Go Glamping in Warwickshire: 12 sites
Does a floating tiny wooden house, reached only by dinghy, float your boat? An idyllic glamping utopia in a Victorian walled garden or back-to-basics camping on a peaceful car-free site?
What Warwickshire lack in seaside entertainment and clifftop views it makes up for bucket loads of culture, wildlife and stunning countryside. There’s rivers and lakes for a spot of wild swimming, spades full of historic sites and Shakespeare (his family homes, the RSC and Stratford-upon-Avon). Discerning campers and glampers can stay at any of these indie sites and have lots of historic sites to see, family-friendly activities to do, not forgetting cool village pubs on their doorstep…
BEST FOR NEWLY-BORN FOALS
A little country hideaway near Hatton Locks and award-winning Hatton Arms, 5 miles outside Warwick. with glorious uninterrupted views of the Warwickshire countryside – and six foals due to be born this year! You can hire furnished Bell tents, sleeping up to 5 people, and two lovingly restored retro caravans Casy, a kitsch retro style 1981 Castleton for 4; and Betsy, a cosy 1978 Windrush sleeping two, decorated inside as a beach hut. Plus, a luxurious Elddis Superstorm Touring Caravan that sleeps 6. Friendly and accommodating owners Simon and Gabbi Hughes run this well-appointed family-friendly spacious site. It has 4 acres for touring caravans, motorhomes and camping. Children can run free in an enclosed environment; while parents can relish the peace and quiet with a glass of vino. You have miles of pretty public footpaths right on the doorstep – the National Trust’s Baddesley Clinton is a 35-minute walk, Hatton Country world – a country farm with indoor play area – is 2miles away, Warwick Castle & St Nicholas’ Park are close-by and Stratford-upon-Avon is a short 12-mile drive.
Good to know: Owner Gabbi said: “We have 6 foals due to be born this year on the farm. They live in the paddocks adjacent to the campsite which makes any camping experience into something really special!” Watch out for stunning sunrises and sunsets.
Mousley House Farm Campsite, Case Lane, Hatton, Warwick, CV35 7JG, mousleyhousefarmcampsite.co.uk
BEST FOR GLAMPING UTOPIA
Talton Lodge Glamping, Newbold-on-Stour, Stratford-upon-Avon
In the grounds of Talton House, Talton Lodge is ultimate secret garden glampsite to cocoon your family. This is no back-to-basics but a really cool collection of luxurious Mongolian yurts, a secluded North American inspired tipi, an orchard wagon, a fab tree house-boat, and a T5 VW Camper plus awning. They are all enclosed in a red-brick Victorian walled garden, near a converted 18th century barn, where you can also stay. There’s veggie patches, raspberry bushes, chicken coops, an orchard – all topped off with a babbling brook and a pavilion with a full licensed bar. It’s a kids (& grown-ups) paradise. They can roam free in and out of trees and tents, and there are a further 20 acres surrounding this. Talton’s owner Olivia trained as a pastry chef under Gary Rhodes and dishes up delicious three-course dinners with advance notice – you’d be foolish not to taste her cooking during your stay!
Good to Know: Olivia also provides home-produced free-range eggs, bread, preserves, sausages, and ham, plus veg and fruit (in season). Talton Lodge has regular pop-ups Feast Night pop-ups for locals. Their next Spring Feast is on Thurs May 25. There’ll be cocktails, a delicious feast, live music, dancing and a late bar, from 7pm. Tickets: £32.50 Ring: 07962273417 or email: [email protected]
Weddings: are arranged via the sites sister operation, Talton House. Two giant tipis are set up in the seclusion of the original Talton House Kitchen Garden. They can seat up to 120 people and create a flexible space that you can transform into your preferred style.
