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I booked a trip late to attend the Isle of Man TT. As far as I see it now, every place that allows in advance online booking for a campsite has already been taken.

Is there any way I can book a campsite that might still have vacancy that might be outside of googling 'Isle of Man campsites' on Google?

What can I expect for 'winging it' once I'm on the island to setup tent if nothing is available? My understanding is the locals love the extra business and the government really relaxes camping. Is finding a place outside a normal campsite risky or feasible?

Lastly, any pointers that might be helpful? I'm just looking for a place to spend a few nights there without spending more than $100USD/night.

  • They use GBP there ;) and today the GBP fell against USD so it's a pretty good time to change some money. – user16259 May 3 '18 at 9:07
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On the subject of camping, both reserved and free (informal), the Isle of Man Government has this to say:

Camping

There are a number of registered campsites around the Isle of Man.

Informal seasonal camping is also permitted at 2 venues managed by the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture:

Sulby Claddagh

The Sulby Claddagh is not a registered campsite, but informal camping is allowed Easter Weekend and then from 1 May to 30 September. Basic facilities are provided onsite including toilets, but there are no showers.

You will need a camping permit to camp overnight at the Claddagh.

Permits are £15 and you should apply for one well in advance of your visit as permits will not normally be issued on site. Permits may only be obtained by a responsible adult aged 18 years or over.

Permits are valid for a season – Easter Weekend, and then from 1 May to 30 September. Camping on the Claddagh is not permitted outside this period.

A permit allows the holder to pitch a camping unit (motorhome, tent, campervan, caravan, trailer tent, etc) staying for up to a maximum of 14 nights at a time. Your permit must be clearly displayed at all times when camping overnight. Units must be in continuous occupation.

A permit also covers 'pup' tents associated with a family from the same household.

A permit does not reserve a pitch at Sulby Claddagh. Pitches are available on a first come first served basis so space can never be guaranteed. Community events held on the Claddaghs may further restrict space for camping on certain occasions.

The Ayres

Informal camping is also permitted in the Recreational Area at the Ayres National Nature Reserve. There are no toilet or shower facilities here and camping in tents is not allowed.

Camping is restricted to a maximum of 15 motorhomes for a maximum of 3 consecutive nights.

Visitors are asked to respect this special place and leave the site in the condition that it was found.

Campers must comply with the Ayres Byelaws, a copy of which may be downloaded from this

Edit from original question asker:

I was able to finally find a place in advance online at the Foxdale AFC campsite. Even in the middle of the TT, most, if not all campsites I saw appeared to have plenty of room for more tents and I'm sure they'd be helpful in taking in additional people.

As for getting around on foot and public transportation, location is everything! Study the bus routes well in advance, as some campsites are near a bus routes, but runs only a couple times a day. Being close to the routes between Douglas and Peel or Douglas and Ramsey ensures buses both run frequently and later into the night.

Lastly, it should be noted to anyone not familiar with Isle of Man. I didn't get bit by any mosquitos, however midges, a bug I wasn't familiar with was a huge nuisance. They seem unaffected by bug spray, swarm around you like mosquitos around dusk, and their bites actually hurt a little.

  • I ended up finding a campsite at the Foxdale AFC campsite in advance. There appeared to be a decent amount of vacancy at other sites that I saw too, so I do think it'd be possible, even during the TT to book a number of campsites in person. – Travis Jul 29 '18 at 16:17
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    @Travis Add that as you're own answer, along with any info on your experience ! – Giorgio Jul 29 '18 at 16:19

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