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Reviews of Wheems Organic Farm Bothy And Campsite

Campsite Search > UK > Scotland > Orkney Islands > South Ronaldsay > Wheems Organic Farm Bothy And Campsite > Reviews

Wheems Organic Farm Bothy And Campsite
South Ronaldsay
Orkney Islands   (Browse area)
KW17 2TJ
Tel: 01856 831556  or  07400 542026
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Pitches: 20
Open: 01/12/2024 to 31/12/2024

Rating: Average Review Score: 8/10 from 25 Reviews
                8/10 from 25 Reviews

 Tent Pitches   No Caravans   Motorhome Pitches   Small Campervans 
 Glamping Units   No Statics for Hire   No Statics for Sale   No Seasonal Pitches 
 Electric Hookups   Hardstanding Pitches   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   Washing Up   No Bathroom 
 No Baby Changing   Laundry On Site   Drinking Water   Disabled Friendly 
 No Chemical Disposal   Battery Charging   No Gas Exchange   Recycling Facilities 
 Kitchen Facilities   Freezer / Fridge   No Motorhome Point   Wifi Access 
 Shop <5 miles   Bar <5 miles   Restaurant or Cafe or Takeaway <5 miles 
 No Playground   No TV Room   No Games Room   No Evening Ents 
 Fishing <1 mile   No Wild Swimming   No Indoor Pool   No Outdoor Pool 
 Horse Riding <5 miles   Cycle Hire On Site   No Golf   Tennis <5 miles 
 Beach <1 mile   No Watersports   No Boat Launch 
Other Features
 Sea Views   Working Farm   Campfires Allowed 
 No Waterside Pitches   Public Transport <5 miles  No Dog Walk 

Reviews:  25 in total, now showing 1 to 10                 Previous 10          Next 10
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Date of Visit: September 2023 Unit:  Motorhome
Nights stayed: 8 Travelling as:  Mature couple
Reviewer: Big Sandy 2 reviews from this member

 Let's say this first. We booked for 8 nights, but left after the first night. Would have asked for a refund but never saw hide nor hair of the owners, not did they respond to email or phone. Terms say no refunds anyway, so would have been pointless.

The road in. Dirt track, could see where vehicles had bottomed out. Muddy, potholed, unkept. No effort made to improve it.

The m/h pitches. Hardstand? Covered in grass, could see patches of gravel, but there were muddy patches. Not level. Weeds a couple feet tall between pitches.

Facilities. I've seen reviews say "quirky". Rough would be a better word. Dirty, unkept stone paths with grass and mud between the pieces of stone. Uneven. My wife is disabled, so didn't want to risk them.

Kitchen area. Dirty smelly fridge, with old foodstuffs in. Didn't bother looking at the rest of the area. Tap outside for water, looked skanky, and I couldn't have reached it to fill my van tank via our hose even if I felt like using it.

Firepit area. Long grass, lots of dog mess in the grass, as I found to my cost.

Showers and toilets. Looked clean. But seats on loos loose, concrete floor paint peeling. Didn't fancy using them.

The place gives off an unloved vibe. It's a shame, it could be really nice if the owners put in a bit (well, a lot actually) of effort.

Oh. We paid 20 a night, plus 6 for 2 dogs. Sounds cheap, but then you factor in that you have to drive to Kirkwall to empty your grey waste and chemical toilet, makes the campsite in Kirkwall with all facilities, and lovely big clean showers and toilets for 28 a night look just as cheap, eh? And they don't charge you for dogs either. Wheems reason for no black waste? It would interfere with their organic status. As many m/h user's use washing liquid tablets instead of toilet chemicals now, I don't see the difference as they have toilets and presumably washing machines on site.

Was looking forward to our stay. Sadly let down. Sorry to sound so negative, but was very very disappointed. 
via mobile

Date of Visit: July 2023 Unit:  Campervan
Nights stayed: 3 Travelling as:  Family with older children
Reviewer: Pedrosontour 11 reviews from this member

 Stayed here on arrival at St Margaret hope ferry for 2 nights then stayed here again on last night before catching ferry back to Gills bay on mainland. Excellent sheltered location on hillside overlooking beach/shore at St Peters kirk.

We did not bother with hook up but available and 2 different pitches on grass both flat with great views.

