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Showing posts with label adventure. Show all posts
Showing posts with label adventure. Show all posts

The Francis Hotel, Bath...

Dan and I rarely have time to ourselves.  Date night?  What is that?  The closest we get to having to a date, is a curry in front of the TV!  But, last weekend we were delighted to steal a night away just the two of us. 

The Francis Hotel is a perfect weekend city break.  Situated in central Bath, within walking distance of the spa, Milsom Street shops and the Royal Circus, makes it a wonderful place to stay for those wanting a little culture and shopping.

Part of our stay included a twilight tour around the Roman Baths.  Now, I have lived in Bristol most of my life, only 20 minutes away on the train, yet I have never visited the historic Roman Baths.  Seeing the baths torch lit was pretty magical.

After our tour we had lunch in the Roman Baths Kitchen.  A delicious three course meal which we devoured with gusto.  With full bellies, Dan and I wandered the city at night, soaking up the Christmas cheer, the lights and stopping for a real ale at Colonna and Hunter.

The hotel room at The Francis hotel, was comfortable and beautifully decorated.  The large bed was made with cushions and throws by Welsh textile designers Melin Tregwynt, and soft white sheets and pillows.  The only thing I could say that was disappointing was that our room was situated on the third floor (in the eaves of the grand building) and it had very low ceilings.  So low in fact, that Dan couldn't stand upright in the shower, or get his head under the shower rose!  Something to think about when you book!

Dan and I loved having a night away alone.  Time to talk, potter in shops, drink a good cup of coffee at Society Cafe.  Bath is brilliant for all of that and more...

Dan and I were gifted a nights stay at The Francis Hotel with a tour and meal at the Roman Baths.
All thoughts, words and opinions are my own as always.

Walled Garden in Mells, Somerset...



Forgive me... I am catching up on some of our family adventures.  Day trips we did over the Summer.  Back in June we visited the Walled garden in Mells, Somerset.  Just an hour south of Bristol, it was a pleasant journey through leafy lanes to reach Mells.

A small picture perfect village, typically English with roses around the doors and honesty boxes on the road side, selling jams and garden produce.

The walled garden is beautiful and on a bright sunny day it felt like we were sitting in the South of France rather than deep Somerset.  The crunch of the gravel underfoot and the smell of the wood fired pizza oven, gave us a feeling of foreign holidays.

We wandered the gardens, smelt the peonies and looked for goldfish in the pond.  Then ordered a couple of pizzas.  Delicious, wood fired, hand tossed pizzas, with the freshest of salad on the side.  We sat in the back terrace, with the old wall behind us.  Bee's buzzing around the roses and a view across the fields in front.

After lunch we looked at the bric a brac in the greenhouse, a charming addition to the garden.  I found a gorgeous 1930's mirror and a few pots and vases.  To the side is a small nursery, selling plants and flowers too.

The boys ran around the garden finding bugs and smelling the flowers.  Calling to us to come and see.  Dan and I just soaked up the beauty and sunshine, it really is beautiful there.

In the village we took a wander and found the much talked about Talbot Inn.  A beautiful restored village pub and serving delicious food and with stunning bedrooms above.  Mells seems to good to be true... a really idyllic village hidden away from traffic and the rest of the world.  A real destination for food, and gardens.  A perfect retreat.

Camp Bestival 2014 - Project Wild Thing...

This year, the Dingley Dell (the wooded area of the festival site at Camp Bestival) was taken over by Project Wild Thing and the National Trust.  Encouraging families to get outside and enjoy being outdoors.

We couldn't wait to see how they had transformed the woods, and were not disappointed.  We first entered the cooling canopy on a particularly sweltering afternoon, the woods giving us shelter and solace from the noise and the hot sun.

The National Trust had set up activities for children to do, which is part of their 50 things to do before you are 11 3/4. We walked over logs, walked barefoot through the forest, was led blind folded through the trees.  Built dens, climbed trees.  It was cool and epic!

The boys (and Charlie's friend Pheobe) built a beautiful den, made clay faces, wove willow into flowers and leaves, made bug houses, wrote wishes on leaves.... and so much more.

They both agreed that the Project Wild Thing woods was the best part of the festival - now what does that say about my kids?!

Read more of our Camp Bestival adventure here

Early bird tickets are available to buy now!

Camp Bestival kindly donated us a family press pass to the festival - as part of their festival blogger programme.

Campervanning at Camp Festival... with Dawson Rentals Campervans...

Over the years I have been to many festivals,  As a teen, whilst travelling, before kids, and now I am lucky to go with my kids.  During all this time I have always camped in a tent.  My own tiny two man tent from Halfords, our big 8 berth family tent, boutique camping in a bell or yurt, but never in a CAMPERVAN!