Newbold-on-Stour, Stratford-Upon-Avon, CV37 8UB, taltonlodge.co.uk/home.html
BEST FOR MEDIEVAL GLAMPING
Princess or Knight’s luxury tent, Warwick Castle
Pretend you’re in Game of Thrones or a time traveller camping out medieval style in the Knight’s Village. Only much Better equipped than back in the old days with wooden floors, comfy beds, power sockets, an oak storage chest – and Wife! There’s even a very pink fairy-tale Princess tent and a Kings Luxury tent decked out like a castle chamber with a four-poster bed, rich tapestry curtains, cosy sheepskin rugs and even two thrones. An overnight Glamping package includes a sleepover at a Medieval tent, free second day castle tickets, VIP parking and evening parking with free have-a-go archery, Jester’s School and Knight’s School.
BEST FOR INTERIOR DECOR
The Snug and Hut at Park Farm, Upper Shuckburgh, Daventry, near Rugby
Underneath ancient oaks in the grounds of Park Farm, on the Warwickshire-Northamptonshire border, these light, airy stylishly decked out shepherd’s huts can only be booked as a pair, as only one has sleeping quarters…The Sung is a beautifully crafted 16ft Blackdown shepherds hut, with elegant double bed and wood-burning stove, it’s a truly romantic hideout, while a sofa can also be converted in to bunk beds to create a comfy family den. Hop, skip and jump a couple of yards to The Hut and you’ll find the practical stuff – the all-mod cons kitchen, dining and living area. It’s the ideal answer to the problem of keeping shepherd’s huts small and traditional while still offering roomy accommodation. Best of all, once the mudlets are all tucked up in their cosy bunks – you can slip next door and pour a glass of vino.
Good to know: Park Farm a working sheep and beef farm on the historic Shuckburgh Estate. Shuckburgh is one of the oldest privately owned estates in the country and is currently owned by the 14th baronet, Sir James Shuckburgh. The 300-acre farm is home to a pedigree herd of Hereford cattle and 700 breeding ewes, together with a variable number of Gloucester Old Spot pigs, numerous hens and several ducks…
Collect your eggs for brekkie from the nearby chicken coup. Why not invite the grand-parents to stay at the recently converted B&B next door, The Granary?
Weddings: Owner Jill has just opened a new tranquil rural wedding venue, The Cart Shed, a totally unspoilt and authentic country barn. With wonderful rustic timbers decked in fairy lights, a glowing fire pit and floating candles on the pond it’s a really romantic rustic setting.
BEST FOR BOUTIQUE SAFARI-STYLE GLAMPING & HOT TUBS
Tinywood Homes, Southam
These stylish miniature wooden houses are a slight step up from camping, more like boutique safari lodge glamping – and come with their own private hot tubs, granite kitchen worktops, an indoor wood fired BBQ and South African style Stoep or veranda. They’re located in an acre of mown pasture on a working arable farm – the same site as Toasty Tipis – and have beautiful views of the Warwickshire countryside. Like in Goldilocks there’s different sizes houses: the bigger Tinywood 1, 2, & 3, the more compact Family Teeny (more like a pod) and the cosy Teeny Weeny for two.
Good to Know: Tinywood Homes has begun building its first floating house. This will be located on a lake and guests will have to reach the house by way of dinghy. It will be ‘launched’ in summer 2017!
BEST FOR COUPLES
Toasty Tipis, Snowford Hill, Southam
Experience the luxurious side of outdoor living. Toasty Tipis offers a fab glamping experience even the weather can’t spoil – all year round! Expect underfloor heating, carpets, romantic lighting, detached gazebo with BBQ, shared shower – and a log fired hot tub! Toasty Tipis are on the same farm as Tinywood Homes. Six village pubs in Long Itchington include The Buck and Bell, The Duck on the Pond, The Green Man and The Two Boats Inn. You can walk into Long Itchington via a disused railway path. There’s also a farm shop within 1.5 mile walk. It’s a short drive to Royal Leamington Spa, historic Warwick, Coventry and Stratford-upon-Avon.
