How a cheap glamping weekend in Yorkshire has changed my mind about camping:
I’ve never been keen on camping. I’ve done it a few times, with mixed experiences; the best was probably as a child, camping on the East Coast of Barbados, and the worst was spending a freezing night in a field in Kent, trying desperately to get a screaming baby to sleep. That last one wasn’t my idea, and definitely put me off camping entirely.
Camping without the cold
I love the outdoors, but the idea of paying to go somewhere where I would be less comfortable than my own home simply never made sense to me. Add to that the thought of being cold? Forget it. I’m from the Caribbean, so avoiding the cold is a major factor in my decision-making process!
When some friends of ours who had stayed at Woodhouse Farm campsite near Ripon, Yorkshire, told us about their trip, it was clear how much they had enjoyed it. They hadn’t just been camping; they’d been staying in the cutest camping pod in the middle of a forest clearing.
It looked unbelievable!
Affordable family trips
Let’s face it: holidays can be expensive, especially when your family grows. We actually hadn’t been on a holiday for over three years, because of saving hard for our house deposit, then buying our house, then renovating it. This never bothered me, because we don’t have the mindset that we need to have a holiday each year.
Still, we wanted to give Little Balders the chance to spend time with his friends, as he has to go away over the school holidays to visit his father. When our friends invited us and others to join them on another glamping trip, we went for it.
Our family sized pod cost us £88 for two nights, and could accomodate 2 adults and 2-3 children. As there were only three of us, we had plenty of room, but we managed to fill it up with camping gear spilling out everywhere!
The camping pod experience
Our pod was immaculate. With electricity, lighting and a heater, it was extremely comfortable and cozy.
However, one of the best parts of the experience was the woodland setting. We were fortunate to have fantastic, sunny weather over our stay, but unlike the other bright, open spaces filled with tents and camper vans, the woodland where the pods were located had its own special charm.
Walking through the trees to the pods in the clearing, we caught glimpses of our little wooden weekend homes through the leaves, and it made each trip back a little bit exciting. I just love being under a tree canopy… I wouldn’t have been as happy if they were out in the open.
Making the most of our weekend away
I’ve been working hard on writing for several blogs – I’m up to four now – and it’s been making me feel a bit overwhelmed. Getting away from the house was extremely effective for helping me to change my thinking and recharge, but I actually did something else to help myself: I turned my internet connection off.
Since I’m on a very frugal £5 per month plan with giffgaff, I don’t have a lot of data to burn through anyway, but I made up my mind to switch off over the weekend away, and simply allow myself to experience reality. Normally I’m forever checking stats, emails and numbers, but just being away from my routine and giving myself permission to do nothing but enjoy myself (and photograph trees) did me an incredible amount of good.
If you like the sound of glamping, Robert Dyas offers a one night glamping break for 2 for £55 via Red Letter Days.