Beinglas Farm is located in ridiculously sublime scenery, just north of Britain’s largest stretch of freshwater at Loch Lomond and is surrounded by brooding mountain peaks. It’s pure walkers’ heaven – but that doesn’t mean there’s no appeal for other visitors too.
The road access itself – a nerve-defying sharp right turn when heading north across the busy A82, and then over a bumpy bridge – is almost designed to put off non-walkers. A much better way to enter Beinglas is on the famous West Highland Way long-distance walk. Arrive early, whether you’re walking or not, because although the large field that houses the site may hold up to 100 tents, it can fill up fast and the best spots go quickly in summer.
If taking on a stretch of the West Highland Way does not tempt you then there are numerous other hills and mountains nearby. The peak that gives the site its name, Ben Glas, is dramatic in its own right, and rises just behind the site. The mountain that acts as a magnet for walkers from all over, though, is Ben Lomond. One of the Munro mountains, Ben Lomond makes an excellent starting climb (five to six hours up and down, with the ‘tourist path’ as easy as they come, though the usual mountain precautions apply).
While the A82 is enough to put off even the most hardened of city cyclists, the countryside around Beinglas is perfect for touring by car. There are distilleries, visitor centres and what seems like yet another loch at every turn; Loch Lomond is just two miles south of the campsite. If you are into seafood, then the charms of the original Loch Fyne Seafood Restaurant (01499 600236; www.lochfyne.com) are less than an hour’s drive away along the banks of the eponymous loch.
Back at the site, the social hub is the large amenity block that comes complete with a shop dishing out maps, first-aid kits and other walking paraphernalia, as well as an impressive wet-weather shelter that boasts a pool table, laundrette, pay phone, seating and cookers. There is also a bar, popular in the evenings with outdoor types recalling the day’s adventures. Don’t be surprised to see a live band stroll in for your entertainment if you’re staying over a summer weekend. And when the sun deigns to come out and shine, the beer garden is just the place to sit and enjoy a pint.
If the weather turns, there are four wigwams onsite, two large and two small, and B&B chalets tucked at the back of the campsite beneath the watchful eye of Ben Glas. These may provide the perfect sanctuary after a solid day’s trekking in the hills, but if you want to fit in you might as well pitch in with the rest of the West Highland Way devotees and join in the fun down on the camping field, no matter how wild it gets. When you have walked so far to get here, you’ll sleep well in any weather.
Hot showers, shop, bar serving food, and wet-weather shelter with cooking facilities and a pool table.
There are plenty of good hiking routes on your doorstep or try riding a trusty stead from Loch Lomond Pony Trekking (07745 277320), who offer treks high into the moorland on the south western edge of Loch Lomond with great views over the national park.
Food & Drink
Make new friends and enjoy good food and Scottish ale in the onsite lounge bar and restaurant until the weather improves. Or unwind over a few rounds of pool in the camping shelter.
OpenAll year, except Christmas.
Citylink (08705 505050) buses ply the A82 every day from Glasgow.
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