Arisaig, a small town located on the breathtaking west coast of Scotland, is a fantastic place to visit if you’re looking for stunning scenery and outdoor activities to keep you busy.
If you’ve been here before – or seen pictures – it’ll come as no surprise that camping in Arisaig is becoming more popular every year. No wonder too. Not only is the scenery here spectacular, but there’s plenty to do in Arisaig, from hiking, fishing, and kayaking to bird watching. The town is also home to several shops and restaurants.
As we know this area well, below we share with you some of our favourite campsites in Arisaig and what makes them special. We then give you information on wild camping in Arisaig, and share a few of our favourite wild camping spots in Arisaig.
After that we look at when’s the best time to camp here, and give a few of the best hikes to try out when visiting. Basically, we’ve put together your one-stop shop for all things Arisaig camping!
So read on to begin your next adventure!
Camping in Arisaig: The Best Campsites for Fun, Views and Adventure
One of the best things about camping in Arisaig is that you get to wake up to knockout views of the ocean and islands – it’s pretty unbeatable.
But on top that there are also several hikes and trails near the town, so you can easily explore the area on foot.
While it is possible to go wild camping in Arisaig and the surrounding area thanks to Scotland’s ‘Right to Roam’ law – more on that later – it’s sometimes nice to have the facilities that a campsite provides.
That being the case, here’s our favourite Arisaig campsites. All will bring you spectacular views, lots of fun, and some great outdoor adventures.
1. Sunnyside Croft Touring & Camping Site
Camping at Sunnyside is a fantastic experience as you’re surrounded by stunning scenery and just minutes away from white sandy beaches.
The campsite, which sits right on the coast, has consistently been awarded the Gold David Bellamy Conservation Award since joining the scheme in 2013 and is a perfect location for a relaxing holiday.
This 4-star eco-friendly site offers spacious pitches in an idyllic location. From here, you’ll be able to explore the beauty of Arisaig, Morar, Mallaig, Glenfinnan, and Knoydart. You can also hop on a ferry and visit the stunning Isles of Muck, Eigg, Rum, and Skye – many of which you can see from your pitch! And with beaches right at your doorstep, there’s no limit to the fun you can have when staying here!
The site facilities are top-notch and include underfloor heating in the shared facilities, a disabled shower room and infant/toddler bathroom. Guests can also use the covered seating space, complete with a large OS map of the area, or visit the on-site shop for all the basics and local products.
There is also free WiFi available throughout the site, and electric hookups if you need them. This is a wonderful Arisaig camping option with great views and facilities.
What’s Close By
With miles of coastline and rolling hills, there’s plenty to see and do – not to mention the stunning sunsets you will get from your pitch. You can even hire e-bikes to help you get around!
And if you’re looking for a bit of mystery, keep your eyes peeled for a lesser known ‘Nessie’ by visiting nearby Loch Morar. It’s the deepest freshwater body of water in the UK, as is said to have its own monster called ‘Morag’!
Other highlights nearby include the Glenfinnan Monument and Viaduct and the Jacobite Steam Train (made famous by Harry Potter).
Price: From £15 per night
Address: 2 Bunacaimb, Arisaig PH39 4NT
2. Camusdarach Campsite
Camusdarach Campsite is a family-run business located in one of the most scenic parts of the Scottish Highlands, between Arisaig and Mallaig. Expect stunning views over the water towards the islands of Eigg, Rum and Skye when staying here.
The campsite features 40 beautiful pitches, as well as three Glamping Pods. It is also easy to access the coast from the campsite, with a footpath through the sand-dunes leading to three stunning white sandy beaches. These beaches often make appearances on lists of the top ten beaches in the UK and Europe.
The beaches beside this campsite are a safe place for children to play, and the launching of sea kayaks and small boats is relatively easy.
Camusdarach also offers self-catering accommodation and a small on-site shop. They have a takeaway too which serves fabulous coffee, croissants, and pizza during July and August.
The campsite has 18 pitches for campervans and caravans with electric hookups. There are also four sizeable electric hookup pitches for tents. The remaining pitches are without electric.
Free WiFi is available throughout the campsite. And if you’re not using an electric hookup, the campsite staff are happy to charge phones and cameras for you. Which is good as you’ll be taking plenty sunset pics!
What’s Close By
Nestled between hills and the sea, this Arisaig campsite is 5 miles from Mallaig, which has a ferry service to Skye and boats to Rhum, Eigg, and Muck.
The Harry Potter Train, walking and cycling trails, kayaking, golf, fishing, swimming and birdwatching are all great activities to enjoy near this campsite too.
Price: From £30 per night
Address: Camusdarach Lodge, Arisaig PH39 4NT
3. Kinloid Caravan Park
The Cuillins across the water on Skye offer a fantastic backdrop for this caravan park, most notably when highlighted against a typical West Highland sunset. Set in the peaceful setting of a Scottish farm, this small family-run Arisaig campsite is perfect for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
Kinloid is the perfect place for a holiday by the sea. The facilities are basic but this place is all about those stunning views over to the Isle of Skye, Rum and Eigg. It really does feel like the ideal place to escape, and being in such a rural location it’s an ideal spot for stargazing.
