UK staycation: 50 best campsites for summer holidays Leave a comment


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ne of the silver linings of the pandemic is how it has encouraged us to spend more time outdoors and explore the UK in all its glory by embracing the great British staycation.

As a result, a record number of Brits have opted in for a camping – or glamping – summer break this year. The number of campers in the UK has risen a staggering 237 per cent compared to two years ago.

Whether it’s a kooky gypsy-style caravan you’re looking for, a remote safari tent surrounded by wildlife or a spiritual hideaway with plenty of morning yoga and wild swimming spots to nourish the soul, there is a site for every kind of staycation and budget.

And with the August bank holiday coming up, there’s still time book. We trawled through thousands of sites to find 50 of the very best camping and glamping sites in the UK that still have availability this summer. You’re welcome.

Glamping

Cloud Nine Norfolk

With glamping sites across Dorset, Norfolk and the Cotswolds, Cloud Nine is heaven for kids, with endless activities from silent discos to trampolines to kayaking. Kids adore it. They recently got a horrible review on the Mail Online describing it as ‘more Chernobyl than Champneys’ but our spy went last week and had a phenomenal weekend and everything was pitch-perfect. Highly recommend.

Distance from London: Dorset (3 hours), Norfolk (2.5 hours) and the Cotswolds (3 hours).

USP: A funtastic family retreat in lush countryside.

Price: £132-£294 per night.

West Lexham Bell Tent Glamping

West Lexham Bell Tent Glamping

Set on 21 acres of wondrous woodland, with seven quirky bell tents in the Norfolk countryside, West Lexham offers the ultimate glamping experience that’s suitable for the whole family. Inside, tents feature double beds and plenty of storage. After a good night’s kip, enjoy a refreshing morning dip in the newly-renovated heated pool or wild swimming lake. And there’s no need to leave the pups at home, for a small fee they are more than welcome on site.

Distance from London: 2.5 hours

USP: Wild swimming and soothing woodland in Norfolk.

Price: £100-£250 per night.

Bunker Down

The Cotswolds, home to quintessentially English cottages, quaint country pubs and natural hot springs, is where Bunker Down sits, a 500-acre farm complete with three bell tents and a shepherd’s hut. This site is a perfect base for exploring the beautiful Cotswolds. Indulge in long walks and hearty roasts, before a night spent toasting marshmallows over your very own open fire pit.

Distance from London: 2 hours.

USP: A cosy Cotswolds countryside escape.

Price: £78-£125 per night.

Gilcombe Camping

Down in Somerset, this picturesque spot boasts luxurious bell tents and unbeatable views and its proximity to Longleat Safari Park, idyllic Bruton and The Newt is arguably its biggest USP. Further afield there is stonehenge and the eccentric town of Glastonbury for more day trips.

Distance from London: 3 hours.

USP: Prime positioning in picturesque Somerset.

Homestead Glamping and Camping

Homestead Glamping and Camping

This tranquil site in Herefordshire will take you back to basics (while still offering showers and BBQs if desired). With famous walks, kayaking, canoeing and cycle routes in the Brecon Beacons, there’s plenty to do in the surrounding area. After an action packed day, wind down at The Stag Inn or the award-winning Felin Fach Griffin for dinner.

Distance from London: 4 hours.

USP: Watersports and good pubs in rural Herefordshire.

Price: From £50 per night.

Alexander House Glamping

There are only two of these spacious yurts on site, which ensures a secluded escape. After exploring the surrounding countryside, enjoy a glazz of fizz in your own woodfired hot tub and soak up the breathtaking views of Gleneagles and Perthshire. Fall onto your king-sized bed for a deep sleep before doing it all over again.

Distance from London: 7.5 hours.

USP: Stargazing and hot tubs in Scotland.

Price: From £150 per night.

Collaton Farm

Over in South Devon, Collaton Farm’s safari tents are luxurious and spacious and come complete with memory foam mattresses and a balcony. Venture out of your lodgings and you’ll find Dartmoor National Park in one direction and the sandy beaches at Salcombe in another (both within a 30-minute drive). Snap a spot up while there’s still availability this summer.

Distance from London: 4 hours.

USP: Glamorous safari-style tents in South Devon.

Price: From £100 per night.

Starry Meadow

Starry Meadow Glamping in the Brecon Beacons gives off all the festival vibes and is ideal for both families or groups of friends. Gather around and make new pals at the open-air cinema, while munching on dishes from the onsite food stalls. The quirky experience will be the highlight of your summer.

Distance from London: 3.5 hours.

