Family-friendly yurt glamping on an enchanting old Cornwall estate just three miles from the surf and sand of Newquay
It’s been a tumultuous existence for the Fir Hill Estate. Established in the 16th-century, built up in the 19th century and then abandoned less than a hundred years later, it is only in the last decade that people have begun to rejuvenate its wild and untamed space. Today’s owner, Charlie Hoblyn, has been tirelessly restoring the grounds to craft what is now a managed yet natural 60 acres. It’s like an estate-sized version of The Secret Garden – a hidden treasure being slowly brought back to life.
In amongst the shrubbery and meadow space of the old Fir Hill farmland, is the estate’s 21st-century venture – a North Cornwall glamping hideout. With nine ginormous, Mongolian-inspired yurts, each sleeping up to six people, the site offers privacy and luxury, at the same time as having a real family-friendly buzz during the busy school holiday season. Facilities are all centred around a couple of brand new barns, built on the site of the estate’s old cow shed, with a warm social space (and views of the Porth Reservoir), as well as modern toilets and shower rooms. An outdoor terrace, meanwhile, offers a south-facing space for soaking up the sun with a covered barbecue area alongside.
The prime North Cornwall location combined with the luxuriousness of the yurts themselves gives Fir Hill an obvious appeal. But much of the place’s charm is also owed to the ethos. Charlie hasn’t just built a fancy new barn. Instead, the place has been painstakingly restored and renewed with the environment in mind. Water comes from a bore hole, huge solar panels cover part of the cowshed roof and a Froling turbo log boiler allows the site to run off thermal energy when the sun isn’t out. The surroundings, meanwhile, boast a profusion of vibrant flora. Invasive plants such as sycamore, laurel and rhododendron proliferated in the Estate’s ornamental gardens during its derelict years. But since 2012, Charlie and his team have planted over 200 fruit trees in an attempt to restore the abandoned orchards.
In all, Fir Hill is part glamping site and part restoration of a place that was long overdue its time in the spotlight. For glampers it is a wonder to explore. Stroll the farm footpaths or drive to the coast, where the vibrant surfer town of Newquay is just three miles away. Bring a board or rent one and take to the waves, build sand castles on the beach or hotfoot along the South West Coast Path to discover quieter coves and wind-blown cliff-top ruins. Whatever you do, you’ll find some of the very best attractions in Cornwall are just beyond your yurt-step – a world of adventure awaits on the edge of your own secret garden.
Yurts sleep 6 each, in a king size bed and 2 doubles (all bedding and linen included). Each yurt has its own kitchen shelter, terrace and BBQ facilities, together with a wood supply and fire lighting equipment. Kitchen areas include a gas stove, running water, cool box, pots, pans, tea and coffee making facilities, crockery, cutlery, glasses and all the utensils you need. Beautifully converted cowshed housing 8 showers and 8 toilets as well as a large leisure area to relax in. Covered barn area for reading, meditating, yoga or simply enjoying some quiet time. Multiple sun terraces. Wifi is available in the area around the barn and cowshed (as well as some of the yurts nearest these buildings). Rinsing water tank for cleaning wetsuits. Television available for children on rainy days. For maximum luxury, book the honeymoon yurt, which also features beautiful wood carvings and has a few extra inches of height.
Glamping only. Dogs are permitted in 2 of the yurts (maximum 2 dogs per booking).
Colan is just 3 miles from Newquay. As you approach the glamping site you even get a glimpse of the sea down the Porth Valley – it's the place to head (3 miles) for beautiful beaches, dramatic cliffs and a wander along the South West Coast Path. If you have the energy, use the footpath to get the most out of the coastline, taking in its full undulating scale, from high rocky bluffs to hidden, sandy coves. The quietest beaches are always those only accessible on foot. Try, for example, finding Fox Hole at the far north end of Watergate Bay (follow the grassy track from the main junction in the centre of Trevarrian – opposite Keernow Trek B&B – if you don't want to walk the full mile of up the beach). The vibrant city of Truro, meanwhile, is a short drive away, and definitely worth a visit for its impressive array of independent shops, cosmopolitan restaurants, weekly food markets and striking architecture. The popular family attractions of The Eden Project (01726 811911) and The Lost Gardens of Heligan (01726 845100) can all be reached within 45 minutes (depending on seasonal traffic conditions).
Food & Drink
By arrangement, BBQs can be organised by the glamping site at their central outdoor kitchen for a fixed price. This is usually only an option for groups of 10 adults or more. Food can be ordered online and delivered to the campsite address. For something more local, though, try a full English breakfast in Bre Pen Farm Shop & Bistro (01673860420), or stock up on lamb-and-mint burgers, from farm-reared, cliff-top flocks, for your campfire feast. For a good pub, try the Falcon Inn (01637 860225), in St Mawgan – a superb, wisteria-clad, 16th-century inn with a lovely garden and good food.
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Rated ★★★★★ over 19 reviews
We had a fabulous 4 night stay at The Fir Hill. The air is fresh, the views are beautiful - there is plenty of space between yurts and the growing plants give privacy. You are well equipped, and if you don’t have some utensil or other, Dean or Charlie are very helpful. In fact they bent over backwards to help us when I messed up our holiday dates and put up a bell tent for us for a couple of nights (also very comfortable). The other staff were kind, friendly and helpful, keeping communal areas clean, the nice (no thistles!) grass cut short and beds weeded and tended. Everything is really well thought through, from hooks in suitable places in the spacious showers, to the lovely terraces with the furniture and cooking facilities. The yurts are spacious, with comfortable beds and useful items of furniture for clothes etc as well as mirrors! The cool boxes are very effective, with a good system for getting and returning ice packs. The whole site is wonderfully peaceful, tasteful and uncommercialised. There are beautiful walks and we saw deer and nesting robins. There was a real air of generosity and trust and the other guests seemed really nice too! Thank you Charlie and Dean for providing us with a really good holiday. We’d love to come back!
