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A Guide to Wild Camping in Europe

Publication date: 16 Jul 2024

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Europe can be a confusing place for the hiker who craves the freedom to camp wherever she wants. Its 44 countries have different rules about whether it is legal to wild camp. In some countries, the law is strictly enforced, while in others it might technically be illegal, but in practice, you won’t have any problems.

In this article, I explain the rules for each country. I have also interviewed a number of hikers, who have shared their experiences of wild camping in different countries across Europe.

Some countries’ rules differentiate between ‘wild camping’ and ‘bivouacking.’ In those instances, we are giving advice on bivouacking – that is, setting up your tent late as the sun goes down, and taking it down early the next morning.

profile picture Lisa Butler
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Lisa Butler

Lisa Butler has been obsessively hiking long-distance trails for more than ten years. She’s covered more than 7,000km all over the world. She prefers to hike solo to give her a deeper connection to nature and encourages as many women as possible to hike and wild camp solo too. You can follow Lisa on Instagram @thruhikes.

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Wild camping in Europe

Here is your guide for wild camping in Europe. The European countries are listed below in alphabetical order, scroll down to find the destination you’re looking for. All hikers should be knowledgeable about Leave No Trace principles; anyone wanting to wild camp should leave the area exactly as they found it, taking garbage with them – including toilet paper – and only making a campfire if absolutely essential.

Albania

Stunning Albania has plenty of places to wild camp, and luckily for us, it’s legal. Some of my favorite ever wild camping spots have been on the Peaks of the Balkans, which runs through the Accursed Mountains.

Andorra

Better known for skiing than hiking, compact Andorra – located in the Pyrenees – has some surprisingly long and beautiful hiking trails. Wild camping is, in theory, illegal in Andorra, but in reality, you will be camping high up in the mountains, and no one is likely to spot you. But if you don’t want to take the risk, Andorra has a number of free, basic hikers’ huts. This shelter is called a cabana. You can find the list of their locations here. 

Armenia

Under-visited and under-hiked, Wild camping is legal in beautiful Armenia, and like in neighboring Georgia, you might find that locals want to invite you into their homes.

Austria

Austria has strict laws about wild camping, with the possibility of hefty fines if caught breaking the rules. Under section 33 of the Forest Act, it is illegal to camp in forests. But most hikers will want to know whether the country’s strict rules apply to the mountains.

The rules are different according to the federal state you’re in. In Burgenland, Carinthia, Lower Austria, and Tyrol, wild camping is forbidden. In Upper Austria, Vorarlberg, Styira, and Salzburg you can camp above the treeline, outside of pasture areas.

Throughout Austria, an unplanned emergency bivouac is permitted overnight, but you risk getting fined if authorities see you and decide that you didn’t camp in an emergency.

Hiker Verena (@wer.ena) has shared her views on bivouacking in Austria:

“The Austrian Alps are very crowded. Every time I want to bivvy outside I give it some thought, to go to a place that’s not near a hut, where there aren’t so many people. And not do it in high season or at weekends. If I am alone I worry less because it is obvious I am being responsible and I’m not loud. So far it’s been good – you just need to give it some thought and do it responsibly. If you get caught you can get high fines, but if you’re up on a mountain I think it’s fine. If you’re in the valleys you have to be really careful.”

Azerbaijan

Located on the boundary of Eastern Europe and Western Asia, wild camping is legal in Azerbaijan, except for some national parks, where you will need to register at the gate and leave at the end of the day.

Belarus

Belarus is covered in forest and is a wild campers’ paradise. Under the country’s constitution, all forests and farmland are publicly owned, and you can wild camp, pick berries, mushrooms, medicinal plants, nuts, and whatever else you find.

Belgium

Wild camping isn’t permitted in Belgium, and you might find it difficult to find any wild nature left to pitch your tent discreetly. There is, however, the option of ‘pole’ camping. These are free, legal, designated wild camping spots. Hike Heaven states the rules for pole camping in Belgium:

  • A maximum of 3 tents are allowed in 1 pole camping
  • A maximum of 10 people are allowed in 1 pole camping
  • Every tent is only allowed to stay pitched for 48 hours
  • Additionally, you should always respect your environment and leave no trace.

Bosnia & Herzegovina

Wild camping in stunning Bosnia and Herzegovina is legal and would be a wonderful country to wild camp if it weren’t for the thousands of landmines making camping a potentially fatal pastime. Every year, people are still killed by the mines that were laid during the Bosnian War between 1992 and 1995. So stay away from overgrown areas.

