Glamping is said to offer greater 'adventure' potential than a hotel, and more comfort than traditional camping. At Comrie Croft in Perthshire you'll find a range of self-catering accommodation, eco-camping as well as quirky Nordic Katas.
What's a Nordic Kata? Well, it's a Scandinavian tipi of course! Very cool and cosy at the same time.
We arrived at the Croft’s rural hideaway after the main reception closed at 5pm, but the key to our Nordic Kata was clearly hanging up. We picked up a map and found our site with relative ease. We were kata number seven, and the tipis are dispersed through the woodland with ample space between each one. As you can imagine, the kids were beyond excited.
THE NORDIC KATA
Unlocking the door of our kata was disproportionately exciting. It was a bit of a tardis, seemingly vast on the inside compared to how it looked on the outside. When we arrived the temperature inside and out felt exactly the same (baltic) so Mr Husband immediately lit the wood-burning stove using the logs and matches provided.
Inside we found one vast bedding area where you could probably fit up to six adults if they were on excellent terms. Two couples would also work, or most family configurations. We had to provide our own sleeping bags, and I’d also brought pillows and a couple of duvets and blankets from home as my greatest anxiety for family glamping/camping in Scotland is being absolutely frozen.
The kata provided a gas hob, dining table, chill box and shelf of utensils and crockery. We had everything we needed, and it felt a lot easier than camping. Outside was a campfire area, then a short wooden path led to our private toilet.
The heat is provided by the vast wood-burning stove at the heart of the kata. On one hand it is absolutely roasting – we didn’t need any of the extra blankets and duvets I’d brought. We visited in a cold March weekend and the place was like a sauna: the stove simply belted out heat. I cannot stress how cosy this kata was. On the other hand the stove is a hazard for young children. We made a rule for our 3 and 4 year olds that they had to take their epic bag of toys and play on the bed area – the bed is huge and they stuck to this rule about 95% of the time.
COOKING & FOOD
Bring anything you can envisage cooking on two gas hobs or a campfire. We rocked the culinary world with pasta and sauce – Junior of course insisted on ‘helping’ with every stage of food preparation, which meant everything took twice as long. A vat of fresh water is provided for drinking, cooking and filling the kettle.
If you forget anything then, during working hours, the Comrie Croft Farm Shop is open, selling everything from teabags and honey, to cuts of organic lamb. In high season a tearoom is open, and in low season a friendly farmer in a silver Airstream caravan sells bacon rolls and a range of coffees, so you can glamp/camp then start day with a frothy cappuccino.
The wonder of camping and glamping is the absence of wifi and television, so picture an evening round the campfire, or don a head torch like Mr Tot and wander round the woods claiming you’re ‘exploring’ like Captain Barnacles. Whatever rocks your boat.
CLEANING & SHOWERS
When we awoke, to the noise of children and birdsong, the woodland looked beautiful outside but it was bucketing down. I bravely volunteered to search out the shower block in the downpour. Located in the main reception block, about a minute’s walk from our kata, the shared showers were clean and piping hot. Breakfast of sausages and eggs was prepped on the gas stove, and I then volunteered Mr Husband to take all our dirty dishes to the ‘Washing Up Station’ in the rain, whilst I stayed inside the kata and dressed the children. Mr Husband set off and I think he enjoyed the peace.
Once dressed our tots were set on getting outside and were content running around in the forest. It was a bit surreal, like something out of ‘Heidi’. It was so removed from the city parks they’re used to, it felt so safe, and they took to it instinctively.
Comrie Croft is on the doorstep of Ben Chonzie for any keen hikers, there are also ample walking and cycle trails. The cycle shop at the Croft is the business, with a well stocked array of kit and bikes for sale. If the weather is reasonable it’s an ideal spot for those wishing to get outdoors.
The croft is situated in a beautiful part of green Perthshire – I’m always astounded at how green Perth is. The croft’s nearest towns are the very civilised Crieff and Comrie, so here’s a round up of cool family activities in the Crieff area. And click here for activities in the wider Perth area. As well as lots of charming cafés and boutiques there are lots of really quirky family friendly things to see and do.
OUR STORY – We drove from our base in Aberdeen direct to Comrie Croft, which took just over two hours. It’s a rural location, with equally rural sights to visit in the vicinity so overall I’d recommend private transport. Discover more at comriecroft.com. When we stayed prices per kata were:-
- 1 night (Sunday – Thursday) £99
- Weekend (Friday & Saturday) £229
- 5 nights (Sunday – Friday) £299
- 1 week £499
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