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Upper Hurst Farm

· Dovedale, Staffordshire, England
8 acres hosted by Amy D.
1 glamping pitch
Well-placed Peak District camping near the Manifold Way and Tissington Trail, with a luxury yurt and hot tub in a private space

Halfway between two rivers – the Manifold and the Dove – and in the very heart of the White Peak area of the Peak District, Upper Hurst Farm is a place where old meets new. Visitors light campfires, pitch tents and enjoy far reaching views that have drawn campers here for generations – hills criss-crossed by drystone walls and dotted with Derbyshire sheep – while a plush modern wash block includes underfloor heating and an eco-friendly energy system that couldn’t be more 21st century. As for the camping? If grass tent pitches and campervan hardstandings are too old hat, how about a stay in Gaia's Hideaway, a luxury Mongolian yurt?

Two miles from the picturesque village of Hartington and at one end of the popular Manifold Way, Upper Hurst Farm is a well established campsite with around 40 pitches in total, almost all with the option of electricity. While facilities such as WiFi, a laundry room and a motorhome service point can match some modern holiday parks, the laid-back style of Upper Hurst still lends it that thoroughly rural appeal. Campfires are allowed and small hiker’s tents mix among bigger family models. The adjacent four-acre field, meanwhile, has been set aside entirely, with pathways mown into the long, wildlife-friendly grass and a large apron of space for children to play ball games or make use of the swings and slide.

At the very far end of the campsite, separately secluded away among young trees and daffodils, Gaia's Hideaway can be found. The yurt has its own private composting toilet, so you needn’t worry about the extra walk to the loo, and on the south-east-facing deck outside guests enjoy the ultimate luxury of a wood-fired hot tub too. Inside the comforts continue: The enormous bed has a handmade bamboo headboard, there are Persian rugs, a wood-burning stove and a cabinet with kitchen facilities including a sink, hobs, kettle, microwave and more. If the weather’s not right for a barbecue around the hot tub, you could happily cosy away in here for hours.

When you do leave the campsite, it’s worth the walk (just under two miles) to the quaint village of Hartington, with its antique shop, tea room and pair of pubs, plus a village store if you need to stock up on essentials. The oval duck pond finishes the picture-perfect scene. It’s a popular spot from which to set out on longer walks; just up the hill there’s a car park where you can join the Tissington Trail and you can rent bikes fairly locally from Parsley Hay a little further along the route. By car, four of the Peak District’s main market towns are easily reached – Bakewell, Ashbourne, Leek and Buxton are all within 10 miles – as are historic properties like Haddon Hall and Chatsworth House. It’s all within easy driving distance, yet you might just find getting behind the wheel too much of an ask. With so many good footpaths on the doorstep (and so many good pubs nearby), you needn’t go far to enjoy Upper Hurst Farm.