Bulgaria

Bulgaria is known for being relaxed about wild camping. The hobby is part of the culture, with people enjoying setting up their tents in nature. But in recent years, the Bulgarian authorities have begun cracking down on wild camping on the Black Sea coast.

Wild camping in Bulgaria at sunrise

Wild camping in Bulgaria. Photo by Virag (@viristravels)

Camping.bg states that it knows of no law prohibiting wild camping, except in national parks and nature parks, where camping outside of designated areas is prohibited. You also can’t legally camp next to natural and historical landmarks. On top of this, you should check with the local authority whether there are municipality restrictions on wild camping.

Croatia

With its main economy being tourism, wild camping in Croatia is, unsurprisingly, forbidden. Realistically, away from the tourist areas, you could get away with pitching your tent late and packing up again early in the morning.

Although much effort has been made to clear Croatia of landmines that were laid in the 90s, you need to be careful if you are wild camping, particularly in the areas of Velebit and Zadar.

Cyprus

Wild camping isn’t legal in Cyprus, although many people say that it is tolerated. If you wild camp in Cyprus, respect locals and nature, set up late and take down your tent early, and avoid the busy tourist spots. Never start a fire because wildfires can be a big problem in Cyprus.

Czech Republic

Wild camping in the Czech Republic is forbidden. However, bivouacking late in the evening, and packing up at sunrise, is allowed without a tent. Practically, hikers who are discreet, don’t make a fire, and practice Leave No Trace principles usually have no problems with pitching a tent.

Šumava National Park provides hikers with emergency overnight campsites, which are for one night only.

Denmark

Denmark has many more restrictions than its neighbors, and you can’t legally pitch your tent where you like. But there are a number of locations where free camping is allowed. The Danish Nature Agency outlines the ways you can spend a night outdoors on public land:

Sleeping on a forest floor: You are allowed to sleep on the forest floor on a mat, in a sleeping bag, with a blanket or tarpaulin, a hammock, or similar. Your tarpaulin must not have the same function as a tent, and you must be careful not to harm trees or plants.

Small primitive campsites: Often with water and primitive toilet facilities, for up to two nights. See here for locations. 

Camping for the Quiet Forest Hiker: There are more than 275 woodlands all over Denmark where you may set up your tent for a night. See here for a map of locations.

Estonia

Wild camping in Estonia is easy, thanks to its Everyman’s Right rules. According to the government:

“In Estonia, it is permitted to access natural and cultural landscapes on foot, by bicycle, skis, boat or on horseback. Unmarked and unrestricted private property may be accessed any time and pick berries, mushrooms, medicinal plants, fallen or dried branches, unless the owner forbids it verbally.

On unmarked and unrestricted private property camping is allowed for 24 hours, unless the owner forbids it verbally. Camping is allowed outside visibility and hearing range from residential buildings. During the stay on a privately owned plot and camping one must restrain from harming the environment and private property. The owner of a private property might allow trespassing the area but forbid camping or picking berries etc. In this case the restriction must be clear – either a sign or an oral prohibition. The permission of the landowner is required to make a fire.

All of the rights and responsibilities regarding humans’ interaction with nature are collectively termed everyman’s right.”

Beautiful Estonia also provides hikers with a number of free forest huts for one-night stays. You can see the list here. 

Finland

Finland’s ‘Everyman’s Right’, or Jokaisenoikeudet in Finnish, gives every person a right to use nature regardless of who owns or controls the land. The law allows you to wild camp temporarily, ensuring you keep a reasonable distance from homes. In some national parks and nature reserves, special regulations might restrict camping, so always check before your hike.

In the north and east of the country, there is an extensive range of comfortable, free open wilderness huts for hikers that are usually stocked with firewood. They are meant for stays of one to two nights only.

France

In France, wild camping is generally only legal if you get permission from the landowner. But in practice, although the law seems strict, wild camping is usually tolerated. I have slept in my tent all over France without problems, setting up late and taking down early.

France’s national parks all have different rules on wild camping. This website outlines the rules for each one. 

France often provides free areas to camp for one night on popular hikes. These are called Aire de Bivouac, and you’ll find them on popular trails such as the Tour du Mont Blanc.

The country also has lots of free huts for hikers in the mountains. This basic hut is called a cabane. Although often barely more than four walls and a roof, cabanes have often protected me from terrible weather in the French mountains.

