We tried glamping for the first time in Dorset at Featherdown glamping, and were very pleased we did. As its name suggests, it offers glamorous camping. If you like the idea of camping and getting closer to nature, but can’t face a whole week with kids, glamping is a great midway choice.
Where is Featherdown glamping?
Featherdown glamping at East Shilvinghampton Farm in Dorset is just idyllic. Situated just inland from the famed Jurassic coast down a rural farm track lie eight safari tents. The tents are clustered in a well-kept meadow with small woodland copse and campfire site in the middle. Adjacent is resident horse and goat. And the views over the rolling Dorset countryside are divine!
What are the tents like?
We went for full luxe, so our safari tent had 24/7 hot water for a shower, cold running water in the kitchen area, a wood burning stove, kerosene and candle lamps, outdoor barbecue, small covered outdoor decking area with deckchairs and a table and bench, dining table, sofa and three bedrooms! There’s no fridge, but a large cool box is provided and an ice box up at the farm has reusable ice packs to keep cool boxes at a low temperature.
The tents have a lovely rustic feel, with green canvas outer walls, wooden floors, and beds. Linen is crisp white marshmallow soft duvets and pillows (so cosy on cold nights) and nice touches like falcon-style enamelware complete the look. Wheelbarrows are provided to help you carry your bags down to the field, though it’s not a long walk. Our kids adored getting rides back and forth in the wheelbarrows too.
We stayed over a very hot week, so didn’t use the indoor wood burner. The tents are actually too hot to stay in during day (but why would you want to?) and I imagine are incredibly lovely to stay in out of season when it’s wild and windy outside. Charcoal and wood is readily available from the farm, so we made better use of the outside barbecue as a stove.
What else is at Featherdown glamping?
Up at the farm, there’s an honesty shop, where you can buy useful provisions such as locally-churned butter and meat from the farm. You can also put in orders for freshly baked croissants, and homemade stews and pies. We went for a vegetarian lasagne, which was one of the best I’ve ever eaten – no joke. The shop also has a useful charging point for phones, though the farm does encourage a small donation to charity for using this.
On certain nights, you can cook pizzas made to order in the outdoor pizza oven. This is also a great way to bond with fellow campers, which we did. Martin, the farmer at Featherdown glamping, also gives a fab farm tour for the kids. The tour takes around an hour and you get to pet and feed chickens, goats, piglets and calves, collect some eggs and sit in a tractor! There’s also an old drovers track which leads to a woodland where kids are encouraged to explore and build dens. For a bit of luxe, you can book the private jacuzzi for an evening chill out.
I have nothing negative to stay about Featherdown glamping. It’s just an amazing experience for families to enjoy camping in a little more luxury. In fact we had to bargain with our sons daily to see more of Dorset than the farm. They would have been quite happy to spend all day running around the meadow.