The views are amazing. There is tons to do on site and at multiple other places around kielder water - such as
Birds of prey centre (excellent for kids)
Play parks galore
Amazing cycle paths
Outward bound centre
Good pubs / cafés
There isn't phone signal all over but who cares, there is wifi and what do you want when booking a country break in the woods!
Buy some smidge = midges sorted. People make such a fuss. Just be prepared.
The restaurant is excellent, the people below that moan regarding not getting change from £50. 00 for 4 main courses are living on another planet, it's par for the course! The food is good and fresh and huge portions too!
Just had a week at Leaplish and it was superb. Arrived 4pm and no-one to greet us but there is a phone down to main reception and we were advised how to proceed. However, being told to just go find a pitch on a wooded and twisty site you have never visited before, in the rain, was not ideal, though all worked out well enough. The area is stunning, with huge pines and amazing views. There is loads to do and excellent facilities both on site and in the neighbouring areas to Kielder Water. The insects, even at the end of October, found their way into our caravan at night via the ventilation grills for the fridge! Must be a nightmare in warmer times.
A couple of minor grumbles; the toilet closures for cleaning between 11 and 1 are awkward, and there is only one block for a large, well spread park; this can be 'uncomfortable' if you have a need in the night! Also, I was unimpressed that parking is pay&display at the waterside park; surely a pass could be issued for people staying on site, given it is immediately adjoining it and must supply a majority of the customers for its pub, shop, pool etc.
Be warned, fuel stations are few and far between and are involved in nothing short of profiteering; diesel was 11p a litre more than I paid at home!
No TV signal, no radio signal, no mobile signal for miles around. Some people would find that problematic
Nevertheless, a brilliant place if you choose the right time of year and we will be back
Family of 4 (kids aged 10 and 7 yrs) in a touring caravan and small awning.
We have just left this site after 2 nights on the first stop of our tour around Scotland from the Midlands.
I must admit we were getting slightly concerned on the roads once you've left the main a68 or the B road as they go for some miles and you are literally in the middle of nowhere, but we just followed the brown tourist signs and my it was certainly worth the trip once you see kielder water for the first time.
The site itself is well situated and we were lucky enough to get one of the open pitches overlooking the lake. Many are secluded woodland plots which could feel pretty isolated?
Staff at site office and the leapish centre were friendly and helpful.
We knew about the midges before we came as had researched the area thoroughly so came well prepared with repellent, raid aerosol and a plug in mosquito killer! That said we did get a few bites when first arrived but after that were well sorted and did fumigate regularly.
Facilities at the centre include small swimming pool, park, crazy golf, nice pub with good food and small shop. Didn't have time to do the bird of prey centre or observatory further up the road but would have done so given more time.
We took the ferry to tower knowle ( pretty pricy) and then cycled the 18. 5 mile ride from tower to kielder castle / village and back to leapish: this was an amazing ride staying close to the water on good ground with excellent views. Rather up and down but the downs are well worth the push uphill. Take time to stop at the chairs sculpture for a well earned rest!
If you love cycling defo the place for you but go prepared there's nothing the far side of the lake. It's a get away from everything place, no phone signal or tv or traffic in a beautiful location (free wifi at pub). Would have been great to sit out in the eve though but for the pesky midges.
We loved the place and wish we had booked / time on our tour for at least another day.
Ps; clean loos and good showers too and use the cut through the lodge park to get to the facilities.
NightmareE! Lost phone signal on the way here, about 12 miles from site, site has no phone signal and no Wi-Fi (although this you can do without on a camping holiday). We arrived at about 4pm, the guy was really nice and warned us of the problem with midges, he saw a bite that my husband had got whilst golfing in fife and advised us where to set up to avoid the worst of the midges. Set up caravan and awning, only took 20 minutes and my husband and son had been badly bitten. Went to on site restaurant for food we had to pay for parking and then had to wait ten minutes to get in as they had closed for a break, from what I don't know as there was nobody else there. Not much change from £50. 00 for 4 main courses, shocking, just ordinary food, burgers and fish and chips, don't think they had Gordon Ramsay hiding in the kitchen. Beautiful scenery but impossible to enjoy, yes you guessed it the midges, We were covered in bites and I usually don't get bitten, my husband had 80+ on his head alone, bites were swollen he looked like he had the plague. We returned to the caravan and spent the rest of the evening trying to kill the midges that had gotten into the caravan. There was no one outside, it just wasn't an option. We got in the car and drove miles to the nearest shop, the on site shop was just for gifts. The next morning we knew we couldn't possibly stay, our bites were really bad, my husband's were honestly horrific. My husband went to the man in charge of the site to see if we could get any of our £200 back for a weeks stay, we were told no absolutely not, and the man could see the state my husband was in with bites. We left as staying was not an option, will never go to a site where they insist on having the money upfront again, we have only done this once before and had trouble with that site too. We have been camping and caravanning for 26years and have never experienced anything as bad as this, usually if a site is affiliated to the caravan club site you would expect better, but we have been let down badly. Yes it has lovely views but what's the point if you can't leave your caravan and the on site restaurant and shop are overpriced and pretentious, oh the showers are good and strong, obviously to blast of the midges. Do not go to this site if you don't want to be eaten alive and remember you will have no contact with your family and friends due to the lack of phone signal. I don't apologise for this review as I feel we should have been warned at time of booking and certainly before they took the whole fee over the phone, it isn't worth the pain literally!
