Loch Katrine Eco Camping

UK Scotland Central Scotland Stirlingshire

  • Dogs welcome
  • Electrical hook-ups
  • Good walks nearby
Loch-side sleeping and steamship exploring in one of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park's most historic locations

It’s not always clear which is the biggest attraction at Loch Katrine. The water itself – a nine-mile-long S shape in the heart of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park – or the 100-year-old single screw passenger steamship (the last of her kind) that sails across it. The world-famous steamer Sir Walter Scott came here in 1899 by barge, boat and horse-drawn carriage before being painstakingly re-assembled for her maiden voyage. For today’s vessel visitors it’s a far easier ride. A one-hour drive from Glasgow, a little more from Edinburgh, or the sleeper train from London to Stirling affording you a little less stress on your journey north. From Stirling, it's just a short drive into the spellbinding heart of the Trossachs and the Great Trossachs Forest National Nature Reserve. A truly magical setting, Sir Walter Scott described 'the scenery of a fairy dream’ in his famous poem Lady of the Lake.

Along with running the Steamship Sir Walter Scott, the Lady of the Lake, the Trossachs Pier, Brenachoile cafe, the gift shop, and visitor centre, the team here at Loch Katrine have also just opened an exciting eco campsite. The brand new facilities are suitably modern, fully accessible and cater for eight camping pitches and up to 12 motorhomes, while a clutch of secluded glamping lodges allow those travelling light to live in luxury but still enjoy the great outdoors. The lodges' prime position means glampers wake up in the long dawn shadows of Ben Venue, soundtracked by the rippling waters of Loch Katrine and the crinkling top of Ben A'an – the mountain in miniature – looming in the distance. As evening descends, the dramatic sunsets enjoyed from the lodge are very special indeed. Inside each eco lodge, a compact kitchen, heating, proper beds, TV and free Wi-Fi come as standard. The largest ones also offer en suite shower rooms and underfloor heating.

As pampered as an eco lodge stay might sound, it’s still a far cry from the delights Queen Victoria experienced when she came to visit the loch in 1859, famously demanding an entire house and jetty be built for her exclusive personal use. Alas, despite the production of the gothic royal cottage and jetty, which can still be visited to this day, Queen Victoria never stayed there overnight. The 21 gun salute that greeted her arrival shattered almost every window in the house.

If you’re not listening to such tales as you take a narrated boat tour across the water, then hiring bikes on site is also a fantastic option. You can grab a one-way boat ticket to the far end of the loch (taking bikes and buggies on board) and pedal back along the quiet and almost car-free, loch-side road. Hiking, meanwhile, is the key attraction for many. Whether it’s a gentle stroll to Glengyle (the birthplace of Scottish legend Rob Roy MacGregor), taking the long route to Ben Lomond or making your way up to the nearby peak of Ben A'an, there are endless opportunities to keep you occupied. The latter even boasts views back down to the loch, where you can see the Steamship Sir Walter Scott departing across the water. From up top you can really understand how Loch Katrine – “highland thief or robber” in gaelic – earned its name. It certainly steals your breath away.

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Details

Facilities

Woodland camping, some pitches with electrical hook-up, with access to a shared toilet and shower block. 2 camping pitches are wheelchair-friendly. Eco lodges feature a small kitchenette with combo microwave, fridge and sink, Freeview HDTV, free Wi-Fi, lighting and heating. Basic lodges sleep 2 in fixed double bunk beds and a further 2 in a double sofa bed. A toilet and shower block is nearby. The luxury lodges have en-suite facilities (including a walk-in electric shower), underfloor heating and sleep up to 4, with 2 in a king-sized bed and up to 2 in a fold down bed. A wheelchair-friendly lodge is available. Open fires and charcoal BBQs are not permitted. There is no direct access to the Loch at the Eco Camp site, a fence prevents access due to continual boat movements. There are view points and access to the lochside a short walk up the lochside. Fishing on Loch Katrine is by boat only and requires a permit. Campervan/Motor-home pitches are in the car park and have electric hook-ups, water and are close to a toilet block where there is a wet room and shower. All guests receive 20% off sailings on the Steamship Sir Walter Scott and the Lady of the Lake. There is a small shop on site where a limited range of supplies are available as well as a café/tearoom.

Suitable For

Glampers, campers, tents, campervans and motorhomes all welcome. Dogs welcome in some pods (£8 supplement per night). No caravans, stag or hen parties. All guests receive 20% off sailings on the Steamship Sir Walter Scott or on the Lady of the Lake.

