Whether you’re a bell tent or yurt kind of person, or you’re big into all-weather camper-vanning, winter glamping is a great way to boost your melatonin levels. But for those of us who appreciate a spot of luxury, you may like the idea of a shepherd’s hut or a cabin in the forest with a wood burner. Either way, these days it’s possible to find all the mod-cons you need for a spot of winter glamping in the picturesque British countryside.
Here are just a few tips on how to approach winter glamping:
1. Leave all expectations at home
Unlike the spring and summer in the UK, we all know what to expect in the winter. It’s going to be cold. But as they say, there’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing choices. I’ll come onto that in a moment. So the best mindset to have when approaching winter glamping, is to leave all your expectations at home and embrace the season for what it is. Just managing to get away in the UK during the winter can be enough to inspire and reset your thinking. Just adjust your expectations to the season.
2. Look for the light
Naturally the days are shorter so do plan your days differently. Enjoy a good lie-in and breakfast in bed and make the focus of your day outdoors from 9am until 3pm. Make sure you use the day to explore your area, perhaps finding a local pub to cosy-up in. Then spend your afternoons and evenings by the fire with some good reading material and place the focus on great food and warming drinks.
3. Stay warm
It might sound obvious but it’s actually easy to forget, especially if you have heating in your hut or cabin. Remember that you may need to make midnight trips to outdoor toilets if you’re staying in a yurt or shepherd hut. It’s not always best to pile blankets and rugs on top of your bedding, remember to put some extra layers on, and underneath your bed too, as the cold air rises upwards.
4. Comfort foods are go!
Take lots of warming foods with you. You might consider making and freezing a stew before you travel. Take your pre-cooked stew to heat up along with some fresh bread and butter; there’s nothing better by the fire. Now is also your chance to relish in hot chocolates and marshmallows and cheese fondues. Winter glamping gives you carte blanche to eat ALL the comforting things, no holds barred.
5. Let nature do its thing
When you’re cold, your body will need to use the toilet more, so there's no use holding it in. Your body has to remain at a consistent temperature otherwise you will waste much-needed energy keeping your bladder warm. If you don’t have a toilet in your cabin or yurt, allow nature to take its course – your sleep will be better for it. (Or better still, take an old fashioned bed pan with you. You can pick these up cheaply from charity shops or car boot sales.)
6. Turn your things upside down
If some of your food items or belongings need to stay in the boot of your car or outside your yurt, then they could potentially freeze! If you are taking cooking equipment, turn your stove fuel and water upside down. Ice will form from the top down, so keep the opening of your container at the bottom, will stop it becoming unusable when you rise for the day. Insulate anything that could freeze. And if you’re taking breakfast or other food items, make sure you keep them inside your yurt, tent or hut. There’s nothing worse than frozen milk in your tea and on your cornflakes!
Winter glamping inspiration
If you don’t fancy glamping in a bell tent, then consider a stay in a yurt, which more often than not will have its own log burner. Some shepherd huts also have a wood burner or an electric heater.
For the ultimate glamping style experience but with all the mod-cons, Toad Hall in Norfolk, is a beautiful woodland lodge tree house with under floor heating, a hot tub and glass fronted open gable where you can soak up the views. Boutique glamping is an understatement. Now that’s the way to do it! From £139 a night for two people.
By Leah Larwood, Food & Travel Blogger and founder of www.rootsandtoots.com.
Tagged in winter