Nathan and I enjoyed a brilliant 2-night stay with Just Us Retreats and I couldn’t recommend a stay on this wonderful, family-run farm enough! Just Us Retreats is located just outside Crediton in Devon and is situated on a working family farm. Zara runs the luxury glamping offered on the farm and luxury it really is! There’s ‘Gabriel’ the bell tent or ‘Bathsheba’ the Shepherd’s Hut to choose from and both offer real privacy and are situated in their own fields.
We were lucky enough to enjoy a 2-night stay in ‘Gabriel’ the bell tent. We had never stayed in bell tent before and we certainly weren’t disappointed!
Welcome to Luxury Glamping
We arrived on a sunny Sunday day in May and were greeted warmly by Hugh, who had been ploughing a nearby field before we arrived. We hopped back into the car and Hugh led the way to the site of the bell tent. Hugh showed us around our own secluded private woodland and informed us a Devon cream tea was waiting for us!
My first impressions of the area were amazing! I thought the woodland field was gorgeous and the bell tent was stunning! Standing in the sunshine admiring the site, with the countryside views surrounding us, Nathan and I were giddy with excitement – we knew this was going to be a good stay!
Left to explore we took a closer look at Gabriel. Wow! What a stunningly decorated bell tent, furnished to such a high standard! The bed was made with duvets, pillows and plenty of blankets to keep us warm. There were two sofas and lots of storage space for clothes and all your other holiday bits. I think the sofas can be turned into beds if people are staying with children. I was so impressed with the colour scheme and how everything matched – I really liked the carpets too as they added a really homely feel to the tent. One of the rugs matched a one my Gran used to have in her house so that was a nice personal memory for me.
I loved all the candles and ornaments – I would happily have had any of them in my home! I think they added such nice touches and helped to make the tent feel so homely and luxurious. Additional extra touches like a welcome book, torch and first aid kit were also included. The welcome book includes a map of the farm site, a menu of fresh meals guests can order and recommendations for places to eat and visit. We were delighted to find a trunk full of cards, games, books and colouring pens for guests to use.
There’s also a wood burning stove inside the tent which kept us nice and warm in the evenings. There’s plenty of wood, kindling and firelighters provided to help get the fire going too.
A Touch of Romance
Despite there being no main electricity or lights, the bell tent still looks beautiful at night thanks for the abundance of fairy lights and candles. As well as providing a surprising amount of light, the glowing ebbs of the fairy lights and the flickering flames from central tea light holder give the bell tent such a romantic, cosy feel. It was lovely dosing off in the comfy bed with the candles flickering, the fire slowly crackling and listening to the owls hooting. We certainly slept well!
Everything You Need and More
The secluded site includes its own kitchen area – a gazebo-tent fully equipped with all you need to cook up a storm. There’s pots, pans, crockery, cutlery and a stove with whistleblowing kettle. There’s also tea, coffee, sugar and various other sauces and condiments included – there really was so much provided; it was everything we needed and more! There’s also a sink attached to mains water with tea towels and all you require to do the washing up. A cool box with ice-packs is provided and guests have access to a fridge that’s located in one of the farm’s barns. It makes a big difference to have all of these items included when you go glamping as it really cuts down how much you need to pack and bring from home – I’m always one for an easier life!
Inside the kitchen area is also a table and chairs – this was nice as this gave us the option to sit outside and enjoy our food or the option to have it undercover should it have rained. The nice added touch of some pink roses to dress the table was cute. We sat at the table for breakfast each day and enjoyed our complimentary scones, cream and jam too! Zara offers cooked meals and homemade desserts which you can pre-order. The menu included pasta dishes, lamb tagine and some very yummy sounding puddings! I can imagine these homely warming dishes would be very much appreciated in the colder months. You can also opt for another cream tea if the complimentary welcome one tempted you to have another!
