Pitching a small tent on the bonnie, bonnie banks of Loch Lomond, and camping with my family.
It’s a beautiful childhood memory that I was fortunate enough to pass on to my own young son, and he loved it every bit as much as I did. It really is one of those ‘money can’t buy’ moments. Making memories that last a lifetime and something I’d advise anyone to do with family if they get the chance.
A lot has changed in the world in the two decades that passed between camping as a young kid and camping with a young kid but the ancient campsite we chose in Luss was comfortingly familiar.
Technology and the fast-paced of modern living had rushed past this tranquil spot, keeping it the same little idyllic campsite I remembered. My packing skills had certainly progressed. As a 10-year-old boy, I had with me two items; a football and a fishing rod. As a father, I had packed like we were going on a polar expedition.
Perhaps over the top for a weekend camping on the shores of a loch situated little more than 30 minutes from our home in Greenock, Scotland. The car was packed with bags, food, and modern technology.
My mobile phone was fully charged in case of emergencies, with the Bovada Sports app downloaded to ensure I didn’t miss my chance to bet on the Grand National at Aintree. A cautious father taking his son on a first camping trip, I played the role perfectly. Thankfully, my son saved space, packing only a ball and a rod.
Luss is a tiny village situated on Loch Lomond, Scotland, and is part of the Trossachs National Park.
The campsite there is simply stunning with its own private beach, perfect for water sports like kayaking and canoeing, or even just removing your shoes and socks and going in for a paddle in the crystal-clear waters.
Position your tent right and the loch will be on your doorstep as you zip open the door each morning. The wooden stairs down to the beach meant I could safely set up our tent while keeping an eye on my son as he investigated the rockpools and made new friends.
Things to Do
You could spend the entire weekend without leaving the campsite if that’s what you were looking for. There’s a little shop attached to the reception selling essentials, things you may have forgotten to pack.
There’s also a play park for kids, open grassy fields for playing sports, ancient trees offering shade from the sun, and the loch itself.
Take a picnic on the sandy beach and enjoy the peace. Get into the water and enjoy a swim. Go exploring the coastline, across the sand, over rocks, and through woodland.
If you’d prefer to get off the site and look around, you are in for a real treat. The village of Luss is small, but it packs a punch.
It has one main village shop selling everything from milk and tea bags to whisky and shortbread. There’s the pier at luss beach which, in summer, is packed with day-trippers. You can enjoy a boat trip around the loch, taking in the many islands and hearing their stories.
Stroll around the village and enjoy the pubs and cafes or visit the bigger playpark with its mix of local kids and children enjoying their holidays.
The cottages that were originally built for the slate minors are like something you’d see on a biscuit tin and the Luss Parish Church was built in 1875. Wandering around the grounds – if that’s your thing – you’ll find monuments and graves dating as far back as the 7th century AD.
The only slight downside of the campsite on Luss is the A82 trunk road that bypasses the village, busy with lorries and trucks carrying timber.
If you have had a busy day enjoying Loch Lomond, it shouldn’t be enough to affect your sleep but you will be aware of the heavy vehicles whizzing past at speed.
Any late nights will soon be forgotten with a morning dip into the cold waters of one of Scotland’s most famous lochs.