Georgia

Wild camping in Georgia is legal. While hiking in hospitable Georgia, people invited me to sleep in their homes because they were scared that I would be attacked by wolves and bears while sleeping in my tent!

Germany

Wild camping in Germany is illegal, with hefty fines for camping in a nature reserve without a permit. However, rules are enforced differently in different states. Tent-maker Alp Kit has written a detailed account of the rules of bivouacking in Germany.

The country also has free shelters, called Schutzhütte, which are meant for emergency use, and often have three walls.

Greece

Wild camping is generally forbidden in Greece. While camping on a beach on the island of Patmos, I was woken in the night by the police, who shone a torch into my tent and demanded to see my passport.

Greek law states:

“It is prohibited to pitch tents or park caravans in archaeological sites, beaches, public forests, and public places, and to accommodate more than one caravan belonging to shopkeepers or individuals.”

Despite this, wild camping in areas less visited by tourists is definitely possible. I spoke to bikepacker and hiker Panos (@justatrip.xyz), who has extensively explored his native Greece. He said:

“The places I choose to camp are as much away from humans as possible. But when this was not possible, I make sure to choose a quiet place, introduce myself to the community, show my respect to them and ask around whether people can help me find a place to put my tent.

I have camped many times in the middle of nowhere, but also in the squares of villages, in abandoned buildings, stations, campsites, huts. I have camped in areas where in the summertime you have to pay to breathe, but in the winter there is no one there. Many times when I was asking for a good place to camp, people offered me in-house accommodation or their garden.

If you go and put your tent randomly in a touristic area during the summer time, you won’t last long. And the reason is money! If you are away from urbanism and money, based on my experiences so far, you won’t have any problem. Kindness and humanity are still existing when you are away from these two, especially if you act with respect to the places and communities you visit. 

But there is still something you might need to worry about – especially if you grew up in urban areas like me –  and that’s the wild nature, e.g. bears, wolves, snakes, wild boar, mosquitoes. But it’s not as scary as most people believe. You just need to understand that you’re a part of nature and live with it, not on top of it.”

Hungary

Wild camping in Hungary can be confusing. The Erdőtörvény (Forest Act) allows hikers to pitch a tent in the country’s forests for up to 24 hours.

Hiker and bikepacker Virag (@viristravels) explained the rules more:

“If the area is a protected nature reserve officially you need to ask permission, but practically no one asks for it. You should not leave the marked trail and you are not allowed to make a fire. If a guard catches you a penalty will, in theory, be charged.”

Virag shared her experiences of successfully camping in her native country:

“I circumcycled Hungary around the border, and found spots easily. Locals were very helpful suggesting suitable ground for my tent, and I ended up sleeping in churches, village museums and abandoned buildings too.”

Wild camping in Hungary by a river with soft sunlight through the trees

Wild camping in Hungary. Photo by Virag (@viristravels)

Iceland

Iceland is one of the most expensive countries in the world, so you might be tempted to save money by wild camping. While many websites state that it is forbidden in Iceland, there are exceptions. The Environment Agency of Iceland states that: 

  • Along public routes in inhabited areas, you may pitch a traditional camping tent for one night on uncultivated land, provided there is no campsite in the immediate vicinity and the land owner has not restricted or prohibited access, passage or stay within the area by means of signs on gates and walking paths.
  • Along public routes in uninhabited areas, you may pitch a traditional camping tent on privately owned land or national land.
  • Away from public routes, you may pitch a traditional camping tent, either on privately owned or national land, unless otherwise indicated in special rules which may be applicable to the land area in question.  

When must I get the permission of the land owner or rightsholder?

  • If you plan to camp near places of human habitation or farms.
  • If you plan to camp for longer than one night.
  • If you plan to pitch more than three tents.
  • If the land is cultivated.
  • If you plan to use tent trailers, tent campers, caravans, camper vans or similar outside organised campsites or urban areas.

There is a list of exceptions to these rules, where wild camping is completely banned. See the list here.

Ireland

In Ireland, wild camping rules vary according to which land you’re on. Like neighboring England, in theory, you need to ask permission from the land owner if you want to camp on private land. There are numerous places where wild camping is allowed throughout the country, including in the national parks (see this Irish Times article or this Outsider article).

There are also Adirondack shelters which hikers can use for refuge in bad weather. These are very basic shelters with three sides, found in remote areas.

