of Dorset boasts a UNESCO World Heritage Site coastline, pretty villages and towns and some great bucket and spade resorts. The cliffs of the 95 mile long Jurassic Coast contain millions of fossils and interesting rock formations and there is even a forest of fossilised trees. With Bournemouth, Swanage and Weymouth providing good old fashioned sea-side entertainment, there’s a lot to recommend Dorset, making it one of the best campervan trips you can take.
Dorset is very accessible by taking the M3 and M27 from London before picking up the A31 into the county.
Highlights & Where to Stay
Lulworth Cove and Durdle Door
Lulworth Cove is an almost perfect circle and considered one of the best examples in Europe of marine erosion. Whatever the reason for Lulworth Cove, it really is a beautiful spot and perfect for kayaking and stand up paddling. Stop at the Boat Shed Cafe for a relaxed lunch before hitting the pebble beach.
There are many fantastic coastal walks in Dorset, with the walk from Lulworth Cove to Durdle Door being one of the best, and taking around 45 minutes. Durdle Door is a natural limestone arch in the sea, caused by millions of years of erosion. On hot days, the kids swim out here and climb up, before jumping off with glee. Durdle Door is backed by a truly beautiful beach with imposing limestone cliffs that the Jurassic coast is famous for, and for us, is one of the best scenic places in England.
Stay at Durdle Door Holiday Park for incredible sea views and easy access to both Durdle Door and Lulworth Cove beaches.
Chesil Beach & Around
The iconic Chesil Beach is an eighteen mile long shingle barrier beach made up of 180 billion pebbles and stretching from West Bay to Portland. This wild and natural place seems made of sea and sky and being here clears your head and fills your soul. Head for Abbotsbury Gardens for one of the best views of Chesil Beach from above, stretching miles in either direction and then pop in to see the mute swan colony at the swannery. If you’ve got energy left after all that, head south to the iconic Portland Bill lighthouse at the tip of Portland, for more dramatic sea scapes.
Stay at East Fleet Touring Park for its stunning location overlooking Chesil Beach and the sea beyond.
Swanage & Around
A quintessential English sea-side resort, Swanage was a hit with the Victorians when sea bathing became fashionable. With a safe sandy beach, steam train, nearby Corfe Castle, great wreck diving and Durlston Country Park there’s a great deal to keep you entertained. Throw in a bag of newspaper-wrapped fish and chips and you’ve got the perfect motorhome holiday destination!
Stay at the friendly and welcoming Ulwell Holiday Park for easy access to Swanage and its pretty surroundings.
Famous for its glorious beaches, cliffs, islands and wildlife, the stunning coast of Pembrokeshire offers infinite opportunities to enjoy the outdoors and is one of the most beautiful places in the UK. From the Victorian sea-side town of Tenby to the puffins of Skomer Island, Pembrokeshire has something to suit everyone, nature lovers and outdoor adventurers alike.
Take the M4 west until you pick up the A40 which will take you into the heart of this beautiful and eclectic county. Why not take in the prime walking country of the Cotswolds or the awe-inspiring Brecon Beacons on the way?
Highlights & Where to Stay
Pembrokeshire boasts that it invented coasteering, so how could we leave it off our list? The sport of cliff scrambling, jumping from land to sea and swimming between rocks will stretch you physically and mentally and give you hours of fun! You can find a pace to suit you, there are courses and guided expeditions for beginners of all ages, some of which include marine biology education along the way!
Stay at Pencarnan Farm Camping and Caravan Park, just up the road from St Davids, a coasteering hub, and with access to the gorgeous sandy Porthsele beach, safe for swimming and kayaking..
The wild island of Skomer is a haven for migrant birds such as puffins, guillemots and razorbills. You may also see seals here, which come to moult in April, along with owls, peregrine falcons and buzzards. In the spring, wild flowers carpet the island, making it a truly beautiful and fascinating place to visit. Tickets are on a first come, first served basis and numbers are limited so make sure you get to Lockley Lodge visitor centre early!
