For me, this year is full of milestone birthdays in my family. My husband and I are now part of the 30’s club (life begins at 30 right?!), my parents are both turning 60 and my beautiful sister is going to be 21 in September. An expensive year for me then!
I love to plan little getaways on special occasions and my husband’s birthday was no exception. Back in December I booked a lovely two night stay at Helseyside Huts for his birthday in May. To sum up this place, it’s basically a 5 star glamping retreat in the heart of the Northumberland countryside for people who like the idea of camping but still want the luxury of a hot shower, a warm place to sleep and somewhere to cook inside and enjoy the warmth of a campfire outside whilst staring up at the clear night skies.
I wouldn’t usually blog about my non work experiences but as soon as I arrived I couldn’t help but think how perfect this place would be as a mini moon for a newly married couple. Mini moons are really popular now, not all couples choose to have a long trip away straight after their honeymoon; instead they opt for a mini break for a few days to relax after the hectic run up to a wedding and spend some time on their own.
This place would also be a great option for a girly glamping weekend for a hen party!
If you are thinking of having a mini getaway in the beautiful countryside then consider Hesleyside, it is so beautiful and here’s why…
The Huts – take a look!
As soon as I saw these huts online I just knew they would be perfect for our trip. There are currently four in total, all offering something slightly different. Word of advice, get booked in well in advance. These huts are popular so if you are hoping to have the most romantic hut of them all (Holly) then try and book as far in advance as you can.
We stayed in the Bracken hut which was equipped with everything you could possibly need to get that camping experience yet with the added luxury of a hot shower, good quality duvet and the most adorable log burner to cook your own meals. I love the outdoors but I also appreciate the warmth of a hot shower and warm bed to sleep in. Last time I camped was over 5 years ago at Leeds Festival and by the third day I was cold, miserable and tired (yes I cried!). The days of basic camping are well and truly over for me and I can imagine that when booking your mini moon you are thinking the same!
Each hut also has its own outdoor camp fire with enough wood to use for one day/evening, plus marshmallows to toast! There is also outdoor equipment for you to cook food outside if you wish. A lovely option on a warm summers evening.
Hesleyside is only a few minutes drive from Bellingham and 45 minutes from Newcastle. The huts are situated on private land, part of the beautiful 18th century country house that is Hesleyside Hall with acres of fields and woodland. There are many walks that you can take advantage of right on your doorstep, we even saw a wedding cake tree that had just been planted, how sweet!
Places to Eat
The huts are situated in the heart of the countryside so you do have to drive to get to the nearest pub. We went to a place just 10 minutes down the road called The Pheasant Inn, a lovely cosy country pub with homemade food and lovely service. You do need to book in advance as it is only small! Within the hut you will also find a handy booklet with lots of other recommendations and things to do in the area.
Alternatively, there is everything you need to cook a wonderful meal using the indoor stove so another option is to bring food with you or arrange delivery for when you arrive. The nearest large supermarkets are in Hexham which is only about 30 minutes away. That way you never have to leave the hut apart from to enjoy the fresh air and say hello to the sheep that will most likely be just outside your door.
The owners of Hesleyside Huts also offer a few added extras to make your stay even more special. For guests who would like a fresh basket of warm pastries, eggs, local sausages, juice and vegetables to make the perfect full English; you can arrange this in advance and they will deliver it on the morning at 9am or at a time that suits you. This was really lovely and they even provided vegetarian sausages for my husband which was great!
The area is also well known for its clear skies making it the most ideal location for a spot of stargazing sat by the campfire with a bottle of fizz. Each hut comes with a telescope, binoculars and instructions to do just that! If you are really into the wonderful world of stars then the Kielder Observatory is only 20 minutes drive away.
I’ll let the photos do the talking. This really is a beautiful place and so unique to anything else that I have seen. The huts are fairly spread out so you really do feel like you are completely on your own. If you are looking for complete alone time then try and book either the Holly or Bramble hut. Bracken and Heather are closer together but still far enough apart to enjoy peace and tranquility.