Bikepacker Panos (@justatrip.xyz) lived in Ireland and has wild camped extensively throughout the country. He said:

“Ireland is a great place for bivouacking (spending just one night in one place). There’s lots of space to do it without a problem, and there’s no threatening wildlife (except midges!!) I could pitch almost everyone if no one was around, and if there were people, they would do everything to help me. Extremely friendly people and if you camp with respect for people and nature it is heaven. The only thing you should worry about is the winds and rain, so make sure your equipment is good enough to withstand Irish weather. If you pass the Irish weather test, you’ll survive everywhere, I guess!”

Wild camping in Ireland.

Italy

Like other countries, Italy differentiates between bivouacking and wild camping. The rules are complicated, and information online can be contradictory, with most information saying that pitching your tent is illegal. Each region has its own rules, though, which you can read about at Cammini d’Italia.

Practically, though, wild camping is possible. I have wild camped with my dog all over Italy, including on popular trails, such as on the variants of the Tour du Mont Blanc in the Alps (there aren’t many people on the variants), and on the Alta Via 1 in the Dolomites. According to Cammini d’Italia, it is legal to bivouac in the Valle d’Aosta, location of the Tour du Mont Blanc, above 2,500m. Regardless, my advice to those wanting to bivouac on popular trails is:  Walk late into the evening, long after everyone else has settled into their refuges, and pitch your tent just before dark.

I have also camped in more remote areas of Italy, such as in the Adamello Presanella Alps. There, the friendly staff of one rifugio allowed me to camp outside the hut.

I have also wild camped on beaches and in the mountains of Sardinia, and I have slept in just my sleeping bag on less-popular beaches in Sicily. If you are discreet, setting up late and packing up early, Italy is a wonderful place to wild camp. It is one of my favorite countries to lay under the stars.

Like neighboring France, Italy has a number of free, basic huts in the remote mountains. These are called bivacco. Visit Mountains For Everybody to read more about these huts.

Kosovo

Welcoming Kosovo doesn’t receive many visitors. There are no laws around wild camping, and it is well-tolerated. On the Peaks of the Balkans trail, many hikers skip the Kosovo section. But if you take time to explore this country, you will find stunning gorges, chatty locals, and some great spots to pitch your tent. Be aware that there are still landmines littering the countryside, so take care and don’t explore overgrown areas.

Latvia

Like neighbors Estonia and Lithuania, wild camping is legal in Latvia, except in National Parks and on sand dunes. And if you’re on private property the land owner has a right to tell you to leave.

Liechtenstein

Liechtenstein is extremely wealthy and extremely tiny and is located in the Alps between Austria and Switzerland. Like many of the richest countries, wild camping is forbidden.

Lithuania

It is legal to wild camp in Lithuania, except in regional and national parks, nature reserves, and on a number of beaches. And you’ll need to ask permission to camp on private property.  Beware of mosquitoes in all the Baltic countries, which can make hikers’ lives miserable!

Luxembourg

Wild camping in the small but rich state of Luxembourg is, unsurprisingly, forbidden. People have reported that they have successfully bivouacked, setting up late and packing down at sunrise.

Malta

Officially, you need to get permission from the local council office if you want to wild camp in Malta. Hikers have reported that they’ve camped on Malta, Gozo, and Comino without problems. Use common sense if you choose to wild camp, setting up late, packing down early, and leaving no trace.

Moldova

Landlocked Moldova is an often overlooked country between Romania and Ukraine. Happily, wild camping is legal in Moldova.

Montenegro

It’s not legal to wild camp in Montenegro, but hikers report that they haven’t had problems when they have pitched discreetly, outside of tourist areas. I have camped in a number of places in Montenegro, including in the stunning mountains on the Peaks of the Balkans (although bear in mind that camping in the Prokletije National Park is officially against the law), and I’ve even slept underground in a disused fort!

The Netherlands

Like neighboring Belgium, wild camping is prohibited in the country, except for in free, legal, designated areas, known as ‘pole’ camping. These camping areas are marked by a pole, or have a water pump, and are marked with a sign. Unfortunately, many sites were closed permanently during the Covid pandemic. There are only 10 sites left in the Netherlands: see Kampeermeneer or Stichting wild-kamperen for the list and a map of locations.

The rules for pole camping are:

  • Camping is allowed within 10 meters of the pole
  • You can camp there for a maximum of 72 hours
  • A maximum of 3 small tents are allowed per pole camping pitch
  • No rubbish may be left behind (bring your own rubbish bag)
  • You can not make a fire.

North Macedonia

Wild camping in Macedonia is not technically legal, but it is very tolerated, with many locals enjoying camping. Use common sense, making sure you leave no trace.

