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Woodfrys Farm

· Shaftesbury, Dorset, England
6 acres hosted by Hannah J.
1 glamping pitch · 2 motorhome pitches · 3 tent pitches
Amazing views
Hipcampers say this spot has amazing views.
Best campervan spots: Finalist
Named one of the best Hipcamps to visit in 2023.
Private sites
100% of recent Hipcampers say the sites felt private.
Hannah is a Star Host
Star Hosts are highly rated, responsive, and committed to providing incredible experiences.
A sustainable, family-run smallholding in rural Dorset with a small lakeside campsite

The lake, the cows, the chalk stream… Woodfrys Farm isn’t just a campsite, it’s a taste of rural Dorset. This 25-acre smallholding, nestled below Melbury Hill in Melbury Abbas, is home to Liam, Hannah, their children and herds of pedigree rare breeds like Hereford cattle and British Lop pigs. Tawny owls and Soprano Pipistrelle bats can be spotted in the sky at night, while ducks, herons and the occasional egret take the dayshift. There’s room on the farm for campers too, of course. But only a few, and only if you book early enough to bag a space in the hundred-year-old shepherd's hut or one of the small handful of pitches available.

Surrounded by mature trees, Woodfrys is an easy place to relax. There are two camping areas, the Water Meadow and the Ridge. The former is just for tents and is set between the campsite’s one-acre lake – crowned by a beautiful willow on an island – and a clear chalk stream that’s ideal for dipping your toes in on a hot summers day. The Ridge, meanwhile, is on a raised bank overlooking the meadow and valley and can accommodate a couple of campervans as well as tents. All pitches have their own picnic table and fire pit and are each individually mown into the grass. You can’t choose your exact spot in advance, since Hannah and Liam rotate the pitches to protect the ground, but if you choose the meadow you’ll always get a waterfront patch.

From the recycling and the composting loos, to the ‘Shower Shack’ made out of locally sourced waney edge larch, everything here is done with sustainability in mind. The dedication to the place's history and sustainability is best seen in the shepherd's hut, an original herdsman's hut built in Shaftesbury over 100 years ago and beautifully restored with a bed and wood-burner whilst also kept humble without mod cons. It comes with a separate 'field kitchen' alongside, the timber finish fitting perfectly amongst the agricultural surroundings, which includes Liam and Hannah's productive market garden a short stroll away – in the last few years, the couple have begun planting up areas with orchards and soft fruits so that they can provide fruit and veg to campers and locals alike. Free range eggs from their chickens are also up for grabs at the gates, fresh from the farm hens.

If you want to get fully immersed in nature, the farm’s well located on the western edge of the Cranborne Chase AONB, with Melbury Beacon across the other side of the valley (a scenic walk from the campsite) and Fontmell Down just beyond. Swathes of this land are owned by the National Trust and the area is also within a Dark Sky Reserve, meaning there is just as much to enjoy here on a clear starry night as there is on a sunny day. The pretty hilltop town of Shaftesbury is within walking distance too, with streets that are (literally) out of a Hovis advert and, for a long day out, it’s a 40-minute drive to the Jurassic Coast.

