Wavecrest campsite is located about two miles from the village of Caherdaniel on the N70 – the Ring of Kerry. With this campsite being right beside the N70 there are no access problems, and looking at the size of some of the trailers, caravans and motor homes on the site during our stay it looks like you can get a unit of any size to Wavecrest campsite with no issues at all.
Wavecrest isn’t just a campsite and this is clear to see as you turn off the N70. On site there is a café, a reasonable sized food store with deli counter and a small shop selling camping supplies and fishing supplies. These shops are not just for the benefit for the residents of the campsite but for any one travelling around the Ring of Kerry. The range of shops is impressive, and very useful too. I have never come across a campsite with an onsite deli before, so this was a novelty for me. With a huge selection of mouth-watering foods including hot oven roasted chickens, wings, sausage rolls, burgers, freshly made pizza (whilst you wait), sandwich meats, various salads, coleslaw etc. there is no way to go hungry and the waistline took a bit of a battering – it’s a good job I was only there for a short stay.
Wavecrest campsite is a bit of a haphazard site with pitches dotted around the site on different levels and in no particular order. Some campsites have pitches in neat rows, but Wavecrest is not like this, and there the pitches seem to be wherever the owner could fit them in. Looking across the campsite the units look in total chaos but it works. The campsite doesn’t look messy, just a little disorganized, but this is part of its charm.
The pitches aren’t the largest but they are plenty big enough for our Accordo, and can also accommodate much larger units too. Once the unit is on the pitch there isn’t much room around it to do anything else, but this seems to be the case with most of the campsites in Ireland. The “2017 camping guide to Ireland” book of sites we picked up at our first campsite stated Wavecrest as having 100 pitches, and before we arrived I thought it was going to be another Nagles Campsite. Looking around I am struggling to see 100 pitches (although I haven’t counted them) however there are quite a few. That said, the majority of pitches seem to be seasonal and are taken by caravans. The number of touring pitches is actually quite limited.
On arrival we paid at reception and was then told to go through the barrier and take any pitch we wanted, providing it wasn’t a tent only pitch or obviously taken. Because of the layout of the site, and the haphazard nature of it seeing how to get around the site wasn’t clearly obvious, and choosing a pitch wasn’t easy. We were keen to park up so didn’t tour around the entire site, besides we didn’t need to as we found a nice looking pitch on one of the high points. The pitch was a little tight to get in even in our little 6m Accordo, which is probably why it was vacant on the busy Saturday we arrived – the majority of tourers on site were much bigger and I think that getting parked up would have been a bit of a struggle.
The first thing you’ll notice about Wavecrest campsite are the views, which are simply stunning. The site overlooks a bay with small islands and hills/mountains in the distance it really is a place of natural beauty. The view from our pitch was awesome, and after walking around the touring pitches during our stay each one has a lovely view overlooking the bay. Wavecrest is a busy site I can’t (and won’t) deny it but it doesn’t seem it. Sitting in the rear lounge of the Accordo and staring out there is a large hedge covering the rear window (an essential wind break for the pitch) which extends to be the view from the left window. Out of the right window there is an uninterrupted view of the bay and rolling hills. We can’t see another unit from our rear lounge, and if it weren’t for the usual campsite noise we could think we are the only on site.
There is one small toilet/shower block onsite and whilst I had concerns about having to wait for showers etc. I didn’t have any issues during my stay. That said, I didn’t shower at the normal peak times (I learnt to shower at random times a few years back on a particularly busy site with very few showers) so this may be another reason I had the pick of the showers. The toilet/shower block isn’t as modern or nicely fitted out as at Nagles Campsite, and it is a bit dated however it is very clean and does the job perfectly. One thing I will say is that Wavecrest showers have traditional style shower curtains so the cubicle (and your towel, clothes, shoes etc.) stays dry and doesn’t get flooded out. I hate getting changed in shower cubicles with water over the floor – but this doesn’t happen at Wavecrest. The showers, as seem to be the case on all Irish campsites are a Euro and you need a token purchased from reception.
Many tourers seem to use Wavecrest Campsite for a one night stop off, which I think is a shame because they aren’t getting the most from the location. At first glance it may seem like there isn’t a lot to do around the site and the local village of Caherdaniel, but there is plenty to see and do. Using some of the leaflets and maps from reception we devised an easy circular walk (I am not a keen walker so it had to be easy) from the campsite to Derrynane National Park and via Caherdaniel village and Derrynane Bay that took around three hours to complete, including plenty of stops to take photos as well as a ten minute pit stop at the Blind Piper pub (you can read an account of my thoughts about this pub here). If you want to see details of the walk you can read about it in detail here. If you want to see some of the photos taken during the walk you can find the gallery here. In addition to walking there are various boat trips from the site (whale and dolphin trips, various island trips etc.), a water sports centre, blue flag beaches and rock fishing to name but a few. If you really want to get the most out of Wavecrest campsite and the local area a one night stop off is not going to do it, and you really need a couple of days and a good pair of hiking boots.
We paid for a four night stay we paid 84 Euros (20 Euro pitch fee, 4 Euro electric), however we did get a “4 nights for the price of 3 deal”, which as you’d expect isn’t available during the peak season. 28 Euro per night (including electricity) is, from our experience, the going rate so it’s not an expensive campsite at all. All things considered, I would say Wavecrest campsite is great value for money and I would happily pay a bit more for the view alone.
So the million dollar question has to be “Would I recommend Wavecrest campsite?” This is an easy one and requires no hesitation or thought. It’s a big yes from me (and the better half), although I’m sure you’ve probably worked that one out from yourself. It is a fantastic campsite and one that should be on your shortlist on your next holiday in Ireland.
Below is a short video clip taken from outside our motor home. Over my four night stay at Wavecrest Campsite I never once tired of the view, and neither did it fail to amaze and impress me.
"Sweeping view from our pitch"