From cuddling a cow to sipping a great wine: farm campsites!
My first encounter with a farm campsite was around the age of eleven. It was a modest little campsite at a dairy farm in the south of the Netherlands. For two warm weeks my sister, brother and I explored the woods and the farm with the other children staying at the site, and in the evenings we joined the campfire. The last time I went camping on a farm was when I spontaneously decided to last summer: I strapped all my camping gear onto my regular city bike, pedalled for three quarters of an hour, and put up my tent on a camping field with a fantastic view. For me, camping on a farm has its own charm. And I’d be happy to tell you more about it.
Because camping on a farm is wonderfully no-nonsense. No entertainment team, no mascots, no campsite train. Just you and your camping gear. That’s quite refreshing at a time when we are constantly confronted with exotic destinations and perfect photos. A farm campsite is an ideal place to unwind, a place where there are no demands on your time. And it is usually also quite cheap.
That does not mean that it is boring or that there is nothing to do. And farmers’ campsites are not primitive at all. Nowadays, farm campsites are generally just as good as regular campsites when it comes to toilet facilities, electricity or wifi. Often you will even find special extras, such as fresh eggs or a country shop with its own cheeses or fruit. Don’t have your own caravan or tent? Many farm campsites now also offer accommodation in a mobile home, holiday home or rental tent.
Experience the farm
Okay, if you really don’t like cows or sheep, you may not want to go camping with a livestock farmer. But I advise you not to be deterred too quickly and take a look in the stable. Sometimes children and other guests can watch and help with milking, feeding or moving cattle, or take a ride on the tractor. It is fun and educational to discover where our milk actually comes from. There are even campsites that focus on the farm experience and organise all kinds of activities on the farm. At some campsites you can come and spend the night with your own horse.
By the way, farm camping doesn’t necessarily mean camping with animals. You also have farm campsites that run an olive grove or orchard, or that grow bulbs. Or perhaps the campsite used to have a working farm but now focuses entirely on campsite guests. There are luxury farm campsites with a swimming pool and glamping accommodations. In Italy, for example, you will find agriturismos where you can taste the most delicious wines, cheeses and/or olive oil. On some farm campsites you can pick your own fresh fruit or herbs. But what they almost always have in common is lots of space, lots of greenery and a personal atmosphere.
A paradise for children
Farm campsites are very child-friendly. The play area is never far from your pitch and because of its small-scale character, you can quickly get to know your neighbours so there is always someone to keep an eye out. During the high season and school holidays there are plenty of playmates and fun organised activities. And remember: most children know enough beautiful playgrounds from home. But playing in a haystack, picking cherries or stroking calves is something new. Spring is a great time to stay on a farm campsite. You’ll see newborn lambs and fruit trees in full flower!
Three extraordinary farm campsites
- Campsite Torassieppi in Lapland, Finland is located near an old reindeer and husky farm. Torassieppi is specialized in excursions and activities in the wilderness, in summer and winter.
- Danish campsite Gyvelborg’s philosophy is that you really live among the farm animals. There is a shop with ecological products from the farm. And you can cuddle a cow!
- At Saksida Wine and Camping Resort in Slovenia you will be camping between the vineyards. The owners will be happy to introduce you to the wines and local cuisine.