Get away from it all; disconnect from technology and reconnect with nature
Not being a fan of camping, and being woefully behind the trends, I recently dipped my toe into the world of glamping and it was a resounding success, thanks in no small part to a beautiful shepherds hut in Cornwall.
The shepherds hut, located on a farm 2.2 miles east of Boscastle in North Cornwall, was not only delightful to look at, but offered a real get away from it all, off-grid experience. Set away from the main farmhouse in its own private field, the hut with its separate but private kitchen and shower room had stunning and far reaching views of the Atlantic Ocean and offered a perfect snapshot into Cornish country life.
Being on a working farm, it wasn’t long before an inquisitive cockerel and his harem of hens made their way over to inspect the newcomers. Obviously used to people, they weren’t phased by us, or the camp fire and happily pecked and scratched around within a few centimetres of us.
Our host, farmers wife Caroline, was absolutely charming. After showing us around the accommodation and recommending a walk through the meadows, she left us to it giving us the privacy and peace we craved. The freshly baked bread and hummus left in the kitchen as a welcome gift were gratefully received and we devoured the loaf as we sat back drinking in the view.
Not having the interruption of phone signal, wifi or electricity allowed us to switch off and really ‘hear’ the noise of the countryside – the neighbouring cows, the cockerel, a neigh from a nearby horse and above all the enchanting bird song were not only audible but appreciated in a way we simply aren’t able to do among the bustle of our technologically driven home life.
The shepherds hut itself was tastefully decorated with a double bed, rustic cabinets crammed with books and games and a small – but powerful – log burner. As the evening drew in, the LED lanterns gave the hut a low but atmospheric light and added to the sense of being off-grid.
With my husband happily channeling his inner Ray Mears(!) and busying himself cooking sausages on the camp fire, I attempted to take photos of the cockerel who had been keeping me amused me with his antics all afternoon. The photos should have been amazing given the close proximity and the wonderful light but simply proved once again that I was not born to be a photographer!
The small but perfectly formed kitchen with a camping stove, sink and cooking utensils supplied us with everything we needed and Caroline had also thoughtfully left us a jug of milk allowing for copious cups of tea around the fire. I’m not sure if my imagination was running away with me, but the tea tasted exceptional – it must have been the Cornish water!
Before arriving at the shepherds hut we had started the day in Port Issac, the picturesque fishing village made famous by the popular TV series ‘Doc Martin’ and as we made our way through the winding streets we came across the fabulously named ‘May Contain Nuts‘ grocery store selling take away cream teas. At the shepherds hut later in the day, eating our cream tea in front of the fire, the scones and cream had never tasted so good. Take away cream teas is such a fantastic idea I am amazed more people don’t offer this service.
As the evening drew in and the temperature dropped we moved into the shepherds hut, lit the log burner, turned on the lanterns and attempted to do a crossword. Leaving aside the beautiful surroundings, the unusual accommodation and our total immersion into the countryside, the unparalleled success of our 24 hours away from it all was sleep. I have chronic insomnia, the result of a traumatic operation 18 years ago and a complaint I have never been able to overcome. However the lack of electrical stimuli and the enforced relaxation ensured that as I snuggled under the goose-down duvet I fell into a deep and uninterrupted sleep for a blissful (and almost unbelievable) 10 unbroken hours. This much needed and therapeutic sleep was a thing of beauty.
The fantastic Boscastle Farm Shop, located a mile from the shepherds hut was the one thing we wish we had known about before arriving at the farm. We had foolishly stopped at a supermarket prior to arriving to stock up on camp fire food spending a small fortune on fairly average sausages and overpriced cider. The following morning after checkout we drove past the farm shop and discovered that we could have purchased fresh meat, eggs, salad and a flagon of cider from local farmers as well as having a choice of some mouthwatering deserts. We won’t make the same mistake again when we visit next time, and I do mean when not if. The farm shop also had a great cafe and outside play area, perfect for a lazy brunch.
The shepherds hut offered the perfect off grid get away from it all experience. The rustic yet stylish accommodation coupled with the tranquil location, friendly animals and hospitable owners made us long for a second night in the ‘wilderness’.