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Reviews of Thurso Bay Caravan & Camping Park

Campsite Search > UK > Scotland > Highlands > Thurso > Thurso Bay Caravan & Camping Park Reviews

Thurso Bay Caravan & Camping Park
Smith Terrace
Scrabster Road
Highlands   (Browse area)
KW14 7JY
Tel: 01847 892244
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 Featured Site

Pitches: 66 touring (36 hard-standing); 30 tent
Open: 31 March Through September

Rating: Average Review Score: 7/10 from 41 Reviews
                7/10 from 41 Reviews

Photos (6)

 Tent Pitches   Caravan Pitches   Motorhome Pitches   No Glamping Units 
 No Statics for Hire   No Statics on Sale   No Seasonal Pitches   No Caravan Storage 
 Electric Hookups   Hardstanding Pitches   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   Washing Up   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 <1 mile   Bar <1 mile   Restaurant On Site   Wifi Access 
 Kids Playground   No TV Room   No Games Room   No Evening Ents 
 Fishing 5 miles   No Wild Swimming   Indoor Pool 5 miles   No Outdoor Pool 
 No Horse Riding   No Cycle Hire   Golf 5 miles   Tennis 1 mile 
 Beach 1 mile   No Watersports   No Boat Launch 
Other Features
 Sea Views   Not Working Farm   Campfires Allowed   Not Open All Year 
 Coastside Pitches   Public Transport 1 mile  No Dog Walk 

Reviews:  41 in total, now showing 1 to 10                 Previous 10          Next 10
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Date of Visit: June 2018 Unit:  Motorhome Rating:
Reviewer: Truediamond 84 reviews from this member

A warm, sunny day always makes a Site look welcoming and this was no exception. We had driven along the top from Durness with the single track section being particularly stressful - think ~50 German cyclists on electric bikes, all heading in the same direction as our motorhome and none willing to let anyone past in the passing places. Anyway, Thurso Bay was a welcome sight with a friendly face at Reception. Facilities are good and clean, if the Site is a bit squeezed in between the main road and cliff path.
This was one of the more expensive Sites we used on this trip (£26 with EHU in June). There are good views across to Orkney, access to the beach and the Town, museums, shops is a short walk. They have spent some money recently putting new hard standings in place.

Date of Visit: August 2018 Unit:  Motorhome Rating:
Reviewer: Raysmiffy 14 reviews from this member

We chose this site over the Caravanning and Motorhome site at Dunnet Bay as we thought we would take a chance as we wanted the shops.


Lets get the two positives done first.

The site overlooks Thurso Bay, with Dunnet Head and the Orkney Islands in one epic vista. What a dissapointing waste of an oppertunity that the site owners seem to 'pin their hopes' on that their site will be held in high enough regard on the views alone.

I get this impression as the site charges £24 and an extra £4 for electric. Now that would be acceptable if the facilities were worth the trek of 250 miles and two days to get there, never mind £28 for one MH and two adults.

Thurso itself is five minutes walk away and Lidl is two minutes.

Now lets get to the main problems.

The toilets are an absolute disgrace. It smelled and looked like a public toilet. There was flooding on the floor outside the showers. One of the doors was hanging on by one hinge.

The site is totally open to the public (not the facilities) with no barrier or fence. So security is non existent.

Some really small kids next to us had to be quickly moved out of the way of some cars that were driving too fast in quite a few occasions. So you could not even say that the place is safe.

Their very large rule sheet states that no refunds will be given. Quite an unusual thing to say, but when you see the state of the place you can understand why they would.

Date of Visit: May 2018 Unit:  Motorhome Rating:
Reviewer: Alanawayfromhome 17 reviews from this member

Site very handy for the Orkney ferry at Scrabster and is also an easy walk into Thurso from the site along the clif top with access to a nice dog friendly beach on the way.

The site has obviously had a lot of investment since 2017 reviews as there are now many more hard standing pitches with EHU.

Site itself is neat and tidy with views over Thurso bay to Orkney or Dunnet Head depending on your pitch.

Staff were friendly and helpful you check in at the cafe where there is information about local attractions.

Toilets and showers were clean if perhaps a little tired with lots of hot water.

Lidl is just across the road.

The Castle of Mey is not far away but if you are into industrial archaeology the ruins of Castleton which was a major port for the processing and export of Caithness slabs is just a little further with a fascinating museum as well as substantial remnants of the buildings which once served this important industry, it is run by volunteers so check opening times.

Thurso Bay is a lovely site on the NC500, a handy stop before the Orkney ferry, or as a destination in its own right.

Date of Visit: May 2018 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Jono4 4 reviews from this member

Great location on cliff top, with Orkney Island of Hoy in full view. Great walks all around, on beach, clifftop, and town. Great value at £13 a night for my ridge tent, dog and me.

Reception very friendly and helpful about the site and surrounding area.

I really liked the inclusion of a vet's contact details in the leaflet given at reception, a great idea for dog owners, although the leaflet was so long that I didn't read all of it.

Facilities very clean and well presented.

I would be pleased to stay there again.

Date of Visit: June 2018 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Sheila9206 6 reviews from this member


I must stress I'm leaving this review as a person who stayed in a tent with EHU.

We did not like this site, it felt like it was in the town park, so anyone and everyone could just walk through the site and people did constantly, it did not feel secure. We wanted to camp away from this and the busy road and be on the other side with motorhomes but were told we had to be in the thoroughfare, even though other tents were in the motorhome section!

