GLAMPING, CAMPING AND COOKING TO COMMAND

GLAMPING, CAMPING AND COOKING TO COMMAND

Reading Time: 5 minutes

 

Glamping is definitely a trend that has grown incredibly in the past few years, so much so that even the rich and famous are heading out of town just to explore the countryside and instead of checking into exclusive hotels, are opting for a ‘five star’ experience in one of the great Glamping sites springing up all over the UK.

There is nothing better and more bonding for a couple or family, than sitting around a camp fire cooking and reminiscing, and in the absence of electricity, it is wonderful to switch off from the World and turn back the clock to those joyful pre internet days when communication was conversation.

One location I have tried and would recommend is Nethergong in Kent, which has been long established as a camping site, and now extremely well equipped with everything you would need for Glamping, if you wanted to stay in one of their Shepherds Huts, Bell Tents or Romany caravans.

Nethergong is a family run business who take care to ensure all of their guests have everything they need for a delightful Glamping experience.

They have a two-acre wood with tall, evenly-spaced poplar trees and grass underfoot. In addition to Glamping there are several grassed camping areas, including the First Field, the Fruit Trees, the Carp Lake and the New Duck Pond. Some areas can be let exclusively to groups of families dependent on availability and numbers. See their Map for more details.
One of our most popular areas is either side of our shallow Frog Pond, populated by many marsh and common frogs, toads, dragon flies and damselflies and the odd grass snake! The frog pond is suitable for pond dipping and paddling and nets can always be found in their shop (our best seller). Their one-acre Carp Lake can be fished by campers and is not open to the public. Every morning at 10am Jed, the owner, can be found with a throng of children feeding the carp which compete with the swans and the ducks for the food.

History of Nethergong

In the early 90’s Jed’s father planted 3000 English broad-leaved trees on our 26 acre piece of beautiful Kent countryside. Jed then dug out two lakes and more recently stocked the carp lake with thousands of carp for our campers enjoyment. Their oak, ash, willow, elm and beech trees are their pride and joy and at 25 years old are now coming to maturity.

Environment

The natural and unspoilt nature of Nethergong enables hundreds of wildlife species to thrive and live harmoniously with their temporary human guests. The wildlife includes:

  • Hundreds of frogs. The marsh frogs’ chorus (best heard from April to July) has to be heard to be believed
  • A resident swan family who have raised a brood for the past three years
  • Rare dragonflies and damselflies
  • Coots, moorhens and ducks of all varieties
  • Newts, lizards and bats
  • Rare visiting Turtle Doves
  • Cuckoos in spring
  • Nightingales singing at night
  • Owls – From the riverbank you can also see the Barn Owl nesting boxes across the far side of the field. They also have Little Owls and Tawny Owls
  • Marsh Harriers and Buzzards.

Glamping is ideal if you are travelling with kids and multi generations, some of whom may be in need more of their home comforts.   This gives the family the outdoor experience, but will enable them to cook their favourite meals, if the tastes differ within a family.  For instance, two members of my ‘tribe’ have special dietary requirements, whilst the others enjoy a good steak or burger.  Mission accomplished and everyone catered for and the entire family happy and able to enjoy their holiday to the full.

Check out Nethergong for yourself at http://www.nethergongcamping.co.uk/

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Looking For A City Break Not Far From Home, Canterbury Is A Stunning Cathedral Destination

Looking For A City Break Not Far From Home, Canterbury Is A Stunning Cathedral Destination

Reading Time: 6 minutes

 

If you are looking for a City Break not far from home, Canterbury is a stunning Cathedral destination in Southeast England, which really will tick all the boxes and cater to all palates and passions.

Canterbury was originally a pilgrimage site in the Middle Ages.  The Ancient walls which were originally built by the Romans, are the boundary for its medieval centre with cobbled streets and timber-framed houses.

Canterbury Cathedral founded in 597 AD is the headquarters of the Church of England and Anglican Church, boasting Gothic and Romanesque stone carvings and stained-glass windows. https://www.canterbury-cathedral.org/

Ancient walls, originally built by the Romans, encircle its medieval centre with enchanting cobbled streets and timber-framed houses. Canterbury Cathedral, founded 597 A.D., is the headquarters of the Church of England and Anglican Communion, incorporating Gothic and Romanesque elements in its stone carvings and stained-glass windows.

There are plenty of wonderful buildings and churches to explore as well as the Cathedral, if you enjoy ancient architecture, but if you want to indulge in food, wine and entertainment, this is also close at hand.

On a recent trip we visited The Marlowe Theatre in The Friars, Canterbury. https://marlowetheatre.com/ which is the recently refurbished Modern theatre for Shakespeare, musicals and stand-up with a studio for contemporary performances.  They often have touring shows and household names appearing there so if you like a good play or musical, book to coincide with your holiday.

