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Sit back in seventh heaven and scope out the stars from Grey Willow Yurts deep in Devon’s Blackdown Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, on a panoramic inland plateau where the views will leave you starstruck. This is down to earth and comfy camping with the Mercury rising: each of the traditional yabins (a cross between a yurt and a cabin) at this small and friendly family-run site has a woodburning stove inside and your own area outside for toasting tiffin over a fire (gas fires and barbecues are welcome too).
We can’t comet on whether you’ll see a meteor shower while you’re Saturn the grass around the fire, but the yabins’ location in the middle of the Blackdown Hills is one of the best stargazing spots in the country and is close to Exmoor National Park, the first designated Dark Sky Reserve in Europe – quite the atmosphere for lying back and feeling heavenly… If you’re a novice to the night sky, book one of the stargazing courses on offer to see what’s what.
Grey Willow Yurts is emphatically eco-friendly: drinking water comes from the site’s own borehole, and hot water for the two bathrooms in the amenities block (each with loo, shower and basin) from a woodburning stove with boiler. All the yabins have waterproof roofs to keep out the elements. Each has its own flat decking, a double bed, double sofa bed and a single futon/z-bed, as well as crockery, cutlery, pots, pans, tables, cushions, blankets and carpet; bring your own bedding, a torch and your wellies. Dishwashing liquid is provided at the site washing-up area.
For campfire supplies, Dunkeswell with a local shop and Honiton with a supermarket are within about ten minutes’ drive; for exploring further afield, the site is in base position for sunny dispositions on days out at Dartmoor, Exmoor, the Jurassic Coast and the sights and scenery of south-west England. It all sounds rather heavenly…
Find nearby sites with availability…
Many sites set a maximum occupancy of 6/8 people per pitch, so try breaking your booking down into smaller groups to generate more results. For example, if you’re a group of 10, enter 5 people in your initial search and then book 2 pitches.
However, where the pitch or accommodation occupancy allows it, you can make a booking for up to 30 adults and 30 children in one booking.
To book multiple pitches or accommodation, use the 'Special requests' box on the booking page to ask to be sited together. Complete the booking form for the first booking (you can add a password and save your card so that we remember your details). Then click "Make another booking like this" at the top of the confirmation page to make the next booking.
Large groups: check the listing page for any group restrictions set out in the terms and section titled ‘Please note’.
Large tents/caravans: check the restrictions on unit dimensions to ensure your unit is suitable for the space you will be provided with.
Leisure on site
Bar or club house
Indoor swimming pool
Outdoor swimming pool
Amenities on site
Ice pack freezing
Parent & baby washroom
Pick-up from public transport
Gas cylinders available
Commercial vehicles allowed
Dogs allowed all year
Horse riding nearby
Indoor pool nearby
D. of E. welcome
Single-sex groups welcome
Student groups welcome
Tiny (1-10 pitches)
Tipis, yurts, or wigwams
- Coach stations
Wellington (Somerset): High Street Coach Stop — 6.9 miles
6.9 miles Tiverton Parkway: Rail Station Bus Stop — 8.3 miles
8.3 miles Sampford Peverell: The Globe Bus Stop — 9.2 miles
- Train stations
Honiton Rail Station — 6.1 miles
6.1 miles Feniton Rail Station — 8.3 miles
8.3 miles Tiverton Parkway Rail Station — 8.3 miles
- Ferry ports
Topsham Ferry Landing — 18.9 miles
18.9 miles Topsham (Turf Lock Ferry) Ferry Landing — 18.9 miles
18.9 miles Topsham Lock Ferry Landing — 19.0 miles
Exeter International Airport — 14.9 miles
For your satnav, the closest postcode to type in to get to the site is EX15 3QA. The easiest way to reach us from the M5, the A303 and the A30 is from Honiton.
From the M5, come off the M5 at Cullompton (Junction 28) and head down the A373 to Honiton. When you arrive at Honiton, turn left into the High Street. At the mini roundabout, bear left. Once you are just over the A30 bridge, take a left turn signposted Dunkeswell. After 7.5 miles, take the left turn signposted 'The Knowle'.
Basking on the beach, foraging for fossils, roaming the moors or eating and shopping your way around Devon and neighbouring Cornwall are all accessible from Grey Willow Yurts, and there are two Sites of Special Scientific Interest within a mile for meeting local birds and beasts.
If you’re a rummager, the old WWII airfield at RAF Upottery has occasional car boot sales and vintage car shows, and the town of Honiton is about six miles away to pick up pottery, lace and antiques at its twice-weekly market. Axminster, home of the restaurant and cookery courses of Hugh Fearnly-Whittingstall's River Cottage Canteen and headquarters, is about half an hour away.
Straight from Grey Willow Yurts, stride into the Blackdown Hills and its miles of hike, bike and horse-riding trails, 16 Sites of Special Scientific Interest, Iron Age hill forts, World War II sites at Dunkeswell, and a wealth of wildlife such as barn owls, kingfishers and otters. Or drive south to Lyme Regis, Charmouth, Sidmouth and the rest of the Jurassic Coast to book a guided fossil walk at Lyme Regis Museum, tramp the South West Coast Path and the Purbeck Way, take a boat/kayak out or pedal along the Lyme Regis to Dawlish on the cycle route through Seaton and Sidmouth.
Taunton and Exeter are 30 – 40 minutes’ drive away, and both Dartmoor and Exmoor within an hour for horse-riding, fishing, gliding, climbing and much moor – start off with the heaps of info and ideas at Dartmoor’s visitor centres at Princetown, Postbridge and Hayton, and Exmoor’s at Dulverton, Dunston and Lynmouth. If you want to travel a little further, the AONB, beaches and watersports of the north Devon coast are around an hour and a half away.
- Blackdown Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (3.2 miles)
- The National Trust Killerton House & Gardens (13.9 miles)
- Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site (14.1 miles)
- Loughwood Meeting House (8.5 miles)
- Shute Barton (9.3 miles)
Find local routes on the National Cycle Network - over 12,000 miles of cycling routes.