Accessible Holidays

Accessible Holidays Word version

Holidays in the United Kingdom

For holiday makers staying in the UK there are a wide range of options. From accessible hotels, caravans and motor homes to residential activity centres for groups.

The National Accessibility Scheme

Helps identify how accessible the accommodation is for people who may have difficulty walking, use a wheelchair, wear a hearing aid or have impaired eyesight.

Disabledholidays.com

The website provides a very useful search facility for accommodation, tourist attractions and activities.

Ceiling Hoist users Club 

(CHuC) provides information about away from home accommodation with hoists.

Holidays in the British Isles

A useful guide you can purchase to help plan accessible holidays and inclusive trips in the UK. 

UK Campsite 

A website containing details of accessible caravan and camping sites within the UK.  This usually means they have adapted toilet or shower facilities, but please be aware they may not all be accessible by wheelchair.

Bruce Wake Charitable Trust

Hires out a wide beamed boat and a narrow boat for canal cruises.

Waterways Experiences

Aim to promote well-being by providing affordable canal boat trips particularly for disadvantaged people. All trips include a crew and skipper and there are plenty of opportunities to get involved. There is no reduction for self-drive bookings because the crews are not paid.

Revitalise Holidays

Provide respite care in a holiday setting for disabled people and carers. UK and European breaks

Seagull Trust

Provides free cruises on Scotland’s canals for people with special needs. Cruises run from branches at Ratho near Edinburgh, Falkirk, Kirkintilloch and Highland. In addition, a purpose-built holiday boat based at Falkirk is available.

Traveleyes

Provide group holidays for visually impaired people, although sighted people can join too. You can go solo, as a couple or with friends.

Group Holidays / Residential Activity Centres

Group holidays can be great for young people and older people alike. Some cater for particular disabilities and some may provide extra support. We have included a selection from the Scottish Disability Directory.

Branch Out holidays

Provide all inclusive, group holidays for adults with learning difficulties.

Calvert Holidays

Have activity centres in Exmoor, Kielder and the Lake District. They enables people with physical, sensory and learning disabilities to experience exciting, challenging and enjoyable outdoor activities.

Kepplewray Centre

Provide inclusive holiday, education, and activity centre in the Lake District. Offers fully inclusive programmes for groups.

QE2 Activity Centre

Is a holiday centre in Hampshire for people with special needs.

Speyside Trust

Charitable Trust providing short breaks and respite services to people with a learning disability or multiple disabilities.

St Arthur Grant Residential Centre

Provide residential accommodation in Aberdeenshire. Priority given to disabled people.Tel: 01467 651 397

Wingate Special Children’s Trust

Provide holiday accommodation for children and young people with physical or learning disablities in Cheshire.

Wings on Wheels

Provide group holiday travel for disabled people, their carers and relatives in the UK and abroad. They also arrange tailored made holidays both within the UK and abroad.

Youth Cancer Trust Holidays

Provide free activity based holidays for young people between the ages of 14 – 30 who are living with cancer or who have been in remission for up to 5 years.

Accessible accommodation in Scotland

Lin Berwick Trust 

Based in Dirleton (East Lothian). Facilities available include electrically adjustable nursing beds, bedroom-to-bathroom overhead track hoist, wheelchair-accessible shower(wetroom).

The Homelands the Paxton Centre and self-catering cottages

Based in Fife. Facilities available include electric profiling bed, tracking hoists, wet rooms.

Eildon Holiday Cottages 

Based in Melrose (Scottish Borders). Provide a range of disabled equipment, including an electric height-adjustable profiling bed, electric ceiling hoists with continuous track to transport from bed to toilet and to bath. A portable hoist is available for use in the all five accessible cottages, and three of the cottages have a fixed ceiling trapeze pull. Cottages with showers have shower rooms – not cabinets.

Crieff Hydro Abercairney Cottage

Based in Perthshire. Facilities include wheelchair-accessible en-suite bedroom, with a hoist to aid travel from bed to bathroom.

Crathie Opportunity Holidays

Based in Cairngorm National Park. Facilities include wheel-in shower area with fold down shower seat, height-adjustable wash hand basin / mirror and closomat shower toilet. Ceiling track hoist and height-adjustable electric bed in each main bedroom.

Woodhead Cottage

Based in Cairngorm National Park. Facilities include electrically adjustable bed, electric tracking hoist, a wet floor shower.
For further information on accessible accommodation in Scotland, check out the accessible accommodation section at Visit Scotland 

Holidays Abroad

For those heading further afield, we have listed a selection of tour operators who can arrange holidays for disabled travelers abroad, as well as a selection of companies arranging specific types of holiday’s.

Epic Enable Safaris

Offer wheelchair accessible safari holidays in South Africa.

Accessible Europe

Provide accessible tourist services to disabled travelers in Europe, Asia, Africa, Americas, Australia, New Zealand, and also cruises.

Across

Provide vehicles adapted to take sick and terminally ill people on pilgrimages.

