Monday, 20 April 2015

The Secret Valley Campsite

Tucked away high in the Somerset Quantock Hills lies The Secret Valley. Run by the Hardwick family, headed up by Farmer John, this luxury camping site is made up of wooden wigwams, bell tents, tepees, even a traditional shepherds hut, spread over 4 paddocks to give everyone a level of privacy.

The farm remains a working organic beef & poultry farm, alongside growing Christmas trees and most impressively a vineyard producing gorgeous still and sparkling wines.

We booked to stay in a wooden wigwam for three nights over the Easter weekend. The booking process was easy using their easy to navigate website and payment was taken via PayPal. The week before our arrival date I noticed that I had only booked for one person but this was quickly rectified over email, for an additional small charge to cover our stay.

Our satnav took us on a scenic route rather than via the M5 and only to the nearest village so it took a little time to decipher the directions to the site, perhaps a traditional map detailing the local area could be added to their website, particularly useful for visitors without a satnav too. On arrival a large board confirmed our wigwam location and plenty of signage quickly led us to our home for the next few days. 

Finding the keys in the door we quickly let ourselves in to find a well equipt cabin with every thing needed to make our stay comfortable. Fully insulated we were also provided with electricity, heating, a kettle, toaster and microwave as well as seating that converted into a huge bed. We brought our own bedding and all of our cooking equipment & food. Electricity was provided via a prepaid card that had been topped up prior to our stay.

We had a single toilet in our paddock, perfect for those late night dashes, with a sink, loo roll & hand towel all provided. The main toilets and shower block were a short walk away and were always clean and inviting when we visited them. We both left our shower gel in the showers one morning and unfortunately they had been moved when we returned the following day. Perhaps it would be helpful to store any found toiletries somewhere for 24 hours before disposing of them to give people a chance to reclaim them?

Each evening we would be visited by a member of the family where we could purchase extra electricity, wood for our fire pits, marshmallows and most importantly, home produced wine...that's right, we had a daily wine delivery!! This was also an opportunity to ask any questions or find out information about the farm. There were plenty of walks and animals that you could visit as well as vineyard tours and wine tastings. There is also an outdoor activity company that is based on the farm should you want to do some different activities.

Washing up facilities were provided in two desperate kitchen areas that were kitted out with lots of equipment if you preferred to cook indoors, along with plenty of seating areas, although we chose to cook on our BBQ fire pit each day.

Over the three days we were there we spent less than £3 on electricity, despite using the microwave, kettle and toaster. The huts are so well insulated that we didn't need the heater on at all. 

We loved staying at Secret Valley. It was well located, close to both Taunton & Bridgwater, but still in beautiful countryside with no main roads close by. There were no negative points to our stay although it would be great to have an area on site where we could get tourist information and there were no bins in the shower rooms. Our stay cost approximately £130 for three nights and we would happily return later in the year.

Further information can be found on The Secret Valley website. 

We paid for our stay in full and were not asked to write this review, all words and opinions remain our own.

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  1. Oh that looks fantastic. I am yet to convince my OH to try glamping but I will get there.

  2. This looks idyllic! Wish I was there! x

  3. Camping but not quite, I might just be able to cope with this on a lovely sunny day. You make it sound very tempting. Popping by from What's the Story

  4. I am from Somerset and we love camping! I will look at their website to see if they allow campers with their own tents. This is such an amazing place to stay! #magicmoments

  5. Wow - what fun - this looks brilliant. We haven't done this before but would love to give it a go #whatsthestory

  6. looks like a wonderful setting, I'd never go camping in a tent but this might be a way to ease me into the idea! #timetravellerlinky

  7. This sounds such an experience - so different and really good fun. And you would go back too - that's always a great sign! #timetravellerlinky

  8. What a great place! Love the little huts, they appeal to me much more than tents! We go to a beautiful campsite in Austria (where we stay in a static home thing) but they have something similar, and my children are always going on about staying in them! :D #timetraveller

  9. I usually take my own tent camping to cut down on the costs, but stayed in a Yurt once and loved it

  10. I am utterly loving these .. i am glad i know where the FB photo were taken i would love to visit!
    Thanks for linking up with #MagicMoments

  11. A wine delivery, daily you say? Where do I sign up?! :) the cabins look great too #timetraveller

  12. This sounds like the perfect holiday of trying something a bit different. I'd love to do this. Annoying about the shower gel being taken, that's happened to me before and I know it's only a couple of pounds but still.
    And then wine delivery??? What a superb idea.
    Thank you so much for adding this post to #TimeTraveller

  13. We love glamping and have been meaning to try out one of these PODS - looks like you had a great time

    Laura x

  14. Wow, that looks such a wonderful place to stay, nice and cosy too! Sounds like a great price as well. #magicmoments