WE’VE all been lured into camping with visions of a star-studded night, food roasting on an open fire.
And we’ve been there, a few weekends later, discovering after dark the cat’s pissed on the tent and a thumb isn’t the best target for a hammer.
Which is why the Milky Way above me is all the more blissful for the double-bed waiting inside the luxury Mongolian tent just a few steps away.
There’s no fumbling around in the dark for the tent’s zip; solar-powered lights shine the way on manicured paths to the yurt door, and even to the en-suite bathroom with hot water.
A circular hole in the yurt’s roof allows you to drift off to the stars above. Bliss.
Once inside, gleaming wooden floors mean no mud between your toes, and crisp white sheets mean no unravelling of sleeping bags that never seem to fit back in the pouch.
This is the definition of glamping – a portmanteau of the words ‘glamorous’ and ‘fed up of camping’.
The three yurts that make it all possible – Persimmon, Pomegranate and Grenadilla – were all handmade in Mongolia, where centuries of nomadism have perfected the art of temporary living.
“There is a growing interest in smaller, more sustainable dwellings and few can match the ancient Mongolian yurt, for beauty, simplicity, and its intrinsic connection with the earth,” co-owner Ann Marie says.
“The shift towards slowing down, adjusting our work/life balance, and minding ourselves and our environment, is more than a whimsy – it is absolutely vital to our wellbeing and the planets’ continued existence.”
This philosophy is intertwined with the yurts, where every single rope and peg is made from something ‘living’, be that wood or Mongolian horse hair.
The layers of natural cotton fibre ‘breathe’, according to Ann Marie, which helps to trap heat in winter and release warmth in summer.
It’s a perfect balance of indulgence and the great outdoors.
An on-site barbecue space – firewood provided – gives you all the pleasures of wood-roasted food without the fumbling around with firelighters.
Breakfast and Sunday roasts are on offer, if necessary, and Ann Marie adds that for anyone wishing to venture into the nearby towns, Fiorencios and Bar de Maya’s in Chella and Ermita in Bolbaite will not disappoint.
While the days are still warm, Yurtas Pepita provides a swimming pool, and the ruins of an ancient hydroelectric station at the nearby Salto de Chella waterfall are not to be missed.
But if you just want to relax with the stunning views over the Canal de Navarres valley, or chat with husband and able-builder Dave about the solar shower and how he built this slice of paradise from scratch, then the time is yours to fill.