For years I have envied the 'vanners' who just effortlessly roll up to the site, park and casually get on with it. I have huffed and puffed my way to and from the car to the campsite lugging my luggage up hills. Wishing I was one of the campervan elite.

Well this time I was!  Oh yeah, and it felt amazing!!!  We were proud campervan renters for the weekend. A VW transporter which had had a full camper van conversion - from Dawson Rentals.  It was beautiful.  Pure white with slick wheels, it felt seriously cool to drive.  Now I am not usually a van type of gal, but oh my goodness this baby was so good to drive.

Inside she had been cleverly converted to sleep four people.  The roof popped up to reveal a double cabin bed for the boys and the back seat converted into a rock n roll bed.  The rest of the interior was fully functioning with a fridge freezer, sink with running water, a two ring gas hob and masses of storage throughout.  On the roof was a solar panel which powered the fridge, the lights and also sockets to charge our phones and tablets.

Our little camp was perfect.  We cooked there every day, returning for our lunch and evening meals before venturing out again.  The kitchen area was well equipped with pans, kettle, cutlery, bottle opener and pretty enamel ware mugs and plates.  We cooked great camp food on the hob, spag bol, sausages, bacon butties etc.  Eating outside under our gazebo with the view of the big top in the field below.  

I must admit I have been spoilt now.  I want to campervan everywhere.  We still talk about it daily, our adventures in her.  Whenever we see one on the road, one of the boys will shout 'VW CAMPER!'.  We will hire one again.... there are so many adventures to have.  Trips to the beach, wild weekends in the mountains in Wales... and more festivals too.

Thank you Dawson Rentals - we LOVED our adventure to Camp Bestival.  We will be back for more!

If you want to hire a VW Camper for your own epic adventure then please do get in touch with Dawson Rentals and say Lou sent you!

You can read more of our Camp Bestival adventures here.
Early bird tickets are now on sale.

Dawson Rentals kindly let us borrow the camper for the weekend. All words and thoughts are my own.

Camp Bestival 2014 - crafting...

We could have spent every second of our time at Camp Bestival crafting.  Really we could.  On Friday morning, early, parents rush across to the main site areas and stand in queues to book their children on to places.  Yes, they really do.  And yes, we did - (Dan did).

Dan booked the boys onto, Charlie - woodcrafting a pirate ship and Rufus - letter press printing.  Both of these we paid extra for, but the majority of craft is free.  The boys had SO much fun, trying something new and learning a new skill.  We are so pleased with their efforts that the boat and print sit pride of place now in their bedroom.

Each day at the festival, we set forth to find new crafting opportunities.  Clay model making, puppetry, pom poms, screen printing, lino relief painting, crafting a little big top, bug houses, circus hoops, the list goes on.  Each evening, we filled and decorated our van and gazebo with our creations.

We love to craft at a festival, it allows a sense of place among the hubbub and loud commotion of it all.  A moment of calm and concentration.  Plus we get to try out new skills, which we can turn into future hobbies back at home.

The boys were hooked on the clay models - and since returning we have bought our own air drying clay and made some pinch pots for baby succulent plants.  Meet Yellow Cat, Greta (yes I made her) and Tim!

Read more about Camp Bestival here.

Early bird tickets are on sale now.

Camp Bestival kindly donated us a family press pass to the festival - as part of their festival blogger programme.

Camp Bestival 2014...

Woah!  Where has the time gone?!  A few weeks of Summer has gone by since we were at Camp Bestival.  I need to tell you all about it.

It was fantastic!  Five days full of fun, adventure and wild times.  This year we stayed in the camper van field, was lucky to have a gorgeous van, which made the whole camping experience a breeze.  More on the van in another post.

This festival, we made so much craft, watched circus performers, danced under the stars, ran wild in the woodlands, played with friends, dressed up, watched the knights joust and to top it off saw the most EPIC of fireworks.

Over the weekend, we crafted in the Soul Park area, making letter press prints and wooden boats.  Tried our hands at circus skills and played for hours on the crazy, wonky bikes. Watched stand up comedy.  Listen to Jo Whiley read Charlie & the Chocolate Factory. Wowed at the teenagers skateboarding in the skate park.  We dressed up as a human cannon ball and a ring master and joined the fancy dress procession.

Camp Bestival is wonderful, full excitement on every level.  A festival for every age, something for all.  It is FUN!

I'll pop back with more on the Project Wild Thing and our crafting later.

Early bird tickets for 2015 are now on sale.  Get your tickets now - we will be there!!!

Camp Bestival kindly donated us a family press pass to the festival - as part of their festival blogger programme.