USP: All the festi feels in the in the Brecon Beacons.

Price: From £495 per week.

Tamar Lakes Campsite

Can’t decide between the lake or the beach? You don’t have to at Tamar Lakes, which boasts both a sandy beach and lake. During the day, there is a wide selection of water sports to enjoy, before refuelling at the campsite with cream teas and Cornish ice cream. This is the ultimate Cornish holiday experience.

Distance from London: 4.5 hours.

USP: Cream teas and canoeing in Cornwall.

Price: From £15 per night.

Kooky

FinchingField Camping

For an Instagram-worthy trip a mere hour from London, stay on the 1.5-acre lavender and wild flower farm at FinchingField Camping in Essex. You’ll be given your own lavender bag on arrival for picking, before settling down amongst the lavender for afternoon tea. With plenty of village pubs, quaint tea rooms and the Stour River on its doorstep, this unique location is a perfect break from the city – and it’s a real bargain.

Distance from London: 1 hour.

USP: Pretty lavender fields for your feed.

Price: From £28 per night.

Ettie’s Field

Already own your own glamping gear? This one’s for you. Ettie’s Field in Hinkley, Leicestershire, welcomes tipis, bell or lotus tents and roof tents and with the Tropical Bird Land and Lucky Tails Alpaca Farm nearby, you’ll have the kids entertained all weekend.

Distance from London: 2.5 hours.

USP: Boho glamping in Leicestershire.

Price: from £70 per night.

Knepp Wildland Safaris & Camping

Knepp Wildland Safaris & Camping

Had to press pause on your dream Kenyan safari? Knepp Wildland Safaris & Camping in Horsham, West Sussex, is the next best thing. Just expect Exmoor ponies and roaming cattle rather than lions and elephants. With options to camp in a basic tent or treat yourself to some glamping, there’s a spot to suit every budget.

Distance from London: 2 hours.

USP: Safari(ish) vibes in West Sussex.

Price: From £20 a night.

Apple Camping

Missed the thrill of taking to the sky over the last 18 months? Apple Camping, in Pembrokeshire can help with that. Spend the night in a stationary JetStar aeroplane, complete with original bar and an X-box with flight-simulator games, or go extraterrestrial with a stay in the UFO pod. Three Mongolian-style yurts are also available to hire.

Distance from London: 4.5 hours.

USP: Movie scenes in South Wales.

Tin Can Camping

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Throw it back to the 1950s in one of the four airstreams at Tin Can Camping in South Norfolk for a fun and retro weekend away. Partial to a tipple? The site is optimally located next to three of the region’s top vineyards.

Distance from London: 2.5 hours.

USP: Airstream glamping in Norfolk .

Fuzzy’s Farm

You needn’t stray too far to reach Fuzzy’s Farm and its wild west themed luxury tipis, which is located in lush Hertfordshire countryside, just 25 minutes by train from London. Alpacas, sheep, pigs, chickens, ducks and geese all roam free on the farm near the quintessentially English village of Potten End and the National Trust woodlands of Ashridge.

Distance from London: 1 hour.

USP: Roaming alpacas and a wild west theme.

Price: From £480 for a tipi.

The Cairngorms Yurt

Partial to a wee dram? Use this charming yurt stunningly decorated with an oriental twist as a base for a exploring the magical Scottish Highlands, including the nearby Cairngorms national park and world famous Malt Whisky Tail. The star-gazing alone makes the trip worthwhile.

Distance from London: 10 hours.

USP: A magical setting in the Scottish Highlands.

Price: From £465-902 per week.

Vintage Vacations

Vintage Vacations on the Isle of Wight was the first to offer American airstream holiday accommodation in the UK. Inside, the vans feature original fixtures and fittings and quirky vintage accessories. The nearby town of Ryde boasts plenty of restaurants and shops, and also offers ferry access.

Distance from London: 3 hours.

USP: Authentic airstreams on the Isle of Wight.

Price: From £80-£160 per night.

Roulette Retreat

Looking for something a little different? These kooky gypsy-style caravans nestled in Eildon Hills in the Scottish Borders feature intricate hand-carved wooden doors and wood burning stoves. The scenic setting is surrounded by the flowing River Tweed and the beautiful valleys of Yarrow and Ettrick.

Distance from London: 6.5 hours.

USP: Gypsy-style caravans on the Scottish Borders.

Price: From £110 per night.

