Lakeside camping to the north of the Loire valley with a swimming pool, restaurant and bar plus a handful of glamping options
Huttopia have a simple formula across all their campsites – take a ginormous patch of natural woodland, subtly pimple it with eco-friendly camping facilities and then open the gates to any camper with an affinity for the trees. It’s formulaic in its approach but the result is anything but, after all, no two trees are alike and every setting offers something dramatically different. Take Huttopia Rillé, for example, the forest is almost a side-note to Étang de Pincemaille, a vast lake the campsite overlooks. It’s the surroundings that dictate the camping here. And we think that’s exactly how it should be.
The pitches themselves come in various types. There are shady woodland spots, tucked beneath the Scots pines, chestnut trees and lime trees that populate the woods. Some of the most prized positions are near the two tennis courts, built where the woods open out into a clear area. ‘Camping +’ pitches are also available – much the same but with a wooden picnic table for you to use – and then there are the glamping options, of which there are many.
Unusually for Huttopia, generally dominated by families bringing their own tents, the Rillé site is almost half taken up by glamping accommodation. All of the units, however, have a focus on their eco-credentials. Built out of French Douglas fir and gradually blending into the surroundings as they age, they range from small safari-tent like structures, such as the ‘Bonaventure tent’ sleeping two, right up to larger wooden cabins and gypsy caravans, well-equipped for an entire family. If you fancy travelling light and turning up with just your swimming togs and a toothbrush you can’t go far wrong here.
Water babies are in their element. If you’re not on the lake, dabbling around in pedaloes and canoes, then you’ll probably be bobbing about in the heated swimming pool which overlooks the lake, giving it a curious continuity. There’s a terrace that overlooks the swimming pool in turn, a handy place to enjoy a home cooked pizza and spread your map across the table to make a plan for the day. You could rent bikes to explore the local area, hop on the charming Rillé steam train that puffs its way around the lake or just stay put and acquisition the communal BBQ for the day. Life’s full of tough decisions.
The Owner Says
Welcome to Huttopia Rillé in the Loire Valley! The ideal departure point for visiting the Loire castles. If you like tranquillity, nature, and culture, Huttopia Rillé is made for you...
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I agree with the other review left; this is a lovely site and we would def go back. Visit Lac d’Homme for more water based fun.
We went for a two week-long camping holiday in July 2018 and we had a lovely time. The campsite is nicely located for day trips around the Loire Valley, and set in a managed woodland on the edge of a lake (Lac de Rillé) just a 2-minute drive from the village of Rillé. The campsite caters for tents, campervans and also has a variety of 'glamping' options (bell-tents, wodden huts, gypsy caravans, etc). The campsite is very generously proportioned and well set out, with the tent pitches clustered away from the huts and yurts. The pitches themselves are generously sized and although the pitches themselves do not have their own individual electric socket, there are sockets clustered together so they are easily reached with a longer lead. As it's a woodland, the pitches are nicely shaded, though it's not dark as the trees are quite far apart so there is also plenty of sunlight. The facilities are basic but spotless, we spent a couple of days relaxing in the campsite and the staff regularly clean the facilities. There are plenty of showers and toilets spread out through a few separate blocks across the campsite so we never had to wait in line to use them. As usual in France, there is a daily bakery run. We put in our orders for baguettes, croissants and the like in the evening and the morning we could pick up the fresh deliveries from the little shop on the site. There is a central building that houses the reception, the small but surprisingly well stocked little shop (which stock wine from the local vineyards - a must try if you are enjoy wine), the bar and the restaurant which offer a good selection of nibbles and lunch and dinner options at the usual French prices, and communal areas with books and games. There is also a small but lovely pool right by the main building, we had a lovely time lounging in the cool water in the heat. Although the campsite is right by the lake, we had no real issues with bugs. There is a great range of on-site activities you can do: the staff runs a kid's club with daily activities in the morning and in the afternoon, you can hire a canoe and paddle boat and go on a paddle out in the lake, they also do a range of water-based activities for the kids, there are tennis courts which are free to use, there is on-site bike hire with a good selection of recommended routes in the area (with maps you can take with you), and there is a small, narrow-gauge railway that runs along the lake and past the campsite. This is run by volunteers a couple of times a week (mostly the weekends) and added a lovely atmosphere to the campsite. They also had evening activities for the adults, for example, a local market came to the campsite one day, there were a couple of small music gigs on site, organised evening wine tasting tours, organised evening canoe trips down the Loire. The staff were mostly young (early- to mid-20s) summer students with a handful of more senior managers. They could not go out of their way more to make our (and everyone else's) stay better. They were extremely helpful, friendly, and lovely. Overall, I would thoroughly recommend this campsite and cannot wait to be back at some point in the future.