Fancy something new? Try a yurt
Jo Middleton explains how holidaying in a yurt brings all the joys of camping but without the tent...
I have always loved the idea of camping - the fresh air, being at one with nature, getting away from the day to day stresses and strains of life. Unfortunately, there is also a part of me that hates the idea of camping. Putting up a tent makes me want to scream, and the idea of crouching under canvas in the pouring rain, trying to heat a can of beans on a one ring gas stove just does not appeal.
Fortunately, there is a happy compromise. Yurts -- basically wooden structures with a fabric covering.
The best of both worlds
Click on the link above if you want to know more about the types and history of yurts. But I want to share is just how wonderful they are for family holidays.
We have been on three yurt holidays in the UK, to three different, equally fantastic locations. Each of our yurts have slept up to five people and come complete with beds, wood burning stoves, and dozens of gorgeous lanterns.
With a yurt holiday, you really do get the best of both worlds - you don't have any of the hard work of camping, but you still have the thrill of collecting wood for a fire, cooking outdoors (if you want to) and waking up to the sound of the wind in the trees, rain on the canvas roof, or even chickens pecking around your front door.
Each of the sites we have stayed in have been small and very friendly, and my children have very quickly made friends with the other children, meaning they can spend happy afternoons and evening exploring, and I can enjoy drinks and chat around a campfire with the other adults. Long warm evenings, the smell of wood smoke, and a good, cold beer - bliss!
Where are all the yurts?
There are more and more yurts springing up around the country, but to get you started, here are a few that we have visited. They are all fabulous. Do you think it's something you could try?
Hunger Hill Yurt Holidays - based near Sidmouth in Devon, we stayed here during the Sidmouth Folk Week, so there was plenty to do once we had explored all the local beaches. The yurts come complete with gorgeous sheepskins, plenty of cushions, and painted, wooden Moroccan furniture.
Woodland Tipis and Yurts - both tipis and yurts, set in 12 acres of enchanting woodland, so plenty of opportunities for kids to explore. You can even make your own pizzas in the outdoor pizza oven.
Larkhill Tipis - explore the Welsh countryside and coastline from this amazing eco-friendly site, complete with yurts and tipis, meandering woodland paths and its own quartz stone circle. The site generates its own electricity with wind and solar power.
Happy holidays! Have you got any yurt-related experiences to share?
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