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By keef and annie hellinger, Sep 13 2018 09:18AM

Motorhome trip No34 : Aug 27th- Sept 12th 2018


NOTTS->Scotland and the Isles via Lake District ->NOTTS 1313 miles


Troutbeck nr Penrith,Greystoke, Glasgow, Mull, Iona, Ulva, Kintyre including the Mull of Kintyre, Bute, Arran, much of Argyll & Keswick, Lake District


Summary Overall


A fab time away visiting our dear friends Chris and Allyson in their new home at Ardtun (pronounced Hard – Ton) on the oh so peaceful Isle of Mull plus pulling in 7 ferry trips, 5 Scottish islands, a lot of miles, 2 great days out in Glasgow (which is a truly fabulous city – much better than when we cowered under the bench overnight in Buchanan street bus garage 40 years ago – city of culture now), a great Sunday dinner with friends Lawrence & Yvonne, Strathclyde country park - the old lady who had lived there all her life and not found the Roman fort (lol), classy Charles Rennie & Margaret MacDonald Mackintosh, the Glasgow Boys,Riverside Museum, Hunterian, George Square, Murals, Kelvingrove, real pizzas, Sir John Moore and true scotch food, Hard Rock Cafe, HOHO bus, Bellshill station, scotch mist,wind and rain a plenty on some of the isles plus lots of sunshine, Connel, trying to find the amphitheatre in Oban, humming Mull of Kintyre, Chris reminding me about a lift we had on Mull all those years ago where the lifter played Planxty, the burg, Cnoc Mor, tea and cakes Bunessan, a revisit to Threlkeld, Keswick and a first visit to Tarzan’s Greystoke, Fionnphort, great walk to coast on Iona in the sun (now costs to go around the abbey - progress?),learning something about crofting and de-crofting,that multi-seen french yacht, 2 busted ferries to and from the Isle of Arran, Crab & Lobster soup in the Boathouse Ulva, Shiela's cottage,Lachlan MacQuarrie's mausoleum Mull (Benmore estate - born Ulva as were Dr Livingston's grand parents) , Uisken beach and the big chair, Ardalanish beach rain and red admirals,Bob Ryan MBE Ardalanish weavers,Tarbert, Campbeltown, Mull of Kintyre, Machrihanish, views of Islay, Loch Fyne, revisiting Tighnabruaich,Rothsay, Winter gardens and harbour, Port Bannatyne, Ardrossan, Brodick and castle and grounds, shifting from the dog lounge to the coughing suite on Arran ferry, the Big stone (both Arran and campsite Troutbeck), Corrie, Lochranza and castle, hills of Sannox (lunch twice),fake sheep and a very convincing seal, my first red squirrel in the UK, seal shores views - kildonan, Kinloch, Old byre visitors centre - Machrie, wild camp A83, learning more functionality on our camera, waterfalls galore in Loch Lomond NP and oh so much more, very relaxing, we really enjoyed ourselves.


If you would like to see the slideshows and videos please CLICK HERE


Updated Plan


DAY 1 Mon 27 Aug 3hrs 30mins 178 miles Home to Penrith (straight there 6hrs 10mins 284 miles… too much for 1 day!!!) stay at Troutbeck head site, Troutbeck, Penrith, CA11 0SS (a C&M site) Booking confirmed £33 0008542092

DAY2 Tues 28 Aug 3hrs 4 mins 155 miles Morecambe Bay to Strathclyde Country Park Caravan Club Site L&Y Bothwellhaugh Road, Bothwell, Bothwell, G71 8NY Booking 0008543275 £70.50

DAY3&4: Wed & Thurs 29 & 30 Aug 3 nights with Lawrence & Yvonne, 2 days in Glasgow… note that is 12 miles away by bus.. see Y&L tues eve , they are off Weds so we will probably do 2 days in Glasgow. Park and ride (free) at Bellshill train station, only £4.40 return to Glasgow Central station. What a fab place it is. The hop on hop off bus is only £16 for 2 days. Guess what Glasgow has a Hard Rock Cafe

DAY5: Fri 31 Aug 3hrs 106 miles to Oban, stay at campsite there North Ledaig Caravan Club Site Connel, Oban, Argyll & Bute, PA37 1RU, Scotland C&M club site booked ref 2450 £28.20-£10 deposit paid. Had a quick drive up to find the Victorian amphitheatre at Oban but couldn’t find it, interesting climb on single track road. Campsite wonderful, on beach front with clear views of the isle of Mull

DAY6 – 11 Sat 1 Sep – Fri 7 Sep Ferry Oban to Craignure : on Mull with Chris & Allyson. Leave Fri am 6 full days. Take tickets BOOKED leave oban checkin closes 8.10… leave craignure checkin closes 9.25

£41.20 return #wow . Drive to Cnoc Mor takes about 1 hr, allow 1hr 30 on way back because of traffic.

