Glamping

by Diane on 01/02/2015

A little while ago I read an article on glamping. I’m pretty sure it was in the Good magazine, but I can’t find it anymore. Since then the topic has been picked up by a number of other magazines as well, with NZ House & Garden being the latest one where I saw it featured.

If you have no idea what I’m talking about, have a look at Glamping.com where they have a nice definition of glamping. In a nutshell: it’s camping without all of the inconveniences like long drops, leaking igloo tents or shared DOC huts, and carrying a backpack up- and downhill for ages.

The place that caught my eye was a little campsite called Ridge Top Farm, which is located reasonably close to Feilding. It’s within easy travel distance to Wellington (about 2.5 hours drive) and looked absolutely stunning. Check it out on the website above and tell me that you wouldn’t have fallen in love with this place right away too!

Image of the sign about the Feilding hotel.

Welcome to Feilding.

Obviously a place like this would be quite boring if it was just me and Kai spending some time there by ourselves, so we made Bex, Nick and Leo come too (they didn’t have a choice, really).

I did my research on cooking in/on/under open fires, filled the car with food to the ceiling and off we went early Friday morning. Kai and I took a slow drive up, with a couple of opshop stops along the way. Towards midday we met with Bex, Nick and Leo in Feilding to explore the Farmers Market and to grab some lunch before heading to the campsite.

After an additional half an hour journey through the middle of nowhere (meaning: no cellphone reception, no sealed roads, but plenty of sheep, cows, goats and horses) Kai and I arrived at the campsite first and our host Sarah took us straight down to the tents. But ‘straight’ I mean that we followed her quad bike across fields and airstrips for ages until we arrived at our final destination.

Campsite with a hill in the background. In the foreground from left to right: a bell tent, a square tent, an outdoor kitchen/dining area with toilet and shower room attached, and 2 outdoor bath tubs.

Campsite.

It was as breathtakingly beautiful as it looks on the online pictures! Two giant tents for us all to live in, a fully equipped outdoor kitchen with BBQ, a flushing toilet, a luxurious shower, two outdoor bathtubs and a chicken coop that would house two friendly chooks to keep us entertained throughout our stay. I can’t put into words how awesome the campsite is! Only downside was a fire ban in the area that had just started at midnight, so we weren’t able to have an outdoor fire or use the woodburners in the tents or kitchen area. But I can happily confirm that all campfire recipes can be cooked on a gas BBQ too.

Shortly after Bex, Nick and Leo arrived as well, and we explored the campsite and nearby features (such as the bench on the opposite hill, where our phones got 3G signals), then we spent some relaxing time cooking, playing games and settling in. I ended my day with a bath under the stars – bliss.

Kai standing on the hill opposite the campsite.

Kai heading towards 3G reception.

A covered outdoor kitchen area, with Nick and Kai sitting at a long table.

Nick and Kai relaxing in the outdoor kitchen area.

Saturday morning we drove into Feilding to spend some time at a park and playground, we played mini-golf and had lunch. I even managed to sneak in a little opshop visit (we were walking past on our way to the park, I had to go in).

Kai, Nick and Bex sitting at a picnic table.

The ‘grown-ups’ watching me and Leo playing on the playground.

Me swinging on the swings on the playground.

Swinging.

Nick and Leo on a climbing frame on the playground.

Nick and Leo on a super high climbing frame. I’m still surprised they managed to get down again safely.

For the afternoon we went back to the campsite, where we did all sorts of relaxing and not-so-relaxing things, such as studying for a flight exam, going for a run, reading books and playing badminton.

From left to right: me, Kai and Leo playing badminton.

Badminton.

Dinner time was spent making pizza and awesome filled mushrooms on the BBQ. After Leo went to bed we played Godori and dealt with random visitors to our kitchen, such as a little hedgehog and a possum. The possum came back at night to poop on one of the chairs in our kitchen, and to crawl over out tent roof while making strange noises. In the evening it started raining, which the farmers in the area loved, but for us it meant that we ended up leaving a bit earlier than initially thought – it’s not so much fun to hang out in the rain.

Overall this was a truly amazing weekend! I didn’t miss electricity at all (Kai did a little) and the purity of the place and the remoteness helped me unwind in no time. I loved every single minute of this holiday and am really glad that we have such awesome friends we can enjoy these kind of things with.

Cow on a hill with sheep in the foreground.

Cow, plotting world domination (probably).

 

 

 

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