Settled in rural North Devon, you’ll find the mesmerising Whittlers Yurt: a bohemian haven that promises a unique retreat back to nature.
We made our way through the winding country lanes of North Devon on Friday afternoon, intrigued to discover what our weekend escape to nature would have in store for us. After arriving at our humble abode, the sun peered behind the clouds creating a warm, welcoming glow over our hideaway. Opening the beautifully intricate gate, we walked into nature's paradise and simply could not believe the beauty and thoughtful details we were greeted with. Nestled amongst lush greenery stood our wonderfully presented yurt. Complete with a spacious decking area and the most glorious vibrant sunflowers, adding a pop of colour to the already stunning outside space. There were so many pretty flowers and glistening fairy lights… It was a truly special start to our weekend.
We opened the door to our bohemian boudoir and instantly fell in love with its vibrant, quirky interior. Whittlers unique charm was so inviting, we simply sat for a while to take in all the gorgeous furnishings and tropical colours.
To the left of our hideaway, sat the purpose-built outhouse. Inside was the superbly equipped kitchen, which had everything we needed and more for our stay. There were plenty of thoughtful touches from the owners, such as freshly laid eggs from their chickens, teas and coffees and delicious shortbread biscuits. There was also a lovely shower room, which was simply divine and perfect for freshening up in the mornings before a day of exploring. Just a few steps away from the yurt was the secluded outside area with a large hot tub, deck chairs to soak up the sun and a charming seating area, perfect for snuggling up by the rustic fire pit. One of the highlights for us was the heavenly hot tub. We spent our evenings soaking our worries away and gazing up at the stars… pure bliss.
We began to feel peckish, so headed to Westward Ho! (which was a short drive away), for fish and chips overlooking the glistening sea. We had plenty of recommendations to choose from, as Whittlers Yurt has its own app, which the owners have thoughtfully put together. The app is sent to guests before they arrive and is super helpful for planning days out, as it’s complete with restaurant, walk and beach recommendations. After our delicious fish and chips, we decided to go to The Pig on the Beach, as they had live music playing and an outside seating area, perfect for watching the golden sunset. Strolling along the front we discovered an array of cafes and restaurants, we’ll definitely be returning to try them out! As the sun dipped beyond the horizon we returned back to our peaceful haven.
Sinking into the sumptuous double bed, the led lights surrounding us added to the immersive ambience of the yurt. We listened to the wind kissing the trees and drifted off to have the most peaceful night's sleep.
Saturday morning arrived and first on the agenda was coffee and pancakes. The veranda was an idyllic spot for listening to the peaceful soundscape and watching the world go by. After a freshen up in the warm shower, we couldn’t wait to head out for the day and explore the local area.
The small picturesque fishing village of Clovelly is a must when visiting the area. Take a step back in time with its steep cobbled street and traditional architecture. It’s privately owned, to help preserve its original atmosphere and as such, there are no vehicles. Just donkeys and sledges to help transport goods. Clovelly is truly special, there is a small fee to enter, which also gives you access to the Victorian Clovelly Court Gardens. We began the walk winding down the wooded hillside, stopping in the cutest independent shops and museums. We learnt about the rich history of Clovelly and of course stopped to spend time getting to know the village donkeys!
The beauty continued to unravel on our descent down to the fishing harbour. With the tide out, an array of pretty fishing boats were perched on the sand. At high tide you are able to jump off the harbour wall into the sea. We treated ourselves to a pint of cider from the Red Lion Hotel and sat on the harbour wall chatting about the marvellous wonders of this quaint village. As it was low tide, we were able to stroll along the rocky harbour to the picturesque waterfall. On the way back up we stopped off at the Cottage Tea Rooms in the heart of the village. We enjoyed scrumptious home-made scones with a generous topping of jam and clotted cream. It felt right to be respectful to the county we were visiting, but we also had to stick to our Cornish roots. The only solution we saw fit was to have one half “jam first” and the other “cream first”… either way it was simply delicious! After a delightful day of exploring we headed back to our heavenly hideaway.
The owners are both talented blacksmiths. They actually handcrafted the stunning gate that leads you through to Whittlers Yurt. They offer blacksmithing classes to guests and are also planning courses for groups to partake in. This is something we had to try during our stay, as it added a truly unique experience. It was super fun and interesting to try something new! The owners were very helpful and great teachers (If you’d like to find out more about trying blacksmithing while staying at Whittlers, you can speak to the owners once you book).
After, it was time to unwind with a glass of wine and indulge in some delicious nibbles; cheese, olives and fresh bread. There is no TV or WiFi at Whittlers Yurt, which was perfect for us to switch off from the outside world and reconnect with nature. Instead we listened to the radio softly playing in the background. By this time, we couldn’t wait to take a dip in the steamy hot tub. Such a magical spot to let your worries fade away and gaze up and the glowing stars in the night sky. The features of the outside area were just as special as the interior of the yurt, with vibrant artwork surrounding the tub and an array of warm fairy lights illuminating the path. We fell asleep listening to the peaceful pitter-patter of rain falling around our cosy haven.
As Sunday morning arrived, we woke up from a dreamy night's sleep. We opened the door to let the fresh morning air fill our hideaway. Treating ourselves to a freshly brewed cup of coffee in bed and a piece of delicious shortbread, we kept the door latched open and watched our friendly sheep neighbours grazing in the field in front. Wandering through the gate, nestled at the end of our hideaway, we explored down to the owner's idyllic lake. There is a platform above the water which is the perfect spot for yoga or meditation. We stopped to take in the unspoilt surroundings, entering a state of pure relaxation. It was nearly time to leave our enchanting hideaway, but first, we had a cooked breakfast on the decking, reminiscing over the truly unique and refreshing weekend we’d had. Reconnecting with nature enabled us to reset and recharge, leaving us with the fondest memories of Whittlers Yurt.
Before heading home, we visited the picturesque hamlet of Bucks Mills, just a 5 minute drive away. Winding down the steep valley, we parked at the top and walked through the undisturbed village, enveloped by lush green woodland. The village doesn’t have any shops or pubs, which adds to its unspoilt atmosphere, complete with quaint cottages and vibrant flowers. Similar to Clovelly, the path down to the rocky beach is steep. At low tide the sand is revealed and you can go for a refreshing dip.
We felt inspired by our retreat to Whittlers Yurt and will definitely be finding more ways to practice mindfulness in nature. It had everything we needed for a comfortable, relaxing stay with plenty of added extras and thoughtful touches. It was a true glamping experience; we reconnected with nature without compromising the little luxuries!
Why not experience the unique charm of Whittlers Yurt for yourself. You can read more about this enchanting hideaway here.