Imagine sitting at the edge of a lake, with uninterrupted views of its entirety. Watching the resident ducks emerge from the weeping willow branches dipping into the lake. The gentle meandering of them making their way to the lakes island, ready to settle for the night. Imagine yourself immersed in the scene unfolding before you, as day slowly dims its lights to welcome night. As the darkness wraps itself around the lake, picture being snuggled in a blanket, warm mugs of tea in hand. Behind you, your gorgeous traditional yurt is lit by just the twinkle of candles and fairy lights. Well, this is what we experienced while glamping in Essex…
In truth, I was a little unsure what to expect. I had booked a stay here on a whim. Nik was still limited on what he was allowed to do while recovering from his operation, but desperately needed a change of scenery. There is only so long you can stay at home recovering! A quick “glamping Essex” google search was my introduction to Lakeland Yurts. I knew straight away that I had found the perfect retreat for us. Two beautiful, traditional Mongolian yurts were on offer, right on the edge of a lake, surrounded by the Essex countryside. Just as perfect, they were situated just a short, 30 minute drive from where we live. After a conversation with the incredibly helpful owner of the site, Sue, we had booked our two night stay in Lily Lake Yurt.
How to get to Glamping in Essex
Lakeland Yurts are situated just 5 mins from the A12, in Hatfield Peveral, Essex. The City of Chelmsford, (incidentally the first City of Essex and the birth place of radio) is just 7 miles away. So, despite the peace and quiet of the destination helping to make you fell like you are a million miles away from everything, you are on the door step to unlimited choices of things to do should that be your desire. If your car journey brings you via the M25, exiting the motorway at junction 28, puts you straight on the A12. A half hour drive on this A road will have you arriving at Hatfield Peveral.
Lakeland Yurts are also easy to travel to via train. In fact, it is just a 40 minute train Journey from London Liverpool Street to Hatfield Peveral. It makes the yurts popular as a peaceful getaway for those looking to escape the City for a few days.
The Details of Glamping in Essex
Lily Lake Yurt
Many people in Mongolia, still live in traditional yurts. In fact, these incredibly hard wearing homes are still used throughout many parts of Central Asia. Constructed with a circular wooden structure, felt, or other available fabric would have been stretched over it to cover it. The yurts at this glamping site in Essex are made in the traditional style, with a little Essex glam. In Lily Lake Yurt, intricately carved wooden poles make up the structure, and it is incredibly ornate and detailed.
Walking in through the carved wooden door of the yurt, we were met with beautiful twinkling candle light. Surprisingly spacious, the decor was romantic and whimsical. Perfect for a couple to retreat to for a few days. Comfortable, mismatched arm chairs sat either side of a wood burning stove, inviting you to take a seat and warm up from the evening chill.
A huge bed, adorned with thick duvets, cloud like pillows and pretty cushions invited you to climb in. The bed was sat directly opposite the door, so your view of the lake was assessable without even having to step foot outside of the bed! Fairy lights twinkled all around the yurt, and we knew already we were going to love it here!
Blue Bell Yurt
Blue bell yurt is the second, slightly larger yurt on offer. Set slightly back from the Lake’s edge, it has the capacity to host 4/5 people. The decor of Blue Bell yurt is a little more masculine than Lily Yurt, but just as adorable! The large bed is again, positioned opposite the door, and two, full sized single beds are provided in the form of a day bed.
Where Lily Yurt is set right on the waters edge, Blue Bell is set on higher ground. It still has the lake views, but from a tiny bit further away. The hot tub is set beside the yurt in a private enclosure. There is a stepped slope encouraging you to walk down to the waters edge, where you will find a large hammock and table and chairs.
The Hideaway Pod
If you fancy going full on retreat, then another option is the hideaway Pod. A gorgeous little wooden structure, with no more than a double bed and a fire. Set right on the waters edge, and a little off the beaten track, this would be perfect for the keen fishing couple. There are no electricity facilities at the Hideaway, so you really would be living your best “cabin in the woods” life. The views from the Pod are stunning!
