The UK’s best and most luxurious camping spots to pitch up at this summer
Worthy Pastures, Somerset Glastonbury Festival devotees rejoice – Worthy Farm’s dairy herd will be moving aside for campers for a month this summer. The Eavis family is putting on a more tranquil event than usual, with a family focus across the scaled-down festival site.
The Kidz Field structures will be in place, and there will be food traders, a bar, village shop and on-site activities. Camping is available in pre-pitched, unfurnished scout and bell tents sleeping between two and eight, with showers and parking available. Open 28 July to 30 August; three nights from ?195 for two, no dogs, worthypastures.com Gilling Castle, North York Moors
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Set in 200 acres, this Grade I-listed castle dates back to the 12th century but was most recently a boarding school. This summer, its grounds will host yurt, pre-pitched tents and camping pitches for active family breaks.
Guests can hike, ride bikes on woodland trails, canoe or kayak on the lake, play tennis, golf or football, or swim. There’s also a kids’ club and two hours of free childcare offered per stay. Open 12 July to 31 August; six-man tents from ?64 per night, pitches from ?32 with dogs allowed, gillingcastle.co.uk Camp Elwood, Norfolk
The set-up at this Americana-leaning campsite in Holkham on the North Norfolk coast is focused on grown-up adventures. On-site activities include astrology and macrame, with workshops included in the price of camping. Additional offerings include kayaking and bike hire; after dark there will be DJs, food trucks and a bar. Campers can bring a tent, book a furnished bell tent or pull up in a campervan. Families and dogs welcome. Open 26 July to 9 August; three-night pitches from ?90pp, campelwood.com
This summer, Gilling Castle’s grounds will host yurt, pre-pitched tents and camping pitches for active family breaks
Pop-Up Hotel at the Cadland Estate, Hampshire More accustomed to providing luxury digs at festivals, the Pop-Up Hotel is decamping to the coastal Cadland Estate on the edge of the New Forest this summer.
Its luxurious tents sleep between two and six – some with en-suite bathrooms – and there is also a handful of beach huts. There will be a restaurant and bar on site, as well as yoga classes, massage, kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding. Open 9 July to 31 August; from ?99 per night for two, dogs allowed, thepopuphotel.com/destinations/cadland-2021 At Home Farm, Hertfordshire
The Home Farm glamping site will be hosting a summer of food-focused festivities, including communal dining events with Thomasina Miers, Sabrina Gidda and Honey & Co’s Sarit Packer and Itamar Srulovich. There are also wildlife walks, outdoor yoga, circus and bushcraft workshops, theatrical productions and live music. Furnished yurts and bell tents sleep between two and five. Open May-September; from ?66 per night for two, events extra and dogs allowed, homefarmglamping.com Wild Canvas, Bedfordshire
On the Georgian Turvey House Estate, campers will have 150 acres of parkland to explore, as well as riverside walks along the Great Ouse and a variety of free and paid workshops including superhero fancy dress, circus arts, stand-up paddleboarding, yoga, pilates, gong baths and cacao ceremonies. DJs and food trucks complete the line-up. Accommodation is in tepees that are part of the Glastonbury Festival set-up, or you can bring your own tent. Open 23 July to 31 August; pitches from ?78pp for three nights, tepees from ?300, no dogs allowed, wildcanvas.uk
Scattered around a green field overlooking the east Devon coast, Dreamfields’ bell tents come with beds and picnic benches and breakfast is served to campers each morning. On site there will be an outdoor cinema, bar and fire pits, and there are many beaches to explore such as Sidmouth and Beer. Open 6 July to 31 August; from ?130 per night for two, families and dogs welcome, dreamfieldsglamping.com Starry Meadow, Powys Billing itself as a “festival-inspired family glamping experience”, this Brecon Beacons camp is within walking distance of the River Wye and has mountain walks and Hay on Wye on its doorstep; at night the Dark Sky reserve is perfect for stargazing. There are fluttering flags, festoon lights, film screenings, a games room and daily activities, as well as food stalls. Open 30 July to 30 August, three nights in a furnished bell tent from ?495 for up to six, wyeglamping.co.uk/starry-meadow-glamping
Kymani Getaways, Surrey Kymani is popping up camp in the grounds of several stately homes around southern England (Surrey, Hampshire, Wiltshire and Suffolk). The Godstone site is best suited to families and will have just 10 furnished bell tents sleeping up to four. A communal tepee is set up for dining and there will be a games area, library and themed catering including pizza and wine Wednesdays and fish Friday. Book one tent, or take the whole site. Open May to October, from ?197.50 per night for two or ?1,975 for 20, dogs allowed, kymanigetaways.com
The Pop-Up Hotel is decamping to the coastal Cadland Estate on the edge of the New Forest this summer
Woods & Meadow, East Sussex This peaceful, off-grid site is a patchwork of meadows and hammock-strewn woodland. It is available for campers to bring their own tents or campervans, or turn up and rent a bell tent, tree tent or hammock kit.
There’s a pizza van on Friday nights, a pub within walking distance, and Hastings is a short drive south. Open May-August, pitches from ?15 per night, bell tents from ?65 per night for four, dogs allowed, popupcampsites.com/east-sussex-woodland-meadow-campsite Camp Roarsome, Cornwall Two converted American school buses will be parked within walking distance of Polzeath beach, with beautifully crafted, rustic interiors – reclaimed boarded walls and handmade bed and bunks, kitchenette, TV and DVD, games and firepit with barbecue outside.
