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Visitor Reviews - Hillside Camping And Caravan Site

Campsite Search > UK > England > South West > Dorset > Cranborne > Hillside Camping And Caravan Site Reviews

Hillside Camping And Caravan Site
Ringwood Forest, Gotham
Verwood
Cranborne
Dorset   (Browse area)
BH21 5QY
Tel: 01202 813527
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Pitches: 20
Open: 1st April To 31st October

Rating: Average Review Score: 8/10 from 63 Reviews
                8/10 from 63 Reviews

 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   No Hardstandings   No Fully Serviced Pitches   Show Full Facilities
Who's it for
 Families Welcome   Club Members Only   Rallies Welcome   Not Naturist Site 
 Dogs Welcome   No Dogs Allowed   Groups Welcome   Motorbikers Welcome 
Facilities
 Toilet Facilities   Hot Showers   Washing Up   No Bathroom 
 Baby Changing Facilities   No Laundry   Drinking Water   Disabled Friendly 
 Chemical Disposal   No Battery Charging   No Gas Exchange   No Recycling Facilities 
 No Kitchen Facilities   No Freezer / Fridge   No Motorhome Point 
 Shop <1 mile   Bar <1 mile   Restaurant <1 mile   No Wifi Access 
Activities
 No Playground   No TV Room   No Games Room   No Evening Ents 
 Fishing 10 miles   No Wild Swimming   No Indoor Pool   No Outdoor Pool 
 Horse Riding 5 miles   Cycle Hire 5 miles   Golf 5 miles   No Tennis 
 No Beach   Watersports 10 miles   No Boat Launch 
Other Features
 No Sea Views   Not Working Farm   No Campfires Allowed   Not Open All Year 
 No Waterside Pitches   Public Transport 1 mile  Offroad Dog Walk On Site or Direct Access 

This is a club member only site - you may be able to join on site - please check direct with the site

Reviews:  63 in total, now showing 1 to 10                 Previous 10          Next 10
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Date of Visit: August 2017 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Wombleexplorer 1 review from this member

Great campsite. Nice size, clean facilities and a very warm welcome. Great for children as the tents are all around the edge, so you can see them wherever they are. One of the nicest sites I've stayed at.

Date of Visit: June 2017 Unit:  Motorhome Rating:
Reviewer: MurphyandLizzie 4 reviews from this member

Spent five nights at this site in June this year. It is a very pretty location at the end of a rough track surrounded by trees and fields. The site is very nicely kept - generous pitches are mown regularly and divisions between each are easy to make out - but it is basically a field with electric hook ups and a toilet/shower block. We were welcomed by Phil who even offered to help us set up!

My only complaint would be that the information regarding the location of the nearest shops and pubs is totally inaccurate! There are lots of paths that lead through the forest and to the local towns and villages and this is the safest way to travel around on foot. However the hand drawn map that is pinned to the notice board is not only not to scale, but also misses out great chunks! Why they don't invest in an ordnance survey map instead I don't know. However even if we hadn't got lost every time we tried to walk to a pub, we would still have taken well over half an hour. The same is true of the shops. Their website says that it is 10 minutes walk and this site says that it is 15 minutes walk. Usain Bolt might manage that but not me! We like to pitch our motorhome close enough to a pub to be able to pop in either before after dinner without moving the vehicle and it wasn't really suitable for that. But apart from that everything was lovely! Thanks to Phil and his family for their warm welcome and friendliness.

Date of Visit: May 2015 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Becsmum 4 reviews from this member

Just spent a lovely weekend at this site. Great location with direct access to the forest and lots of walks nearby. Ideal for exploring area, new forest, moors valley country park, Avon Heath country park and heavy horse centre all nearby.

Site itself is quite basic, but the facilities (3 showers/ toilets) and covered washing up area were kept clean and the water nice and hot. The price very reasonable for a new forest site.

Tents were pitched around the edge so plenty of space for children to play in the middle (and a good tree to climb). It is away from any main roads so no traffic noise, although a little difficult to find from the road so a bigger sign would help!

The new owners were very friendly and helpful. Would definitely go back.