Norway

Norway has similar rules to its neighbor Sweden. ‘Freedom to roam’ (Allemannsretten in Norwegian) allows you to hike and set up a tent almost anywhere for up to two nights. You must camp at least 150m away from the nearest house, and you shouldn’t pitch in someone’s garden, or on cultivated land.

Different rules apply, however, on the Lofoten Islands. In 2020 the six municipalities established new regional regulations prohibiting camping in certain areas. You can see which areas are restricted by visiting Guide To Lofoten.

Norway has an extensive system of wilderness huts, but unlike in neighboring Sweden, many are not free. You can read more about the hut system at Gone71°N.

Poland

It is mostly illegal to wild camp in Poland, and local hikers say that rules are enforced in the popular Tatra mountains. In 2021 the Polish authorities introduced a new ‘sleep in the forest’ rule, zanocuj w lesie in Polish. It is now legal to camp in 600,000 hectares in 425 forest districts, which have been made “available to bushcraft and survival enthusiasts.” See the Poland government website for more information.

Portugal

It is illegal to wild camp in Portugal, and you shouldn’t light fires because of the risk of wildfires.

Your experience on the ground might be different depending on the region you are in, and the time of year you are there. I have successfully wild camped on the coast of mainland Portugal, tucked away from tourists. On the Portuguese islands of Madeira and the Azores Islands, there are designated free camping spots, although they are on a permitting system. (See here for the list of Madeira campsites).

Madeira wildcamping.

Romania

Wild camping is generally illegal in Romania. In protected areas, such as national parks, nature reserves, or natural monuments, it is prohibited, and you need to ask the landowner’s permission on private land. In reality, though, bivouacking is widely practiced and people don’t usually encounter any problems. Be aware of wolves and bears in Romania: you might want to hang your food in a tree.

Russia

It is legal to wild camp in Russia, and Russian people love to set up their tents and sit around fires. Bear in mind that you should ask permission if camping on private property.

Scotland

Right to roam laws, making wild camping legal in many places, mean that Scotland is one of the best countries in Europe to pitch your tent. The Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003 gave the public access to almost all land and inland water in the country. The Scottish Outdoor Access Code states:

“Access rights extend to wild camping. This type of camping is lightweight, done in small numbers, and only for two or three nights in any one place.”

These laws don’t, however, apply to Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park. From 1 March to 30 September, you need to buy a permit to camp.

The right to camp also doesn’t apply if there are buildings on the land, such as houses or schools, or on gardens and golf courses. And if farmland has animals grazing or crops growing, you shouldn’t camp there, either.

Bear in mind that Scotland has many bothies. These are basic, free huts in the mountains – a lifesaver in the terrible Scottish weather.

Serbia

Wild camping in Serbia is allowed, except in national parks and protected areas. People have reported that it is very easy and that locals may be confused and will likely invite you into their homes.

Slovakia

Bivouacking in Slovakia is allowed in limited areas. Unfortunately, in protected areas labeled level 3 and above, wild camping is prohibited – which includes national parks such as the High Tatras. It is, in theory, illegal to wild camp in forests, but in practice, people have reported to have done it without problems.

Slovenia

It is illegal to wild camp in Slovenia, and you risk getting a fine if caught, particularly in popular areas such as Triglav. Hikers have reported that they have wild camped in the country – setting up their tents late and taking them down early – without problems, so you could do it at your own risk.

Spain

Wild camping in Spain is complicated because the different regions of the country have varying rules. Sleeping on Spain’s Mediterranean beaches is said to be particularly forbidden, with police issuing fines. On the other hand, it is apparently more tolerated on the Atlantic coast. A decent breakdown of the rules per region can be found here.

In the mountains, bivouacking for one night is usually tolerated, if not strictly legal. I have successfully wild camped across the whole of the Pyrenees (although bivouacking is strictly forbidden in the Aiguestortes National Park), while others have wild camped without problems on trails in the Sierra Nevada. In the Picos de Europa, you can set up a tent above 1600m up to one hour before sunset, and only for one night.

In the mountains, you are likely to find cabana to sleep in. These are free of charge, very basic huts which give protection from the weather.

On the islands, thru-hikers usually get away with wild camping on the GR131 across the Canary Islands, while I have also successfully camped (pitching late and taking down early) on long-distance trails in Mallorca and Menorca.

Hiker Virag said:

“In the Canaries, I visited La Gomera and spent most nights in silence as I was the only person around. I also visited a campsite on the island, but other people were too loud and I couldn’t sleep.”

