Waterside caravan sites near Luton

Swap urban life for outdoor adventure in the vicinity of this travel-hub town.

92% (209 reviews)
92% (209 reviews)

Popular camping styles for Luton

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Waterside caravan sites near Luton guide

Overview

Thanks to its busy airport and well-connected train station, Luton is fast becoming a destination for adventurers on the go. Though at first glance the town may seem a concrete jungle, the encircling Chiltern Hills offer plenty of opportunities to get up close with nature, and the River Lea cuts a scenic route deep into the countryside. Outdoor attractions such as Bramingham Wood, Stockwood Park, the Dunstable Downs, and Barton Hills National Nature Reserve are ideal for ramblers and riders, while families will be pleased to find Whipsnade Zoo nearby. Though camping options are limited within the town itself, there’s plenty to choose from in its rural surrounds.

Where to go

Dunstable and the Chiltern Hills AONB

Right on Luton’s doorstep, Dunstable offers a convenient gateway into the Chiltern Hills AONB. Hiking and biking trails abound, while bird-watchers can get their kicks spotting reintroduced red kites. Whether you’re after basic-to-basics camping in remote woodlands or glamping experiences closer to town, these rolling hills provide many options.

Bedfordshire

This rural county is a haven for hikers, bikers, and canoeists, thanks to outdoor attractions such as the Bedford River Valley Park and Forest of Marston Vale. Working farms, riverside retreats, and caravan parks provide ample accommodation options, all within easy reach of the airport town.

The Cotswolds AONB

Around two hours’ drive west of Luton, this iconic English landscape boasts charming villages, country parks, and undulating hillside, making it a firm favourite among outdoor enthusiasts. Glamping is becoming a major draw in the area, with wild-style campsites and caravan parks providing more traditional camping options.

London

Contrary to its urban reputation, the English capital is actually home to many camping-friendly green spaces, making it easy to combine city sightseeing with outdoor adventure. West London’s Colne Valley Park and northeast London’s Lee Valley Park are both around a half-hour drive from Luton, while green belt counties such as Kent, Surrey, and Essex boast their own camping hotspots.

When to go

Across the UK, camping is at its most popular during summer, thanks to higher chances of dry ground, plus longer days and temperate weather. However, autumn and winter have their own charms, including fewer crowds, especially around busy airport towns like Luton, and dramatic landscape views.

Know before you go

  • Luton is reasonably well connected, with a direct trainline into London. If you plan to visit more remote spots, however, it’s worth hiring or bringing a vehicle.
  • Only some campsites offer gear hire, so you’ll need to check in advance. Basic supplies can be picked up from the Army Surplus or Halfords in central Luton, though for more specialist items you may need to head a little further out.

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