DAY12: Fri 7 Sep Ferry Craignure to Oban Then on way back 50 miles 1hr 30 mins Oban to Tarbert ferry via Lochgilphead (all Argyll & bute) Camp near Tarbert @ killegruer caravan park, woodend, glenbarr, tarbert, argyll pa29 6xb email sent to book/ now confirmed pay cash We called in at this campsite and it was YUCK! So carried on and stayed at a lovely site just outside Campbeltown (a great town) on the Mull of Kintyre

DAY13: Sat 8 Sep Ferry Tarbert (Argyll mainland) to Portavaidie (across loch fyne) Turn up and go, see timetable then around loch riddon, drive Portavaidie to colintraive ferry terminal 40 mins 19 miles, then Colintraive - Rhubodach Ferry £5 1 way for motorhome plus passengers. Now on the isle of Bute, Spend the rest of the day on Bute… camp there then head to Rothsay. Camp at Roseland Holiday park, Serpentine Road Canada Hill, Isle Of Bute PA20 9EH email sent to book response hardstanding pitch secured. Not the greatest site but high up on the hills overlooking Rothsay so close to ferry. Hardstanding was in basically a car park £20 all in so cheap. Washrooms adequate (just)

DAY14: Sun 9 Sep Ferry Rothsay to Wemyss Bay , then Drive Wemyss Bay to Ardrossan 45 mins 18 miles, Ferry Ardossan to Brodick - Isle of Arran stay 1+ full days (lots to see and much bigger than Bute)camp at Seal Shore Camping & Touring Site, Kildonan ,Isle of Arran ,KA27 8SE ,01770 820320 £23/night 2 nights.. go anti clockwise around the island… 25 mins 14 miles Brodick to Lochranza, see castle… email sent to book Take tickets BOOKED Arran leave ardrossan checkin closes 12 noon… leave brodick (11th) checkin closes 9.15 £46.70 return Update… due to crane crushing drive on / off ramp had to take a later ferry so had nice lunch and coffee in Asda near the terminal. Drove up to Lochranza – nice place, hills of Sannox fab

DAY15: Mon 10 Sep Day on Isle of camp at same site Seal Shore Camping & Touring Site, Kildonan ,Isle of Arran ,KA27 8SE £23/night £20 deposit paid by card, sending confirmation. Drove right around Arran 30 miles top to bottom so about 60 miles in all. Called in at CalMac Brodick after text re ferry cancellation. As the second ferry from Brodick to Ardrossan was also damaged (how careless, winds from storm , ramp cracked – dry dock) and no vehicles over 2.8 meters high could leave we travelled (for the 4th time) back to Lochranza and got the 5.05 pm small ferry back to Cloanaig (Kintyre), very choppy and getting off was fun. Then A83 Lochgilphead, Inveraray (nice) and wild camp just outside Cairndow with own private waterfall

DAY16: Tues 11 Sep then back to mainland via drive Kildonan to Brodick 30mins 13 miles ferry Brodick to Adrossan, then drive Adrossan to Penrith Lake District 3 hrs 6mins 158 miles Stay at Troutbeck head site, Troutbeck, Penrith, CA11 0SS (a C&M site) Booking confirmed £26.80 0008542045 Update from Cairndow (up early) drive A83/ A82 past Glasgow back to Troutbeck campsite

DAY17: Wed 12 Sep Penrith home 3hrs 30mins 178 miles longer time wise via M6 about 186 miles


If you would like to seen details of our previous trip to Scotland in the wendy house please CLICK HERE


If you would like to see details of our trip to the Shetlands in 2001 CLICK HERE


If you would like to see Slideshows of our trip to the Isle of Lewis, the Uists and Benbecula in 1988, Edinburgh in 1993 when we holidayed in Lowick, Northumberland or Tighnabruich, Cowal peninsular which we revisited on this trip and it was Craig's 1st holiday back in 1982 CLICK HERE






Panorama: The Burg from Cnoc Mor, Ardtun, Isle of Mull #BLISS
Panorama: The Burg from Cnoc Mor, Ardtun, Isle of Mull #BLISS


just gotta do it tried it once thats enough
just gotta do it tried it once thats enough


fionnphort - isle of mull, argyll and bute
fionnphort - isle of mull, argyll and bute

By keef and annie hellinger, Nov 5 2017 04:08PM

Motorhome trip No31 : November 1st-3rd 2017


NOTTS->Greetham , Rutland ->NOTTS 107 miles


Used the truck nav which took us via a slightly longer route via A52 and A1 to come into Rutland from the Stamford end to avoid the Belvoir valley hill, we came back however through Rutland water which is about 10 miles shorter in distance.


