I’m so excited to share a bit more about our Cotswolds summer holiday. We stole a few days in July, set aside the summer camps and work for a few days, and nipped out to the Cotswolds for a little glamping getaway in the tiny village of Evenlode.
Evenlode is a small village in north Cotswolds, just 5 minutes from the ancient market town, Bourton-on-the-Water and 10 minutes from the storybook villages of Upper and Lower Slaughter. Two minutes drive from the village center is Evenlode Grounds, our home for three days, part of Evenlode Farm, a 400 acre secluded farm in the heart of the Cotswolds.
My little animal lovers were in heaven on the Evenlode Farm. Upon our arrivel, our gracious hostess Amanda gave us a short tour of the grounds and introduced us to a few of the cows and horses, who were to be our neighbors during our stay.
Six cabins are perched in a little green valley, overlooking the grazing fields. We spent hours sitting by the fence talking to the animals, watching the cute little calves, and even spotting the occasional fox and hare running through the field.
The small wooden cabin pods are beautifully made, handcrafted and very high quality. Inside, the cabins have all the modern conveniences you need to ensure you are not camping, no, you are glamping, my dear. Soft mattresses, luxury bedding, heated floors, and a fully kitted kitchen and bathroom with hot water for showers. A small TV, and a DVD library ensured we truly were at our leisure to enjoy our holiday. Mom and Dad could catch up on reading while the children ran around the grounds with a football or watched one of the many DVDs on hand.
The little thoughtful touches are what made the stay memorable for us. A small shed onsite contained holiday wonders – from games and DVD’s to borrow, to fresh cakes, treats, and cold drinks on offer every day. The children loved putting pound coins into the small “honesty box” for our marshmallows and kindling wood.
Apart from the gorgeous setting, our favorite part of our stay at Evenlode Grounds: the wood-fired hot tub of my dreams. Next to our cabin, hidden from view of other glampers, sat a beautiful wooden hot tub. We threw firewood in the oven, stirred with the wooden paddle, and let it heat to our desired temperature. It stayed warm for the duration of our stay, with just an extra log or two thrown in every time we got back in.
Our hostess, Amanda, suggested we visit the small village of Snowshill – a very small village that was a filming location in Bridget Jones Diary. The children found a playground, and I wandered around the small village, camera at the ready, capturing the chocolate box cottages and roses dripping from every corner.
Back in the car, a quick five-minute drive took us to the vibrant purple fields of Cotswolds Lavender, a place I’ll remember as realizing the world is quite small. We walked by a few groups of people in the midst of a photoshoot, and one photographer recognized me! It was an out of body experience that I’m still processing, I was actually recognized in the middle of a lavender field in the English countryside. Did I reach peak instagram?
The heat making us wilt like little English roses, and my camera stocked with Instagram-ready lavender field photos, we took refuge in our air-conditioned car and made a 30-minute drive to the falconry center. I would say it was a visit for the children, but if I’m being honest it was just as much for my husband and me. We’ve been to a few bird refuges in the UK, and there is something about them that just brings me joy.
Attending the afternoon birds in flight demonstration was a big hit. We took it in turn holding the cutest little owl. And capturing this moment – my little babe meeting his favorite animal – the fastest animal on planet earth – the peregrine falcon.
Having worked up an appetite, we stopped at a nearby pub for dinner. Spoilt for choice in the area, the Fox Inn at Broadwell or Oddington, or The Kings Head at Bledington all make for a lovely meal.
The heatwave relented in the evenings, and as the sun set, we stoked the fire and took another turn in the hot tub.
I cannot impress upon you how badly I need a hot tub like this in my life 24-7. The children took it upon themselves to ensure the hot tub always at least one swimmer, appreciating its warmth in the cooler evenings.
Never one to let an opportunity pass me by, we picked up a s’mores kit from the honesty shop on-site. Gooey marshmallows, with a kind assist from a fudge brownie, safe to say we were all happy glampers.
A full day behind us and another one ahead of us, we nodded off, sleeping the kind of sleep you only get away from the city.
In the wee early hours, the children awoke begging to get in the hot tub. Who am I to deny them on their holiday? They each took every free moment as an opportunity to “go for a swim” in the gorgeous wood-fired hot tub. Goggles at the ready. In summer, with the sun rising at 6am, it’d be rude not to have a dip in the hot tub before breakfast.
Finally, I was able to peel them away from their hot tub swim, after promises of ice cream to those who would join me, and our family hopped in the car for a little Cotswolds village trip.
With temperatures on the rise from the heat wave, we explored nearby Bourton-on-the-Water and Upper and Lower Slaughter, wading in the streams to cool down, eating ice creams along the way, making sure to visit the mini-Cotswolds park. But feeling like we were walking on the surface of the sun, it was time to head back to the cabin grounds for some rest and to enjoy our final glamping evening.
A quick shop run to pick up provisions for dinner, it was time to test our survival skills. Eager small ones pitched in to gather kindling and logs (provided by the grounds) and in a matter of minutes, we had ourselves a roaring fire, ready to cook dinner. We took advantage of the fully-kitted cabin kitchens to prepare a glampers feast of hamburgers, kebabs, peppered with fresh salads and the juiciest British strawberries from the nearby Cotswolds chic Daylesford Farmshop.
That night, we settled in for another DVD movie with the kids, and let them stay up late, until the summer sun had fully set. We wanted to show them what a real night sky away from the city could look like. Our city kids were in awe. To be honest – so were mum and dad. It seemed like a fairy had sprinkled a bit of magic dust across the night sky. We stargazed, looked for planets and shooting stars, before finally settling into bed.
We managed one final hot tub dip in the morning alongside some croissants and yogurt, before packing up the car to head back to London. Our time at Evenlode Grounds had come to an end, but hopefully we’ll return again soon.
Thank you to Evenlode Grounds for hosting us, and for the lovely memories. This post is in partnership with Evenlode Grounds. All opinions and thoughts are my own.