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Visitor Reviews - Shell Island Camp Site

Campsite Search > UK > Wales > Gwynedd > Llanbedr > Shell Island Camp Site Reviews

Shell Island Camp Site
Shell Island
Gwynedd   (Browse area)
LL45 2PJ
Tel: 01341 241453
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Pitches: 800
Open: March To November

Rating: Average Review Score: 8/10 from 279 Reviews
                8/10 from 279 Reviews

 Tent Pitches   No Caravans   Motorhome Pitches   No Glamping Units 
 No Statics for Hire   No Statics on Sale   No Seasonal Pitches   No Caravan Storage 
 No Electric Hookups   No Hardstandings   No Fully Serviced Pitches   Show Full Facilities
Who's it for
 Families Welcome   Not Members Only   No Rallies   Not Naturist Site 
 Dogs Welcome   No Dogs Allowed   Groups Welcome   Motorbikers Welcome 
 Toilet Facilities   Hot Showers   No Washing Up Area   No Bathroom 
 No Baby Changing   Laundry On Site   Drinking Water   Disabled Friendly 
 Chemical Disposal   No Battery Charging   Gas Exchange   Recycling Facilities 
 No Kitchen Facilities   No Freezer / Fridge   No Motorhome Point 
 Shop On Site   Bar On Site   Restaurant On Site   Wifi Access 
 Kids Playground   TV Room   No Games Room   Evening Entertainment 
 Fishing On Site   Wild Swimming On Site   No Indoor Pool   No Outdoor Pool 
 Horse Riding 5 miles   No Cycle Hire   No Golf   No Tennis 
 Beach On Site   Watersports On Site   No Boat Launch 
Other Features
 Sea Views   Not Working Farm   Campfires Allowed   Not Open All Year 
 Coastside Pitches   Public Transport 5 miles  No Dog Walk 

Reviews:  279 in total, now showing 1 to 10                 Previous 10          Next 10
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Date of Visit: May 2019 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Nights stayed: 7 Travelling as:  Family with older children
Reviewer: Stealth20673 4 reviews from this member

The location of this site in reagrds to the views and the sea is fab and the fact you can pitch where you like rather than being sectioned off is a nice touch. Ive been to shell island with my family and friends 5 times now. We pitch down by the dunes away from the busier sections nearer reception.

What I will say with this place is that you NEED the weather on side. We suffered terrible winds off the sea every day which makes doing anything very difficult. This was the first time we actually pitched ON the sand. Don't do it! Its a nightmare - especially in the wind.

The bar is reasonably priced but the little food shop they have is quite pricey and doesn't really offer a broad selection of fresh food for bbqs etc. The bar also sells alcohol to take back to tents such as tins of beer, wine and spirits which is handy.

The cafe is a little over priced (more like a Haven site) but the food was good quality in fairness.

There did appear to be a larger % of what I would call "chav families" this year. The ones that make a lot of noise, swear, don't watch their kids and generally lower the tone for everyone else.

The toilet blocks were cleaned regularly and the shower block was impeccable.

The biggest drawback for me here is the distance to the nearest shops. There is no electric here so keeping food/drinks cool for more than a day or so is almost impossible. The food shop on site doesn't cut the mustard for a decent bbq and the nearest shops are in porthmadog which is a 30 minute drive. Here you will find a Lidl and Aldi but as I said, they are an hour round trip away. There is a little Spar with a butchers attached to it about 15 mins away but that's nore expensive than the shop on site!

On several occasions idiots decided it be a good idea to come and drive like baffoons on the sand right next to where we were camping.

All in all we enjoyed our stay again this year but its not a place to come for more than a few nights in my opinion and as we plan to camp for 7 nights next year we wont be returning.

Date of Visit: May 2019 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Nights stayed: 5 Travelling as:  Mature couple
Reviewer: Storeman_uk 7 reviews from this member

The location is excellent with fantastic views to wake up to. Unfortunately there are now so many anti-social people turning up, car radios blaring out, one night until 2:00am. Others having a domestic slanging match with plenty of abusive language for all to hear. The number of dog owners who believe they are exempt from the 'Dogs must be kept on a leash' rule is unbelievable.

I did approach security about the radio noise and to their credit they had a word with the offenders who did turn it down substantially but the next night made up for it with the aforementioned domestic.