Stay at the family run West Hook Farm Camping, with simple facilities and superb sea views, and just up the road from Lockley Lodge.
Tenby is one of the most iconic seaside towns in Wales, steeped in ancient history and surrounded by an imposing medieval stone wall. With several great sandy beaches, a pretty and colourful harbour and narrow cobbled streets with a fantastic selection of gift shops, independent boutiques, cafes and pubs, this charming and lively town is perfect for a day out. If you base yourself here, you’re within striking distance of two of the best castles in Wales, Pembroke and Carew, both well worth a visit.
Stay at Meadow Farm, with fantastic panoramic views and easy access to Tenby, the coastal path and local beaches.
Isle of Skye, Scotland
The Isle of Skye is Scotland’s second largest island, a 50 mile long stretch of heather covered moors, rugged mountains, clear sparkling lochs and dramatic sea cliffs. This incredible landscape is the main draw, but there is plenty to do when the mist descends, including castles, museums and craft studios, as well as the odd pub or two! Come here for real solitude and remoteness, to breath the bracing air and remind yourself of why life is good.
The driving route to Skye is spectacular. There are two main routes from Stirling, we would suggest the most southerly, taking the A84 north and skirting the Trossachs to your west before heading through Glencoe and Fort William, both worthy of a visit. Take the road bridge at Kyle of Lochalsh or do it the traditional way on a ferry from Mallaig. The Isle of Skye makes for a good 7 day motorhome itinerary in Scotland.
Highlights & Where to Stay
In a beautiful position at the edge of Loch Dunvegan, Skye’s most famous historic building, Dunvegan Castle is the seat of the chief of Clan MacLeod and has been so for over 800 years. The castle itself is fascinating and the formal gardens make a fantastic contrast to the stark beauty of the surrounding landscape. It’s a busy tourist attraction though, and best visited outside of the peak months of July and August.
Stay at Kinloch Campsite, with a superb waterfront location and access to the local village of Dunvegan itself.
The Sleat Peninsula
Commonly referred to as ‘the garden of Skye’, the Sleat peninsula is home to lush gardens, dense forests and mountains surrounded by beautiful beaches and sparking seas. This eclectic corner of Skye not only has nature on its doorstep, it also has some of the best restaurants on the island and of course, a whisky distillery!
Stay at Camping Skye, well situated for the whole island and opened in 2018 with modern facilities in a peaceful woodland setting.
The Trotternish Peninsula
Trotternish is the most northerly peninsula and enjoys Skye’s most striking and dramatic landscapes. As you drive north your attention will be captured by The Storr. This 719m summit rises above the east-facing cliffs that run down the centre of the peninsula. Sitting at the foot of these cliffs is a 50m high tooth of rock, the Old Man of Storr. The Old Man is part of a distinctive rocky outcrop that lies below the cliffs and a fascinating sight. Head for The Quiraing for some fantastic hiking and to see the best of these ancient landscapes in this remote and stunning part of the island.
Stay at Torvaig Caravan and Camp Site for amazing views of the Cuillin mountain range from your camper van, and easy access to Portree. Wild camping on Skye in a motorhome is possible if you are discreet, the Trotternish peninsula is remote and a good place to find a quiet spot.
We have been living and touring in our motorhome in the UK and Europe for over two years. You can find more destination ideas, practical motorhome tips and information and stories about life on the road in our motorhome blog.
Check out these motorhome and campervan road trips in the UK and Europe for lots more ideas and inspiration for fantastic motorhome holidays in Europe.
If you’re a first timer in a motorhome hire vehicle, check out our post about taking your first motorhome trip. Although the motorhome rental company will provide you with the basics, there’s lots of tips and tricks here to make your motorhome trip easier and more enjoyable. Wherever you decide to go, have a fantastic trip!
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Find out where to go on a motorhome holiday in the UK. From destination ideas in England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland to holiday parks and tiny rural campsites, everything you need to plan your motorhome staycation is here. #motorhomeholidayuk #motorhomestaycation #motorhomescotland #motorhometripuk