A very nice Camping and Caravan site at Greetham with reductions for Caravan Club members but no reduction for ACSI members as only ACSI approved not registered. Your Caravan club card is kept during your stay as the deposit for the site security card which you need for all barriers and gates during your stay.


The site has a mixture of both hard standing and grass pitches and there are 2 areas one for adults only and one for families. There are two toilet blocks, the one on the adults only area is much more modern with great under floor heating and wet room showers.


There are dog walks at both ends of the site, an indoor swimming pool , hot tub and limited games room plus a kids play park in the middle of the family area. It is a very large site with about 130 pitches and tenting areas in the middle of the family area. Fees apply for the pool and hot tub; see their website for more details HERE.


We were on pitch 21 in the adult only area. All pitches have all 3 services i.e electrics, drinking water and drain for your grey waste assuming you have the right length of pipe work.


Right next to our pitch was the walkway thru the woods to the perimeter gate which led 2 ways into the village either via church lane or the community centre. Its only about 15 mins leisurely stroll into the village and the autumn colours were beautiful. St Mary’s church is a delight and it is such a lovely village with supposedly 3 pubs, we only found one, the Plough, which has great real ales, friendly staff and a gut busting dinner for a reasonable price which we had a lunch time on our second day. The chef even gave me a few tips on veggie cooking


We had a bit of a mosey around after lunch before returning for an afternoon of luxury reading, such a treat!

On leaving we went via the south side of Rutland water and visited the village of Manton with its wonderful priory and St Mary’s church. We had not been there before and down a public bridleway there were great view of Rutland water.


We liked Greetham a lot and will hopefully return again, it’s a great starting point for discovering Rutland. If you would like to see the slideshows click HERE thanks.



classy selfie greetham village, rutland
classy selfie greetham village, rutland

By keef and annie hellinger, Apr 14 2016 08:08AM


Motorhome trip No26 : April 11th- 13th 2016


NOTTS->Harbury, Warwickshire plus Royal Leamington Spa & Kenilworth Castle ->NOTTS 134 miles


Having had the van serviced, both habitation and engine, we were keen to try it out locally for a few days to ensure everything was working perfectly in readiness for more major excursions.


So we chose a local one a Caravan club affiliated site at Harbury Fields Farm, not far from Leamington Spa. A lovely site that we would definitely recommend right in the middle of a working farm which does both arable and livestock and at lambing season is a must. They are so gorgeous. The owners are very friendly and told us they started the site as a CL 13 years ago then added one field and now 1.5 years ago added another field. There are 3 amenities block and they cater for the disabled camper. All in all a fab site and great 360 degree views from our motorhome. Free wifi in the reception area and good phone reception across the site.


The 1st day the weather wasn’t great so after a brisk walk around the farm to see the lambs we settled down to reading, crochet and hippy music listening (Cat Stevens and Pink Floyd). It bucketed down.


The next day was much better and we walked down the farm drive and caught the bus into Royal Leamington spa, rather conveniently the bus stops right outside the farm entrance. Had a lovely day in town, fab architecture, great gardens and free exhibitions in the pump and spa rooms, sadly they no longer exist but the remaining hamman spa is very interesting. We had lunch and a drink in the Weatherspoons in town but food wise one would be spoilt for choice.


Again it poured down over night but no problems for the van.


The next day we packed up after a nice brekkie of warmed ciabatta and set off for Kenilworth castle. A wonderful place with much history including even Robert Dudley’s attempts to marry the ‘virgin’ queen. Spent a pleasant 3 hours here and then headed off back home, arriving back about 3.30 pm


A great short break which I would thoroughly recommend.


Want to see the SLIDESHOWS



By keef and annie hellinger, Oct 15 2015 07:53AM

Up to 15/10/2015


Note this data does not include any of the sites we have stayed in in Scandinavia, France, Australia, New Zealand, Canada or the USA. These are numerous and varied and can be found under the appropriate blogs in the index. Specifically blogs numbered 55,63,71,72,79,80,81,92,100.

There are however some slideshows of those campsites in those countries attached after the data.


As a tip however if you stay in these it is worth investing in one of the appropriate club memberships in that country i.e ACSI (Europe), Big 4 (Oz), Big 10 (NZ) etc etc. i.e similar to the Caravan Club (CC) and/or Camping & Caravan Club (C&CC) in the UK.


