North Devon – Glamping Vintage Vardos style

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

When one of my weekend jaunt buddies invited me along for a few days away to celebrate her birthday I immediately jumped at the chance. Especially when previous escapades have included Paris and Bruges. This trip, however, took a slightly different tangent.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

It came in the guise of Vintage Vardos, a trio of gorgeously restored gypsy caravans and it would involve CAMPING! Now this word needs capitalisation. Anyone who knows me also knows that word usually wouldn’t feature in my vocabulary. I hate camping. I mean this is the girl who nearly had heart failure at the thought of not being able to plug a kettle in for a cup of tea. Instead I’d have to build a fire and wait for the cast iron kettle to boil. All whilst gasping for a brew. The situation started to give me palpitations. This thought thankfully only lasted a minute (a very long minute) before somebody discovered the two gas camp rings. A fine example of why I don’t do camping. Anyway I digress…

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

On arrival we parked the car outside the farmhouse and met the wonderful owners of Fisherton Farm, Gavin and Jemma. A short stroll down a little lane with your luggage following behind in a vintage tractor we entered our own private haven. Even with all my apprehensions there was no denying the dreamy location of the Gypsy caravans at the foot of a sloping meadow. It took me straight back to my childhood and reading Roald Dahl’s  Danny, The Champion of the World.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

A few steps away is a campsite complete with a fire, large wooden dining table, seating and cooking facilities.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

Everything you could ever need to cook up a feast is provided in huge hampers – pans, crockery and utensils.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

Further into the dell we discovered a rope swing over a brook. Obviously I had to give it a go. It quickly turned into a hysterical panic when I couldn’t step back onto the ledge to stop, but that’s another story. The giant day bed in the woods is a lovely touch. Somewhere you can lie down with sleeping bags and snooze staring at the stars if your heart desires.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

The colourful caravans are fabulous with their beautiful interiors each with their own name – Big Ted, Red Rum and Little Gem. The tiny wood burners are a great addition in two of the caravans.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

They can all sleep two adults and two small ones. The camp is rented out in its entirety, so there is no need to worry about sharing with strangers.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

If the British weather decides to be typically British and rains there is also the Tippin’ shed. A converted farm tip up trailer now home to a communal area. A place to cosy up and play the stack load of board games.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

At the top of the meadow is a wooden hut which houses the bathroom facilities. Compost toilets complete with library and a piping hot shower. The incredible views whilst dealing with your ablutions are pretty impressive. Endless rolling fields and being at one with nature makes for an unforgettable experience.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

Jemma provides guests with a welcome goodie pack to start you off containing hot freshly baked bread, milk, tea, coffee and condiments. If required she will rustle up fresh home cooked meals to order, picnic, breakfast hampers and BBQ selections you can throw on the fire.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

We took advantage of this on our first night and ordered meat and veggie chilli wraps. Simply heated up on the campfire they were delicious.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

By the second night we upped our game and cooked our own jacket potatoes and halloumi, pepper and tomato skewers.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

Next to the farmhouse is an honesty shop where you can buy fruit and vegetables grown on the farm, meat, eggs, cider, homemade jams and chutneys.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

The shop most importantly also has plenty of power points to charge your devices and ice packs for your cool box. You can borrow wellies,  waterproofs, warm jackets, deck chairs, boogie boards, beach bbq and buckets and spades. Basically you don’t have to bring a thing with you, it’s all here – Magic!

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

And if you fancy a break from relaxing on the hammock you can head on down to the games room for a spot of table tennis or table football in the converted barn at the farm.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

Vintage Vardos is within easy reach of some great walks, Exmoor National Park and some of Britain’s best beaches.

Our Saturday started with an early morning yoga session with Marci.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

After aligning our chakras and saluting our downward warriors in Gavin and Jemma’s garden we left feeling energised by our session in the open air, ready for the next part of our day.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

After a short drive to Torrington we hired cycles for £12 a day and rode along the famous Tarka trail path.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

Cycling past some amazing sights, eight miles in we stopped at Instow beach for lunch and indulged in pasty and prosecco on the beach. Keeping it real and classy!

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

By the time it came to riding back my aching thighs and bum were wishing Uber existed in North Devon. Wishful thinking aside, we all made it back in one exhausted piece and patted ourselves on the back. Just not that firmly since we were a bit tender.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

Fisherton farm is a great place for a get-together in the open countryside and perfect for a family holiday too. Gavin and Jemma are the best hosts and make you feel so welcome in their little oasis.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

Even though you’re going back to basics, you have everything you could possibly need at hand to make your stay comfortable and relaxing.

Vintage Vardos - Fisherton Farm

It just goes to show that it’s good to push yourself out of your comfort zone every now and again. Maybe glamping is the way forward, well for me anyway.

Do you love camping? Have you been glamping? If not, have I convinced you? I’d love to know in the comments box below.


Fisherton Farm | Atherington | Umberleigh | Devon | EX37 9JA



Vintage Vardos


  1. Sarah (Mum x3x)
    2nd Oct 2016 / 7:06 pm

    Wow what a brilliant place to go glamping! I love the Tippin’ shed idea, that’s fab! And the welcome pack is amazing. There’s so much to do – the games room is awesome, too! Lovely post, thank you for sharing. xx

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      2nd Oct 2016 / 7:19 pm

      I went on a girls weekend but it perfect for kids too! Thankfully it didn’t rain when we were there, but the Tippin’ shed is a great idea.

