I’ve always been a fan of UK-based holidays and even more so since our two boys arrived.
With so much child-orientated paraphernalia it seems so much easier to just open the boot and literally throw everything in.
There’s no worrying whether the suitcase will shut or whether it will be overweight at check-in and you can pack as many shoes and coats as you like, which is always a bonus for me!
We’re no strangers to travelling long distances across the UK having lived in the Scottish Highlands for several years and having endured many commutes back and forth to Shropshire to visit family and friends.
But I have to point out, I’m no real fan of travelling with children under the age of five.
The dreaded “Are we nearly there?” question just five minutes after setting off gets me every time!
There’s also only so many games of eye spy you can play and there is a limit to the amount of snacks you can cram into the picnic basket.
That’s why we have discovered that holidaying on your doorstep, especially for weekends, can be so much more enjoyable.
When I say on your doorstep, I generally mean within less than one hours commuting distance.
It means by the time the kids have played eye spy a few times, demolished a snack or two, had a bit of a sing song, you’ve already reached your destination.
There’s other benefits too – like not having to get up too early, sit in traffic for hours on end and feeling rather lively and refreshed upon arrival. And, what’s more – the kids don’t really care where they are – it’s just an adventure to be away from home.
Our most recent ‘Doorstep Holiday’ was enjoyable for all these reasons and made even more special by a wonderful location and super friendly hosts.
We headed to the Welsh village of Llansilin, right on the Shropshire border, just a few miles from Oswestry and approximately a 50 minute drive from home.
We stayed at the Barnutopia Luxury Glamping site run by Katrina and Steve Boydon.
It was our first time glamping and our first time staying in a luxury yurt – complete with beds, heater, electricity and fairy lights!
We’re no strangers to conventional camping but I have to say having chosen a pretty wet and windy April weekend for our trip away even I was grateful for the luxury home comforts.
Never before have I been too warm on a camping expedition – I’m usually wrapped up from head to toe in a woolly hat, socks and everything in between – so this has to be a big thumbs for the glamping, along with the fact that we and our gear remained bone dry!
Despite the rain, the kids loved every minute of the trip, running about on the farm, visiting the resident pigs and horses and playing with the cats.
They enjoyed a walk to the nearby fish ladder and the village pub and enjoyed a brief sit around the campfire before the heavens opened! We became tourists for the day in nearby Oswestry, drinking tea and eating cake and had a fab day out at Chirk Castle.
Katrina and Steve were superb hosts, making our stay both comfortable and enjoyable. We even indulged in Katrina’s homemade all-you-can eat pancakes for breakfast and made it into a respectable position on the leaderboard! We’ll certainly be back for more!
So with spring finally here, we are now planning our next ‘Doorstep Holiday’. In fact, we’re thinking about getting the tent out and trying a campsite we have discovered just 10 minutes down the road. I doubt if we’ll even manage a game of eye spy on this one, let alone time for “Are we nearly there yet?”