There are also on-site showers, and activities (surfing, brewery tours) can be booked. Open 4 June to 12 September, from ?200 per night for up to five, no dogs, dinoskiwear.com/blog/surfing-in-cornwall Be Wilder Camp, Somerset This “rewilding” experience will be keeping campers busy on a rare breeds farm in the Mendip Hills with foraging, nature walks, yoga and fireside storytelling. Accommodation options include furnished tepees, Kyrgyz yurts, bell tents, a Touareg tent and camping pitches, and there will be a coffee van on site, alongside a farm shop and lunchtime caf?. Open 16 July to 31 August, from ?100 per night for four, pitches from ?25, no dogs, be-wilder.co.uk
Maju glampsite, Devon Surrounded by the ancient Trinity Hill woodland and just a short drive to Lyme Regis, the Jurassic and East Devon coasts, Maju combines camping and coast. The 12 bell tents are furnished with Indian textiles and antique furniture and a bar and food truck can be found in the forest (although you can also stock up for the barbecue at River Cottage HQ next door). Activities include yoga and life drawing, and there will be a cinema, survival classes and live music. Open 5 July to 28 August, from ?60 per night for two, dogs allowed, pitchup.com
Jimmy’s Farm, Suffolk Jimmy Doherty’s farm will be hosting “fancy camping” – furnished bell tents with access to the farm’s wildlife park (with residents from capybara and camels to tapir and tortoises), nature trails, woodland pub and restaurant. There will be a communal campfire for marshmallow toasting and storytelling in the evenings. Open until 28 August, two nights from ?470 for two including farm entry, no dogs, jimmysfarm.com/fancycamping
Starry Meadow in Powys is is within walking distance of the River Wye and has mountain walks and Hay on Wye on its doorstep
Beale Wildlife Park, Berkshire Open to Caravan and Motorhome Club members, this pop-up will be at Beale Wildlife Park in the school summer holidays. The site will be taking over a field just outside the wildlife park, next to the River Thames, with riverside pubs nearby and walks in the Chiltern Hills on the doorstep. Pitches are all grass and come with hook-ups and there will be showers and food vendors on site. Guests also receive a discount on entry to the Wildlife Park. Open 26 July to 22 August, pitches from ?34 per night for two, dogs allowed, caravanclub.co.uk
Cloud Nine Glamping There are three Cloud Nine sites in Dorset, Norfolk and Cotswolds, each with a family focus and plenty of comfort. With wild swimming, yoga, horse riding, hula and handstand workshops on offer, there will be plenty to keep busy with, as well as silent discos and gin tastings, babysitting and a creche. Locally produced food is served in the pop-up restaurant tent. Accommodation includes bell tents, tepees and an Airstream, all in the grounds of stately homes (Cirencester Park, Narford Hall, St Giles House). Open 19 July to 30 August, three nights from ?480 for four, dogs allowed, cloudnineglamping.com Camp Honeybrook, Dorset
You can bring your own tent or book a bell tent at this Dorset site, near Wimborne Minster. Poole, Bournemouth and Studland are a short drive away and a playground and open fields to enjoy at camp, as well as a restaurant and bar under canvas. It’s also possible to book extras, including children’s bedding, high chairs, firepits and even a drinks fridge. Open 9 July to 6 September, pitches from ?52 per night, bell tents from ?114 for four, no dogs, camphoneybrook.co.uk
Graythwaite Glamping, Cumbria A family-friendly site on Cunsey Farm, next to Lake Windermere, Graythwaite will host 40 bell tents and a communal, covered dining area, visiting pizza van, volleyball court and table football. It’s part of the Graythwaite Estate, where wildlife includes osprey, golden eagles, peregrine falcons, red squirels, otters, pine martens and more. Activities include off-road driving, kayaking, archery, bushcraft and stand-up paddlingboarding. Open 9 July to 4 September, two nights from ?180 for four, dogs allowed, graythwaite.com/glamping
At Home Farm in Hertfordshire there will be wildlife walks and bushcraft workshops
Wood View Farm Glamping, Kent
This is a small site of six tents in a meadow near Tenterden, which can be booked individually or by a group. There are showers and a outdoor cooking area, plus space for campfires, but no food vendors – this is a space for privacy and back-to-nature camping. Pubs are within walking distance, and there are many walking and cycling trails on the doorstep, as well as vineyards. Open until September, two nights from ?224 for two, additional guests ?10 per night, largekentholidayhome.co.uk
Campfire Weekends, East Sussex
Only available at weekends, and exclusively for adults, Great Danegate Farm near Tunbridge Wells aims to “capture the essence of a good village pub… where you can either enjoy your own space… or join in a lively conversation.” It is back-to-basics camping, with two frontier stoves providing hot water for drinks, fire grates for cooking and one “ablutions trailer”. Activities are up to you – walks, conversation, cooking or exploring the area. Open until 30 August, pitches ?13.50pp per night, campfireweekends.co.uk
How to minimise your impact
With a growing number of temporary campsites comes an increase in footfall. Familiarise yourself with the Countryside Code and consider the following points to help protect the natural environment that the sites are located in.
- If possible, arrive on public transport and use it to get around if exploring nearby, ideally walking or cycling
- Take only what you need
- Take your litter home and recycle and if you can’t, make sure you sort it on site
- Avoid disposable barbecues and use designated firepits if available.
Don’t light fires unless you are told that you can
- Take compostable or recyclable cooking and eating equipment and no single-use plastics
- Use environmentally friendly washing products
- Plan your meals and donate unused food to a local food bank at the end of your stay; buy local produce
- No longer want your camping gear? Don’t send it to landfill – consider organisations such as Gift Your Gear and the Continuum Project
- Keep dogs under control
- Leave no trace
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