We had two nights here as part of our extended return journey from Scotland.
The site really is off the beaten track with an approx 10 mile journey after leaving the nearest B road so it does take some getting to.
It's time well spent though as this is a site that's really worth a visit. You are greeted in the small reception by an affable Geordie who is bursting with enthusiasm for the site but also for Kielder in general.
After being briefed on the site facilities, you are sent off to take your pick of the pitches. Once you have chosen you return to the site office for your keys for the toilet/shower block. The latter are top quality and well maintained.
There are the usual electric hook ups but you can also get a TV hook up if you have a long enough cable. The washing up area is fine but is outdoors so you are at the mercy of the midges if washing up in the evening. Bizarrely, we were unable to find the drinking water tap and waste water point - there must have been one though.
The site itself is a short walk (approx 5 minutes) from the waterpark where there is the Boat Inn (check on opening times) and a fairly well stocked general store and souvenir shop.
The Boat Inn is great for an evening meal and has fantastic views over Kielder.
Also in the waterpark is the Birds of Prey Centre and children's play areas. The Birds of Prey Centre is good but it's quite small so its a couple of hours entertainment rather than a day out.
If you're heading further afield there are plenty of walks around the banks of Kielder Water most of which are on well defined, hard paths.
On the subject of midges. They are an issue here and you need to take the usual precautions but still resign yourself to getting bites even quite early in the day. Its bearable though to be able to enjoy the spectacular surroundings.
If you are planning on hiring bikes for the day, bear in mind that they are NOT available from Leaplish. You need to go to Kielder Castle (approx 10 miles) for that. If you are a family, there are lots of organised activities and you are given a comprehensive information pack on arrival at the site.
All in all, an excellent base for an outdoor holiday.
Slightly disappointed on arrival. We canoe all over the place, and are part of the British Canoe Club, but unless you have qualifications at least Level 2, you are not able to use any of your own craft on Kielder Water lake. Which is a bit ridiculous, when we go on the sea, and that's tidal. So we took the canoe up there for no reason, and when booking these rules were not given to us. Website needs to be updated with a warning for the rules of Northumbrian Water in general. However, the week was peaceful and quiet, but a bit remote - be warned that if you want to cut yourself off from civilisation this is the place for you, if not, then go somewhere where you are contactable.
Pros - quiet, peaceful, lovely place, lovely people, area is clean, loads to do for walkers[us], bikers, kids[if you want to pay for the lakes facilities], lovely bistro type restuarant, small shop, bird of prey centre good,
Cons; - very remote, no mobile network coverage of any kind, no internet of any kind, fuel stations are not in the vicinity, bellingham is nearest and is £1.56 per litre, which is too pricey but as he is the only one for miles, he can charge what he likes I suppose, no supermarkets, good co-op in bellingham. Pitches down the bottom end are too close together, we were lucky not to have someone next to us, otherwise it would be cramped. Looks like quantity gone for rather than quality in that dept.
So all in all a good week, bring a book, you will need it, midgies are awful so bring your repellents etc.
Wildlife is good for watching.
Walking was also a must in Kielder. These activities together with a Bird of Prey Sanctuary and The Boat Inn, plus more, makes for a wonderful place to stay.
There is a feeling of isolation on site, Kielder Village is 10 minutes drive away but tiny and the next real sign of civilization is in Bellingham, a 25 minute drive away.
Would we go back - No, not to this site, as too remote, would be nearer a signal so that we are contactable, especially when our burglar alarm went off at home and no one could contact us.
36 Review in total, now showing 1 to 6Next
Submit a review to UKCampsite.co.uk of any caravan park or campsite, for a chance to win a caravan towing course or motorhome manoeuvring course worth up to £145, or £100 of Amazon vouchers, courtesy of The Caravan Club. Join the Club for just £44 per year to enjoy access to a great range of caravan sites, benefits and special offers.
If you've visited this site, then please submit a review for a chance to win.
All reviews and comments are the personal opinion of the review author only , and as such do not represent the view of the UK Camp Site.co.uk.
The facilities shown on this website are a guide only, and you should check with the campsite direct before making any booking. The UKCampsite.co.uk will not be held responsible for any errors or omissions