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Old Bidlake Farm

Dorset Dt6 5 Py, Dorset, England
1 acre hosted by Sue ?.
Hassle-free camping on the Jurassic Coast
Cradled between the beautiful beaches of the Jurassic Coast (recognised as a World Heritage Site) and Dorset’s highest hills within an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, lies the Marshwood Vale. If all of the aforementioned recognition isn’t clue enough, the Marshwood Vale is home to an epically picturesque landscape. The atmosphere and views of Marshwood Vale may be little changed since the area provided the backdrop to some of Thomas Hardy’s best-known novels, but the comfort and convenience of Old Bidlake’s Farm’s camping field, with its four ready-erected bell tents, is most certainly up-to-date.

Making your arrival up the well-trodden track, you park in the farmyard where the wonderfully welcoming Sue will meet you with a tin of her delicious home-made apple cakes and show you around the eight acres of quiet pastureland. Guiding you through the pretty orchard, which at night is illuminated by a row of pretty solar lights, you're taken to the one-acre camping area of a six-acre meadow field .

 Nestled within each outward corner of the camping area (allowing plenty of privacy for guests and plenty of room for kids to roam freely and safely) are the four traditional canvas bell tents. Each tent is named after the four hills that surround the field, and is equipped with a double futon and up to three child sized futons, solar-powered lanterns, hot water bottles, crockery and a cool box – and there’s also a toilet in the wooden 'wash hut' if you don’t fancy walking to the shower block in the barn extension at night.

Outside, you'll find a picnic table and tree stumps fashioned into chairs to sit on while you cook under the stars on the very efficient rocket stoves. For more ambitious meals, the cosy field shelter houses a gas camping stove, portable wood fired pizza oven and stove top smoker and the nearby barn kitchen has an oven, microwave, fridge and freezer, running hot water and a large dining table where you can enjoy communal meals.

And if you’re a family of foodies, this is definitely the place for you. The small honesty shop in “The Potting Shed” provides home grown fruit and veg and eggs from Old Bidlake's happy hens as and when available. It also stocks vital camping staples such as wood for the rocket stoves and marshmallows.

Sue is incredibly accommodating and has thought of everything to make a family camping holiday run smoothly – there are windbreaks, sunshades, high chairs, child size deckchairs, baby baths and even buckets and spades to borrow. A washing machine, washing line and iron eliminate tiresome trips to the launderette and she is happy to give advice about local activities and recommendations. Kids will feel like the Famous Five as they ride their bikes, explore the sprawling (to them at least) small-holding, help out with collecting the eggs or pick the fruit and veg. They can even go riding at the stables next door – and if they tire of that, the dramatic Jurassic Coast beach at Eype is only three miles, with the lively fishing harbour of West Bay just a fifteen-minute drive away.

Natural features
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Dorset Dt6 5 Py, Dorset, England, United KingdomTraditional, ancestral territory of various First Nations according to To respect the Host's privacy, the precise address of this land will be provided after booking
Hosted by Sue ?.Joined in May 2016
From the host
Old Bidlake Farm is a smallholding situated in West Dorset, in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty known as the Marshwood Vale, three miles from the dramatic Jurassic Coast. We offer the chance of sleeping under canvas, close to nature, free from the stresses of modern life. This isn't 'Glamping' rather Hassle Free Camping, with everything we can think of to make your stay relaxing, comfortable and lots of fun. New since 2017 we have a 28 day POP Up campsite from late April until late May offering six enormous pitches on our one acre camping field and full use of all our glamping facilities. Tents, Campervans and Caravans welcome. Regret No Dogs. Please book via Cool Camping From the end of May our four traditional Bell Tents, sit sheltered by hedges and wildflowers in a one acre section of pasture field, with backdrop views of Pilsdon Pen, Colmers and Lewesdon hills. In the adjacent pretty orchard a couple of classic caravans are pitched perfectly for peaceful romantic getaways. A one minute stroll through the orchard leads you to the Barn where you will find a fully equipped kitchen, flushing toilets and electric showers, and a large communal area to socialise and dine together.There is plenty of space for children to run free, ride bikes or go pony trekking at the riding stables next door, whilst you sit back and unwind. Don't worry that the price to pay for this rural idyll will be a scarcity of culture and activity. We are two miles from the vibrant Market Town of Bridport, a hub for art, music and food lovers and just a ten minute drive to the beach. At the heart of our plans for the campsite is the desire to tread lightly on the landscape and our approach is eco-friendly and sustainable. Camping at Old Bidlake provides a great base for cycling and walking holidays; a perfect weekend retreat from the rat race; a traditional family summer holiday or a memorable location to celebrate a special occasion. We are delighted to be listed amongst the top ten glamping sites on Mumsnet.
Nearby attractions
Riding is available right next door at Bidlake Riding Stables (07796517888). Mackerel-fishing trips at West Bay. A mere two miles away you’ll find the charming market town of Bridport, recently voted ‘Best Local Food Town’ in Dorset. Dubbed a “Notting Hill on the sea”, Bridport offers a varied selection of independent shops and an abundance of wares to please foodies, book worms and art & vintage-lovers alike. The bustling Bridport Market on Wednesdays and Saturdays is a browser’s delight – check out the quirky mix of stalls selling everything from delicious pots of homemade curry and cakes, second-hand screwdrivers, antiques and bric-a-brac to local arts are crafts.
Food and drink
The nearby Ilchester Arms (01308 422600) at Symonsbury is a child-friendly, fifteenth-century village pub with an open fireplace, serving good value meals and local ales. Half a mile away, Washingpool Farm Shop (01308 459549) sells a wide selection of produce from local farms and bakeries, while Samways Fishmongers in West Bay (01308 422201) is the place to get your fresh local fish and seafood. The Hive Beach Café (01308 897070) at Burton Bradstock features freshly caught seafood to enjoy on the beach. Come here to enjoy anything from a crab sandwich to an extravagant seafood platter. Brassica Restaurant (01308 538100), Beaminster, serves innovative seasonal fare from an award-winning chef and the River Cottage Canteen (01297 631862) in Axminster features a menu which changes daily based on what comes in from local farmers and fishermen. Bridport has a good selection of cafes, bars and restaurants to choose from.

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