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44 Ratings · 40 reviews
Irene C.recommends
August 27, 2023
Water Meadow Campervan Pitch
Beautiful camp site
We had a lovely time in Woodfrys Farm despite the rain. Hannah met us on arrival and introduced us to the site and our pitch. Our pitch has a beautiful view of the lake. The sound of wildlife were serene and amazing. Sadly, there was a family who chatted quite loudly which masked this off sometime. Toilets were clean and bathrooms were inviting with warm strong showers.
Zahn G.recommends
September 20, 2022
The Water Meadow
Stunning location
We had such a relaxing time in beautiful surroundings. Will definitely visit again!
Tim H.recommends
September 13, 2022
The Withy Hut
very relaxed and friendly site, Hannah was brill
Angela L.recommends
August 21, 2022
The Water Meadow
What a fantastic site! So peaceful and beautiful. Hannah is very welcoming.
Robert R.recommends
August 20, 2022
The Ridge
Just returned from a stay at Woodfry’s Farm. Family of 5 + a dog. Fantastic! Peaceful, well laid out, picturesque, spotlessly clean campsite. Made to feel very welcome by Hannah and Liam. Our pitch on the ridge overlooked the lake and had plenty of space for our family 6 man tent and the 2 man tent our older son uses. Ample facilities to cater for the number of pitches. Free shower gels, shampoos, conditioners and washing up liquid. Even free loo rolls in the compost toilets and eco dog poo bags. Hannah and Liam always available if needed. Would not hesitate to recommend this site and fully intend on staying again.
Josie J.recommends
August 18, 2022
The Water Meadow
Dreamy site, not to be missed!
This campsite is an absolute dream. Small , quiet with every detail considered. Hannah has clearly put so much effort into creating a wonderful sustainable, comfortable space (compost toilets were very well maintained and actually pleasant to use.) We saw deer , bats and so many stars. My son loved watching the ducks in the lake. I can’t fault. Would recommend to anyone with kids or without. Thanks Hannah
Shaftesbury, Dorset, England, United KingdomTo respect the Host's privacy, the precise address of this land will be provided after booking
Hosted by Hannah J.Joined in January 2021
From the host
Woodfrys Farm is a wild-ish campsite in the most scenic of settings. If you want to get back to nature in fantastic surroundings, then this campsite is for you. Nestled in the North Dorset countryside in easy striking distance of Shaftesbury, you can decide whether to go out or relax onsite watching the birdlife on the lake, paddling in the stream, or walking the meadow. We're in the Cranbourne Chase AONB, which is a Dark Sky Reserve, with dark nights and starry skies. Torches are a must There's two camping areas - the Water Meadow or the Ridge. The Water Meadow is just for tents and is set in between the lake and the chalk stream, whilst the Ridge is on a raised bank looking down over the Water Meadow and the valley. Ridge Pitches are suitable for tents or campervans. All pitches are mown into the meadow and are generous in size, approximately 10m by 10m. Facilities Each pitch is supplied with a picnic table and fire pit with logs available to purchase. A large tub with kindling and lightings is £6, all sustainably harvested on the farm. In the Water Meadow there are compost toilets, spread around the camping areas so you never have far to walk. There's also a washing up station with hot water. ​On the Ridge, there are three hot showers, wash basins, compost toilets and hot wash up area. The showers are well sized with ample room for getting changed. Faith in Nature hair products and shower gels supplied. Recycling, composting and rubbish facilities are available in designated areas, and we ask everyone to recycle and compost as much as you can and give you a composting caddy on arrival to help you get started. We provide mobile phone charging lockers and a place to freeze your cool packs too.
Nearby attractions

The National Trust’s Melbury Beacon and Fontmell Down are both a short walk (and a big hill) away from Woodfrys Farm. In particular, there’s a nice circular loop from the farm taking you past the nearby Mill and along the stream, before climbing to the heights of Melbury Beacon, with stunning views over Shaftesbury and the Cranborne Chase. Archaeology is right on your doorstep with some exceptional hillforts a short drive away, like Hambledon, just fifteen minutes by car. Hambledon Hill is covered with rare flowers in the spring – you’ll need to park in the village of Child Okeford, a lovely village with a couple of pubs if you need refreshment after climbing the hill. Another fifteen-minute drive from the farm will take you to the Woodland Trust’s Duncliffe Wood, a great place away from crowds for shady dog walks in the summer. If you fancy something a little up market, try a visit to the Newt (01963 577777), a magnificent estate near Castle Carey. Though it takes a little longer to get here (half an hours drive from Woodfrys Farm), its newly created garden, cider tours and history of gardening museum make it well worth the journey.

Food and drink

The Compton Abbas airfield café (01747 811767), five minutes by car, is a great place to grab a bite to eat whilst spotting the planes. There are plenty of local pubs but the hilltop town of Shaftesbury (less than 10 minutes drive from the farm) has a particularly good selection. The 18th-century inn, Ye Olde Two Brewers (01747 854211), serves modern and classic pub fare and real ales to accompany the sweeping views of the local fields from its garden. Mitre Shaftesbury (01747 853002) serves up a great brunch and dinner as well as cocktail menu that will have you spoilt for choice.

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