Choosing the right campsite isn’t as easy as you might think, and is surprisingly easy to get wrong. Luckily here at Priory Rentals we’ve put together some advice to help you select the perfect campsite.

To choose the right campsite, you first need to look at what you want to get out of the camping experience. If this is your first time camping, then you’ll need to try and work out what characteristics your ideal campsite would have, as where you camp, can really make or break your weekend away.


What characteristics and facilities do you want?

If you are planning to roast marshmallows around the fire with your kids, or enjoy a nice barbecue you are going to want a site that allows campfires, but a surprisingly large number do not allow them, so do check out the available facilities and campsite rules, and let these guide you in your decision making.

A few considerations

Not all campsites allow you to park beside your pitch, meaning you may need to carry your tent and camping gear.
Some campsites don’t allow BBQs and the vast majority don’t allow campfires
Showers and toilet blocks aren’t always close and sometimes you have to pay extra for showers.
Some campsites have excellent shops, whilst others don’t have a shop at all.
Set up and take down can take longer than you think, so make sure you know what the campsites arrival and departure times are.

Do your research

Different campsites have different personalities. As crazy as this sounds it is true. A campsites personality is influenced by it’s location, the type of campers it attracts and the campsite rules.

For example, a small and very remote campsite with very strict noise rules are likely not to be much fun and certainly not the right place for a group or anyone who generally likes to stay up and chat around the campfire.

Reading online reviews can help, but remember people often only leave reviews when they have negative feelings they want to share, so use these for rough guidance only. Have a good read of the campsites own website, visit professional review sites. If you read what they have to say so you get a true feel for the place, and finally always look at pictures and the location of the site.

Make a shortlist of potential campsites

Each time we plan to go away, we just consult our shortlist, and see which takes of fancy. If you write a list of positive and negatives and pitch them against each other then you will be able to narrow down your list.

Consider the length of your break

If you are going away for just a night, you are unlikely to want to have to make a 400 mile round trip. However, if you have a few days, then you will have time to venture further afield, so plan your route in advance and note the distance of the campsite.

The length of your break will also influence practical things like what you’ll need to take with you, and activities and days out in the local area. Even if you end up spending most of your time chilling on site, make sure you have an idea of things available to do. This makes life easier, should you feel the urge to do or see something different.

Do all of the above and you stand the best chance of enjoying a stay at the ideal campsite for you.

To help you along the way, these are the things that we think are good to look for in a campsite.


Our campsite criteria

Allows BBQs and campfires
Coastal or lake side, preferably with a water view
Rural location
No set pitches
No very strict noise rules
Parking available next to the pitch
Within a 3 hour drive
Set fee based on number of tents or number of people not the size of tent
Good walks in the immediate area
Smaller sized campsite rather than a large holiday park style site
Nature, and loads of it
Pretty scenery for me to photograph
Visitor attractions within a half hour drive from site

What do you look for in a campsite? How do you decide where to camp? We’d love to hear from you, why not leave fill out our questionnaire here and let us know.