Snowford Hill, Southam, Warwickshire, CV47 9QE, toastytipis.com
BEST FOR BACK TO BASICS & CAR-FREE SITE
Twitey’s Tipis and Camping Meadows, Wellesbourne, Stratford-upon-Avon
Spot deer, buzzards, rabbits, badgers and foxes at this rustic, but comfortable campsite. Twitey’s was developed 4 years ago by the owner Michael Twite to reflect a more natural and back to basics style of camping. Michael’s early vision was to leave the meadow grass and wild flowers to grow freely and very carefully mow only a limited number of pitches. There are 15 flat, mown pitches spread between two wildflower meadows and 3 new simply furnished Tipis to rent. This is a family-friendly tent camping site only, where pitches are hidden in the grass and wild flower meadows, thus providing seclusion and exclusivity. Children are free to explore the grass pathways, play Hide-and-Seek and use their imagination, then enjoy evenings around the campfire. Further enhancing the experience of camping in the meadows, vehicles are left in the car-park – like at a festival. Wheelbarrows are provided to help transport tents and kit to your pitch.
Good to Know: The site is now open all year round, has continuous hot water in the washroom and a new shop. Good local pubs include The Kings Head, The Stags Head in Wellesbourne, the newly refurbished The Fox at Loxley, Charlecote Pheasant Hotel, opposite the National Trust’s Charlecote Park, and Baraset Barn in Alveston. It’s only 4 miles into Stratford-upon-Avon. Cycle into town to visit Shakespeare’s school, houses and the RSC theatre, or join one of the daily history walks. There’s lovely countryside to be enjoyed along the Shakespeare’s Way walking route that replicates the 146 miles the playwright regularly travelled to and from London.
Lowe Farm, Hunscote Lance, Wellesbourne, near Stratford-upon-Avon, CV35 9EX, twiteystipis.co.uk
BEST FOR WATER SPORTS
Bosworth Water Park, near Nuneaton
Warwickshire may be landlocked but it has a beach! If you’re looking for an action-packed family-friendly water sports holiday head over to the Bosworth Water Trust campsite. The 50-acres of parkland has 20 acres of lakes and lagoons for boating, fishing, windsurfing, kayaking and canoeing. And you don’t need to splash out on any fancy kit. The campsite will hire out everything you need in the way of tackle and togs, and runs dinghy sailing, windsurfing, canoe, kayaking and powerboating courses. For the less adventurous (or energetic), there’s rowing boats and pedalos, and you can fish from dawn to dusk.
A small sandy Blue Lagoon ‘beach’ next to the lake’s roped-off swimming zone should keep younger mudlets happy building sandcastles, and in keeping with the seaside theme the park has a pirate-ship playground, crazy golf, dodgems and bungee jumping. The families-only campsite came 3rd in the Sunday Times’ 2010 camping list, and chosen as the 23rd best campsite in Europe by The Independent in 2006. It has grassed pitches for camping, hard-standing for caravans and motorhomes, plus The Water’s Edge Cafe & Bar.
Far Coton Lane, Wellsborough Rd, Nr Nuneaton, Warwickshire CV13 6PD, bosworthwatertrust.co.uk
BEST FOR STAR GAZING & HOLISTIC TREATMENTS (over 12’s only)
Cotswolds Camping Holycombe, Whichford, Shipston-on-Stour
Enjoy camping, glamping and stargazing without light pollution on the moated site of Whichford Castle, where a Norman castle once stood – the legacy of which is a splendid water-filled moat. This wildlife rich site in the beautiful North Cotswold village of Whichford is designed for those looking for a peaceful, rustic, outdoor experience, surrounded by nature and history. It has some fab glamping options too – a Mongolian Yurt, Gypsy Caravan, Gazebo or Airstream. Exclusively for glampers is their new glamping shower room and loo. But no children under 12 or dogs are allowed.
