Outdoor World

20 of the best campsites in Europe

A tent is your cheap ticket to wild beauty spots across Europe, from Swedish reservoirs to Greek beaches with walk-to, wildlife and stargazing on tap

Beach holidays

Le Clos du Lac , Provence, France

Setting Mountains
Pitches 50
Activities Fishing, swimming
Perched at 1,485 metres on the leading edge of Ecrins national park, this mountain site offers Instagrammable views from the tent door and a range of picture-perfect outdoor experiences. Serre-Poncon lake is a short walk away, for swimming or angling, and nearby Boscodon forest has a host of hiking trails. At the campsite, there’s a volleyball courtroom, children’ play-act area and botanical garden home to nine species of butterfly. By night, the stargazing is superb.
* Pitch for two from EUR1 3, campeole.com

Le Chant-hibou, Auvergne, France

Camping

Setting Countryside
Pitches 20
Activities Swimming, narratives, animals
This small yet spacious site on a modest farm not only has a petting zoo, where children can cuddle up to the animals- in summer there are daily activities such as helping collect eggs, attaining cookies, face paint, journeying tractors and storytelling around a campfire. The website is flat, with a pool( plus toddlers’ pond) in the middle, so little ones can run free while parents keep an eye on them.
* Pitch from EUR8, plus EUR5 per adult,
lechanthibou.com

Camping La Pointe, Brittany, France

Camping

Setting Woodland
Pitches 60
Activities Fishing nearby, wildlife
Pitch up on one of the spacious places on the banks of the Aulne – there are salmon in nearby stretchings for which you can fish with a permit. The owners deliver patisserie each morning to your tent, and encourage you to sit with a glass of wine and watch the wildlife( ruby-red deer, squirrels, woodpeckers, tawny owls ). But make time to explore the rest of the
Crozon peninsula too.

* Pitch for two from EUR1 5.50, lapointesuperbecamping.com

D’Olde Kamp, Ansen, Netherlands

Camping

Setting Woodland
Pitches 40
Activities Den house, feeding animals
This woodland site has a choice of open realm camping or more private pitches, and finishing touches such as coffee on tap, warm bread to ordering, burn pits, an outdoor pizza oven and free wifi. It offers the full benefits of a countryside locating without the feeling of roughing it. Goats, donkeys, chickens and rabbits are your neighbours – children can help feed them with the farmer and get a” farming diploma “.
* Pitch for two from EUR1 9,
plaggenhut.nl

Landgoed de Barendonk , Beers, Netherlands

Landgoed

Setting Woodland
Pitches 30
Activities Cycling, hiking, geocaching
Don’t be fooled by the name of the village: this campsite is distinctly family friendly. On the Barendonk estate( complete with historic Flemish homes and barns ), this dairy farm is a patchwork of green realms surrounded by a moat. Though there are spaces for campers and caravans, there is an field exclusively for tents. There’s also a bad-weather sitting room where you can dry clothes, feed, sit and program your next day’s cycle( available to hire on website ), stroll or geocache challenge( rentable GPS treasure hunt available ).
* Pitch for two from EUR1 3.20,
barendonk.nl

Camping de la Cascade, Coo, Belgium

The
The river Ambleve and the waterfalls at Coo. Photograph: Alamy

Setting Riverside
Pitches 40
Activities Trail working, cycling, canoeing
This small campsite sits on the Ambleve river in the Ardennes, individual regions of woodlands and rolling mounds. Here campers can fish, swim, walking, bike and stroll through a little-visited scenery, while cars are kept at a distance( no vehicles stay on pitchings once unloaded ). Nearby, in the village of Coo, are tumbling cascades that look like something out of a fairytale. And to round things off nicely is the famous Belgian beer- there are 15 to choose from in the on-site bar.
* From EUR9. 75 per pitching plus EUR2. 80 per adult,
camping-coo.be

Zur Muhle, Black Forest, Germany

Schweinebhl

Setting Woodland
Pitches 30
Activities Hiking, cycling
Not to be confused with a website of the same name over in Bavaria, Zur Muhle offers stepped pitches with hillside views between shady trees. The emphasis is on relaxation- this is a peaceful website- no clubhouses or play areas. There is a stream for paddling, and guided walkings and cycle roads for the more energetic. With fresh bread available to order and some groceries on site, this is the perfect place to simply pitching up and do nothing at all.
* Pitch from EUR4, plus EUR4. 90 per adult,
camping-kirnbach.de

