Year of Sleeping Variously: holiday cottage edition
- Bed (5/5) - It was certainly more comfortable than (a) a tent (b) an aeroplane or (c) our own bed.
- Room (4/5) - A decent size with plenty of storage. And it had an ensuite bathroom. With a bath!
- View (3/5) - Not so much from our room, but the view from the living area was lovely - a little garden and some fields with turkeys, sheep and chooks.
- Facilities (4/5) - Would be a 5, but the water temperature in the shower and bath was . . . temperamental.
- Location (4/5) - Perfect for what we wanted . . . but minus a point because it took us about 7 hours to get there from Brighton on Friday night. Is it unfair to dock a point for the M25 when the M25 is at least one county away? Probably.
- People (5/5) - As I said, lovely friends. Would friend again.
- Food (4/5) - It was all self-catering and I cooked some tasty vegan food. The welcome pack also included eggs from their free range chooks, a sponge cake and a bottle of wine. Score!
- Value (4/5) - Four people, three nights, £360 (I think). Very reasonable.
- Uniqueness (3/5) - It's a farm building converted into a holiday cottage - nothing too out of the ordinary for the UK. But then, you don't usually get to see Southdown Sheep and rare turkeys from your window . . .
- That indefinable something (2/5) - A holiday after our holiday to Australia, far from anything resembling hustle and bustle, sleepy countryside . . . so relaxing.
Holiday cottage verdict: 76%
Year of Sleeping Variously: tent in a campsite edition
- Bed (2/5) - Somehow less comfortable than the tent in Australia - but not by much.
- Room (3/5) - This is our old Aspect 2.5 tent, which is a decent 2 person tent. It has a couple of storage pockets and plenty of headroom. This time for the first time we used walking poles to make a verandah at the front - bonus space!
- View (2/5) - We put our backs to the campsite, so our view was mostly a fence and some woods. Nice.
- Facilities (3/5) - We only used the water, loos (showered at home) and washing up area. But they had a laundry, showers, recycling point, tiny kiosk - all the things you need at a campsite, really.
- Location (4/5) - All of ten minutes from our door, in a secluded, wooded valley. The magic starts with the sign at the front and the drive down the tree-lined track. It feels a bit like entering another world.
- People (3/5) - The campsite wasn't boisterous in the evening and although there were a lot of kids we were awake before the morning noise began. We were amused by snatches of overheard conversations, too!
- Food (2/5) - Look, I forgot the oil, so we kind of had to steam our burgers for dinner. They turned out OK, but it wasn't exactly gourmet. Food situation somewhat redeemed by stroopwafels.
- Value (4/5) - Not the cheapest campsite around here, but it's nice enough to be good value.
- Uniqueness (3/5) - I really liked all the handpainted signs and little cut-out woodland animals everywhere. Cute!
- That indefinable something (2/5) - Lying under our verandah reading our books, listening to the wind sigh through the leaves overhead was delightful. And the extremely loud dawn chorus in the valley was . . . well, it was not nothing.
Tent in a campsite verdict: 56%