After 3 nights of disturbances I approached reception regarding the issues I have mentioned and told them we were thinking of cutting short our 5 night stay. They were sympathetic and said if we did cut our stay short because of the issues they would refund the unused nights, as it turned out, most of the unruly groups were leaving so we decided to stay, Predictably those that left were replaced by other noisy visitors. They also said they would leave a message for the night security to increase their patrols.

I didn't see any patrols (apart from the time I complained). The standard of the people visiting this site has turned a great site into something akin to a festival site so if you prize peace and quiet along with the ability to get a decent nights sleep then I would advice looking elsewhere. It's a pity as the site is great with friendly and seemingly helpful staff.

Date of Visit: August 2018 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Coffeegirl_forever 8 reviews from this member

The Tent Graveyard. Definitely true! It's a lovely site for the location to the beach but make sure you're well pegged down, guy ropes attached and pitch in a sheltered spot.

It depends on what you're looking for in a campsite but I'll give you my opinion.

Positives: tavern for relaxing in the bar, well stocked camping shop, friendly staff, games room for children, security patrols, friendly other campers, gift shop, beach, fixing poles for a donation to charity, supermarket for basics.

Negatives: noisy and inconsiderate campers, windy weather, lack of recycling facilities, tide covering the causeway at certain times. This year there were several thefts but the police dealt with it, less toilets than previous years.

I will go again but will be more wary of people stealing. I've met some amazing people who visit every year so this outweighs the negatives for me.

Date of Visit: July 2018 Unit:  Campervan Rating:
Nights stayed: 2 Travelling as:  Extended family
Reviewer: Ratty 195 reviews from this member

I've wanted to visit Shell Island since we first drove past it 14 years ago and on this tour we finally made it.

You of course have to be aware of the tide times as the causeway gets covered at high tide, but once on the island the reception area was well signposted and we soon checked in. The staff were friendly, explained where we could pitch, etc. And charged me £12 per night for one person in a VW and a dog.

We drove on to the site and the place is simply huge and split in to many different camping areas, some in the sand dunes, some on top of the hills and some more sheltered down the hills, but without the sea views. There are many secluded spots where you can be the only one in the pitch however we wanted 360 views so camped on the top of one the hills to the right of the main complex.

The views are simply stunning looking out to sea, over to Snowdonia, North Wales, South Wales and on a good day you can see for miles.

The site is surrounded by sea and beaches and we enjoyed a couple of great walks and the dog could run free too.

On site there are plenty of toilet blocks and these were all kept to a very high standard and always stocked. There are fresh water taps at all the blocks, so it is never far to walk to use the facilities.

The shower block is housed by the main complex and there were plenty of showers in the block and these are push button type and non directional, but were a good temperature and had a small wall in each to stop your clothes getting wet. These were free to use.

There is a washing up area, laundry, bar, shop, accessory shop, restaurant and takeaway. We used the bar and the first night the cider tasted a bit weird, but was fine on the second night. The pizza we ordered was freshly made and very good. The shop stocked all the essentials and was priced ok. The laundry was £3 per wash and £2 for the tumble dryers.

There is a huge play area by the main complex and this was fenced off and had loads of stuff for kids to play on.

As the site is so big you never felt on top of anyone and we had loads of space around us and were able to enjoy the stunning sunset in the evenings.

There is loads to see in the area but you need a car to get around and I will be back and will recommend this to anyone who wants to stay in the area.

Date of Visit: March 2018 Unit:  Campervan Rating:
Reviewer: Louisecat123 1 review from this member

Fabulous campsite, amazing beach, friendly helpful staff. Love it here, come every year. So many places to set up camp with sea, mountain, sanding view. Restaurant open daily and the Tavern. 3 shops and ample toilets and shower. Very dog friendly also

Date of Visit: June 2017 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Dustie 3 reviews from this member

Shell Island # GREAT Welsh institution, A GEM, GREAT for free range kids #Freedom camping.

Only campers spoil it !

By leaving/dropping litter & burning the grass with fires on the ground.

& camping too close to others when the site is humongous!

Warning: once again I came across broken glass in the sand dunes and lots of litter/beer cans # children bare feet

Big Jelly fish on the beach

Kids use snow sledges down the dunes (big fun)

Great for Kites (when windy)

Other areas further down are for bird and wildlife conservation and even a nudist beach!


I would like to see hooks for hanging toiletry bag/coats at the back of the toilet doors and the hand washing area in the new toilet block. A shelf would be handy for putting items on instead of the floor (and a mirror?)