Being right by the coast there are plenty of beautiful beaches nearby. But best of all, the West Highland Line runs right next to the camp, so you can enjoy the fantastic sight of the Jacobite Steam Train – better known as the Hogwarts Express – chugging by.
The farm is a haven of peace and tranquillity, with well-maintained washing and toilet facilities. There is also a lovely loch where fishing enthusiasts can catch brown trout.
The local village shop is well-stocked too, and there are also hotels, restaurants and cafes for visitors to enjoy within walking distance.
What’s Close By
The Harry Potter steam train can be seen making its way through the West Highland Railway between May and October. This is a sight for sore eyes, with much cheering and waving to be had by all. Kids will love it.
For those looking for a bit of relaxation, there’s white sands only a five-minute car journey away too.
There are many leisure activities to enjoy in this beautiful part of the world, including boat trips to the islands, sea fishing, golf, hill walking and bird watching. All in all, it’s a place that is sure to please everyone.
Price: From £20 per night
Address: Kinloid, Arisaig PH39 4NS
4. Silversands Caravan and Campsite
The Silversands Caravan and Campsite is a beautiful coastal caravan park that overlooks the stunning Isle of Skye and the Small Isles. Situated two miles from Arisaig, this caravan park has 18 touring pitches, all of which are sat on grassy areas.
There are also showers and toilets on-site and electric hookups for those who need them. But one of the best features of this caravan park is the direct beach access! That allows you to enjoy the beauty of the area as soon as you leave your pitch, as well as enjoy the incredible sunsets you get here (see picture below).
The staff are friendly and welcoming, and they’ll do everything they can to make sure your stay is enjoyable. You won’t find any entertainment on site, but this place is all about enjoying the peace and quiet in one of Scotland’s best spots.
So if you’re looking for a beautiful coastal caravan park that offers stunning views and direct beach access, then Silversands Caravan and Campsite could be perfect for you.
What’s Close By
Visitors can spend their days exploring the area’s natural beauty or simply relaxing in charming Arisaig. When night falls, enjoy a delicious meal at one of the local restaurants or pubs.
The village has a rocky coast, blue seas and white sand, which makes it the perfect place to explore the surrounding countryside. The views of the islands of Rum and Eigg can be breathtaking, especially at sunset.
Price: From £20 per night
Address: Portnaluchaig, Arisaig PH39 4NT, United Kingdom
5. Invercaimbe Caravan & Camping
This small, family-run caravan site is situated on a croft, has 14 pitches, and is located next to a sandy beach close to Arisaig.
You’ll get wonderful views of the Small Isles from this small peaceful site. There’s also a surprising number of facilities, including a chemical disposal point, electric hookup, laundry facilities, shower block, and toilets.
The site also offers free WiFi, is pet friendly, and on top of that you can buy freshly made cakes (made by the owner Joyce) and other items from the small on-site shop!
Their caravan pitches are suitable for both motorhomes and caravans but must be pre-booked with a minimum stay of 4 nights.
If staying, look out for Redshanks, Lapwings and Oystercatchers on the nearby beach.
What’s Close By
The Morar Sands, which are 5 miles from the caravan site, is a beautiful stretch of white sand that makes for an ideal place to relax and take in the stunning view.
The local area is also great for fishing, with sea trout and salmon being among the catches that can be made here. Boat trips can also be taken from the village of Mallaig, which is a short distance away, to the Inner and Outer Hebrides.
Address: Invercaimbe, Arisaig PH39 4NT
Wild Camping in Arisaig: Everything You Need to Know!
Thankfully wild camping is permitted and legal in Arisaig thanks to Scotland’s Right to Roam Act. However authorities ask campers to “tread lightly” and to respect a few guidelines:
- You should camp away from enclosed fields, and pitch your tent away from buildings, roads, and historic structures.
- Campers should be vigilant to avoid disturbing wildlife such as deer, grouse and others.
- When wild camping at Arisaig, do not light fires as wild fires are a danger. It is recommended to use a stove or storm cooker. The Swedish brand Trangia make great camping storm cookers that are safe and virtually indestructible.
- Take any rubbish with you, and leave your camping spot exactly the way you found it.
The Right to Roam Act also gives access to most of Scotland’s land and inland water, as long as it does not encroach on someone’s privacy and private land.
Here is a list of what the Right to Roam Act doesn’t give you access to, and therefore what you should avoid:
Where You Must Avoid:
- Walking in and going through buildings. An exception would be bothies – small mountain and rural huts that can be used by walkers and hikers – see a list of bothies and where they are by clicking here.
- Land clearly attached to a building (private garden, backyard).
- Sports fields.
- Schools and school land.
- Building sites.
- Working quarries (disused quarries are fine, but be extremely cautious and stick to known and safe paths).
Now you know you’re legally allowed to wild camp in Arisaig, and where to avoid, here’s some of our favourite wild camping spots!
Some Of Our Favourite Wild Camping Spots in Arisaig
Of course one of the best parts about wild camping is finding your own special spot to pitch your tent for the night.