The rustic, Eco vibe shown in long grassed area with short cut pitches between ensuring no-one overlooking each other and well spaced out.

Facilities all available, but do not expect shiny modern style, 3 toilets, 3 showers, covered sink area, separate kitchen and covered sitooterie. Even honesty shop area with eco/organice produce.

Really enjoyed out stay here, very relaxed and enjoyable 10 minute walk down to sandy beach at end on minor road by church. 

Date of Visit: June 2022 Unit:  Tent
Nights stayed: 3 Travelling as:  Mature couple
Reviewer: Hecate105 17 reviews from this member

 Stayed here for 3 nights on a cycle tour of Scotland.

It was by far our favourite campsite of the whole 10 week trip!

Set in a stunning position above the beach and coast - when it is clear there are beautiful views, when it is misty - you get amazing sudden glimpses of the sea.

The tent area was well set out with enough space to have privacy whilst still feeling open.

The facilities were great - showers, loos, laundry - a really funky kitchen and sitting area that was great for meeting people. Books, games and a little shop selling healthy food.

This is the sort of place I would rather stay at - real - hand-made, authentic in every way. The staff were so helpful and friendly too.

So much better than the massed ranks of white plastic in stiff rows that is the normal site!

It also helps that Ronaldsay it self is so pretty! 

Date of Visit: July 2022  Confirmed Booking Unit:  Motorhome
Nights stayed: 1 Travelling as:  Mature couple
Reviewer: Zecchi 1 review from this member

 Very kind and helpful managers.

Well managed and maintained site.

Plenty of opportunity to buy Products grown on the farm very good and at an honest price.

To be recommended 

Date of Visit: June 2022  Confirmed Booking Unit:  Campervan
Nights stayed: 1 Travelling as:  Retired couple
Reviewer: Ruthje 1 review from this member

 Hillside campsite with stunning views.

Informal festival vibe.

Delicious freshly picked strawberries for breakfast.

Focus on up cycling and organic produce, which means that it is not smart, but the shower was powerful and hot 
via mobile


Date of Visit: August 2021 Unit:  Campervan
Nights stayed: 3 Travelling as:  Mature couple
Reviewer: EdinburghRosie 3 reviews from this member

 This is a charming, beautifully located site, with a 'hippy'/eco aesthetic and a lot of thoughtful facilities and touches.

The farm is approached by a narrow track that winds up to the top of the site, where the campervan pitches are. Not sure how larger vehicles would cope. You get fantastic views out across the sea, and we had some memorable sunsets and moonrises! Although the site is hilly, the pitches are pretty level. However warm the weather, there was always a bit of a breeze!

The facilities are a bit idiosyncratic, but only what you would expect from this kind of place. There was a kitchen with loads of crockery and cooking equipment for the campers, a fridge-freezer, and a comfy covered dining/ seating area. There were also books and games for children. The children on the site seemed to be having a fantastic time, running about and having fun. It would be a great place for families I think.

The toilets and showers were unisex, and frankly a bit tatty and grubby. For example, there were handtowels rather than paper towels for hand-drying - a good environmental choice - but they were not changed in the 3 nights we were there.

Not great, especially during the pandemic. Easily solved, by bringing my own towel when I went to the loo, but it was a sign of the way the site operated. We also noticed the bins in the toilet cubicle hadn't been emptied.

There were some nice facilities - a little wholefood 'honesty' shop, with staples and also some farm produce. There was also sometimes home-baked bread - however, it turned out to be inedible - totally undercooked.

There were fire pits available, made out of old tyre rims and you could buy bags of wood for 4.

Overall we had an enjoyable, atmospheric stay - it's really a special place. Just be aware that the very ethos that make this such a unique little site mean that some aspects are a bit tatty. 

Date of Visit: August 2021 Unit:  Motorhome
Nights stayed: 2 Travelling as:  Retired couple
Reviewer: Truediamond 112 reviews from this member

 As per previous reviews, this comes across as a very Marmite Site - you either love it or not.

We found it quite a contrast from everywhere else we stayed on Orkney where precautions against Covid were carefully thought out and applied to the letter, meaning that we felt quite secure.

At Wheems, there was nothing in the way of precautions and no indication that a world pandemic had stretched to this corner.

