Read on to hear about our wonderful woodland stay in a luxury bell tent at Owl Valley Glamping. Discover this private, hidden gem in North Devon – the perfect place for a glamping getaway!
A Warm Welcome to Owl Valley
Deep into the North Devon countryside we arrived at Owl Valley Glamping and parked up in the designated parking area. As instructed, we located the secret wooden box that houses the walkie-talkie needed to inform the owners you have arrived and within minutes Pauline and Ray arrived on their quad bike and warmly welcomed us to Owl Valley. Ray loaded up and took our luggage on the quad bike, whilst Pauline walked us down into the woodland to discover our bell tent site. During the walk, Pauline was able to tell us the history of the site, show us the facilities and introduce us to the abundance of wildlife that we passed.
After a pleasant 5-minute walk we arrived at ‘Tawny’ our bell tent and home for the night. Ray met us there with our luggage – I think this is such a simple but nice touch – saves you carrying all your bags! Pauline and Ray showed us round our little woodland site, including the beautifully decorated bell tent and separate toilet/ shower area. They also took us down to the Parliament recreational building, then left us to settle in and enjoy our surroundings.
Our Woodland Wonder
The bell tent was so lovely – decorated with a really homely feel and had a comfy double bed. There was all you needed for a relaxed and fun stay and we felt instantly at ease. Wooden boxes and crates revealed all we needed to cook and eat down at the tent including crockery, cutlery and pots and pans. There were candles, cushions, blankets and a cool box too.
As well as having a double bed, there were fold out mattresses that could be used to make beds for additional guests or families with children. I always think that bell tents are more spacious inside than they look form the outside, and there would have been plenty of space for more than two people to stay. You can find out more and follow the site on the Owl Valley Glamping Twitter page.
Outside on the decking area was a dining table and chairs. I loved the different coloured, rustic feel to the table and chairs and felt the vase with fresh flowers was a lovely extra touch. A BBQ is provided too, and we made the most of it cooking up some burgers and eating al fresco at the dining table. There’s something great about getting back to nature, cooking our own dinner over a fire and enjoying it whilst surrounded by beautiful woodland and wildlife.
It was a very warm evening and so we were able to sit out till late and enjoy watching the sun go down through the trees. The hot weather and wildlife around us did mean there were quite a few bugs about though, so I would certainly advise taking some bug repellent with you!
Our bell site tent had a separate raised building which housed a compost toilet and eco shower. The toilet was super clean (Ray mentioned he empties them daily) and Pauline had made sure there was fresh water available for us to wash our hands too. Whilst we didn’t brave the eco shower, had we stayed longer I think I would have enjoyed showering in the old-fashioned tin bath!
The window of the toilet building had a lovely stained-glass window which I liked – Pauline told me this was actually a sticker she had brought but I think it looked very effective all the same! I think it’s always nice when you go away on a glamping trip like this to have your own private toilet and washing area- it always makes me feel much more comfortable and there’s never a queue!
Time for Fun
Also on site is the parliament building – this is a big recreational shack-type building that houses lots of fun!
There’s a log burning stove with comfy seats to sit around on the colder evenings, a big dining room table and stacks of games and books which guests are welcome to borrow.
There’s also a darts board and mini pool table which we enjoyed! I was so pleased to win a very heated and competitive game of darts!
In case you don’t fancy using the BBQ at your tent or it’s raining outside, there are cooking stoves and all you need to cook up a storm in the parliment building. There’s washing up facilities too and lots of candles and fairy lights which light it all up and makes it look very pretty at night! There are only three bell tents at Owl Valley and the Owlet Cabin, so I can’t imagine the parliament building being too overrun with people or busy which I like. We were the only people staying at the site during this time so were lucky enough to have it all to ourselves! I really like all the quirky objects, cute touches and funny signs that made me laugh!
As if this wasn’t enough, the site is also home to Beaters Hut – a sitting area with a pizza making oven! There’s also a campfire area and my favourite – an old British telephone box filled with wildlife information, books and bug hunting equipment. I think this is such a great addition to the site and something to keep children entertained for sure. A small honesty shop is also available where you can find essentials such as milk, eggs and bread.
As well as having three well-spaced out bell tents, Owl Valley Glamping also offers the Owlet Cabin – a cute, secluded wooden retreat that can sleep up to five people. Pauline kindly showed us around the cabin, so we were able to take a sneak peek at the quirky and pretty interior and appreciate how fun it would be to stay there. You can find out more about the Owlet Cabin by clicking here.
We had a really enjoyable stay in ‘Tawny’ our bell tent. We slept really well having had a relaxing evening and woke up to sunshine and the sound of the birds singing. If you want a luxury glamping experience, combined with the opportunity to get back to nature and immersed in wildlife, then Owl Valley Glamping is for you! Pauline and Ray were lovely, welcoming hosts and seem to really enjoy meeting and getting to know their guests. The secluded woodland sites for each of the bell tents were very private and gave you your own personal piece of woodland wonder! I loved all of the wildflowers and thought the foxgloves dotted around were divine! You can find more pretty pictures on the Owl Valley Glamping Facebook page.
The location of Bideford and the rest of surrounding North Devon is beautiful! There are lots of nearby beaches and attractions to explore including kiddies favourite The Big Sheep, the unique village of Clovelly and historic Hartland Abbey. Ray provided us with lots of recommendations for the best nearby beaches and recommended we try a local Hocking’s ice cream – which we did down at Westward Ho beach and it was delicious!
Prices for a stay in one of the three bell tents range from £77 to £95 a night, depending on whether you visit in the high or low season. I think this is a really reasonable price for all Owl Valley offers. Prices for the Owlet Cabin start at £100. More information on pricing and booking can be found on their website.
Big thanks to Pauline and Ray for having us at Owl Valley Glamping, we had a wonderful stay and hope to return one day soon to stay in the Owlet Cabin!
***Whilst our stay was provided by Owl Valley Glamping on a complimentary basis, all thoughts and opinions are entirely my own***