Good to know: A short walk away in the village is the Norman Knight, a classic, award winning Cotswold country pub, Whichford Pottery and Whichford Woods, a sea of bluebells in early May. Never mind The Rolling Stones check out The Rollright Stones an ancient site. For wild swimming nearby go to: wildswim.com The owners also run Holycombe Holistic Retreat Centre. Treatments such as Shiatsu, Reiki, Massage, Reflexology, acupuncture, kinesiology and Emotional Freedom Technique, can be arranged while you are camping.
Holycombe, Whichford, Shipston-on-Stour CV36 5PH, cotswoldscamping.com
Camping at The Green Man, Long Itchington, Southam
Tucked away behind The Green Man in pretty Long Itchington with its 6 village pubs, lies a lovely quiet flat camping and caravanning field. A great location yes, but as the landlord point outs, it has no shower facilities, no electric hook up and the deep, fast-flowing River Itchin runs at the bottom of the camping field. The Green Man is a traditional English village pub listed in the Camra Good Beer Guide. The legendary fish and chip van stops at the front of the pub every Friday around 7.30pm. A very popular 4-day beer festival around the village’s 6 pubs ran for 9 years on May Bank Holiday until 2015. A pared down, smaller event is planned for April 28 – May 1 2017.
Church Road, Long Itchington, Warwickshire, CV47 9 PW, Tel: 01926 812208
BEST FOR OUTSTANDING HILLTOP VIEWS
Hilltop Hideaways, Hunningham, Leamington Spa
For a top-notch glamping holiday stay in one of the beautifully done-out 4 Bell Tents or one of 3 wooden cabins, handmade in the UK. All come with comfy beds and cosy feather duvets. Nestled into the rolling Warwickshire hills, Hilltop Hideaways is on a working third-generation family farm, with breathtaking views across Warwickshire. It’s a few miles from Royal Leamington Spa, with Warwick, Stratford-upon-Avon and the Cotswolds right on the doorstep too. This newly established site is family-run, boasts some of the finest views in Warwickshire; its hilltop perch meaning you can see for miles and miles around – the sunsets are unreal! The site is next to Hilltop Farm Shop and Café. Handy for cooked breakfasts, lunch or teas. The Stag at Offchurch close-by is a great gastropub.
Good to know: From Fri April 17, Something For The Weekend – Hilltop Farm will be opening its cafe restaurant on Fridays and Saturdays throughout the summer. On the opening night, there will be live music from Chasing Deer and the chance to try the new evening menu. Call: 01926 632978 or email: [email protected]
Hilltop Farm, Fosse Way, Hunningham, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire, CV33 9E, hilltophideaways.com
BEST FOR TOLKIEN FANS & EXPLORING STRATFORD
Stratford Caravans, Riverside Park, Stratford-upon-Avon
Literally 1 mile outside Stratford-upon-Avon, in the village of Tiddington, you can stay in these quirky glamping pods – Beehives, Snugs and Hobbit huts. They really do look like something out of Tolkien’s Middle-Earth. The Hobbit Huts come in two different shapes, the standard sleeps up to 4, and the Hobbit Hut Mini sleeps up to 3. The beehives are a fully insulated wood clad design with a pine clad interior, French doors, sofa bed & built in bunk beds; while the Camping snugs are well built, insulated wooden huts made of larchwood to keep you nice and snug from the elements with lockable French doors (they accommodate up to 4). All three are situated away from the centre of Riverside Park in their own field, just a short walk from the River Avon – where you can get a river taxi straight into town. Riverside also has 100 touring grass pitches for caravans, motorhomes, folding campers and American RV’s, all on well drained ground with electric hook up. Riverfront pitches are available and there’s the Riverside Bar & Restaurant.
Good to know: The site has won a David Bellamy gold award. It has open fields for children and lots of birdlife including Kingfishers, Buzzards, Woodpeckers & Heron.
Stratford Caravans. Riverside Park, Tiddington Road, Stratford-upon-Avon, CV37 7AB, stratfordcaravans.co.uk