At the weekend the kids, Rick & I jumped in the car and headed North for a long weekend. I had booked accommodation through Canopy & Stars; basically the website is a selection of inspected quirky places to go glamping. The site is not only for the UK - there are locations throughout Europe too. I was initially keen to stay at a treehouse near Edinburgh but discovered these were fully booked. The staff at Canopy & Stars helped me select a lovely alternative - the Stuc a'Chroin Trossachs yurt near Stirling.
The Canopy & Stars website
I was drawn in by the beautiful photographs of the yurt on the website and couldn't wait to stay there myself!
The farm was very easy to find thanks to the directions provided by the owner Kate. She was a fantastic hostess and met us on arrival. We had a tour of the site and were given some instructions about the facilities and finally were accompanied to the yurt. It was just beautiful.
After unpacking the car, Kate invited us to watch her feed her 6 day old calf Query (all the calves at the farm had been named alphabetically, and she struggled to think of a name beginning with Q! Query is a twin and her mum was unable to feed both the calves, so Kate was bottle feeding one). The littlest in particular was very keen to ask questions and observe the goings on; as was I.
Inside the yurt there were lots of interesting touches, from the candle holders, the dream catcher and a selection of wall hangings. It really was a cosy space and I particularly loved the wood burning stove. Kate had provided some home baking for our arrival and I have to admit I demolished the lot myself with a cup of tea... I had told the kids it was full of nuts and was for grown-ups only!!
We managed some grown-up time and enjoyed a glass of wine!
Our home for the weekend
There was a communal kitchen area across from the yurts, and with just three yurts on the farm it didn't feel crowded. We stored our food in the fridge here and used the kettle for my much needed cups of tea! There's no electricity in the yurts, but in the kitchen area there are sockets that can be used to charge phones or cameras etc.
In the yurt there were two gas rings and a grill so we were able to prepare scrambled egg and bacon for breakfast. We also had a BBQ which we used for dinner on the Saturday night. We bought burgers from Kate that were made using beef from the cattle that graze at the farm. They were delicious!
In terms of the bathroom facilities, there are two toilets both with showers. After spotting a huge spider in one of the toilets on the first night, this loo was not an option for the kiddos as they were too scared to go back in!
Query in her pen
We had hoped to get some grown-up time sitting outside with a bottle of wine, however the weather wasn't as good as I had hoped so we ended up whispering in the yurt whilst the kids tried to get to sleep. It wasn't ideal and I hadn't really thought this through. Plus the kids were sharing a sofa bed and although they had sleeping bags there were still a few arguments about them crossing the line into the other sibling's side of the bed!
The other thing I hadn't considered was how bright the yurt would be - obviously there is no black out lining! So when it was 7.30pm and I was trying to convince the kids it was night-time they had a hard time believing me. At my house we go into lock-down at 7pm - all the black-out blinds get closed, the lights are all dimmed and it's as good as night-time. This wasn't an option at the yurt! If I had thought ahead I would have brought eye masks for them to wear.
Next time I think we'll visit the yurt without the children. As ideal the surroundings are for children, it is also a very romantic place and I would love to spend a few days with Rick just relaxing, enjoying the countryside and his company. We really did feel like we were far from home when in reality the yurts are just an hour's drive from Glasgow. Very easy to get to for a few nights rest & relaxation in the countryside.
I'm going to write a separate post on all the activities that we did during our stay at the yurt and I've also got some video footage to put into a short vlog... watch this space.
Have you ever gone glamping and where would you recommend to stay? Or perhaps I have inspired you to give glamping a try?