There are a plethora of restaurants if you are a foodie, and depending on your taste buds and budget you can’t go wrong with the centrally located Cote Brasserie either for a brilliant brunch, pre-theatre meal or romantic supper.  The food is excellent and the service first class. https://www.cote.co.uk/restaurant/canterbury/,  They also have a great variety of wines and cocktails to toast your time out.  The restaurant itself is huge and spacious and so you can also have an intimate meal at your own pace which is worth its weight these days.

If you are watching your diet or want to eat ultra healthy, then try The Skinny Kitchen, also near to the centre, which is ‘a healthy hangout serving clean, fresh food all day long. https://theskinnykitchen.co.uk/ Whatever your diet, goals or macros there’s something for you. Everyday food with a clean, healthy twist. HOW IT ALL STARTED Back in 2014 three friends realised Ibiza was missing a major part of their lifestyle; healthy food. Fuelled by passion and the desire to bring something totally unique to the food industry, they immediately set about opening Ibiza’s first healthy food hangout. But they didn’t stop there. Now with five locations across Ibiza and the UK, The Skinny Kitchen still focus on that initial concept; creative, clean and healthy food with lots of variety, to suit many diets. MISSION They create healthy…

If you are looking for a reasonably priced but highly recommended place to stay The Millers Arms Built in 1826 is an inn positioned in the middle of Canterbury.https://www.millerscanterbury.co.uk/
Guestrooms feature flatscreen TVs, telephones, work desks and complimentary Wi-Fi. Also included are tea and coffee-making facilities. Hair dryers and free toiletries can be found in the private bathrooms. Rollaway/extra beds can be made available upon request.
Wi-Fi and wired internet are both free in public areas is of this hotel, which has its own garden.
A complimentary breakfast is served every morning. Later in the day, guests can enjoy some food and a drink in the bar.

The Millers Arms is under half a mile from Canterbury Cathedral. Marlowe Theatre, the Royal Museum and Art Gallery, Westgate Gardens and Towers and Weaver’s House are all also within half a mile. Other local attractions include St. Dunstan’s Church and St. Augustine’s Abbey are within easy walking distance as well.

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Top 10 Irresistible Villas & Apartments in Spain

Top 10 Irresistible Villas & Apartments in Spain

Reading Time: 8 minutes

 

Check Out Our Top 10 Irresistible Villas & Apartments in Spain

 

Plain sailing in Catalonia I 5 Bedrooms I From £965pw

This totally unique villa in Catalonia has been designed to look like a boat with its several curved balconies offering views
of the sea and private outdoor swimming pool. Large windows bring in huge amounts of natural light to the open-plan
living/kitchen/dining area, inviting guests to enjoy the luxury of taking in the sunshine even from the sofa or dining table

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/catalonia/sant-pol-de-mar/holiday-home-sant-pol-de-mar-ebn049

 

 

Costa Blanca Escape I 1 Bedroom I From £457pw

This apartment has a fresh, clean aesthetic with plenty of natural light flooding through from the large private terrace.
Whilst there is one double bedroom for the accommodation of two guests, there is also a convenient sofa bed for one more.
The apartment comes with access to several heated pools, a Jacuzzi, tennis courts and children’s play areas. Just stone’s
throw from the beach, this is the perfect little space for a Spanish escape.

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/valencia/costa-blanca/apartment-arenales-del-sol-elche-ebl019

 

 

Costa del Sol Getaway I 2 Bedrooms I From £359pw

Join the party on the popular Costa del Sol but have your fill of peace and quiet whenever you like with this tranquil retreat.
This contemporary apartment is the perfect place to relax after a long day at the beach – whether that be with a book next to
the large window, or next to the nearby shared swimming pool. As the view suggests, you’re not far from the sea, as well as a
selection of restaurants and shops.

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/andalucia/costa-del-sol/apartment-margolf-riviera-del-sol-ean097

 

 

Catalan Comfort I 4 Bedrooms I From £1,564pw

This villa in Catalonia isn’t shy of creature comforts and mod-cons. Not only are there four super-modern bedrooms, but four
bathrooms to choose from, as well as two separate living areas and two kitchens. With plenty of facilities to go round, you
won’t have to compromise during your stay. Whilst the interior design and functionality is very impressive, the villa also delivers
on outside space with multiple balconies and a lovely pool.