Kids washing off sand in the sinks (so a rinse off sand sink tap/area outside instead of just the water tap).

?? maybe one more toilet block further down past the skips.

MORE RECYCLING BINS next to skips!

Date of Visit: June 2017 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Wetwellies 7 reviews from this member

It was okay, but more suited to large groups than our smaller family unit.

Site is very large. That you can pitch anywhere is both a blessing and a curse, it was very windy and we drove around for ages looking for somewhere to pitch. Having more sheltered places shaded on the map would really help.

It was so windy, luckily we had Delta pegs, I would certainly advise you to take them. Also we had a baby with us and it's hard to find shade or shelter on the site. None on beach either. If you have small children take bikes scooters prams or something, site too big to carry them from place to place.

Staff exceptionally helpful and friendly, although the non toilet facilities like cafe are rather rough and ready. Toilets were immaculate until the sunny weekend arrived and the place was packed, then I felt that the staff struggled to keep up with replenishing toilet roll. No mirrors in the loos around the site, or warm water! But both available if you trekked to the main block. Long trek to loos with small children.

Loads of large groups of people, even in term time although they were all pleasant I was a bit wary due to signs warning not to drink drive. Could imagine it being rowdy in high season. Lots upon lots of dogs here but I did not once see a poo, and some fields were labelled as dog free on the map.

Location was great, my three year old son liked the slate mines about ten minutes away at Harlech, torches and hard hats given but no real darkness or small spaces, farm park at same location was excellent fun. Harlech castle also had a clue finding trail for little ones and gave a lovely flag and comic strip as a prize.

Barmouth was a nice place to visit but the railway across the harbour at another town was overpriced, disappointing views, and we have been on many. Portmerien was a lovely place to visit and worth paying for, I was sceptical but it is beautiful with plenty of shade and places to rest and eat.

The takeaway on shell island was very basic, freezer burgers and chips sort of thing but not overpriced. Supermarket on site very well stocked with everything you could ever need. Beach very clean and great for rock pooling and toilet near entrance to sandy beach.

Overall I would say go if you like it lively.

Date of Visit: June 2017 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: JAHunt 1 review from this member

Location is great it's getting there that's a bit of a mission. The tight, narrow roads for miles leading in are difficult and I would think hair raising for big vehicles. The site is vast, so vast in fact that there aren't nearly enough facilities further out which means that the shower facilities located at the main building are inadequate to say the least. The site was probably only at 50% capacity and already there was a queue for the men's showers.

We camped further out in the dune area, which was more rough and ready, that's what we wanted, however. The rules didn't seem to apply or be enforced out there as there was evidence of ground fires and unfortunately for us the 'noise' after 10pm and early in the morning was not applied and enforced which made the experience sound like a street party and not the outdoors.

The 3 families camped together close by although far enough away that we shouldn't have heard them were having a good time so you couldn't blame them but someone just needed to remind them of the curfew on noise and the impact on fellow campers.

Date of Visit: May 2017 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Lamornamoon 1 review from this member

Just back from another wonderful weekend on Shell Island. What can I say about this place? It is just beautiful, the location - on a peninsula in Cardigan bay, jutting out into the sea and cut off from the mainland once or twice a day - is magical.

The views are stunning, the size of the site is breath-taking and the diversity of camping areas - sea-front slopes, sand dunes, sheltered fields, open fields ringed by mountains, the harbour-side - is incredible.

Add this to the on-site shop, laundrette, bar and café and to me, it's the perfect campsite. So many happy memories here, especially seeing everyone's fires dotted about as the sun goes down. Vive la Shell!

Date of Visit: May 2017 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Ncdlloyd 3 reviews from this member

We were here over the bank holiday weekend at the end of May. We found a great spot with amazing views over the site, the beach and the causeway. Choosing your own pitch certainly has its advantages, but having never been before it was pot luck we got somewhere so nice. We based it largely due to the short walk to the new toilet block.

That's the downside of the site. The block we used was new, but the others looked pretty ropey. Also only one shower block for such a huge site is poor. There was also quite a problem with litter, the people running the island must know this is an issue and it could be better managed.

We were disturbed one night by singing/music until gone midnight, obviously no monitoring by the site management of the 10pm curfew on that.

The views and freedom of pitching are probably hard to beat, but facilities wise and site management there's much better to be had. Unfortunately I doubt we'll be back.

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