Date of Visit: May 2013 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Swa31 1 review from this member

Just arrived back from a lovely break at hillside. Campsite has a long bumpy track to the entrance, which gives that rural feel. The owner was very friendly, apologised several times for the lack of showers as the boiler had broken. This didn't matter, as we were only staying two nights and the location was excellent. Two toilets on site which were clean. The only reason why the light would go out is because it works on a motion censor. If you are sitting still for too long Just wave your hand then it will go on. The owner gave us advice on a local Italian place, which made excellent pizzas. Would definitely

Revisit this site and stay longer when the showers are up and running.

Date of Visit: May 2013 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Romogape 12 reviews from this member

Stayed here for a weekend in May, in a couple of small tents, travelling by motorcycle.

Very quiet, in fact we were the only visitors over the weekend, so lovely and quite. The only noise was the birds, cows and horses. The site owner was very helpful, offering a lift to the local shops to get supplies, and the use of their bath, (as the site had no hot water as the boiler had broken down!). The lack of hot water was a bit of a let down, but not the end of the world, as we were only there for 2 nights.

The local area is okay, with an excellent Indian restaurant, and a few pubs, all within walking distance, though I reckon closer to mile and half than one. Down dirt tracks, which were very muddy (and entertaining after a few pints), so don't forget your boots if it's been wet!

The site is basic, but got what you need, assuming the boiler's working, though could do with a little sprucing up. No dedicated kids stuff, plenty of open spaces, but something we don't have to worry about!

The track to the site from the road, a few hundred metres long, is still quite bumpy and rutted, but if we could do it with a fully loaded Vmax, and a very low Harley, shouldn't cause to many problems!

Date of Visit: January 2013 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Davebear 1 review from this member

If you want peace and quite in the countryside this is a good place to be.

Beautiful setting, the facilities were good and clean. There was plenty of rain while I was there, but the ground was well drained and firm all the time, even with 3 to 4 inches of snow.

The local pubs were friendly with good food, and the shops had all the provisions needed.

Well situated for the New Forest, Bournemouth, Poole, Dorset Coast and much more.

Top this off with very friendly, knowledgeable and helpful owners, what more could you want.

Would recommend this site to anyone, but would rather keep it to myself!

Date of Visit: August 2012 Unit:  Campervan Rating:
Reviewer: GusBus 2 reviews from this member

My husband and I have been to Hillside 5 times this year so far and have nothing bad to say for the place except for the fact that we cant stay for long enough each visit.

We own a 1967 VW camper van which we take great care of and have never had a problem getting down the lane to Hillside especially since they have levelled out the track from the main road in June.

On our second visit we decided to stay on one of the lower pitches as the site was quiet and even though our first night and majority of the day were very wet the pitch remained dry and firm.

The facilities are immaculate thank to their tireless efforts. The showers are lovely, clean, hot and powerful! What more could you wish for. Oh yeah fresh eggs on request (both chickens and ducks (which are amazing)), friend owners, stunning walks, amazing local butchers with the best sausages we have ever had, wonderful facilities and peace and quiet.

Our patch of heaven in the forest

We have recommended Hillside to all of our friends and they all agree with us having stayed there independently and with us.

Date of Visit: August 2012 Unit:  Touring Caravan Rating:
Reviewer: Omegacamper 6 reviews from this member

We have just spent a week at the Hillside. We almost went pass the site due having no sign at the end of the lane. It is also on a left hand bend and if you travel from Verwood you to have do a right hand turn into the lane which is not great if you are pulling a caravan. Then the lane itself is full of potholes and a little uneven.

On arrival we reported to the reception and we were met by Brian he told to set up along the lower field edge bottom due to us being a caravan c/w hook up. The site is a little uneven but nothing to cause any problems once we were set up my wife went to visit the toilet block.

This a unisex set up with 5 rooms 2 showers/ 2 toilets and a wet room with shower and toilet and 2 free standing pota loo's. This block is clean and can sometimes become sadly a little smelly. The cost of a shower is 50p this lasts a very long time and are great power shower's with plenty of hot water.

The waste water is a little high to lift a full wastemaster into due to you emptying it into what looks like a old drainage well you also put your chem waste in here it's to best empty you waste water every day.

A little more information on the information board please because there is none. The grass also needed cutting it was long and got wet after any type of rain shower heavy or light.