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/catalonia/costa-barcelona/holiday-home-alella-ebn040

 

 

Zen on the Costa Barcelona I 3 Bedrooms I From £1,167pw

This ultra-modern and minimalistic villa is accented with natural materials and decorations that pay homage to the far east.
The two storey holiday home is surrounded by tall trees and creeping vines, that make the property feel like a hidden oasis. Sit
and meditate on the beautifully hand-crafted wooden seating area in the garden (sangria optional) or take a dip in the pool.

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/catalonia/costa-barcelona/holiday-home-cabrils-ebn339

 

 

Rustic Retreat in Andalucia I 5 Bedrooms I From £785pw

If you have an eye for traditional tastes, you’ll adore the authentic feel of this Spanish country house. Filled with beautiful
wooden furniture, tiled floors, and plenty of well-maintained outdoor space, this villa is the ideal rural getaway in Spain.
Appreciate the grassy garden whilst dining alfresco under the arches of the house, or take a refreshing dip in the private pool.

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/andalucia/holiday-home-carmona-sevilla-eac219

 

 

Family Mansion in Majorca I 6 Bedrooms I From £2,620pw

This sprawling villa is bright and spacious with enough room to sleep 12 guests comfortably. The real star of the show is the
private swimming pool, which is surrounded by panoramic terraces with Jacuzzi and an outdoor kitchen complete with
barbecue. Its hillside location affords this villa with striking views over the Bay of Palma – ideal to admire with a nightcap after
a day in the sun.

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/majorca/palma-de-mallorca/holiday-home-rustica-saranjassa-palma-eml387

 

 

Quirky & Contemporary in Seville I 3 Bedrooms I From £561pw

Discover the capital of southern Spain’s Andalusia region from this well-located apartment. Featuring bold and individual
design touches throughout, the holiday home strikes a balance between fun and calm. Enjoy a morning spread whilst sat
around the breakfast bar, or take your time over a cup of coffee on the balcony, which faces onto the courtyard.

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/andalucia/apartment-sevilla-eac181

 

Hillside Hideaway in Catalonia I 4 Bedrooms I From £1,186pw

Grand, impressive and certainly worth a stay, this hillside holiday home has beautiful views over the coast, trees and peaceful
neighbourhood below. Lounge by your private pool topping up your tan, or stay on top of your game with a round of table
tennis…

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/catalonia/costa-barcelona/holiday-home-santa-susanna-ebn636

 

Balearic Island Beauty I 4 Bedrooms I From £1,119pw

This state-of-the-art villa is peacefully located in northern Majorca amidst some sublime landscapes. The shaded terrace and
stunning swimming pool provide ample space for absorbing the reviews and the favourable climate. Inside, open and well-lit
rooms offer guests a relaxing ambience. Despite this luxurious villa feeling remote, the sandy beaches of Port d’Alcúdia are
just 20 minutes away.

https://www.novasol.co.uk/holidayhome/spain/majorca/holiday-home-moscari-ema109

 

 

https://www.novasol.co.uk/

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Hygge on Holiday – Make Yourself at Home

Hygge on Holiday – Make Yourself at Home

Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

The Scandinavian countries annually jostle at the top of the World’s Happiest Nation rankings to win the prized title each year. So what are they doing so right? And how can you experience a bit of that Scandi satisfaction they call ‘Hygge’? We think it’s about time we learned a thing or two about making ourselves at home on holiday.

 

Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Iceland and Norway have a lot to offer, and not just for permanent residents, but for lucky visitors, too. These Nordic neighbours are blessed with wonderful landscapes and a sense of environmental responsibility that means nature is well-guarded and appreciated. Those that choose Scandinavia as a holiday destination are putting themselves in a fantastic position to experience flora, fauna and the great outdoors right on their doorstep.


Whilst winter leaves much of Scandinavia blanketed in picturesque snow, this also means the Nordic nations know how to do a hearty log fire really, really well. Rent a holiday home with all the trimmings to keep out the cold whilst you’re not exploring frozen lakes, taking in the Northern Lights, or visiting authentic Christmas markets. Many of Novasol’s Holiday Homes are well-equipped to deliver the full Hygge experience with plush fire-lit living rooms, saunas and even Jacuzzis.

To channel Scandi satisfaction on your next holiday, call 0333 012 4926 or visit www.novasol.co.uk, where your perfect holiday home awaits.

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MAKE A SPLASH THIS SUMMER WITH A PRIVATE POOL

MAKE A SPLASH THIS SUMMER WITH A PRIVATE POOL

Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

We can’t think of anything quite more essential on your summer holiday than having a swimming pool.
In fact, holidaymakers gravitate towards the water for all sorts of reasons from dawn to dusk!

Active adventurers arise early for leisurely lengths, whilst sun seekers are intermittently drawn from their loungers for a refreshing dip.
Children splash and compete for their favourite pool float as the designated grillmaster keeps the barbecue stoked.
Finally, once the sun has set, parents can sit and listen to the crickets with a poolside nightcap before bed.