EarthSpirit

Want to mix things up? Just five miles from Glastonbury, EarthSpirit is a site dedicated to the spiritually curious that lies within the ‘temenos’ (sacred enclosure) of Avalon in Somerset. Glamping accommodation here includes two lotus belle tents and a yurt, and guests can enjoy energising morning yoga classes and workshops, scenic walks and evenings gathered round fire bowls.

Distance from London: 2.5 hours.

USP: Somerset glamping for spiritual souls.

Price: From £18 per night.

Wilder spots

Instagram/dowardparkcampsite

Phone constantly reminding you of your ever increasing screen time? It’s time for a digital detox, and Doward Park, set in the secluded Wye Valley, near Symonds Yat, one mile from Wales, is the place to do it. With barely any signal and no wifi (except in the reception building) you’ll be forced to go off-grid.

Distance from London: 3 hours.

USP: Go off-grid in a secluded valley.

Price: From £24 per night.

Cotswold Camping

While all of the cottages in the Cotswolds might be booked, there is still space at this cute campsite in Charlbury, where you can embrace the simple life for the weekend. This spot offers stunning views and, more importantly, award-winning pubs close by. While basic, it is equipped with all the essential facilities, as well as an electric car charging point and basketball hoop.

Distance from London: 2 hours.

USP: Camping in the Cotswolds.

Price: From £90 per night.

Yomer Wood

Yomer Wood in North Devon is the closest you’ll get to wild camping in England, with only a compost loo and a stream for a shower and no electricity or wifi, you can really escape it all here. The 10 acre site is found in Lee, a small valley and designated area of outstanding natural beauty in North Devon between the Victorian seaside town of Ilfracombe and the stunning surfing beach of Woolacombe. Bring your own tent or, for a little more comfort, book the two-person rustic cabin onsite that’s perfect for a couple.

Distance from London: 4 hours.

USP: (Almost) wild camping in North Devon.

Price: From £20 per night.

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For those wanting a classic Devon camping experience with the amenities. Bales Ash offers homemade Devonshire cream teas on request, wifi and showers. Spend your days walking the spectacular trails and surfing at the nearby beaches before returning for still warm home-baked scones, followed by a communal campfire.

Distance from London: 4 hours.

USP: Homemade cream teas and surfing in Devon.

Donnington Wild Camping

Enjoy the countryside and beaches of West Sussex at this picturesque campsite set on a rural farm in the small village of Donnington. Guests can pitch up and make use of the onsite toilets and washing facilities, and even rent a campfire for an evening of marshmallow toasting and stargazing. With Chichester town and the vast sandy beach at West Wittering all nearby there’s plenty to do .

Distance from London: 1.5 hours.

USP: Stargazing and swimming in West Sussex.

Everyone wants to get down to St Ives this summer, but accommodation can be tricky. The answer? Forget about the Cornish cottage and camp, just don’t forget your surfboard. This site is also only three miles from the centre of buzzing St Ives and offers guests a chilled out, informal and friendly place to stay.

Distance from London: 5 hours

USP: A chilled out spot in buzzing St Ives.

Another spot in Cornwall, The Field of Stars sits on an organic beef farm in Penzance with plenty of nearby beaches to explore. Facilities include drinking water points, a washing-up sink, composting and flush toilets, hot electric showers, a communal fridge freezer and an electric socket for charging phones. There’s also a pub and bakery just a 10-minute drive away.

Distance from London: 5.5 hours.

USP: A well-equipped picturesque spot in Penzance.

Sustainable

Sunrise Eco Glamping

With a zero-waste re-fill shop, a vegan coffee shop and greengrocers, Sunrise Eco Glamping set the idyllic Nottinghamshire countryside feels more like a little sustainable village. The accommodation is cosy, with double beds and wood-burning stoves in each tent, meanwhile, outside there are adorable resident alpacas that you can book to see.

Distance from London: 3 hours.

USP: Sustainable camping with alpacas in Nottinghamshire.

Price: From £15 per night.

Chyan Farm

Chyan Farm is an eco-friendly campsite surrounded by apple orchards under five miles from Falmouth in Cornwall. Amenities include solar-powered hot showers, a sauna, spring-fed swimming pool and mud kitchen. This is a place to chill and relax with the family, party animals need not apply – there’s a strict 9.30pm noise curfew.

Distance from London: 5 hours.

USP: A calming family-friendly field near Falmouth.

Price: From £16 per night.

Adults-only

The Shepherds Hut Retreat

The Shepherds Hut Retreat

Looking to book a last minute romantic bolthole this summer? Look no further than these romantic shepherd’s huts nestled in the rolling Somerset hills, which offer guests a slice of luxury. Each comes with ensuite bathrooms, an outdoor kitchen, decking area, open-air hot tub and stunning views looking out on to the lake.