Also be aware there is a very busy cafe on site and cars and people are coming and going during the opening times - parking their cars on pitches, also cars were driven away at speed through the site.

We would not come back here again and if you want peace, don't come here in a tent. We booked for 2 nights but left after 1 as we didn't feel safe to leave our tent.

Shower block was good, if dated.

The only positive was the view.

Date of Visit: June 2017 Unit:  Motorhome Rating:
Reviewer: Headgardener 35 reviews from this member

As other reviews have stated this site is very close to the ferry terminal at Scrabster for Orkney and has fantastic sea views.

We had not booked and had hoped to get a hardstanding as there had been a lot of rain and we did not want to get stuck in the grass. The reception is actually inside the Cafe (we did not eat there but the menu had a reasonable selection). We were told we could have a hardstanding but they did not have EHUs but if we had a very very long electric cable we could reach a hook up! As we had not we opted for a grass pitch and were told which ones were OK in the wet weather. Just as we were setting up another motor home drove a fair distance across grass, got stuck and had to be pulled out by the owners 4x4.

There are good walks outside the site along the cliffs which are very steep and unfenced in places so care needed,

There is a Lidl across the road and a very nice hotel close by.

Part of the site boundary consists of Caithness Flag Stones.

Didn't use the toilets/showers.

Date of Visit: April 2017 Unit:  Campervan Rating:
Reviewer: Sibrig 8 reviews from this member

Stayed in mid-April for an overnight stop before getting the early morning Orkney ferry. Heavy rain meant that many pitches were badly waterlogged. Not an unusual occurrence, but I wonder how much effort has been put into improving drainage. I was advised which pitches were least affected and chose accordingly from the 4 offered. Despite the site having a few scruffy-looking hard standings these were not offered to me, presumably because I had booked and paid for EHU and - amazingly - the hardstandings had no hook-ups. The leaflet I was given on arrival contained the site's Rules. These are written in a very officious manner, and give little comfort to anyone unfortunate enough to get bogged down and stuck on their sodden grass - 'Staff are not responsible or liable for extracting customer vehicles from any difficulties. '

The Rules also told me that 'Recycling is mandatory. Recycling bins are located in the chemical waste disposal room. ' Except that they weren't. I could find no recycling bins anywhere on the site, just a sign on the wall of the chemical disposal saying 'glass', and no-one to ask after the cafe/reception closed for the day. Despite also being instructed to 'Put litter in the marked refuse bins' and told that 'Littering will not be tolerated' I was also unable to find a litter bin on site after the cafe had closed.

The toilet and shower facilities were somewhat utilitarian, and shower cubicle gives no space for changing. They had however been kept clean and tidy - they should be, as according to the site leaflet they are closed for an astonishing 3 hours every day (2 hours in the morning and 1 in the evening). This is the longest time I have encountered in my camping experience of over 70 different sites, and it isn't a big toilet block!

On a more positive note, the site is convenient for the Scrabster ferry, has a good outlook over the bay, is located on the coastal path with a pleasant walk to Scrabster in one direction and Thurso centre and river in the other. However in future I will do as I have done on previous visits to the area - drive a bit further down the road to the Club site at Dunnet Bay.

Date of Visit: June 2016 Unit:  Touring Caravan Rating:
Reviewer: Graham Haddow 11 reviews from this member

On way to Orkney and wanted stop off before the ferry the next day. Very convenient for the ferry so ideal in that sense but not my type of site for a holiday. In saying that it over looks Thurso Bay and is a nice open site. Toilet/shower facilities are a bit 'public toiletish' but clean and spacious. Good walk path for the dog but on the edge of cliffs, so be careful. Good beach for a walk. There was a bit of confusion when checking in and although I had booked on-line they had no record of it and was told it is a common occurrence. I also realised I had clicked on requiring electricity at an additional £3. 50 only to find out it was included in any case. OK for the ferry, but personally would go for a holiday

Date of Visit: May 2016 Unit:  Motorhome Rating:
Reviewer: Mogs70 12 reviews from this member

Overnight stop en route to Orkney. Very handy for the Scrabster to Stromness ferry. Arrived after heavy downpour. Were advised which pitches were free and left to park. Just stopped on first available, on grass which had already been churned up a little. Later noticed there are now hardstands at the toilet block side of the site, however we got off the grass ok in the morning.

Facilities as others have stated, toilet block rather tired but clean and adequate. Café not open on our visit.

Weigh Inn a short walk, towards Scrabster, didn't eat there but has real ale and a pleasant enough place. Walked into the town, which is in the opposite direction. Bit more run down than the last time we were here. Everywhere very quiet, but it was Sunday. Pleasant walk back along the sea front.

Good location, handy for local facilities and the port, nice views.

Date of Visit: June 2015 Unit:  Campervan Rating:
Reviewer: Vv59 1 review from this member

We just stopped for one night ( the weather wasn't too good). The site is on the edge of town with a Lidl supermarket across the road. The Proprietor is very strict trying to save his pitches from excessive wear, but that makes it better for all of us. The facilities all worked well and were lovely and clean, but the evening meal a bit 'disorganised', but the town centre is only 400 yards away with other restaurants available.

We enjoyed a walk along the promenade in the evening and the sea views.

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