Lets go to the other extreme now with the latest accomodation to have been added to the site! If you like the idea of a getaway, but still want your mod-con’s, then The Lodge could be a good option. Set up like a holiday home, there are two double bedrooms, as well as large lounge complete with huge tv, kitchen and bathroom. A garden area at the rear of the Lodge, complete with hot tub, means you can be in beautiful settings, but not have to sacrifice any of your home comforts!
Yes, you may be staying in a posh tent, but glamping in Essex really delivers on the glam in glamping! Each of the yurts has a hot tub for you to use! Both are totally private, bath temperature hot and just wonderful to watch the sunset from with a glass of something chilled in hand. Our hot tub at Lily yurt is again, just steps from the waters edge. We absolutely loved watching the sunset over the lake from the warmth of the hot tub. It was a gorgeous place to observe the day slowly give in to night. When you are ready to leave the warmth of this little outside oasis, wrap yourself up in one of the thick fluffy robes that are suppled for your stay, to make your way back inside the yurt.
Both of the yurts have private kitchen and bathroom facilities within the immediate vicinity. Lily yurt has her small but perfectly formed kitchen and shower immediately behind her. Blue Bell has a much larger kitchen and bathroom, to accommodate the larger numbers staying there, set at her side.
The wonderful owners of Lakeland Yurts have supplied you with tee, coffee, water, and even freshly laid eggs from the chickens roaming freely around the grounds. I think me and the chickens became great friends by the end of our stay. My morning chats with them as I walked around the lakes each morning were epic!
There are also outdoor cooking facilities if you are in the mood to cook/bbq. Again, everything has been thought of here too as you have an outdoor chiminea fire to keep you warm while outside, should you wish to utilise the outdoor space to its max.
Things to do at Lakeland Yurts
The short, and most rewarding answer here, is do nothing! Honestly. Every one has such busy lives now, take the time to relax. Nik and I took a book each to read, but the yurts do have a supply of magazines to flick through. There are also board games, a cd player and of course the views! I found that relaxing on the hammock, book or magazine in hand was a wonderful way to spend an hour or so.
The property is actually a popular fishing destination. The two lakes have an abundance of “ones that got away” and each yurt has its own swim. You can fish to your hearts content. Although Lakeland Fisheries, (the property the yurts are in) is a Fishing club, the yurts are out of bounds to anyone not staying there, so you have no fear of local fishermen walking through your garden!
I did take a walk around the lakes a couple of times a day. In addition to Lily Lake that the yurts are set on, there is Swan Lake which is 5 acres of unspoilt beauty. The lakes are home to ducks, geese and various other bird life, as well as being popular fishing lakes. You then of course have my mates the chickens, and two gorgeous pigmy goats. The goats are such characters, hilarious to watch, and even Nik enjoyed going to see them each day.
If you do fancy a little jaunt out, there are a good selection of pubs nearby. We went to The Wheatsheaf for lunch one day, just 2 minutes up the road, which was delicious. You also have various towns and villages scattered nearby, if you need some retail therapy.
Booking your own glamping Essex experience
Nik and I had such an amazingly restful, peaceful retreat at Lakeland Yurts. I would urge anyone to try glamping. It seems to me to be the prefect marriage of going a little off grid, but with some luxuries! We genuinely never knew that we had this wonderful place just half hour from where we live. We will be making a return visit for sure! It is great to discover more of what’s on our doorstep and support our local businesses. we visited Finchingfield, Essex last year and that was also a beautiful surprise.
If you too like the idea of staying here for a gorgeous Autumnal break, I have some great news for you. If you book a mid-week stay, from now until the 31st March, you can get a fabulous 10% discount. If you book direct with Sue, (tel 01245 380416) quoting Kerry Life and Loves, you will get the reduced rate. This is not an ad, I paid for our retreat myself, I just wanted to share with you all. Of course, if you prefer the idea of staying as the weather warms up again, or a weekend retreat, you can find out prices and make a booking right here. (I also have a £25 discount code for you if you are new to Air BnB, or want to set another account up, just here).
Have you ever been glamping? Is it something that you have ever thought about doing if not? Many people were not even aware what it was, so I hope I have given you a little insight into it. I would love to know what you think!