Here I show ALL the sites we have stayed at in our motorhome listed by

1. UK country / county

2. Rated

3. Site Blog number.

4. Site type (i.e CC, C&CC etc etc)


49 different sites in the UK to date


In all cases use the Index or search facility to read more and see the pictures that will show some views of those sites (hopefully) ;) Some of the UK private sites are part of either the Tranquil sites (adults only) or Best of British books.


VIEW 1: Sites by country then county
VIEW 1: Sites by country then county
VIEW 2: Sites by motorhome-travels rating
VIEW 2: Sites by motorhome-travels rating
VIEW 3: Sites by motorhome-travels blog number, use the index or search
VIEW 3: Sites by motorhome-travels blog number, use the index or search

VIEW 4: Sites by Club Type
VIEW 4: Sites by Club Type


If you would like to see a slideshow of the sites we stayed at in France and Scandinavia they are show below.




By keef and annie hellinger, Oct 14 2015 02:23PM


Motorhome trip No24 : October 7th – 14th 2015


NOTTS->YORKSHIRE including Holmfirth, Hebden Bridge, Cragg Vale,Bronte Country,Settle, Grassington, Wharfdale (Yorkshire Dales) then up to NORTHUMBERLAND Berwick upon Tweed for time with friends then back to YORKSHIRE including Sutton Band Hill (25% steep avoid in future although trusty van OK),Pickering, Rosedale (North York Moors), Scarborough & Castle, Filey , Flamborough Headcand Bridlington ->NOTTS 654 miles


Lovely time spent touring areas of the Yorkshire Dales we missed out on our last trip in September then a weekend with friends up in Northumberland on the Scottish borders at Berwick upon Tweed and then touring the North York Moors national park and ending up on the east riding coast.

Great weather mostly for mid October, shorts and flip flop time again!


6 days away all Caravan club sites ;- 1. Hebden Bridge HX7 5RU no facilities but nice tranquil site by the edge of the river Calder 2. Wharfdale BD23 5PN beautiful site on back of major holiday park, pheasants everywhere, so peaceful, good TV hookup on posts 3. Berwick Seaview TD15 1QU fab views bus and easy walk into town over old bridge and nice fish & chip shops, pubs, esp Old Barrels Inn and Micropub (did 2 nights here with friends) only down side is it is on the main east coast railway line 4. Rosedale Abbey YO18 8SA – absolutely loved this site although it is grass (bad when wet) and no facilities but its upside is location and proximity of pub opposite, gr8 ales and food esp recommend Desperate Dan Cow pie (home made) Yummy! 5. Bridlington YO15 1DU expensive for what you get and weird enclosed area with long walk and no cut through to amenities block, would go back again and 4 miles to brid…


DAY1: Wet Holmfirth, saw picturedome where Graham Parker and the Rumour will play their last ever live gig. Cleared up a bit in after noon, stayed site no 1


DAY2:Visited Cragg vale, Hebden Bridge, Oxenhope, Howarth,(interesting climb), Settle and railway station, Grassington and Wharfdale, stayed site 2.


DAY3:Drove long way upto Berwick Upon Tweed arrived about 3.30pm at site 3, set up and then met Chris & Allyson and Lawrence &Yvonne in evening… walked to Barrel inn for 3 pints of Bolt maker then late fish and chips at Fowlis on Dock Road before returning to vans for more drinkies and chat, late to bed 1-ish am


DAY4: Nice bacon stottie at L&Y’s van then into town for look around, scotch pie, Brewers Inn in the high road (Scotland Vs Samoa , many scots in pub happy) then onto the Curfew Micro Pub (lovely pint of Manchester’s Lagonda) then walk back to vans for lovely meal cooked by Allyson of beef stroganoff followed by Cheese and bikkies, K’s bondi banana bread and a game of Bullshit (balderdash) SPVA… (special park village abuse lol!) V late to bed again


DAY5: Up early cooked egg and bacon butties for all, long natter, then said our goodbyes (until next time pals) then onto North York Moors NP (long drive) Saw Pickering just as light was fading then to site no 4. Great meal in pub opposite. Log fire, ale and class food


DAY6: Visited Scarborough and most specifically English heritages’ Castle and Anne Bronte’s grave. Great views from castle and very interesting audio tour. Met aussie couple from Adelaide. Went to Filey ,walked a bit, got wet, lunched then onto Bridlington to dry out and campsite after brief stop at sea front (reminded us of Bognor)


DAY7: Drove home not a bad drive about 120 miles, mixed weather


All in all a nice time, very relaxing we will be back to both these areas


Want to see the SLIDESHOW