Redrock Glamping (Adults Only)

UK England South East England Kent Maidstone

Bell tent glamping on a working farm, where crumbling castles lie just around the corner and rare-breed animals dot the surrounding Kentish fields

Despite being just an hour from central London, Redrock Glamping is an undeniably rural escape. Down the lanes between the Kent Downs and the High Weald, its setting, on a working farm, where lambs bounce in spring and chickens lay fresh eggs for your morning breakfast, is about as far from the big smoke as you can be. Well, not quite. Perhaps the tip of Scotland would be wilder. Though, with Hebridean sheep and the farm’s own herd of Highland cattle, Redrock still competes.

Comprised of just three fully furnished bell tents (along with a trio of ‘pop-up’ unfurnished options), Redrock blends traditional camping under canvas with the added luxuries of home. Inside there’s a double bed (linen and bedding included), a wooden table and chairs, a chunky wooden chest and a deep, cosy bean-bag, while, under the tent’s canvas porch, a rustic kitchen block has everything you need for cooking. Choose from sizzling your sausages on the gas burner provided or go back to basics and cook directly over the campfire instead – cleverly repurposed washing machine drums act as excellent firepits.

While the tents are luxurious and convenient – particularly for those looking for short breaks from the city – Redrock Glamping still hasn’t lost its sense of place. Up-cycled pallets have been use to create the flat decking beneath each tent, while the base of the bed and side tables, too, are built from recycled wood. It all feels wonderfully fitting within the agricultural surroundings of the farm.

Rummage through the bell tent’s box of tricks – past playing cards and board games – to the local OS map provided, then plan a route through the surrounding countryside. Wander along footpaths within the 180-acre farm and out into the land beyond. The English Heritage-owned runs of Sutton Valence Castle, built in the mid 12th century, are within easy walking distance and there’s a trio of good pubs in the same village, too. If you make it back from the boozer before dinner, meanwhile, you can even buy some of the farm’s own home-reared meat. A little more campfire cooking anyone?

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The campsite owner says

Are you brave enough? Dare you face the challenge of (drum roll, please) going off-grid? Let’s just examine the hardships that you’ll have to put up with. No television. No mobile phone charging. No wifi. Very little to do of an evening, except lighting the campfire, opening a few drinks, chucking some steaks on the barbecue and… oh, well actually this off-grid lark is starting to sound like a pretty decent idea.

Yes, it is actually possible to turn your phone off for a while and rediscover the lost art of conversation over here at Redrock Glamping. It's not on some remote island either – this place is eight miles from Maidstone and only about 10 minutes’ drive from the M20, mighty handy if you need a mini escape from London life.

Sorry kids, you’re staying elsewhere as this one’s adults only (nothing personal, it’s just that grownups need a little bit of quiet space sometimes). Aside from a handful of fellow guests, your neighbours on site will mainly be the Highland cattle, Hebridean sheep, pigs and chickens that live here all year round. You may also be joined by some passing wildlife in the hedgerows and wildflower meadows around the place.

Your tent may be devoid of electricity but you’ll soon find that both survival and comfort are entirely possible. You’ll have a barbecue and gas hob for cooking, a coolbox for food storage, a firepit for keeping warm and plenty of battery-powered lanterns and torches. Other provisions include a basic larder (tea, coffee, oil and spices), crockery, cutlery, bedlinen and towels. Logs, firelighters and charcoal can be picked up at the farm.

For the ultimate in low-food-miles feasts, you can buy your meat directly from farm owners Ruth and Norman to take back to the barbecue on your pitch. Make sure you pick up extra provisions for a big breakfast the next day out on your private deck – nothing beats the smell and sound of an alfresco sizzling sausage of a morning. Other bits and bobs you might need can be acquired at the supermarket three miles away.

A short walk from your tent there’s a toilet block and showers block, with proper flushing toilets and hot showers.

So… how does going off-grid sound to you now...?

On your door step are some of Kents finest attractions including Leeds Castle, Bedgebury Pinetum and the historical towns of Canterbury and Rochester.

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