Distance from London: 3 hours.

USP: A romantic lakeside retreat in the Somerset hills.

Price: From £110 per night.

Cider Farm Orchard Campsite

Cider Farm Orchard Campsite

Love cider? Learn all about it at this tranquil camping spot where you can sleep under the stars in the middle of an apple orchard in the West Dorset countryside and enjoy plenty of tastings and communal BBQs for sociable stay.

Distance from London: 3.5 hours.

USP: Camping for cider lovers.

Price: From £32 per night.

Country View Lodge

Country View Lodge is peaceful spot located on a Cornish farm half an hour from the seaside town of Bude. The lodge is well equipped, even boasting its own bath and a great BBQ are for al fresco family meals.

Distance from London: 4 hours.

USP: A Cornish country lodge perfect for the family.

Price: From £80 per night.

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Located on a working rare-breed farm on the southerly slopes of the Greensand Ridge overlooking the Weald of Kent, only an hour from London, this site has everything from Highland cattle to turkeys and ducks roaming free. Enjoy evenings making a slap up meal on the BBQ with some of their fresh local produce that they sell.

Distance from London: 1 hour.

USP: Farm life in the Kent countryside.

Price: From £25 per night.

Stybeck Farm

Stybeck Farm near Keswick in the Lake District is a perfect base for exploring the Lake District. You can lace up your boots and hike direct from your pitch at this stunning spot in Cumbria. Enjoy local produce such as vegetables and eggs from the farm shop and be sure to take a pit stop at the local pub 10 minutes up the road after a long day of walking.

Distance from London: 5.5 hours.

USP: Wholesome farm life and fresh produce in the lakes.

Price: From £23 per night.

Honeybrook Camping

Keen cyclists should head to Honeybrook Camping in Dorset, which is located conveniently close to both the Dartmoor and Granity Way cycle paths. Rise to chirping birds outside your tent, before spending your days cycling or hiking the landscape while soaking up the breathtaking views.

Distance from London: 4 hours.

USP: Cycling and hiking in Dorset countryside.

Price: From £12 per night.

Coastal

Beach View Holiday Park

Situated on the Suffolk coast, this site has a great variety of accommodations, including luxury lodges, light and airy glamping pods and hassle-free camping – there’s something for everyone. With stunning sea views and a bar that makes woodfired pizzas, it won’t take you long to switch off and indulge.

Distance from London: 2.5 hours.

USP: Charming glamping pods with woodfired pizza.

Price: From £30 per night.

Surfer’s Paradise Campsite

Surfer’s Paradise Campsite

Surfers, listen up! It takes just one minute to walk to Croyde’s surf beach, one of Britain’s best breaks, from this spot in North Devon. But you don’t have to be a pro, beginners can hire equipment onsite, or simply enjoy walks to take in the the clear waters, golden sands and fresh sea air.

Distance from London: 4 hours.

USP: A surfer’s paradise in North Devon.

Price: From £34 per night.

Fish for supper in the lake at this gorgeous Cornish spot set on 20 acres boasting ferns, wild bluebells and ancient oak – you can swim and boat on the lake too. Opt for pre-pitched tipis or take your own camping gear.

Distance from London: 4.5 hours.

USP: A fairytale-like lake setting.

Price: From £36 per night.

Celtic Camping and Bunkhouses

Celtic Camping and Bunkhouses

Head to Celtic Camping and Bunkhouses on National Trust land in Pembrokeshire for unbeatable sea views. While facilities are basic, with the beach 10 minutes away and Abereiddi’s famous Blue Lagoon half an hour away, the lack of phone signal will be welcome.

Distance from London: 5 hours.

USP: Spectacular sea views in West Wales.

Price: From £28 per night.

Field 725 Eco Camping and Glamping

Field 725 Eco Camping and Glamping

Both Frome and Glastonbury are a short drive away from this idyllic eco-camping which sits next to 100 acres of untouched woodland within the rolling hills of Somerset. Choose from a selection of pre-pitched glamping accommodation or camping pitches.

Distance from London: 2.5 hours

USP: Eco-camping near Glastonbury.

Price: From £25 per night.

Canna Farm

Canna Farm is an off-grid, pet-friendly eco site near St Austell in Cornwall, just 15 minutes from the sea. There are two fields available for rustic camping, with hot showers, compostable loos and fire pits to borrow all at a very affordable pricepoint.

Distance from London: 4.5 hours.

