Cotna Eco Retreat

Cotna Barton, Gorran, Cornwall PL26 6LG
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A variety of glamping options secluded away on a Cornish smallholding.

It’s difficult to call places in Cornwall ‘hidden’ these days. It has a strong whiff of cliché about it and, given we’re talking about a 10-acre small holding, it also seems a slight exaggeration. Cotna Eco Retreat isn’t exactly something you can slip into your pocket and sneak away with, though we have to say we’d quite like to. If you could bottle the atmosphere they’ve got here you could make a pretty penny. Relaxing, friendly and, above all, sustainable, it’s a place that’s somehow both homely yet also a million miles away from normal life.

Veiled (not hidden) in a quiet Cornish valley, Cotna is a small-scale glamping site ensconced on an organic farm. They offer eco-living without any posturing or grandiosity. The farm, established far longer than the glamping business, supplies salad leaves to most of the local pubs and restaurants and is home to hens, horses, cats and dogs, who add to the good-humoured hum of daily life. At the right times of year, Cotna boasts a plethora of seasonal goodies – including asparagus, aubergines, cucumbers and quince – much of which is housed in the long poly-tunnels that stand out among the green patchwork of the vegetable gardens.

Yet a sense of wilderness is still fostered at Cotna Eco Retreat – one of the real pleasures of glamping within its boundaries of traditional Cornish hedges. Pockets of fruit and nut orchards dot the farm where visitors have free rein to roam, exploring the oak and hazel woodland, the natural ponds and small streams that trickle away towards Portmellon and the proper working harbour village of Mevagissey, two miles away. This makes Cotna both a boon for families – wanting den building and wildlife spotting instead of plastic playgrounds – and also a romantic escape for those seeking out the more secluded side of Cornwall.

Within the orchards are two yurts (each named after a Cornish apple variety). Crafted from local ash, sail canvas and robust polycotton, each boast a magnificent central crown that pools in natural light. Inside they’re furnished to create an all-in-one sleeping, cooking and living space, each with a double bed and space for a further two matresses if necessary, while a wood-burner provides heating – as well as adding to the suitably snug feel of it all! For cooking there’s a gas burner and all the kit and caboodle you'll need plus, of course, Cotna organic eggs, fruit and veg for sale with sourdough bread baked to order.

The brand new couple's shepherds hut, Ismay, enjoys a prime spot within a peaceful valley beside a babbling brook, while the Strawbale Studio offers an equally atmospheric space. Inside, the honey coloured walls and uneven lime-plaster are evocative of the bales that form this eco-friendly structure, creating a wonderful warmth in the evenings as the lamplight casts irregularly across the walls. The accommodation includes an en suite shower, a hand-crafted kitchen, a big brass bed and the all essential wood-burner. In the adjoining barn, owners Dave and Sara share their passion and knowledge for green living, hosting a wide variety of courses and workshops, as well as giving guests the chance to get stuck in. Sara was a teacher in her former life and Dave is a trained Plant Biochemist, so you’re in the safest of green hands!

Of course, none of this should detract from the ultimate feather in this glampsite's cap – its enviable location on the south west coast within easy reach of the best beaches – yet it also competes with the very sights you came here to visit in the first place. After all, why visit the Lost Gardens of Heligan up the road when you have your own lost garden right here? Lost, but not hidden that is, in Cornwall’s most delightful glamping setting.

Site Info

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The Owner Says

(info supplied by the campsite)

Cotna Eco Retreat offers glamping & yurt holidays in Cornwall, as well as courses, personal retreats and meditation breaks. Cotna is situated its own lush green valley close to some of the most beautiful beaches in Cornwall: Gorran Haven, Vault, Hemmick and Caerhays are all within a 30 minute walk, along dog friendly coastal paths and quiet Cornish lanes.

Cotna’s Cornish holiday accommodation is self-catering, and you can order our delicious organic food hampers for breakfast, lunch and evening meals. Fresh salad leaves, golden organic eggs, sourdough bread, pesto, jams and chutneys are some of our specialities. Participate in one of our courses – wild food foraging & cooking, sourdough bread making or no-dig gardening. And get to know our super-friendly animals – spaniels, cats, horses, chickens and ducks!

We are much more than a yurt farm! We live a low-impact and sustainable way of life in a stunningly beautiful place.  Our speciality is growing salad leaves which we provide to local restaurants and farm shops.We produce solar and wind energy and our water supply is from a natural spring supplying pure Cornish spring-water. We use our own wood, recycle through our compost bins and eco compost loos and produce delicious organic fruit & vegetables.

Through following permaculture principals of living in harmony with the land we hope you enjoy a taste of life at Cotna while you are here. You are welcome to be as involved or as independent as you choose during your stay with us. We also run learning sessions which give you the chance to learn more about growing & food at Cotna – do have a look at our Courses and Events page to find out about foraging, cooking & no-dig gardening.

Reviews of Cotna Eco Retreat

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★★★★★

Best ever family holiday!

