Shepherds hut, private island and a hot tub. What more could you want for a relaxing weekend away?
Welcome to the Nancy Blackett. A gorgeous shepherds hut in rural Somerset. It really is an escape from the day to day routines, where you can immerse yourself in the countryside and forget normal life even exists. A weekend in July was my chance to spend a few nights at this little getaway and I cannot wait to share it with you.
You can find the Nancy Blackett on Canopy and Stars. The Canopy and Stars website is the ultimate website for unique nights away, the majority of the places are in the UK, however, there are a few dotted around Europe. You will loads of different types of accommodation there, from yurts to canal boats to treehouses. Your inner child will squeal in excitement at the choice of places to stay!
After much debate over so many fab places, Joe and I booked our trip to the Nancy Blackett. Then counted down the days till we visited. As we live in Devon we wanted somewhere that was fairly local but we could afford to stay more than just one night.
When we arrived we were greeted by the Sam one of the owners of the hut. She was lovely, showed us where to park the car and pointed us in the direction of the hut. After that left us to explore. Following the track down it then forks off to the right where you find the cabin. A gorgeous building with a little kitchen and bathroom in. The kitchen was equipt with a small fridge, hob, plates and cutlery and other key essentials. Homemade cookies and apple juice were left for us to enjoy too. A lovely touch.
Just outside the cabin is an outdoor cooking area. Complete with plenty of firewood, an axe and a pizza oven. Actually everywhere you went there was a chance to practice your woodsman skills, this delighted Joe. He’s a bit of a pyromaniac and loves any excuse to have an axe and a fire… So he was in his element.
Next head back down the gravel path to the fork and this time head right. Go over the bridge that’s hidden by reeds and emerge the other side to find the shepherds hut and hot tub. Hidden from view is just this slice of peace. The second you walk over you forget about the world, focusing on the nature around you. The hut is gorgeous to look at and then step inside to a full double bed with a small log burner in the corner.
Lost in Nature
Outside the hut is a lake, there is a pontoon and rowing boat too. Unfortunately, there was a heatwave when we went and the lake waters had dried up. However, I followed the footpath that goes around the outside of the lake came across the water on the other side of the lake. I also found a small rowing boat hiding amongst the reeds. Getting into the boat we headed off to the island in the middle of the lake. On the island, there is a hammock and a firepit. The perfect spot to have an evening BBQ. I did discover very quickly that little rowing boats aren’t really my thing. Also that it’s very difficult to climb in and out of them with a DSLR camera swinging around your neck. A skill I am yet to perfect. I am sure the ducks found it hilarious as they swam around us.
Talking of ducks, the wildlife we saw over the weekend was brilliant. Various birds, a grass snake, dragonflies, water voles and more. I spent plenty of time just sitting outside the hut just listening to the birds singing. Hearing nothing else but nature. The Nancy Blackett is so remote, that you can find wildlife that you wouldn’t usually see, due to human activity. The hut lies in its own little bubble separate from the world outside it.
Fires and Flames
As ex-explorer scouts we got to relive those days camping, with campfires, walks, nature identifying and a bit of drinking. Remembering our campfire making and cooking skills both nights to cook dinner. Including cooking our own pizza. Nothing better than a wood-fired mozzarella pizza. The next night we did vegetarian ‘chicken’ kievs with garlic bread. Yummy!
Another bushcraft skill to practice was wood chopping. Plenty of wood is needed to keep the hot tub going. However don’t put too much on at once or it becomes a bit more a cooking pot than a hot tub, as Joe quickly learnt. The hot tub was lovely. I spent plenty of time sitting in the tub enjoying the sunshine. I don’t want to say too much about the Nancy Blackett, as its best kept a surprise for when you get to visit!
It is a great feeling to just go back to basics, and have life slow down. I avoided social media as much as I could over the break. Taking time to enjoy reading, colouring books and relaxing in the shade. It was the perfect opportunity to take a break from the world, and you don’t get that very often.
Our weekend flew by so fast, and if we could of Joe and I would have lived in that hut! Its the perfect mix of outdoor living and luxury.
If you are looking for a relaxing break in a unique place give Canopy’s and Stars a search and see what amazing places you could visit. Where is your next adventure taking you?
See you next time and happy adventuring!
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