Ruth Brindle and family take a multi-generational holiday in the gorgeous Cotswolds
With both glamping and multi-generational holidays increasing in popularity, combining the two was the way to go for our holiday to please all ages.
When I tried to describe to people that my son and his family were staying in an adjoining pod to myself and my sister everyone was curious. How to describe it?
The best way is to say it is indeed glamorous camping but in clever, compact accommodation with all the modern comforts. You get the best of being right in the countryside, but you don’t have to sleep in a tent! Apologies to all those who love being under canvas.
Our pods, which each sleep four comfortably, were on the Caravan and Motorhome Club’s site in Moreton-in-Marsh in the Cotswolds. Under the club’s Experience Freedom programme there are also yurts, Airstream caravans and camping pods on offer on other sites.
So, set slightly apart from the touring caravan and motorhome section of the immaculate site, we had wonderful open-field views and the children’s play area was just a few steps away. We could keep an eye on the eight and four-year-old youngsters from our decks, complete with table, chairs and umbrella. These were also ideal areas for us all to meet up and enjoy a barbeque cooked on the grill next to our pods.
The accommodation, as I said is so cleverly designed. The double bed, complete with bedding, pulls down over the small settee which neatly collapses to go from day to night mode. There are also two bunk beds.
The small kitchen has cooking facilities (although not an oven) shower and toilet, TV and heating and I was particularly impressed that there were some basic tea making supplies on-hand when we arrived and games and books for the children. Great idea. It’s great to be able to open the patio doors to the deck.
The camp site has a small shop with basic food and other supplies and, having tried out the CAMC sites before, the staff, usually a couple of husband and wife teams, are so friendly and helpful. They are always experienced campers themselves.
Moreton-in-Marsh itself is just a 10-minute, easy walk away. It’s very pretty with mostly 17th and 18th Century buildings with lots of restaurants and shops to browse. It was granted its market charter in 1227 and there’s still a popular market every Tuesday. Apparently King Charles I sheltered in the White Hart (Royal) Hotel on July 2, 1644 during the Civil War and his unpaid bill is commemorated on a plaque there. The Bell Inn is also thought to be inspiration for Tolkien’s Prancing Pony pub, from Lord of the Rings.
No wonder this site is the most popular in the UK. It’s an amazing, affordable base to explore the beautiful Cotswolds.
Batsford Arboretum – just a few minutes’ drive from the campsite. Over 1,300 different varieties of tree, but with a Far Eastern inspiration, including acers and bamboo. In spring the cherry blossoms and magnolias were magnificent. Plenty of great exploring for the kids and an Easter Bunny hunt made it more fun. Stunning. Next door is a falconry centre and archery centre. http://www.batsarb.co.uk
Birdland in Bourton-on-the-Water
Children’s favourite, but pleasant for the older generations too. There are 130 species of birds, other animals and a Jurassic Journey through a forest inhabited by some scary characters. Bourton-on-the-Water is one of the Cotswolds’ prettiest villages, and most popular. Our two youngsters had a great time paddling in the river as we rested to enjoy the beauty. www.birdland.co.uk
On the way back to the pod, take a short journey off the main road to ogle at the picture postcard villages of Upper and Lower Slaughter.
Of course, the list of amazing places to visit in the Cotswolds is endless and Moreton-in-Marsh is an ideal base from which to explore. For inspiration, visit www.cotswolds.com
Experience Freedom from the Caravan and Motorhome Club provides a range of glamping accommodation in beautiful locations across the UK. The glamping pods at the Moreton-in-Marsh site start from £59 per night (based on a two-night minimum stay) and offer comfortable accommodation for up to two adults and two children. The peaceful site is located just a short walk from the pretty market town. To find out more or to book, visit www.experiencefreedom.co.uk