Gaia’s Hideaway is approached from a path at the South-East corner of Upper Hurst Farm Caravan and Camping site leading down to a secluded corner surrounded by trees, natural hedgerows and with open views to the Peak District hills. This truly is a magical little hideaway. When you open the door of your Yurt in the morning you will see the sun rise and you can’t help but hear the prolific birdsong. Peace and tranquillity is guaranteed. The South-East aspect means that you will have shade in some places and sunshine all day long on the decking area so sun-bathing is definitely on the menu. Inside the yurt: The yurt is lavishly furnished with an enormous circular bed with a custom-made headboard and plush throws and cushions. Goose-feather & down pillows and duvet, Egyptian cotton bed linen, towels and fluffy dressing gowns on arrival means you can get cosy right away. The yurt has a self-contained custom-built mini-kitchen with refrigerator, washing up and cooking facilities as well as dining and lounge areas that are arranged around a central log burner. 1 pack heat logs are provided free of charge. More are available to purchase from the site reception. Outside the yurt: On the generous decking area there is a Cadac barbecue, patio set and sun loungers. For the ultimate experience there is 1700 litre, red-cedar, wood-fired hot-tub for you to enjoy a truly luxurious and peaceful stay amidst the trees, natural hedges and wildlife. 1 net of logs is provided free of charge and the hot-tub is heated for your arrival, so no need to stress. More wood is available to purchase from the site reception, although this is rarely needed. To add to the outdoors adventure, there is an adjacent, private compost toilet. Underfloor-heated showers are about 150 yards away - back up your little path to the main caravan site if you prefer. Reviews: "Gaia's Hideaway exceeded our expectations. What a beautiful Tranquil place. We both thoroughly our 1st experience in a Yurt and will definitely be returning, it was equipped with everything you need + more. The Hot tub is all-weather so even with a drizzle of rain your time in the tub is uninterrupted, beautiful at night under the Moon + Stars. The Hosts on site were warm and welcoming and was there to attend to any of your needs. Would highly reccommend to family and friends and everyone else as this is such an incredible place. Thank you and see you again!!" - Adam, via Booking.com "WoW! 10 out of 10 in all areas. Clean, tidy, warm, quiet, private. Amazing easy welcome by the host. Very comfy bed. Easy to use wood burner. It was the perfect Peak District escape. Thank you very much, we will be back !" - Christopher, via Booking.com "Gaia’s Hideaway is a truly magical place for a getaway. The yurt was very warm and cozy despite the weather being cold and rainy and the hot tub was a real luxury! The location is beautiful and perfect for long walks in the stunning countryside. Sue and her family were really helpful and always available if we had a query. I hope we will return one day!" - Caroline, via Airbnb We have many fabulous reviews, Gaia's Hideaway truly is a unique experience.
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1 Ratings · 1 review
Joan H.recommends
October 31, 2019
Gaia’s Hideaway - Luxury Yurt with Hot Tub
Wow! Just amazing. So wonderfully relaxing even with 2 children (1 a teenager) and no play station. Brilliant hot tub and everything you could need within the yurt. Composting toilet worked very well and the shower block is great Local area has some spectacular walks and cycling. Great pubs. Highly recommend staying here. Thank you for your warm, friendly and helpful welcome
Dovedale, Staffordshire, England, United KingdomTo respect the Host's privacy, the precise address of this land will be provided after booking

Hosted by Amy D.

Joined in April 2019
From the host
Our ethos is nature-based and we encourage biodiversity in our fields and hedgerows with the majority of our energy provided through sustainable practices. We have been awarded the coveted Environmental Quality Mark award, which demonstrates Upper Hurst Farm’s ongoing commitment to the environment, to our staff and to supporting the local economy.The site and our facilities are accessible to all and is located in Buxton, Derbyshire, gateway to the Peak District. The toilet/shower block is underfloor heated and, to this day, has been likened to a 5* hotel. It features a generous wet room, which offers easy access for wheelchair users and for those with limited mobility.
Nearby attractions

It's difficult to overstate what an excellent location Upper Hurst Farm has for exploring the Peak District. In the heart of the Dove Valley, it's a 20-minute walk in one direction to the River Dove itself, while, to the west, a tributary, the River Manifold, runs. It's a 15-minute walk to the Manifold, where the tiny hamlet of Hulme End has an excellent pub (see Food & Drink). The 8-mile-long Manifold Way is a popular walking and car-free cycling route, running from here to the village of Waterhouses in the south. It follows the route of the former Leek and Manifold Valley Light Railway (which closed in 1934) and is the flattest of the local options, with other routes like the Tissington Trail and the High Peak Trail also nearby and crossing more elevated areas of the Peak District. All are very easily accessible from Upper Hurst Farm. Elsewhere, its 11 miles to Buxton and Buxton Opera House (01298 72190), 13 miles to Haddon Hall (01629 812855), 16 miles to Chatsworth House (01246 565300), 18 miles to the Crich Tramway Museum (01773 854 321) and 18 miles to Eyam Hall (01433 350055).

Food and drink

It's a 15-minute walk to The Manifold Inn (01298 84537; book ahead for meals at busy times), a 200-year-old coaching inn and restaurant on the banks of the Manifold River. The pub is opposite The Old Toll House, which used to serve the turnpike and river ford. A tad further down the lane, Hulme End Tea Junction (01298 687368) is housed in the old engine shed of the former Manifold light railway and has been tastefully converted into a local tea room. Their cakes are exceptional. Both spots are frequented by walkers on the Manifold Way, which meanders through the river valley, and cyclists are also out in force on summer days. In the opposite direction, pretty Hartington is home to 2 good pubs – The Charles Cotton (01298 84229) and The Devonshire Arms (01298 84232) – both with outdoor seating and, while there is a farm shop and café (01298 84496) on your way into the village, in summer there are picnic tables outside the village stores (01298 84222) too and even the post office is actually a tea rooms (01298 84418).

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