I used to travel a lot. Being a travel journalist, it was, naturally, a huge part of my job. Having been all over the world, my next goals were to travel all over Japan and Europe. Unfortunately, ill health and two solid years of hospital appointments have put that on hold, forcing me to travel much closer to home.
After browsing the web one night, I saw a place that seemed not too far from where I was. Campsie Glen Holiday Park is located in the Campsie Hills, about 1 mile from Fintry.
We finally arrived after about an hour of mostly back roads and hills; Campsie Glen is truly in the middle of nowhere. If you don’t have a car, as we didn’t, you might find that restrictive as there are no pavements up the road and a lot of blind corners that cars take very quickly. However don’t let that out you off – by using a little ingenuity, this can be gotten-around.
A taxi to nearby Kippen will cost about a fiver and buses are available to Fintry, Stirling and nearby places. Likewise, a taxi to the nearby hotel built from Culcreuch Castle (insanely popular for weddings), will cost the same.
Now, back to the campsite, as that is, invariably where you’ll be spending most of your time, especially if it’s torrential rain for the entire weekend, as it was for us. I won’t mention that again, however, as it’s obviously not the site’s fault for the weather (though some protest differently, I know.)
Behind me here is the kind of view you can expect from the site. You can also expect a hot tub if you book one of the new lodges when they’re finished. The hills were shrouded in mist for a bit of the weekend, adding to the epic Rob Rob sense of mystery.
Dogs are allowed and welcomed. Here’s mine finishing a hot dog 🌭
While we were there: yes, very. The park was full of children and families, it was quiet from about 11:30pm until 11am the next morning.
What was there to do onsite?
The site had a dog-walking area, a small historical ruin of a former Laird’s house, a bistro\bar which had bingo on a Friday and live entertainment on the Saturday, a semi-outdoor swimming pool (hard to describe, but the closest I can say is it’s in like a massive clear greenhouse – swimming with the rain battering the roof was a cool experience) and a kids playground.
What’s the clientele like?
I would say very working class (being working class myself.) I’ve been to many caravan parks where there are complaints about noise because people want to go hiking at 6am or a big caravan comparison show. If that’s what you’re into, don’t bother; it’s very working class and family-orientated.
Was the food in the bistro just like reheated Rustlers burgers?
No, not at all, and this was the biggest surprise for me. The Burger I got was homemade, right down to the burger itself.
This was the Rob Roy chicken, stuffed with haggis on a bed of mashed potato with a creamy whisky sauce. I cut it open here so you could see the haggis, it doesn’t come open like this haha
I also had a breakfast which was really nice. You had the option of a full breakfast, choosing 6 items off of the breakfast menu (handy if you didn’t like everything on the full breakfast) and a roll on any item on the breakfast menu.
Prices were usual bistro prices – about £7 for the burger and same for the breakfast, but the quality (especially of the haggis) made it well worth it. A small selection of food was available to buy in the reception, also reasonably priced (£1.10 for six hot dogs).
The reception and staff in general were very kind and knowledgable. They were very talkative and chatty and really let you get a sense of their lives in the surrounding area, including one lady on reception who bred and showed Clydesdale horses – she explained the ups and downs of breeding them and showed us pictures of the shows they had been in and the new foals. I never felt like I was being a bother to them and that’s, surprisingly, a huge thing in communication that many places get wrong. I also have problems with anxiety, but the staff were so chatty and friendly that I didn’t feel like I was being a hassle to them.
All-in-all I had a great time and would definitely come back. Though hopefully the weather’s nicer next time, so I can explore further afield.