Despite bad weather we had a lovely stop here. The views are brilliant and so is the wildlife. I had three good sightings of otters and numerous ones of seals. Also had a sparrowhawk fly into a bush next to our caravan. Great to sit and watch the gannets diving in quite close to shore. The exposed location means tents and awnings can suffer a little in high winds. The remnants of hurricane Bertha passed over Scotland when we stopped. My wife had the same problem as mentioned in the previous review about the water temperature in the shower block. The 4 extra showers in another building were a better bet for her. The shower blocks are a little dated but cleaned each day. All the staff I spoke to were friendly and helpful. Hotel next door very handy for a drink, took advice and did not eat here. Generally a quiet site apart from one noisy family packing up their tent early one morning.
We stayed both in this campsite and in Lochranza campsite in the north of the island. Both have pros and cons, but the major pro of this campsite is that it did lack midges as claimed. The views were outstanding too. The beach adjacent to the campsite itself was not great for swimming but there was a very nice sandy area with the sand extending into the water ideal for swimming just a short walk to the left. The facilities were good but I did find the showers in the female toilet block to be far too hot, almost scalding. After the first time, I reported this to reception and was thanked for pointing it out, but the next day it was just as hot. There is a set of showers outside the toilet blocks and these allow you to control the temperature yourself, while some of them even allow you to keep the water on as long as you want to, I would definitely recommend using those in preference. Also, some of the toilets had often run out of toilet paper in the morning. The undercover BBQ area and dayroom are a lifesaver in wet weather, but the information provided was confined to a collection of leaflets, with some extras in the form of bus timetables and useful numbers. One of the highlights was definitely the crabs and lobsters that were sometimes available in reception: delicious and great value. Dining out options are limited to the hotel next door, which is certainly convenient but maybe not very good value for money (we dined there once). Kildonan shore is great for wildlife watching and Whiting Bay is not that far away.
This year we downsized on our car so we were delighted to see that Seal Shore has added some camping pods. We stayed in one for 4 nights, Ailsa is situated looking across to Pladda - perfect.
I agree with the previous reviewer, there ARE midges. I've been going to seal shore for 4 years now and I've seen one midge each year I've been. I killed one this year so their numbers are down to 3. Try camping next to Loch Lomond and then you'll know what midges are.
The midges are as rare as the owner's moods. He's always been helpful, accommodating and a very hard worker. His charity work in the off season tells you what a stalwart he is.
Maybe people in a bad mood find him in a bad mood?
Anyhow, the site is perfect in location, facilities and management. Again this year Maurice took the boat out and brought in the biggest crab I've ever seen. I washed it down with a beautiful Arran lobster.
He's such a kind guy he even took me out in the boat last year, bit of a risk seeing as he didn't even know me.
The camping pods are a great addition however in the hottest weather they may be too hot as they are so well insulated. They are soundproof too - the double glazing keeps out all noise. Some suggested improvements would be: a work surface at the front left to save leaving food/wine on the floor and possibly another long bench/sleeping surface on the front right. Similar to WigWam designs.
The quality of the pods is fantastic, we're thinking of returning in the autumn possibly to try them again.
We had a trip up to Lochranza this year for the first time Kildonan wins hands down on campsite location and on the midgeometer.
We stayed at Seal Shore on the second half of our holiday on Arran.
It is truly a great site in a fantastic rural location, the sunsets over Pladda with Ailsa Craig in the background had to be seen to be believed.
Site is well looked after with good facilities and lots of hot water for the showers. Owner was welcoming and friendly.
Although it was busy when we were there it was very peaceful and quite laid back - and once again these views.
Client group was a good mix of tents, caravans, campervans and motorhomes. Some of the folk we spoke to are regular visitors coming back every year.
We had a hard standing pitch with ECU and the price was on a par with most other sites we've stayed on, including some club sites so in our opinion it represents good value especially given its stunning location (did I mention the views?).
We weren't bothered by midges at all in total contrast to the north end so the midge net and skin so soft were fortunately redundant.
The beach, especially with the tide out is superb dog walking territory.
One of the highlights was watching a family of otters swimming just off shore.
Constructive criticism - very minor - but it could do with a sign visible to folk coming from the North of the island.
Arran is a beautiful island and the Seal Shore site complements it brilliantly.
First of all, this is a fantastic site, situation wise. Although if you're in a motorhome, or even worse, towing a caravan, be aware the roads are not the easiest to navigate!
Do-able, but be careful.
It is set back from a 'beach' with a direct view over to Ailsa Craig and Pladda lighthouse. We've put beach in inverted commas due to the nearest bit being rocky.
To the left after a few yards however, there is a lovely sandy area, good enough for those with children to build sandcastles, and those without to lay or sit and relax comfortably.
To the right, past the nearby hotel, there is a long stretch of shoreline which lasts the whole village length; this is part rocks, part pebbles, and part sand - the areas of sand are more than adequate to do as previously stated.
Both directions are good for dog-walking.
The site itself;- is on a slight slope, downwards from the back to the shore. It didn't affect us, being in a tent, but we're aware caravan and camper vans need to be level so this is something you need to be made aware of. It is only a slight slope, unnoticeable by human eye, but enough to affect the gas and water levels in a van.
