Possibly the worst campsite I have ever had the misfortune to visit. I suspect most of the reviews left here are written by the owners' friends and relations.
I'll start with the plus-points in fairness:
1. It was clean.
2. It did overlook the sea (well estuary) – sort of
The campsite itself, whilst being on a low cliff in front of the sea was like camping in someone's front garden. The sea is to the front, but shielded from view by a seven foot fence, which was hard to see through, but immediately behind is a railway track, a very busy road and houses. The railway is quite busy and noisy, with express trains whizzing through all the time, although none actually stop there (more of that later).
There is not a single tree or bush on the site which is entered through a large complex of static caravans and it is bland and featureless in the extreme. It is overlooked by houses on one side and a busy public footpath on the other, there is no sense of being out in the wilds.
The cost was outrageous! There were two of us but, because we have a large tent (which will happily fit on most normal pitches without breaching fire regulations) we were charged for a double pitch – i.e. DOUBLE the usual cost. We have NEVER been charged extra before. And this despite the fact that the site was pretty much empty. Also they refused to give us any discounts. I tried my Camping and Caravan Club Membership – no, because they are only listed by them and not members. My senior citizen status gave a minute discount, but, and this was the most disgusting, they charged us high season rates, even though it was late September AND half the facilities in the camp were closed.
How does that work? The shower/toilet block, which was next to us, was locked because the camp was only half full and they could not be bothered to clean it – but we are being charged high season rates! Well double high season rates actually! And the lights on this unusable toilet block lit up our tent like a football pitch all night, making sleeping difficult. This meant we had a long trek every time we needed the loo.
To relieve the boring view of the awful campsite we decided to take a walk along the beach. Of course the large gate in the fence in front of us was locked, what with it being high season and all, so we had to walk a quarter of a mile through the static caravans. The beach was pleasant enough and we spotted a lighthouse around the bay and decided to make for it. We had not gone more than 500 yards when we were shouted at through a loud hailer by an armed, camouflage-clad soldier. He told us we could not walk along the beach as it is an Army shooting range. (No mention of this of course on the campsite details). We didn't argue with him though. He was obviously not kidding as we heard rapid gunfire throughout our stay, giving the site the ambiance of downtown Beirut.
We decided instead to take a look at the timetable for the railway station. My friend is a bit of a train buff and wanted to take the train into Dundee. It turns out there are only two trains a day which actually stop there – one to Dundee at 6.23 a.m. and one back at 18.50. Which seemed odd, since the station itself is quite shiny and has been freshly painted and has a new disabled access ramp. Here's what Wikipedia says about it:
"British Rail operated local passenger services between Dundee and Arbroath until around 1990. Since these were discontinued, most of the intermediate stations have had only a very sparse service, provided so as to avoid the difficulty of formal closure procedures."
Apparently it's easier to run two trains a day at times when no one will use them, than it is to close a station?
Naturally, it said nothing about this in the campsite details!
Another source of annoyance was the patronizing signs all over the facilities. It looks as though someone got a laminating machine for Christmas! "In order to help stop spreading germs and viruses - Please wash your hands". This was in 5" capital letters over EVERY washbasin. Really! Similarly, is it really necessary to put "no smoking" signs in every cubicle? Do they fear someone is going to think "Aha! No sign in this cubicle, it must be all right for me to light up!" Again – Really!
We left a day early, forfeiting our fee for that day, naturally there was no offer of a refund, but it was worth it not to have to suffer another minute at that dreadful site!
Caravan / Campsite name (if applicable) .......... Tayview Caravan and Camping Park