Nearby

Catching a boat tour across to Stronachlachar is a must. The hamlet is full of history and not more than an hour’s walk from Inversnaid, a checkpoint on the West Highland Way. It's been welcoming the steamship Sir Walter Scott for decades. For cyclists, the road along the northern shore of the loch is a relatively flat, car-free tarmac surface, making it the ideal alternative route to the other end of the water. You can hire bikes from Katrine Wheelz (01877 376366) at Trossachs Pier and bikes can also be booked on board the boats, so you can cross the loch and cycle back. For other routes in the Trossachs, the ‘School House Cycle’ is a family-friendly trail that enjoys views across Loch Katrine and surrounding hills such as Ben A’an and Ben Venue. The trail itself is an easy ½-mile and can be combined with a cycle from Trossachs Pier or Stronachlachar but it also links up with 35-mile national route 7. Between Loch Katrine and Loch Achray, Ben A’an (Gaelic for “pinnacle” ) is one of Scotland’s more accessible peaks and one of the most rewarding hikes in the area. There are a series of well catalogued routes, for varying levels of hikers in the Great Trossachs Forest and Queen Elizabeth Forest Park (the latter boasts a visitor centre at the Lodge in Aberfoyle). The route from Loch Achray to the summit of Ben A’an is 2½ miles long, for those looking to experience the hilltop view without a complex climb. Other nearby attractions include the castles at Stirling (01786 450000) and Doune (01786 841742), whisky distilleries at Deanston (01786 843010) and Glengoyne (01360 550 254), the National Wallace Monument (01786 472140), Blair Drummond Safari Park (01786 841456) and Go Ape Aberfoyle (0845 094 9032).

Food & Drink

There aren’t many spots with a view like Loch Katrine's own Brenachoile cafe (01877 376 799). Grab some pre-exploration lunch or enjoy a much deserved tea and cake, all overlooking the loch. Situated at the Trossachs Pier, the Brenachoile offers a warm welcome and extensive array of locally sourced fresh food on offer for families, hikers and cyclists in the area, as well as those staying at the campsite. Open daily on a seasonal basis but not in the evenings. There are a number of places to eat and drink in lochside settings and also in the nearby settlements of Brig o Turk, Callander and Aberfoyle.

Opening Times

All year.

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  • Best Price Guarantee, with no fees
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The Owner Says

It’s not always clear which is the biggest attraction at Loch Katrine, the water itself – a nine-mile-long S shape in the heart of The Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park – or the 119-year-old single screw passenger steamship, (the last of her kind), that sails along it. The world-famous steamer, Sir Walter Scott, came here in sections in 1899 by barge and horse-drawn bogies before being painstakingly re-assembled for her maiden voyage at the end of March 1900. For today’s visitors it’s a far easier journey! We are a one-hour drive from Glasgow and just a little more from Edinburgh. The sleeper train from London to Stirling affords you even less stress on your journey north. From Stirling, it's just a short drive into the spellbinding heart of the Trossachs and the Great Trossachs Forest National Nature Reserve.

It is a truly magical setting!

Along with running the Steamship Sir Walter Scott, the Lady of the Lake, the Trossachs Pier, the steamship cafe, the gift shop, and visitor centre, the team here at Loch Katrine have just opened our new and exciting eco campsite. The brand new facilities are suitably modern. Our new secluded eco lodges allow those traveling light to live in luxury but still enjoy the great outdoors.  Located 7 miles from Callander and 5 miles from Aberfoyle; our Eco Camp is the perfect base to get away from it all but still be within a short drive to bustling tourist hubs.  Inside each eco lodge, a compact kitchen, heating, proper beds, TV and free Wi-Fi come as standard. The largest lodges also offer en suite shower rooms and under-floor heating.

The lodges' prime position means “glampers” wake up to the view of Ben Venue, lulled by the rippling waters of Loch Katrine. As evening descends, the dramatic sunsets enjoyed from the lodges are very special indeed. As exciting as an eco lodge stay might sound, it’s still a far cry from Queen Victoria’s experience when she came to visit the loch in 1859, famously demanding an entire house and jetty to be built for her exclusive personal use. Alas, despite the production of the gothic royal cottage and jetty, which can still be visited to this day, Queen Victoria never stayed there overnight. The twenty-one-gun salute that greeted her arrival shattered almost every window in the house making it impossible for her to stay overnight.

Video Tour

Accommodation

4 large Loch lodges (en suite), 4 Ben lodges (shared facilities), 8 camping pitches and 12 motor-home hook ups in the car parking area.
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Location

Contact Loch Katrine Eco Camping, Loch Katrine, By Callander, Stirling FK17 8HZ

Getting There

From Callander, Loch Katrine is 10 miles via the A84 to Kilmahog, and then the A821 through Brig o’ Turk. From Aberfoyle it's 7 miles via the A821 (Duke’s Pass). If you have a Sat Nav try Trossachs Pier Car Park which is at N56.23226 W4.42734. From the car park, head toward Duke’s Pass/A821 and, after around a ½-mile, turn left onto Duke’s Pass/A821. Then turn left at the signpost for Loch Katrine and follow the road to the car park, remembering to pay for your stay. The nearest train station is in Stirling, where you can change to get the bus to Callander or Aberfoyle, unfortunately, public transport options onto Trossachs Pier from both villages are limited. You can book a DRT (Demand Responsive Transport) car to get to you the Pier. Use this link for details Demand Responsive Transport

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Why book with I Love This Campsite?

  • Best Price Guarantee, with no fees
  • Instant booking confirmation
  • Trusted for over 10 years
  • A chance to win prizes in our regular competitions

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