We stayed on pitch 7, alongside parents in a motorhome on pitch 8. These are both electric hook-up pitches and we would thoroughly recommend these as they are the furthest forward of the bigger pitches, with the best view. The only thing you are likely to get in front of you on these are the one/two man tents, whereas everywhere else you will have other tents/vans or folk walking in front of you en route to the showers etc. Not necessarily a problem, but we're trying to give you a full review with options.
There is a noise curfew at 10pm, which we enjoyed.
The facilities;- I (the husband) found them more than adequate. My wife found them a little dated. But the toilets and showers do exactly what they are designed to do. They are cleaned daily and the showers had constant hot water.
One 'fault' we did find was the washing up facilities (two sinks) are situated directly in the middle of the gents and ladies' facilities. That is, in the same block, in the doorway. So sometimes you are trying to wash up whilst folk are going past you in both directions, either on their way to or having done their business, whatever that may be.
There is a washing machine, charged (quite steeply we thought, but more on charges later) at £3 per wash. It takes an hour to finish the cycle, and there is only one - so if you're there at peak times and most folk are long stayers, this could cause a queue. Again, not a major problem, but needs pointing out.
There are supply facilities in the check-in reception area - stocked enough to keep you going 'til you get to the bigger shops.
There is also a day room with TV. Good if you're with kids and it's raining. Or to keep away from the midges (which, despite another review, ARE about in abundance with the right weather conditions)
Charges:- very expensive in our view. Comparing it to our favourite site in Norfolk, this is double the cost - and although the view is fantastic, it's not worth double the price!
The tariff structure is confusing, and not only for us!(we're convinced we got charged more than we should have)
Everything seems to be charged extra here (i. E. , nothing is 'inclusive')
If you're used to expensive sites, then that's fine - but if you like a cheap holiday, this may not be for you.
Management;- from what we made out, this is run by father and daughter. We found the daughter friendly, the father not so.
We are aware the owner has raving reviews by others but we can only review as we found. Maybe we caught him on a bad week. He appeared quite grumpy and unapproachable to us.
Out and about; we didn't use the next door hotel (due to bad reviews!) but it does have a great situation and a what looks a lovely conservatory and patio area.
We can highly recommend The Lagg Hotel for food - guaranteed non-disappointment! This is in Kilmory, around twenty minutes away by car, and £24 return in a taxi.
Ten minutes (in a car) in the other direction is Whiting Bay, and ten further on from there is Lamlash. Another 10 brings you to Brodick. The first two are small seaside villages, with smaller shops, tea shops and crafty gift shops.
With Brodick you get the feel of a typical seaside harbour town (in a nice way. It has two co-op stores and lots of little gift type shops as well as the visitor centres.
The island is cycled around in a day, and driven around in a couple of hours - although you'll need longer to stop at all the bits worth stopping at!
All in all, we love Arran, and more importantly, Seal Shore. We enjoyed our week there, and would go back at some point in the future.
And if you can put up with the little gripes we've mentioned, you'll love it too!
Management response: Dear MicknSho,
Thankyou for your review in relation to your stay at our site in June 2014. In response, I would like to kindly address the various observations that you made as follows:
You refer to the 'beach' in inverted commas - The beach is at the mercy of mother nature, and like the shore lines of any beach, does alter at times due to the tides.
In relation to the washing up facilities - there are indeed two sinks between the gents and ladies facilities, but there are also two further sinks located in the laundry area.
Also housed within the laundry area, is the washing machine that you mention in your review. The machine, like any other, has several wash cycles to choose from. Customers are advised on using the machine, that there is a family wash cycle that takes 29 minutes to complete. The charge of £3 for a wash has not changed in the last 5 years.
On the stillest of days, with a bit of damp, you will get some midges. Luckily, as the campsite is located next to the beach, the sea breeze will normally keep them away. Midges love low trees and running water, and thank goodness we do not have either of these!
You mention the tariff structure within your review. I would like to point out that you were actually under charged by £18 during your stay. All tariff prices are clearly displayed on our web site. There is no charge for showers, use of the fridges, freezers, microwave, kettle, ice packs, phone charging, battery charging or work shop tools.
In relation to my being grumpy - I am sorry if I came across as this to you, we certainly all go out of our way to make sure that your stay with us is enjoyable and that you find us approachable and friendly. I quite like being called grumpy, as at least I am not a Victor Meldrew!
I've never come across a campsite with such a great location as seal shore. It's superbly located at the south end of the isle of arran, sitting on the waters edge. The locals tell me it's the only campsite in arran that doesn't have midges !
The facilities are more than I expected. Clean, hot showers, plenty of toilets and there's a day room to get away from your tent!
Now this brings me to the owner, he was an absolute gentleman. Sometimes in life you can be so lucky as to meet someone as wonderful as him. If you don't stay here for its great location and facilities, stay here because the owner independently spends the entire off season building up a village in Africa as and when finances are available. I thanked him when I was there but there's not enough space in this comments section to pass on my utter admiration and gratitude. You're a wonderful man, thank you for everything you do and I just feel so blessed to have met you.
79 Reviews 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