I have been camping for over 40 years and this site, with all its little faults, I still loved it just please give it a little more TLC.

The site is great for visiting the New Forest and Bournemouth all within a 20 minute drive. The walks around the site are good even when you get a little lost.

Date of Visit: July 2012 Unit:  Touring Caravan Rating:
Reviewer: Hi102b 3 reviews from this member

We found the site eventually and had to traverse a track full of potholes and water, not good towing a caravan. On arrival we were told to choose a pitch as they were not busy (2 tents and 2 caravans including us).

As we were getting sorted they appeared to say there was no electricity because they had a leak and it was all switched off. The pitch was a boggy and the grass appeared not to have been cut this season.

Wi/Fi was advertised but we could not access it no matter what we tried and there was no tv signal.

The toilets and showers were antiquated and only 2 of each so if the site ever got busy there would be queues, we did not use either because the lights went off without warning. They also were not particularly clean and a little smelly.

Ducks and chickens roamed the site.

Management response: I must refute the comments of Hi102b in their July 2012 review. In May 2012 I had a massive heart attack, 15 days in hospital. I discharged myself and immaterially before the QUEEN's Diamond Bank Holiday, in May 2012, I spent over 6, 000 re-installing massive underground drainage and making the 'track' up to the main Road. It was and is still rut free and relatively smooth. We do not flood, get boggy, soggy or even muddy on our campsite (only once soggy at Easter 13 years ago) This Guest complaining in July 2012 is known to us, he booked before we got Wi-FI or advertised it. We cancelled the advertising of it, during his stay. He did not have BT compatible software. We are BT supplied, as he was told on his second day here.

The Site inspection by the CAMPING and CARAVANNING CLUB took place whilst he was here. We not only passed with flying colours for cleanliness of facilities, their moderness, safety, suitability, but the Inspector also walked the site, including around the caravan in question and commented 'how dry and firm the camping ground is, considering the terrible weather we all had been through. '

The Inspector further commented ' That he was put out, because he could NOT find anything to complain about. ' Both this Inspector and the Friendly Clubs small sites manager Damien, commented that 'they wished other small sites had our quality of campsite & facilities, ambience and ground. '

Verification of the above is only a free telephone call away at the Club's headquarters, and by our dated, timed photographs taken professionally on a Nikon digital camera.

We also pull in spare portable toilets/washrooms for when we are busy.

Brian Davison. (Hillside)

Date of Visit: May 2012 Unit:  Tent Rating:
Reviewer: Lincolngr 8 reviews from this member

We stayed with Brain and Diane for four nights over the bank holiday weekend. We are a group of adult friends without children (hence the N/A score for children).

They were very friendly and approachable and the only thing that went wrong was the hot water running out on Monday afternoon, which Brian fixed in five minutes.

They are keen on recycling, with a multitude of bins available. The vouchers were welcomed and free sausages at the butchers in Verwood were delicious (a range of vouchers are emailed on booking).

The turning to the campsite can easily be missed. Look out for it after passing the heavy horse centre (if approaching from Verwood) - it is a track on the next left hand bend.

The track itself is heavily rutted, so needs to be navigated with care, especially if you're planning to take a caravan. We did bottom out at one point when fully loaded.

Although the grass in the camping field was long, it did dry quickly and there were no boggy or muddy areas, with plenty of space in the site.

One negative point was the chickens, which free-ranged around our cars and tents, something that would be unhygienic in cooking areas.

The location - for walking and cycling couldn't be better. We hardly used the car all weekend, straight off the site circular walks of 5 - 10 miles were easily found, taking in a mixture of open rolling countryside and woodland with panoramic views to the south at Steven's Castle.

The washing up facilities were good although one of the taps is slow running. The showers were 50p for a good length of time, (meters in the shower cubicles).

The walk to the pub, advertised at 15 mins in the site description is somewhat optimistic in my view. A fast-paced 25 minutes and a more steady 30-35 minutes along the bridleway is more realistic. It was muddy in places but perfectly manageable in daylight, however, we didn't attempt it after dark.

Overall, I agree with other reviewers, the site owners couldn't be more helpful, some improvement to the track leading to the site would be beneficial and I would recommend the site to a friend. Location scores 8 out of 10 simply because I prefer a drink to be a little more in reach in the evening.

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