Camping Mexico, Bregenz, Austria

Boy
Photograph: Quadriga Images

Setting Lakeside
Pitches 40
Activities Cycling, hiking, swimming
There aren’t many campsites where you can conducted an investigation into two other countries from the door of your tent, but Camping Mexico is not like other campsites. Near the coast of Lake Constance- a huge, glittering body of water that borders Austria, Germany and Switzerland, it offers the chance to wild swimming after a day’s walking or sightseeing. And there is a lot to find. An easy-to-follow cycle itinerary operates alongside the website and as far around the lagoon as you care to venture. Then, when you’ve had enough, jump on one of the regular develops back.
* Pitch from EUR7, plus EUR9. 50 per adult, camping-mexico.at

Camping Lindenhof, Bern, Switzerland

kids

Setting Lakeside
Pitches 50
Activities Cycling, swimming
Lindenhof lies amid the vine-covered gradients of Seeland, a stone’s throw from Lake Biel, with views stretching to the Jura hills opposite. Cycle alongside rivers, hike to nearby Creux du Van( the Swiss Grand Canyon) or walk through the vines. The site itself is proudly ecological, heating the accompanying farm with solar energy and wood from its own woodland, while the apples and cherries grown in the orchard are sold on website.
* Pitch from EUR1 0.25, plus EUR7. 70 per adult,
camping-lindenhof.ch

Camping Val d’Or, Enscherange, Luxembourg

River

Setting Countryside
Pitches 76
Activities Paddling, cycling, Nordic walking
Think camping and the tiny Grand Duchy of Luxembourg doesn’t often leap to mind. But its relative anonymity means it’s not teeming with tourists. Set on a blissful bending of the babbling Clerve river, Val d’Or gives sociable pitches for those with children and more private places with high hedges across a footbridge. Speaking of little ones, it has three playgrounds, one of which is water themed. There are mountain bikes for hire, two nature walkings starting right from the website, a bar and free wifi.
* Pitch for two from EUR1 9,
valdor.lu

Camping Carso, Trieste, Italy

Pool

Setting Woodland
Pitches 20
Activities Fruit picking, rock climbing
Run by the same family since 1932, this working organic fresh fruits and veg farm is a mix of battleground and woodland, where campers can pick their own render, or buy renders, regional wines and local honey from the onsite shop. The green credentials don’t end there: the owners are also keen to do their bit, insisting on saving water and minimising garbage. For a true eco-break, the teach stops a couple of kilometres away at Sistiana.
* Pitch for two from EUR1 0.50,
campingcarso.com

Camping Camino de Santiago, Burgos, Spain

Colegiata
Colegiata de Santa Maria del Manzano, near Burgos. Photograph: Alamy

Setting Countryside
Pitches 40
Activities Birding, cycling, pilgrim-watching
It may be named after the( at least) 500 -mile pilgrim path to Santiago de Compestela in Galicia , north-west Spain, but blisters, knapsacks and provides to St James are not requirements for a stay there. In fact, the focus is very much on taking it easy. From an on-site eatery to fresh-baked goods delivered daily, the owners do what they can to attain staying in one place heavenly. There’s occasional guided birdwatching( the area is home to 361 species ), pilgrims to spot, and pitchings are divided by hedges for privacy.
* Pitch from EUR4. 50, plus EUR5 per adult,
campingcamino.com

Campsite Port Massaluca, Catalonia, Spain

Kayaking

Setting Riverside
Pitches 10
Activities Fishing, kayaking, birdwatching
Griffon vulture, alpine swift, peregrine falcon … If you’re already reaching for the binoculars, this Catalonian campsite, around 200 km west of Barcelona, will not disillusion. At the confluence of the Matarrana and Ebro rivers, below the dramatic, sandy-coloured cliffs, all these fowls can be spied nesting in the rocks above the campsite. If you’re more excited by zander, carp, bass, perch and catfish, then you’ll be in your component too, as it’s also the perfect website to fish- though there is competitor from the local kingfishers, herons, cormorants and grebes, naturally.
* From EUR9. 30, camping-portmassaluca.es

Quinta do Moinhos, Braga, Portugal

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