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Thursday, 12 June 2014

Lakeside Yurts

Don't you just find that life always seems to get in the way of catching up with some of your oldest and dearest friends?

My friendship with Anna, Lucy and Abby dates back to my school days when we were struggling through our A-levels together. 7 years on and we're still great friends but I do miss the intrinsic closeness you get from seeing people day in day out.

The time comes when you just need to book a little holiday to exchange news and chat about old times. My best friend from uni Caz came too.

As massive fans of the Lake District we knew our mini break had to take place there. I looked at properties on trusty old Airbnb but was let down by the steep prices and minimum 7 night stay. We all love camping but baulked at the idea of lugging camping gear to our various work places on the Friday before dragging it on to the train.

After much research, I stumbled across the ideal accommodation - yurts. The perfect combination of camping and luxury.

Lakeside yurts are located at on Hollows Farm in Borrowdale, just outside of Keswick. Hollow Farm must be one of the most beautiful campsites I've ever had the pleasure of staying on. As the name suggests, the farm is nestled in a little hollow surrounded by mountains which rise up around you. If staying in one of the 3 yurts isn't your thing, you can simply rock up and pitch your own tent.

Priced at £180 for a 3 night stay they sleep up to 5 people.

We turned up on Friday night and were greeted by the welcome sight of my name pinned on the yurt door.

We soon made ourselves at home, lighting the wood burning stove.

The yurts contain sofas which pull out into beds.

The next day dawned - beautifully sunny elsewhere in the country - but typically grey and overcast in the Lake District.

After stuffing ourselves with bacon and egg rolls, we quickly prepared lunch and Caz was accosted by two friendly ducks.

Our walk took us along the ridge across Catbells and onto nearby Keswick.

We came across an abandoned mine shaft which we felt compelled to explore.

It got very scary the further in we got and we soon ran out again, screaming.

Our best Blair Witch impression

Sensible Anna decided to sit this one out.

We must have walked around 12 miles in total. It was such a shame that the clouds descended and it was so rainy; the view would have been mind numbingly spectacular otherwise.

Although for the most part it simply mizzled, for the last two miles it poured. We practically ran into a little cafe on Keswick High Street, literally soaked to the bone.

We had a much needed hot chocolate and possibly the best cake I have ever eaten - Guinness chocolate cake with Bailey's icing. It might have had something to do with having walked for miles, aching legs and feet, and being soaked to the core, but christ it tasted amazing.

We returned shivering to the yurt and took the opportunity to dry off and attempt to get our clothes dry too. Abby did a great job of making an impromptu drier.

Knackered some of us went for a shower (I couldn't face getting any wetter so avoided it) and Abby and I took a much needed nap.

The next day dawned, beautifully warm and sunny, and I took the opportunity to finally have a shower. The walk from the yurt to the shower is ten minutes long but who cares when you have views like this enroute?

We went for a shorter walk on our second day and stumbled across a quaint tea garden nestled in a hollow. I absolutely adore finding hidden gems like this.

Our walk back to the campsite took us across some stepping stones and past some woodland that was exactly how I imagine Jurassic Park would have been like.

Before we knew it, our weekend was over, and we were soon back on the the rubbish Virgin train to London. Being back at work the next day made the whole weekend feel positively like a dream, but it was such a great way of combining catching up with old friends and escaping the big smoke. I couldn't recommend it more.


  1. Pretty envious over here - would love to stay in a yurt (or a tipi)! I love those types of trips away with close friends as it's a lovely dynamic which you can't just get from meeting someone for coffee or dinner :) Though that mine shaft! Your photos of it give me the heebeejeebees (ever since watching the film The Descent - I wouldn't recommend watching it as you're outdoorsy!!) and I too would have screamed like a baby!

    1. Heebeejeebees must be the best word ever! Don't think I'll be watching The Descent though, I don't want to scare myself silly!