Sweden

Sweden’s Right of Public Access, or Allemansrätten as Swedish people call it, gives hikers the right to wild camp for a maximum of two days in each location. Thru-hiker Dino (@drivandemoin) told us:

“The right to wild camp is a point of pride for Swedish people as it is written into law. According to the Law of Public Access, you’re allowed to camp anywhere in nature, even on private property, with a few exceptions: somebody’s garden, close to an inhabited house (if not given permission), or on cultivated land. All other places are fine.”

Dino continued:

“For my 2023 thru-hike of Sweden, I felt completely free to camp anywhere I wanted, a fact I feel made the logistics of the trip significantly easier. Whenever I got tired and ready to call it a day, it was just a matter of finding a piece of land flat enough for my tent and set it up. And I did, even in the whackiest of places. In thick forest glades near car roads, near airports, near busy town parks, on vast mountain plains and exposed ridges. If I’m being philosophical, this freedom to live in nature as I please made me feel completely at ease and connected to the natural world. Being able to plop down anywhere with only the contents of my bag — without anybody telling you where you’re allowed to sleep — gave me the sense of belonging to the vast world in the most primitive way. For this reason I love hiking and camping in Sweden. It’s an enormous, free and mostly solitary wild camping playground.”

Sweden, too, has more than 250 free cabins, named stuga, for hikers. These huts are usually equipped with firewood and dry toilets.

Switzerland

In Switzerland, rules are enforced at a local level. Switzerland is known for fining people who violate these rules, particularly on the Tour du Mont Blanc, where most people opt for paying for a campsite.

According to the Schweizer Alpen-Club:

“As a general rule, anyone has the right to access woodlands and meadows (art. 699 para 1 Swiss Civil Code). Restrictions may apply in some cantons or municipalities. Wild camping is expressly forbidden or not possible due to access bans in the following protected areas:

  • Swiss National Park
  • Swiss game reserves (wildlife reserves)
  • Many nature reserves
  • Designated wildlife areas (during the protection period)

Outside these restrictions, a single overnight stay by a small number of people above the forest line is normally not a problem if undertaken considerately. An emergency bivouac is generally permitted.”

Turkey

While there is conflicting information online about whether wild camping is actually legal in Turkey, the country is known for being one of the best places to set up a tent under the stars. I have camped extensively all over the country, including on the Lycian Way and the Carian Trail. Locals are hospitable and will likely bring you food, or invite you into their homes. Obviously be discreet, and don’t set up your tent next to resorts or villas.

Ukraine

Wild camping is allowed in Ukraine, and it is a favorite pastime of Ukrainian people. This website gives more information and ideas about where to camp in the country.

United Kingdom: England, Wales, and the North of Ireland (excluding Scotland)

England, Wales, and the North of Ireland have completely different rules from Scotland. It is illegal to wild camp without landowners’ permission in these countries.

There is, however, one pocket of land that allows wild camping. Hikers have long been battling a decision that made wild camping illegal in Dartmoor National Park. This ruling was, thankfully, overturned. You should, however, check @thestarsareours.uk on Instagram for updates on the situation.

Despite England and Wales officially being illegal to wild camp, hikers walking the countries’ famous long-distance trails often do so, setting up their tents at dusk and taking them down at sunrise.

Thru-hiker Elli (@elli.hikes) hiked the length of England and Scotland with her dog Otto. The pair walked a massive 2,600km. She spoke about her experiences wild camping in England:

“I feel like wild camping in England (especially in areas that are not too far from villages/town) is very different compared to Scotland. Most of the time you can’t really just set up your tent at 3pm if it’s raining. There’s just this implicit “threat” of being moved on, having to pack up everything again which for me makes it harder to relax. Things are easier if you’re well away from civilization and a lot of people are quite tolerant when it comes to wild camping. But to be honest, I often times just don’t feel that peace of mind and usually wait til dusk to set up which makes most days quite long and is really hard in bad weather…!”

Elli’s tips for wild camping in England – which should also be applied to other countries – are:

  • It’s often easier to wild camp along bigger/national trails as wild camping is more tolerated.
  • Try pitching at dusk and be gone early in the morning.
  • Leave no trace (no fires, pack out toilet roll, etc).
  • Stay out of sight of houses, farms, etc.
  • Don’t camp on enclosed/fenced-off fields and farmland.
  • Camp away from roads: spots that can be accessed by landowners or by cars and quad bikes are more likely to be checked.

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