I’ve never glamped or camped anywhere where I have had access to my own private toilet! The toilet hut is great and features a real flushing toilet that was spotlessly clean. An added bonus is the outdoor power shower – what a unique experience to shower outside amidst the wonderful woodland! There are fairy lights to guide you during night-time and plenty of toilet roll and shower essentials provided which again added another nice touch.
Camp Fire Heaven
For the two nights we stayed at Just Us Retreats we made use of the awesome fit pit to cook our dinners. There’s plenty of wood provided and we so enjoyed building the fire and cooking BBQ food.
Zara had left us some marshmallows and so using his pocket knife Nathan made us some sticks to roast the marshmallows on. There’s something so cute and romantic about toasting marshmallows over an open fire. There’s logs for sitting on and a bench too – plenty of room for a family to chill around an open roaring fire pit. All that was missing was the campfire songs – Nathan wasn’t too keen on these!
One of the brilliant additions to the site is the two full-size hammocks hooked up between the stunning woodland trees. Nathan and I spent hours laying in the sunshine looking up through the trees to the blue skies above us and chilling out. It was so relaxing to unwind with a cup of tea and a book and just listen to the birdsong whilst swaying in the breeze. I am dreaming about returning to these hammocks – such a great addition to the site!
Countryside Views and A Spot of Tennis
Whilst staying at Just Us Retreats guests have access to the farmland and surrounding fields. Guests are provided with a map and encouraged to walk around and enjoy the wonderful countryside views. We did this early one evening and loved how peaceful and beautiful the area was – all you can hear is the sound of birdsong and the sheep grazing in the fields! We spotted an abundance of wildlife during our stay including various birds, squirrels, rabbits, sheep, spiders, bees and lots of other woodland bugs! We weren’t lucky enough to see any deer which Zara regularly sees – maybe we weren’t quiet enough! You can check out some lovely pictures and videos of the wildlife filmed by Zara on the Just Us Retreats Instagram page.
As well as exploring the farmland and fields, guests are invited to use the tennis court. We had a couple of games and really enjoyed getting some exercise whilst competing against each other to win! All tennis balls and rackets are provided which is another bonus!
Taking a Look Around Bathsheba
Zara invited us to have a look ‘Bathsheba’ the Shepherd’s hut. Bathsheba is again situated in its own private field and offers stunning countryside views. The hut looked so cute and cosy and I would love to come back and stay here next time! As with Gabriel, the Shepherd’s hut site has its own toilet hut, kitchen area and fire pit. Again, there are lovely little personal touches that add to the luxurious and welcoming feel. Given the size of the Shepherd’s hut, I think Gabriel would be better for families as there is more space in the tent. I can imagine Bathsheba being super romantic for a couple’s birthday or anniversary getaway. The hut has great reviews on TripAdvisor too so don’t just take my word for it!
Whilst this was an easy and enjoyable blog post to write given how much fun we had, I also feel like I don’t have the words to do our wonderful stay justice! I really can’t give enough praise to Just Us Retreats and couldn’t recommend it more. Everything you need for a luxury glamping trip is provided here and Nathan I totally fell in love with Gabriel, our bell tent. It was so nice to get away from the daily grind and surround ourselves in the beautiful woodland of our secluded getaway. There’s such a peaceful and relaxed atmosphere and I truly felt able to relax and unwind. The luxurious nature of the tent felt very special and romantic and I would really recommend Just Us Retreats for a romantic getaway with your nearest and dearest. The added touches didn’t go unnoticed and we spent our whole stay exclaiming at how much was provided and how the attention to detail was superb. The bank holiday sunshine made our stay even more pleasant, but I can imagine with the watertight tent, warm furnishings and undercover cooking area that it would be a great place to glamp all year-round! Both Zara and Hugh were very welcoming and friendly and appeared keen to provide guests with a really lovely, luxurious and unique retreat. 5 stars all round!
***Whilst our stay at Just Us Retreats was provided to us on a complimentary basis all thoughts and opinions are my own***