It’s hard to imagine your stylish Spanish finca, rustic Italian farmhouse, or modern Croatian villa without the holiday hub that is the pool.

So where to start? A visit to NOVASOL Holiday Homes’ website is a great idea to help you plan your next self-catering holiday. With 50,000 holiday homes across Europe, many with either a communal or private swimming pool, you’re bound to find the ideal property in the perfect location for you.
For many, a private pool signals splashing the cash, but NOVASOL have an incredible affordable range with prices starting from as little as £299 per property, per week.

Check out their latest video and if you feel just as inspired as we do, head to www.novasol.co.uk to book your next villa holiday.

France’s Best Christmas Markets as recommended by Grape Escapes

France’s Best Christmas Markets as recommended by Grape Escapes

Reading Time: 6 minutes

 

With the holiday season in full swing, it’s tempting to huddle up on the sofa with a warming glass of mulled wine and a good film, and simply watch the world pass by outside your frosted windows. But stop! Don’t do that… there’s so much beauty in the world at this time of year, and one thing everyone should experience at least once at Christmas time is a French Christmas Market! With so many to choose from, it can be difficult to know where to head to for the best, most bedazzling festive experience… so it’s lucky I’ve taken the time to review five of my favourites for you…

Strasbourg

The oldest and most historic of Christmas markets, Strasbourg’s Christkindelsmärik dates back to the 16th Century and has thousands of people flocking to the ‘home of Christmas’ each year! This spectacular market features over 300 small wooden chalets, offering local products and delicacies. You’ll be able to nibble on gingerbread and sip hot mulled wine, whilst wandering around the various squares of Strasbourg discovering what made this market ‘Europe’s Best Christmas Market’ in 2014 as voted by Europe Best Vacation. Each year, a different guest country is welcomed to promote their goods, making the market a true multi-cultural delight.

Bordeaux

Discover the magical winter wonderland of Bordeaux, where 150 illuminated log cabin stalls line the Allées du Tourny – the perfect spot to while away the hours whilst picking up a few original gifts for your loved ones. Particular treasures you’ll find here include artisan perfumes, bottles of local wine and Landes foie gras. Father Christmas can be found in his grotto for children to visit, and the market also offers free sleigh rides – an enchanting experience!

 

Avignon

Avignon in December is a great place to be if you are looking to discover Provencal Christmas traditions! As well as the usual market stalls lining the streets, overflowing with wooden toys, gastronomic specialities, artisan crafts and jewellery, this lively Christmas market dedicates space for traditional Provence performers to dance, act and sing transforming Avignon into a sparkly performance arena! You will be welcomed to attend a local midnight mass or nativity celebration on Christmas Eve in the city, which is a lovely way to experience Christmas the way the locals do.

Colmar

A second Alsatian offering, which is only fitting when you consider that Alsace is the birthplace of the Christmas tree! In a pretty, fairy-tale setting, the fully pedestrianised streets of Colmar lend themselves perfectly to a typical festive market. The quaint illuminated town welcomes tourists to explore their five different market areas including a Children’s market in Little Venice (look out for the children’s choirs singing carols on brightly lit boats on the canals!), the markets of the Place de l’Ancienne Douane, and Alsatian gastronomic delights at the food markets at Place Jeanne d’Arc. A Christmas ice skating rink at Place Rapp finishes off this spectacular market, where you can enjoy the childlike joy experienced from skating in such a dream-like setting!

 

Reims

Reims is said to be where the first French Christmas celebrations took place in 496BC when King Clovis and his 3000 warriors were baptised on Christmas Day! Reims’ Christmas market involves over 125 fairy-lit chalets, offering Christmas gifts and local produce. Street entertainers such as carol singers and magicians entertain the crowds, and there is a grotto where children can meet Father Christmas. Look out for Biscuits Rose de Reims – ‘pink biscuits’, traditionally dipped into Champagne – the distinctive feature of these biscuits is they don’t break even when wet. They’ll be the perfect accompaniment for your Champagne on Christmas day. It would also be a crime not to visit some of the esteemed Champagne Houses whilst in the region, as well as exploring the smaller producers, where you are able to purchase a bottle of Grand Cru Champagne for as little as €15 a bottle – the perfect opportunity to stock up for the festivities!

Grape Escapes is a specialist wine tour operator offering a broad selection of holidays and trips to the premium European wine regions. Contact the team for more information about wine tour holidays via their website www.grapeescapes.net, on +44 (0) 1920 468666 or email info@grapeescapes.net

 

 

 

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