  2. 2nd Oct 2016 / 7:16 pm

    Those caravans look adorable. I can never decide if I like camping or not but I’ve yet to try glamping so this has totally inspired me!

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      2nd Oct 2016 / 7:20 pm

      I’m no camper Elizabeth, but it was great fun!

  3. 2nd Oct 2016 / 8:04 pm

    Oh this looks all kinds of wonderful! What a beautiful place to go to. Will have to convince my OH to go on a camping adventure again! Looks like you had a great time.


  4. Josanne
    2nd Oct 2016 / 8:06 pm

    Great blog Sima, and your photos are beautiful.
    It was so much fun sharing that weekend with you and the rest of the girls.
    Annual retreat? I’d happily go back!

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      2nd Oct 2016 / 8:50 pm

      Thanks lovely! It was a brilliant weekend. Never forget our evening disco around the campfire – too funny!

  5. 2nd Oct 2016 / 8:36 pm

    This must be a great experience!
    Would love to go on this adventure!

    X ELien

  6. 2nd Oct 2016 / 8:39 pm

    Amazing place and wonderful pictures. Love the house looks very cozy. <3

  7. 2nd Oct 2016 / 9:02 pm

    This place looks incredible! I would love to find a place like that here in Colorado! Great photos too!

  8. 2nd Oct 2016 / 9:43 pm

    Great post and love all the pics! I wouldn’t mind going glamping actually. The place looks so interesting with so many things to see. Love adventure like this. Thanks for sharing this.

  9. analesha
    2nd Oct 2016 / 11:25 pm

    I really want to go glamping! My partner likes camping but it’s not for me. Great post x

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      3rd Oct 2016 / 7:43 am

      Totally with you on that. Tell your other half glamping is a good compromise

  10. Ahila
    3rd Oct 2016 / 9:32 am

    I have always wanted to stay in a caravan but a caravan with all facilities in a beautiful surrounding is simply wonderful! Enjoyed reading about your adventure. Thanks for sharing on #MondayEscapes

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      3rd Oct 2016 / 10:18 am

      Glad you enjoyed it Ahila. It’s a great place.

  11. 3rd Oct 2016 / 11:07 am

    what an incredible experience would love to go glamping and that kitty is so cute =^.^=

  12. 3rd Oct 2016 / 4:23 pm

    I just LOVE this! The cottage looks so beautiful, I wouldn’t even think of the word “camping” AT ALL. If I could find a spot and a caravan as lovely as the ones in your photo, I would definitely go glamping!

  13. 3rd Oct 2016 / 8:32 pm

    This looks so fab, I am not a camper either but this looks so unique and quirky and I know our boys would love it too, gorgeous photos ! Thanks so much for linking up #MondayEscapes

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      3rd Oct 2016 / 9:13 pm

      I’d definitely recommend for your first foray into the outdoors holiday Sarah!

  14. 4th Oct 2016 / 5:43 am

    Looks like a lovely place and the landscapes are amazing!

  15. 4th Oct 2016 / 9:38 am

    OMG I AM IN LOOOOVE! Yes I’m screaming haha because this is SOOO awesome!! Definitely pinning this idea for later!! #MondayEscapes

  16. 4th Oct 2016 / 9:56 am

    Wow, this looks great, I live in Scotland you make want to go do this. I am definitely a glamper, not a camper and would have to bring a bottle or two of wine as well! I am going to share it on the FB page for my travel blog

  17. 5th Oct 2016 / 8:54 pm

    I’ve been glamping a few times, and absolutely loved it. I don’t think I could do it longer than a few days though – despite loving the outdoors, I do like my indoor-based luxuries too much! This place looks amazing, though.

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      5th Oct 2016 / 9:46 pm

      Nell I’m the same, in the sense I couldn’t handle more than a few days either. This place is rather lovely though.

  18. 7th Oct 2016 / 3:15 pm

    What a wonderfully quirky place to stay! We have family in North Devon so it’s somewhere we often visit. Usually we take our own caravan but I think I could be persuaded to swop my own style of glamping dor this. It sounds like you were very well looked after! #MondayEscapes

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      7th Oct 2016 / 7:44 pm

      Claire it was brilliant and perfect for family breaks. If you go to that part of country often, I highly recommend it x

  19. 8th Oct 2016 / 6:34 pm

    That looks like the most amazing trip, I’m so jealous. I’d love to stay in one of those caravans, it looks so cosy too. And you look like you had a blast with your friends.

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      8th Oct 2016 / 8:07 pm

      It was so much fun Tara. I’d definitely recommend if you get a chance to go x

  20. 20th Oct 2016 / 2:50 pm

    That sounds like a dream vacation to me! Everything I love – open air, yoga, camping (haha quite your opposite!) and just something completely out of the ordinary. Awesomeness all around! 🙂

    • Sima Sthanakiya
      20th Oct 2016 / 4:08 pm

      It was totally out of my comfort zone Louise, but had a great time!

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