Ireland’s Top 5 Places To Camp


Some time ago I spoke with Aaron Scantlebury, Manager of Millets Camping Store, Dublin City. Aaron and I got talking about Irelands best places to go camping.

In short, Aaron and his team compiled and completed an in store survey to find The Top 5 places to camp in Ireland, as chosen by the people who liked camping. The following are their results and findings.

The top 5 places to camp in Ireland:

  1. Glenmalur Valley along Avonbeg River – Wicklow mountains [most admitted to being semi wild campers]
  2. Hidden Valley, Rathdrum, Co. Wicklow.
  3. Carrowkeel Camping and caravan park. Castlebar-Mayo
  4. Actons Camping park. Claddaghduff, Clifden-Galway [although there were less votes – of note here is that they had by far the best comments than any of the others]
  5. Lough Ennell camping site

In relation to this survey customers were asked:

  1. Is this your first time camping?
  2. Where have you camped before that you would recommend to others?

The results of questions 1 & 2 above are as follows:

  • 42% were either first time campers who were purchasing prior to making a decision on where they were going to camp.
  • 23% were festival goers
  • 34 % therefore voted on the Top 5 Camping Places Survey

Aaron sent this email with the survey results

Hi Peter

attached is the list compiled. It is interesting to note that the vast majority of customers were either camping at a festival or had never been camping before and were trying it for the first time [most of which switched the question back on us to ask us for a recommended campsite!].

It should also be noted that the survey was carried out throughout the month of August which was our peak trading time and when compared to last year, the style, purpose and nature of camping gear sold was vastly different to the same period last year. This is also indicative of the results of our survey.

It was a revealing survey that we will expand on next year. Certainly it does not reflect the “at hand pointers to camping sites” that are available to the public via the internet and government “approved” sources!

Aaron Scantlebury, Manager
Millets Camping
61-62 Mary Street
Dublin 1

Other questions we asked included:

  1. What are your recommendations based on?
  2. Are you upgrading your tent/equipment and if so why?
  3. What was the main reason for making your purchase with us today?
  • Value for money.
  • Specification of product
  • Service provided.
  • Brand loyalty.
  • Other.

Aaron will be live in studio on The SodShow this Friday to discuss this. If you have any queries you can leave a comment here or contact me via

woodland way

The Unwritten Outdoors


I was camping in Ireland over the August bank holiday weekend as most are well aware. But unknowns to most, I was slightly irked after my stay by the Irish lake and I felt it beter to hold off for a little before I spoke and noted my thoughts.

What had happened whilst I was there was that around ten other families decided to colate so as they could pretend that they were of a similar age to the children they brought with them [albeit now with extra added alcohol] and in short become overly inconsiderate to anyone else within the vacinity. That may sound a bit harsh and possibly even untoward. But, it pretty much summises what happened. The offspring were left to do as they wished apart from the odd hollar to fetch another beverage and at around three o’ clock in the morning, the unvolumed nonsensical ramblings continued.

As the refreshments flowed the following day some of the juniors without getting into specifics did as they pleased as the guardians looked after themselves…. and in short, so on it continued. It was in summary a myriad of self obsessesd and extreme indulgences from those who should be exemplary to those who look up to them. In this case it just so happened to be on a campsite.

So why didn’t you….

My family were and are at all times are my primary consideration, well before going to any group of well respectable in appearance grown women and men and asking them to be considerate to others and our surrounds. And although I may not wish this piece to be entirely about something that did not make me smile so I may air my graces, this piece is about more than just camping, It is about your and my greater outdoors.

I will write a guide to camping and that was the original intention when I started to write this piece – but, as I began I realised that once again, Ireland outside, takes in so much more than that. It encompasses the woodlands, the lakes and the nature walks. It is our beaches, our parks and green areas where our children play. It is the biodiversity that I have spoke about on many occasions. It is everything that in audio encompasses the reason I set up the garden group, that last weekend walked through seven kilometres of Dublin hedgerows.

Let me sidetrack here….

On our route we passed a field of brussel sprouts. I explained to one that they are the same family as the cabbage, the brassicae family and the problems I have growing them domestically. Another gentleman joined the conversation empathising with my tale of woe. The conversation now a four strong questions and answers session, one colleague lifted the underside of a leaf to show a cluster of golden eggs. The group had just been introduced to the cabbage white butterfly, which was I should add photographed sitting on a thistle flower at a point previous.

We saw a buzzard, wild apples, berries, trees, ferns and roses rambling through what some may call scrub, but what I would call an unlabelled nature reserve. I may be able to boast that this sits on my doorstep. That logically, is not be the case for everyone.

The question is I guess, are signs needed to tell me not to take and do as I wish in this or any other area. To my previous notes, should a guide be necessary at all or is just that some can’t decipher between common sense and utter nonsensical.

That aside, I do know that ninety nine per cent of us are well respecting and logic throughout our daily lives. And for that I stand by your side and applaud you. This is my nineteenth article for The Tribesman. It is the first in which one may consider that I have written in albeit a mild form of, but yet an unhappy tone. I promise, for next weeks piece, I will be back to my normal self.

In the meantime, thanks for reading and chat to you next week.

Contact Peter Donegan

originally published in The Tribesman week Monday 15th August

peter donegan