Glanllyn-Lakeside Caravan and Camping Park
Phone: 01678 540227 or 01678 540441
Website – www. glanllyn.com
With our campsite reviews, we always like to give you a more indepth explanation and build more of a picture to help you decide if you want to stay there in that area. Anyone can write a bland review saying “the site was lovely, toilets were clean, grass was soft etc.”.
To this end, lets dive right in and show you what we got up to on our trip to Glanllyn campsite situated next to Bala Lake (Llyn Tegid) in 2018.
Friday 27th April.
We packed the camping gear on Friday morning and then in the afternoon we collected the kids from school and commenced with the 2 hour drive to Bala.
Our first stop was the award winning butchers at the end of Bala High Street (A494) – We had already planned a couple of meals and had looked into what shops were around. For our meatfest, supplies were purchased from T J Roberts and Sons. We got to meet (not meat) the owner who gave us a wonderful history lesson about the business, and it was great to hear him talk with such pride and passion.
If you find yourself in Bala, this butchers is well worth a visit. You will see some of the food in the photos, we had an array of burgers, lamb burgers, kebab skewers, sausages and bacon. We had some scotch eggs which were very tasty. Butcher gave us some bones for the dogs too. Here is a link to their website, they also do a delivery service so check it out.
We arrived at the campsite, the reception was closed with a sign that gave a phone number. As it was early in the season, the reception was not manned all the time. We gave Megan a call, who said all the electric hook-ups were on the left and that we could go and set up anywhere we wanted.
Looking from the reception, the site is quite large, tent camping on the left along the boundary trees with the stream behind. There was only one other tent there, and chose to stop a little further down, right by a big old tree trunk.
After we set up the tent, we started on our evening meal of burgers and minted lamb using the Coleman Party Grille. There seemed to be a problem with the pressure on the grille as it seemed low. We concluded that we had less gas than first expected.
There was good phone signal in this area so I checked for local Calor gas stockists. There were three within less than a mile so I said I would pop out in the morning and get a replacement bottle. This from a guy who wrote an article about how to check your gas bottle (link here). There also seemed to be a problem with the gas regulator as there was ater dripping out of it, so we decided we would try and replace that at the same time.
We cooked some of the food we purchased from the butchers. We had minted lamb and they were gorgeous, really succulent and tasty.
What can I say about camping in late April? The weather was very kind to us, we had lovely and warm spring sunshine all the time we were there. The site was quiet, meaning ew could sit and listen to the water running through the stream behind us, and everywhere was lush green because of the previous rain, We also had an electric hookup and bought along a heater with us for keeping the chill off overnight. Also, if the weather was poor and we got wet, having the heater allows us to get our clothes dry – win win all round.
Saturday 28th April
My first job of the day was to go and get replacement gas bits that we needed for cooking our breakfast, so off I went in search of some gas and a replacement regulator. Fortunately, it’s only a 3 mile drive along the lake and I promptly found a place to exchange my empty gas bottle. They didn’t have the right regulator, so I popped into Peny Bont Touring Park who have a decent shop for camping supplies, and also the correct regulator that I needed.
Returning to the campsite, sausage, bacon, beans and fried bread were soon being cooked in the beautiful sun, alongside the river that trickles into the lake. We would have had eggs but we think that we left them in the butchers shop. This was all cooked on the Coleman party grille, big enough to get everything on the grille all in one go. Well everything except for the beans (haha), they were quickly heated up in a pan on the Coleman unleaded stove (Coleman Sportster unleaded stove review).
Whilst eating our breakfast my father suddenly arrived for an impromptu visit. Apparently, he checked the weather and drove across from the Midlands because of the beautiful photos we had been sharing on the TentLife Facebook group. My father pointed out that the reception was now open (as he had paid to be a day visitor), so I popped up to speak with Megan and pay the remainder of our camping bill.
After a lovely breakfast, we decided on a drive round to explore the other side of Bala Lake to the lovely Llangower. We found a small carpark, parked up and began our walk along the shore. Funnily enough we spotted our tent on the other side of the lake. We walked along, took some great photos and on our way back to the car were presented with the Bala Lake steam train arriving at the quaint Llangower platform. Click here for more about the lovey Llangower.
Before getting back to Glanllyn campsite, we stopped off in Bala High Street for some very tasty ice creams. It’s a nice shop with a big red dragon outsides, you can’t miss it. It’s called Arans and it is well worth a visit. The upside down A has been designed to look like an ice cream cone - cool. One more thing I've just remembered, Aran also sell doggie ice creams that are lactose free, needless to say our 2 little terrors loved their pots and consumed them in the back of the van - great idea.
One of the reasons we chose to camp around Bala Lake is because we had recently started kayaking, and we love it. I have written about our novice adventures into kayaking (click here) because it’s a brilliant activity that works great with camping. Glanllyn campsite has it’s own foreshore that gently enters the lake, and you can drive down onto it to launch into the water. So I set up the kayak (it’s an inflatable, Sevylor Madison Kayak) and threw it on the roof and slowly drove down to the water.
This was our second time kayaking, it’s a 2 seater and we took it in turns having a paddle. Getting out on the water was great fun and we even took one of the dogs out for a ride. Here is out YouTube video. My father then left us for his drive back home, he had managed to have a play with his new camera and thoroughly enjoyed the family time together and the wonderful surroundings of Bala Lake.
Evening meal cooked on the Coleman party grill again, chicken kebabs and a variety of minted lamb rump and rosemary/basil lamb rump. Then we sat around our fire pit and enjoyed a few beers before retiring to bed.
Sunday 29th April
In the morning we packed away all our camping gear and stopped off at Arans for more ice cream (breakfast). If you bring your own bowls, it’s only £1.20 per scoop. So we bought our own bowls and had a good fill up.
Where possible on our last day of camping, we do like to try and pack away and then stop off for some sight seeing on our journey home. On this trip, our return drive saw us stopping off at Pistyll Rhaeadr waterfalls. It was definitely worth it, spectacular vies of the waterfall. Here is a link to the Pistyll Rhaeadr review of our visit and a video too (they do lovely Cream Teas).
Well that’s it for our trip to Glanllyn campsite and Bala Lake in Wales. It was only a short trip (Friday to Sunday), but well worth it. The site was great, clean and tidy with friendly and helpful staff. I had 3 big toilet/shower blocks with plenty of facilities that were nice a clean also. The bubbling stream by our tent has gained a place in my heart, along with the tranquillity of the area and the convenience of Bala town itself only a stones throw away.
One criticism, the stay wasn’t long enough. There is so much more to do in this beautiful area and I would have loved to explore more of the lake on our kayak.
Would I return to Glanllyn campsite, definitely yes.