We spent a truly magical week at Cotna with our 3 young boys, the eldest who summed it up perfectly by saying "it's like staying in paradise!" The gardens are beautiful as are the yurts (we stayed in Fern Pippen).We loved having Sara's freshly Baker sour dough bread with homemade blackcurrant jam for breakfast every morning, then freshly picked Cotna salad for our lunch. The boys loved 'helping' Dave with the chickens/horses/salad picking/weeding and would have been happy to spend all day at the site, if we hadn't dragged them off for walks to numerous stunning beaches. Cotna is a magical place where we enjoyed lots of campfires, stargazing and time and space to relax in beautiful surroundings. We have left feeling peaceful and relaxed - all agreed best family holiday ever!
We've been back now so many times to this magical space. Either in the Yurt, Shepherds Hut or Straw-bale studio we've had an amazing time. Our favourite is probably a sourdough bread and freshly laid eggs breakfast on the sun-drenched Studio deck, before a spectacular walk to Vault Beach - far from the madding tourist crowds. Sara and Dave are incredible hosts, and well worth making the time for a chat (if you can catch them wizzing around running an organic small-holding). The sustainability and care for the land is very evident, and I was happy my stay was environmentally constructive, and supporting this amazing place.

★★★★★

No better place to be..

We stayed at Cotna for 4 days and had a great time. We love everything : the cosy yurt, the beautiful valley and woodland, the peaceful space, the starry nights and the babbling brook, the bountiful vegetable garden, the picturesque walks to the coast, our lovely hosts and the super friendly locals at the pub on the open mic night :) We have two teenagers and a dog and everybody had a fantastic time. We'll be back!
Cotna Eco Retreat is THE place i would recommend for everyone who wants to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city!! It is situated in a beautiful valley surrounded by beautiful scenery!In cotna you can find the peace you seek.It is a real heaven. Sarah and Dave are so kind and willing to help you everytime you ask for it although they are pretty busy taking care of the valley and the animals. You must try the homemade bread,the organic eggs,the homemade jam as eveything is homemade and organic. There is a list in the leaflet given to you with the homemade things they make.Try the tomatoes and the salad leaves.Everything tastes sooo delicious! Apart from the food in the campsite, cotna is situated very close to coastal beautiful villages(gorran haven,portmellon,mevagissey,carheys castle).You can reach these places also on foot as there are public footpaths which lead you there.In Cotna there is a leaflet with the local walks.It is absolutely worth it!! Cotna is situated in Gorran Churchtown which is a small picturesque village with a beautiful church.You must pay a visit several times to the Barley Sheaf pub(excellent food,excellent place,one of the best pubs I have ever been) In Cotna you will find the serenity and peace you are looking for.It may not be luxurious but it is made out of love. Enjoy your time!!You will not regret it!!

Nearby Campsites

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Gilliflower is our woodland yurt, in its own field you'll frequently hear owls hooting in the evening and birdsong in the morning

Cotna Eco Retreat: Gilliflower is our woodland yurt, in its own field you'll frequently hear owls hooting in the evening and birdsong in the morning

Inside Gilliflower Yurt

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside Gilliflower Yurt

Inside Gilliflower Yurt

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside Gilliflower Yurt

Inside Gilliflower Yurt

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside Gilliflower Yurt

Inside Tregonna King Yurt

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside Tregonna King Yurt

Tregonna King Compost Loo

Cotna Eco Retreat: Tregonna King Compost Loo

Inside Fern Pippin

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside Fern Pippin

Pengelley Strawbale Studio Deck

Cotna Eco Retreat: Pengelley Strawbale Studio Deck

Inside Pengelley Strawbale Studio

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside Pengelley Strawbale Studio

Inside Pengelley Strawbale Studio

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside Pengelley Strawbale Studio

Pengelley Strawbale Studio Deck

Cotna Eco Retreat: Pengelley Strawbale Studio Deck

Ismay Shepherd's Hut

Cotna Eco Retreat: Ismay Shepherd's Hut

Inside Ismay Shepherd's Hut

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside Ismay Shepherd's Hut

View out the door of Ismay Shepherd's Hut

Cotna Eco Retreat: View out the door of Ismay Shepherd's Hut

View out the window of Ismay Shepherd's Hut onto Bos and Elderflower the horses

Cotna Eco Retreat: View out the window of Ismay Shepherd's Hut onto Bos and Elderflower the horses

Inside the shower shed

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside the shower shed

Compost toilets

Cotna Eco Retreat: Compost toilets

Inside the Compost toilets

Cotna Eco Retreat: Inside the Compost toilets

Kitchen Shed for Ismay

Cotna Eco Retreat: Kitchen Shed for Ismay

Glamping in Cornwall: A unique haven of peace and tranquillity in Cornwall with comfortable eco-accommodation in yurts, a shepherd’s hut and a strawbale barn – all within a gorgeous 10-acre organic farm.

Cotna Eco Retreat: Glamping in Cornwall: A unique haven of peace and tranquillity in Cornwall with comfortable eco-accommodation in yurts, a shepherd’s hut and a strawbale barn – all within a gorgeous 10-acre organic farm.

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