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    western isles

    hi to all.we are just about ready for our trip to the western isle,we intend to sail to barra from oban and return from stornaway to ullapool.we would appreciate any advice regarding wildcamping within the past few months.it is a changing scenario on the islands with regard to people camping in vehicles and recent information would help.the plan is for about a month but its flexible either way.regards two jays

    #2
    I did this trip a number of years ago, its a great adventure.
    Can't really help on camping spots, as you say its all changed, but I would advise filling with petrol in Oban as it will be a lot more on the isles, and remember that most things will be shut on a sunday.
    The tourist info stays open for the ferry on Barra so will be able to advise for the first few nights

    Enjoy the trip

    Jules

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      #3
      Originally posted by twojays View Post
      hi to all.we are just about ready for our trip to the western isle,we intend to sail to barra from oban and return from stornaway to ullapool.we would appreciate any advice regarding wildcamping within the past few months.it is a changing scenario on the islands with regard to people camping in vehicles and recent information would help.the plan is for about a month but its flexible either way.regards two jays
      You are welcome to read my account of the first trip I made last year - http://http://www.barryswan.com/HTML/romahome/2011heb.html

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        #4
        Hebrides wilding not a problem

        I recently wild camped with my Romini van all the way from Eriskay in the deep south of South Uist all the way to the Butt of Lewis in the far north, 9 nights wild camping... not a problem. Parking/camping spots do not actually abound, but they are there ... especially if you are willing to explore the skinniest little roads. On no account park in passing bays on single-track roads ... guaranteed to raise the locals' hackles. It's polite not to camp within sight of any habitation and to generally remain unobtrusive, but if you do so you almost certainly will not get any grief, especially at this the 'thin' end of the holiday season. Be aware that on Sunday everything stops, there are even signs on the kids' play areas banning their use, so make sure you have everything you need before close of play on Saturday. Note: All the ferry terminals, even the tiny ones, have free loos, water taps and portaloo disposal points, a really handy facility.
        Attached Files
        Last edited by mikeroch; 16-09-2012, 09:01.

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          #5
          We have been staying near Inverness (not wild camping), but whilst driving about exploring I noticed lots of possible sites and saw a few vans tucked away here and there. As mikeroch says, take to the smaller roads and follow the genreal code for wildcamping and you will be fine with plenty of choice for places to stay
          Mary

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            #6
            Hello,
            We went a couple of years ago and wildcamped at a picnic areas on the coast all over the place. On Harris and Lewis there are loads of loops off the main road North/South to camp in too. We also camped in the car park at Tarbert (too tired to look harder after a very long walk!), and on the front at Stornoway the night before our ferry. We also stayed in two campistes on Lewis and Harris, but had no problems finding wildcamping sites at all.
            I would be very surprised if it had changed too much.
            Whilst very rural, we didn't have any problems buying what we needed, and as someone said earlier the showers at the little harbours/ports are very handy and were a pound a go when we went.
            Invest in OS maps (1.25000 if you can) and seek out the little car parks and visitor centres. We had some in mind before we went (from maps), which we then went and checked out as we toured the island.
            Have a great time.
            Aileen.

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              #7
              thanks to all

              thanks to all who posted replies,we leave tomorrow so the advice is very usefull.regards to all two jays..

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                #8
                great review

                thanks barry for posting your trip,just read it ...thanks again..

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                  #9
                  Sadly you will have missed the best of the weather - we had mediterranean weather in June but now you can expect heavy showers, strong winds but sun as well.

                  Follow Mike;s advice - there's no shortage of places to camp but you need to follow the "yellow roads" on OS maps. We found plenty of camping spots with immaculately clean public loos with outside taps. (don't forget these loos are probably cleaned by volunteers from community - if there is a donation jar - leave a donation)
                  Great camping spots near Northton (nr leverborough) Hosta (gt Bernara) Huisinis (Harris) and a couple of other spots on the "yellow roads". If near habitation - you can always ask permission to camp - we found people very welcoming if you approach them properly.

                  Please remember this is a fragile economy and they need your contribution - so visit local cafes/shops/art galleries and spend where you can - within your own limitations.

                  I was surpised to find that fuel was no more expensive than on Skye - and that is pretty expensive

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                    #10
                    thanks cedas for your welcome tips and advice.not to concerned about the weather although a bit of sun is always welcome.a couple of years ago we took a van to the nordkap in may so we have an idea what to expect,really looking forward to taking the duo on this trip.thanks again and we will look out for the honesty jars,,regards twojays.

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                      #11
                      Originally posted by mikeroch View Post
                      ... Be aware that on Sunday everything stops, there are even signs on the kids' play areas banning their use...
                      Hi Mike
                      I was aware that was the case in Presbyterian Lewis and Harris, but is it still as strict in the Catholic south (Uists, Benbecula, Barra etc.)?
                      We're considering the Western Isles for next year, so it will be useful to know.

                      Geoff
                      Geoff

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                        #12
                        Attitudes are relaxing even in free church areas but there are still many staunch advocates of keeping the sabbath sacred. Recent fierce discussions on sabbath sailings. Catholic areas more relaxed.

                        Anyway to be honest - is it a problem? Providing you know when you can travel and when you can't - and you know what might be open and what might not---the rest of it is no problem - campervans are self contained - we can all cope with a day without shops etc open , can't we???

                        Am a firm non-believer in any church, but I will strongly defend their right to practise their beliefs so long as it doesn';t seriously interfere with normal everyday life. When in Rome do as the Romans do etc etc (just wish others thought the same - when in Britain etc etc)

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                          #13
                          I went with a friend to Harris and Lewis a few years back. The campsite at Lewis had notices asking you not to do washing or peg it out to dry on Sundays!

                          Lovely wild camping site at Horgebost on Harris - showers, loos, water and all the rest, all for a donation! And the beach there has to be seen to be believed!

                          The Youth hostels will also let you park and use their facilities for a small fee.

                          Here's a link to the slide show I did when we came back.

                          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t4Owh...&feature=g-upl

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                            #14
                            changing attitudes

                            we have just returned from the isles and it looks like there is a small change in attitudes to sunday opening..there are coop stores now open between12pm and 4pm on sundays and they were full of shoppers....

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                              #15
                              Voting with their feet then!

                              Although by no means a strict Sabbatarian, I do prefer to respect local cultures and find it a bit sad when places start to lose what made them different. Although chaining up the kids' swings seems a bit over the top, and more likely to deter the little 'uns than inspire them.

                              A few years back, on holiday in Turkey, we even came to appreciate the 5am Adhan. Even though we did go straight back to sleep when it finished!
                              Geoff

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