However, if you’re looking for inspiration, then below are a few of our favourite wild camping Arisaig spots. Just make sure your tent is midge proof as these little biting flies can be a real menace.
As always, if you are unfamiliar with an area – or it’s your first time visiting – then be careful as peat bogs and other dangers exist.
When wild camping, we always recommend using known paths and sticking to them. We also recommend taking a camping friend who knows the area you plan on camping in very well. That’s the best way to stay safe.
1. Traigh Beach
Two of the major draws about wild camping in Arisaig are the beaches and the views, so why not combine both by camping at Traigh Beach.
This stunning beach is quiet, has spectacular views over towards Eigg, Rum and Skye, and you’re likely to spot seals if staying here.
There’s a small car park, perfect to park your car for the night (there’s height restrictions in place so motorhomes will struggle), and even a small public toilet.
It’s a wonderful Arisaig wild camping spot.
2. The Shores of Loch Morar
You can’t beat lochside camping. Not only do you get fantastic views, you also have access to a water supply – always a good thing when wild camping.
There’s plenty of good spots to wild camp on the shores of Loch Morar, but one of our favourites is beside the ruins of the Chapel of Inverbeg. Not only is there a path to get there, but you also get to indulge in a piece of Scottish history.
As always, make sure you set up your tent away from the path and out of the way of other people who may wish to enjoy the chapel and views.
3. Rhu Point Beach
This remote beach isn’t that easy to access, but the reward is beautiful sands, turquoise waters, and a rural unspoiled landscape.
It’ll take a 1.5 mile walk to get here, but there’s a very nice grassy area just beside the beach perfect for pitching a tent. This spot is special, and can be popular with hikers, so make sure to pitch your tent in a considerate spot.
For directions, click here to see a description of the walk to get to the beach.
Arisaig Camping: The Best Time To Visit
The best time to visit Arisaig is during the summer months of June, July, and August. This is when the weather is at its best, and you’ll have the most daylight hours to enjoy all the area has to offers.
However, if you’re looking to avoid the crowds, autumn and spring are also great times to visit – just bear in mind that Scottish weather can be rainy and wild at times during these seasons.
Sometimes whales can be seen off the west coast of Scotland, usually from the end of May through to September. So camping in Arisaig during these months gives you the opportunity to potentially spot sperm whales, minke whales, and if incredibly lucky, humpback whales.
Arisaig Camping: Some of the Best Hikes
There are several hikes and walks available in the area for those who want to explore the great outdoors. (Related: Hiking in Scotland Where No One Else Is: Scotland’s Hidden Hiking Paths).
In case you’re new to the area, here are a few of our favourite hikes and walks to try out while camping in Arisaig.
1. Rhu Point Beach
We mentioned it before because it’s a fantastic wild camping spot, but even if you’re staying at a campsite you shouldn’t miss out on walking to Rhu Point.
With stunning views of the clear blue seas and the many small islands dotting the landscape, this place is simply breathtaking.
Keep an eye and ear out for the many different birds that call this place home, including pipits, skylarks, twites, lapwings, and plovers. You may also be lucky enough to see a white-tailed eagle flying or fishing along the coastline.
2. Strath of Arisaig & Camas Ghaoideil
Hiking around the Arisaig countryside is a beautiful and peaceful way to spend an afternoon. The gentle slopes and lovely views of the surrounding hills, canal, and Loch nan Eala make for a truly sublime experience on this walk.
Keep your eyes peeled for exciting wildlife, including various birds and perhaps even some otters! If you time your walk well, you’ll be treated to a stunning sunset over the Sound of Arisaig – definitely an experience not to be missed.
3. Larachmhor Garden Walk
If you’re looking for a leisurely stroll, then the gardens of Làrach Mòr on the Arisaig Estate are a delight to explore. The old kitchen gardens and nursery have been transformed into a woodland garden, with a beautiful collection of rhododendrons and other plants.
The broadleaf trees and conifers here make for a lovely walk, and there is an outstanding collection of Western hemlock fir trees at the garden’s southern end.
The semi-native woodland is a highlight, with ancient trees covered in lichen. It’s a peaceful and dreamy place to spend some time.
4. Camusdarach Beach and Beyond
The gentle lapping of the waves as they kiss the shore and the sand between your toes as you walk. The sun is warming your skin. These are just a few things you will experience on this lovely walk along the coast.
Make your way to the silvery beach at Camusdarach and walk along the coastline, sandy bays and beyond. With its mesmerizing views of the Small Isles, this route will take you through golden dunes and past glimmering seas.
It can be as long or as short a walk as you like. There’s plenty of good wild camping spots around this beach too.
Arisaig Camping: Our Final Thoughts
If you’re looking for knockout views, peace and tranquility, and a window into rural Scottish life, then you can’t beat an Arisaig camping adventure.
Whether staying in a campsite or trying out wild camping in Arisaig, you’re going to be surrounded by wildlife, walks, and a wonderfully friendly community.
So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and head on over to this incredible part of Scotland for unforgettable outdoor adventures.