USP: An eco-friendly site on the coast.

Price: From £16 per night.

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This eco-friendly site sits on 12 acres of Dorset countryside. Facilities include a shared fire-pit, alfresco pizza oven and rope swings. It wouldn’t be a trip to Dorset without visiting the coast of course, and the Jurassic Coast is only an hour’s walk away.

Distance from London: 3 hours.

USP: Alfresco pizza by the Jurassic Coast.

Price: From £20 per night.

Freshwater camping

Purple Badger Camping

Purple Badger Camping offers a slice of Leicestershire paradise that’s remote enough to feel like you’re escaping it all yet still easily accessible from the city. With two beautiful lakes nestled among woodland, full of roach, perch, tench and carp, you can spend the days fishing your way to zen. Both shepherd’s huts and bell tents are available for hire.

Distance from London: 2.5 hours.

USP: Remote fishing in Leicestershire.

Price: From £25 per night.

Wild Canvas Camping

For the whole of August, Wild Canvas (the organisers of the Tipi Field at Glastonbury) are hosting a pop-up glamping experience with a chilled festival vibe, taking place within the riverside grounds of Turvey House in Bedfordshire. Think delicious local food, DJ sessions and workshops, with plenty of swimming in the River Great Ouse.

Distance from London: 2 hours.

USP: A small-scale Glasto.

Price: From £144 per night.

Canal Camping

Set in the heart of the Norfolk Broads, this tucked away campsite in Dilham situated right next to the canal is a prime spot for canoeing. After a day spent on the water, nestle around the campfire for marshmallow toasting and stargazing in the big (and clear) Norfolk skies.

Distance from London: 3 hours.

USP: Camping and canoeing on the Norfolk Broads.

Price: From £16 per night.

Kingfisher Escapes

Looking for a romantic retreat with your other half? Escape it all at this cosy cabin by the River Ceiriog, just outside Chirk, in Wales. Inside, the self-contained shepherd’s hut features a double bed, fully-equipped kitchen, wet room bathroom and woodburner-style heater to keep you toasty. Feeling daring? Take on a trip to the River Dee where you can go gorge walking or whitewater rafting.

Distance from London: 3.5 hours.

USP: A cosy cabin by the river.

Price: From £130 per night.

Alvingham Lakes

Another great spot for fishing, the calming Alvingham Lakes is a day ticket fishery with plenty of carp and bream that’s just outside the Georgian market town of Louth on the edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds. Pitch up your own tent or rent a static caravan. Amenities are basic but well-maintained, with a cafe, toilet and BBQ. Dogs are welcome too.

Distance from London: 3.5 hours.

USP: Peaceful fishing in Lincolnshire.

Price: From £20 per night.

Coniston Experience Freedom Glamping

Coniston Experience Freedom Glamping

Set on the banks of Coniston Water, a 35-minute drive to Lake Windermere, this site makes an ideal base for a walking holiday in the Lake District. Break up the trekking with windsurfing, canoeing, dinghy sailing and steamboat rides at Coniston’s Waterhead Pier, under a 10-minute drive away.

Distance from London: 5 hours.

USP: Walking and watersports in the Lake District.

Price: From £79 per night.

Family

Forest Oak Farm

Family-run Forest Oak Farm lies just next to the lush landscape of the Forest Of Dean in Gloucestershire. With BBQs for guests’ use, a lake and plenty of nearby cycle routes, you’ll be spoilt for choice, plus this site is dog-friendly and even boasts pup-exercise areas.

Distance from London: 3 hours.

USP: Pup-friendly camping near the forest.

Price: From £16 per night.

Broad Park Camping and Glamping

Broad Park Camping and Glamping

One for adventure travellers, Broad Park is conveniently situated next to the North Devon Wake Park, where you can get wakeboarding lessons and kids will just love the outdoor blow up assault course. Expect to meet alpacas and chickens onsite, where there are also all the essential amenities for a comfortable few days by the sea.

Distance from London: 4.5 hours.

USP: Wakeboarding in North Devon.

Price: From £16 per night.

Barn Park Campsite

Barn Park, set on a dairy farm overlooking Dartmoor, is a tranquil, family-friendly base from where to explore the Devonshire countryside. While this site has basic facilities, there is plenty nearby to get stuck into, including Woolacombe beach, surfing at Croyde, the Ilfracombe Aquarium, horse riding and even a spot of golf.

Distance from London: 4 hours.

USP: Tranquil Devonshire countryside with plenty of nearby beaches.

Price: From £20 per night



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