The facilities are certainly rustic, as others have said, and reminded us of some Nepalese tea houses we've stayed at. We did not see any sign that they had been cleaned during our stay.

Access is up a steep slope with overgrown hedge at the sides. Careful not to scratch your van. Pitches are uneven with lots of long grass but there are good views out to sea.

There is no chemical disposal as it would destroy bacteria in the septic tank. This is quite reasonable but less so is the requirement to take all non recyclable packaging off site. Whether this is a true environmentally driven initiative or a desire to cut waste management costs is an interesting question.

We had a good meal and coffee stop at The Murray arms in St Margaret's Hope and it is only ~10 minutes from the ferry so two positives, at least. 

Date of Visit: September 2020  Confirmed Booking Unit:  Other
Nights stayed: 4 Travelling as:  Mature couple
Reviewer: Helenh 1 review from this member

 We stayed in one of the pods. Great views of the sea and a nice walk down to the beach.

Lovely quaint campsite. Hot showers. Fresh produce available. Especially liked the communal kitchen / eating area. 
via mobile

Date of Visit: August 2020  Confirmed Booking Unit:  Tent
Nights stayed: 4 Travelling as:  Other
Reviewer: Louise 1 review from this member

 My daughter and I were recommended Wheem's campsite by a friend and we really enjoyed our stay.

I have spent today packing our camping equipment away and thinking wistfully about our few days in Orkney and know that it was all the better for camping there.

The view over the bay from our tent was beautiful (the weather was amazing while we were there and we didn't feel as exposed as we expected).

We were really surprised by the hospitable touches in the sit-oot-erie with kitchen utensils, herbs and access to a kettle and much more. The showers and the washing up areas had plenty of hot water and there was much effort taken to ensure that everything was extra clean. There was plenty of handwashing liquid for visitors to sanitise too.

There was ample space to distance within the campsite, and it felt a very safe natural place for children to run around as the car park was separate from the tents.

It was a short walk to the bay and not far to St Margaret's Hope for supplies/pubs and galleries. We were delighted that the Fish and Chip van arrived while we were sitting on the jetty early on Saturday evening.

We supplemented our meals on the campsite with the homegrown organic garlic, courgettes, onions and home made bread from the farm. It was also possible to buy more healthy provisions from the shelves in the sit-oot-erie (honesty box) so, if the weather is too grim to venture out for a couple of days you would be able to cook, eat, socialise and relax under cover in relative comfort and leave the confines of your tent. What a luxury! There are even some board games and books (although I fear the Orkney mist has rather dampened them over time.

We came in on the ferry from Scrabster to Stromness but returned from St Margaret's Hope as it is much more convenient (being so much closer to the campsite on South Ronaldsay) especially if you are getting an early ferry.

All in all - would highly recommend and hope to return again.

Thank you Sophie.

Emma & Louise Brown (from Glasgow & Birmingham) 

Date of Visit: May 2019 Unit:  Other
Nights stayed: 3 Travelling as:  Solo traveller
Reviewer: Tedthebudgie 51 reviews from this member

 You have got to like Wheems! I camp all over the place under canvas, in a small campervan and in pods. Never stayed anywhere quite like Wheems and I would recommend it thoroughly. It won't be everybody's cup of tea and if you have Caravan Club expectations don't bother. Read previous reviews about facilities.

Suffice to say they are different but they were clean for the three nights I was there and I had a decent shower each night. If you are camping, there is an indoor cooking/eating area with a few food items for sale.

Location is wonderful, set high up looking over the sea. All pitches have wonderful views. Approach road is a little steep and quite tight but not very long. Don't attempt it in your twin axle behemoth!

The pod itself was fine with a socket, small kettle and light. Mattress provided. I used my own sleeping bag and would not have been keen using the bedding which was not perfect and had seen better days.

If you're in Orkney, I'd recommend giving this site a try. 

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Common Questions

Is Wheems Organic Farm Bothy And Campsite child friendly?  YES, it accepts children  View all facilities

Where is the nearest shop to Wheems Organic Farm Bothy And Campsite?  There is a shop within 5 miles  View all facilities

Is Wheems Organic Farm Bothy And Campsite dog friendly?  YES  View all facilities

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