Ambleside Tours

A special tour agency for travel in Australia. They offer escorted and aided day excursions within Australia that are available for people with disabilities from overseas countries. Depending on the need, they can provide carers and plan the trip according to the interests of clients.

Casa Capaz Care Holidays

Provide supported care holidays in Spain.

Dr Yachting

Provide accessible sailing trips located throughout Greece.

Flamingo Tours and Disabled Ventures

Provide personalised tours for disabled people and those with a sight impairment who are visitors to South Africa.

HCPT – The Pilgrimage Trust

Take children with disabilities or special needs on a pilgrimage holiday to Lourdes in France.

National Holiday Fund

Take disabled, sick and terminally ill children on a holiday of a lifetime to Disney World in Florida.

Oberon Explorations

Provide services for physically disabled holidaymakers in Cyprus.

Other Disabled Facilities

The National Key Scheme (NKS)

Offers disabled people independent access to locked public toilets around the country.

The latest edition of the National Key Scheme (NKS) Guide includes the location of the 9,000 NKS toilets fitted with the NKS lock. Additionally, separate regional guides can be bought for £3.50 each. You can buy a Radar NKS key for £4.50.

If you have a smartphone, you can download their new FREE app to locate your nearest toilet facility and get directions by road, bus or foot. Available from the App Store.

Direct enquiries website has the full list of NKS toilets you can search for free.

For more information see our Accessible Toilets information guide.

Travel insurance companies

Able2Travel

Providers of travel insurance for people with disabilities and pre-existing medical conditions.

Orbis Insurance Services

Provide life and travel insurance for people with ill-health or disabilities.

Active Mind Insurance Services

Provide a range of insurance products for people with mental health conditions and their families including travel insurance and life assurance.

British Insurers Brokers’ Association .

Many comparison websites allow you to search for policies for pre-existing conditions. If you have difficulty finding a suitable policy, The British Insurers Brokers’ Association may be able to help.

European Health Insurance Card.

The free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) entitles the holder to free or discounted medical treatment at state-run hospitals and GPs in any European Union country, plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. It replaced the old E111 form in 2005.

Many travellers wrongly assume, due to its name, that the EHIC is a substitute for travel insurance. The free card allows you to be treated for the same cost as a local using the same hospital and crucially, pre-existing conditions and chronic illnesses are covered.  However, you can only use hospitals and doctors signed up to the EHIC scheme. If you are in any doubt, check with EHIC before starting treatment.

Medical equipment/ Dialysis

Care02

Arrange for oxygen to be delivered in many countries worldwide, as well as at a number of airports (depending on countries).

Global Dialysis

A website of dialysis centres throughout the world.

UK Dialysis Centres

Provides information on dialysis centres throughout the UK.

Dialysis while Cruising

Cruises that offer dialysis treatment to people with kidney disease.

Equipment Hire (UK and Abroad)

It can be helpful to hire disability equipment when going on holiday rather than taking your own. Included are a selection of organisations that hire out specific aids and equipment such as wheelchairs and scooters.

You may find it useful to search our Aids and Equipment category in the Scottish Disability Directory for more information on hiring equipment. Select “hire” in the Advanced Keyword search box. This will highlight organisations and shops that may hire disability equipment in the UK and abroad.

British Red Cross

Lend items of medical equipment, such as wheelchairs, back rests and commodes, to people on a short term basis.

Eurocare Mobility Services

Specialists in independent living aids offering a wide selection of products all aimed at helping disabled / less mobile people maintain their independence in Spain

GQ Paraquip Cyprus

Provide equipment hire and holiday apartments in Cyprus.

Mobility Abroad Ltd

Hire and sell wheelchairs, scooters and disabled products in Spain.

Scooter City

Hire out scooters and electric wheelchairs in Canada.

Mobility Equipment Hire Direct

A specialist mobility equipment hire service covering all major world holiday destinations offering mobility scooters, wheelchairs and a whole host of mobility and healthcare products essential for making any holiday abroad complete. Site provides details of their delivery services and product information, contacts and prices.

Further information

For further information check out our Accessible Holidays Blog.

For information on grants and trusts that you may be able to apply to for financial help you with your holiday, see our Holiday and Respite Grants Information Guide.

Your Passport to a Smooth Journey is a guide for  that explains your rights and what to do to make sure you have the best chance of a smooth journey. If you are disabled or have difficulty moving around, you can receive free assistance when you fly to and from the UK and Europe, including on domestic flights.

Information last updated on 8 December 2020. Please note that information may be subject to change. All information is provided in good faith but Disability Information Scotland does not endorse any product or service referred to within this resource.

If you would like this information guide in another version then please contact us and we will post or email you a copy.

Access & Accessibility:Frequently Asked Questions

Through our helpline we receive enquiries spanning a wide range of different topics. Here is a selection of those most asked:

Can I use my Blue Badge in Europe?

How can I search for accessible places to visit in Scotland?

How can I get a RADAR key?

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