An amazing time away!
Such a beautiful location and really amazing staff. There to help you no matter what. Couldn’t have asked for better customer service! Thanks so much Charlie and Dean for the fab stay, the dogs are adorable too!
The perfect place
What a wonderful holiday we've just had staying at Fir Hill. Charlie was the perfect host from start to finish; welcoming, charming, informative and with a keen sense of humour, he certainly adds to the experience! Two of our three nights included a ferocious storm which could have been a real downer, but listening to the rain hurtle down outside whilst we were snuggled in our warm yurt (with a fabulous log burner and super artwork on the walls) was really something. Knowing there were lovely, clean, warm facilities in the barn closeby was comforting, especially with a 3 year old, and after a long day exploring the gorgeous beaches and countryside nearby with our two dogs, finding Paw Patrol on Netflix was a welcome treat (for parents too - and i know Charlie's a big fan of the show!) ;) A super experience, highly recommended.
Response from Real Glamping at the Fir Hill
Thank you Rachel and family ....I enjoyed our chats and time together. With best wishes. Charlie
We absolutely adored our two night stay here! The facilities are incredible, the beds are superbly comfortable, the yurts come with everything you need to enjoy a relaxing break and cook over the fire or on your own camping stoves. They’ve thought of everything here! The host, Charlie, was very helpful and welcoming, and his dog Lily was our favourite part. WHAT a location, incredible views. We will definitely be back.
We stayed at the Fir Hill for 2 nights and I only wish we had stayed for longer! Wonderful stay, gorgeous setting and unbelievably accommodating. Would 100% recommend to anyone who enjoys camping/Glamping or anyone who is a first time camper. We particular enjoyed having our own ‘kitchen area’, making it super relaxed to make your own food in the Mornings/evenings as and when you please. Thank you again for a great stay!
Response from Real Glamping at the Fir Hill
Thank you, Evie, for your kind comments ! Look forward to your return for hopefully a longer stay ....
A great place to relax and enjoy a very comfortable outdoor experience.
Charlie the owner and manager of Real Glamping at the Fir Hill, will personally look after your every need, He has lovingly restored and taken over part of the Hoblyn Estate, and created a wonderful and environmentally friendly Glamping experience. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Excellent Glamping Place
We are seasoned glampers - so we were a little nervous over the summer holidays, when everything was booked up - and the only place available was Real Glamping at the Fir Hill. But we had no reason to be. Super remote location - and only a short drive to 'civilization' (Newquay). Excellent onsite facilities - good shower rooms and toilets (and cleaned regularly), lots of communal areas (if you wanted it) and lots of space for my 2 kids to run around in full safety (age 9 and 12) + a proper coffee machine/ TV for the kids if raining/ and good wi-fi . Yurts were very comfortable, and what is different from other places - you have your own sheltered cooking cabin - with free gas cooker, pots, pans, cutlery, plates, wood and water! (so I packed my own for no reason!) Of course you also have your own BBQ pit to cook as well. We had super quiet evenings, and lots of adventures - even with a helicopter landing in the middle of the yurts as a guest unfortunately pranged his car. Charlie and the onsite team very friendly and super helpful. A great location to explore Cornwall - and we did a lot! From Lands End to Surfboarding, picturesque villages, beautiful St Ives, stunning beaches and the Eden Project. (Never been to Cornwall before - so very impressed!) Altogether a wonderful break in the middle of the COVID crisis One tip: Read the email Charlie sends about how to get there - as Sat Nav does not get you to the right place! Luckily Charlie found us driving around in circles just outside his estate! Lovely place. Fully recommend. We will be back Charlie!
This is a very good place to stay but there can be issues with loud groups of drinkers staying there. Some camp sites rules could make a difference. Still worth staying and I would consider returning. Unique opportunity to stay in a yurt!
Response from Real Glamping at the Fir Hill
Matthew ...thank you for your kind review. We do have glampsite rules (as well as written terms and conditions on the website), but they are only valuable if guests conform to them. I recall you were Glamping next to a group of 4 male twenty somethings....I explained to them on their initial ‘tour’ that there was a mixed ‘bag’ of guests (ie families, couples and other groups) and the key thing was to consider other guests and no significant noise after 10pm ...indeed they had been perfect guests, perhaps, until their last night...and on their earlier nights they had gone to Newquay or had partied behind the buildings where their noise could be sheltered by the buildings. However the cleaner found evidence in their yurt after they left that they weren’t perhaps the perfect guests (they had a very charming front !)....their yurt showed evidence of a significant toothpaste fight !!!!
I apologise for your noise experience.
I hope you will consider joining us again in the future.
Great place to stay.....no doubt!
Charlie & his team made our first experience of glamping & staying in a yurt one that we want to repeat! Fir Hill Estate is so close to Newquay and access to Cornwall & yet once on site you feel a million miles away. The yurts themselves are brilliant & nearly all the kit you need is provided from cold food storage, cooking, cleaning, chilling out & sleeping, a real home from home! We even had one really stormy night & I had no problem sleeping like a baby. It was ace to watch the lightning through the clear part in the roof while being all snuggled up in a very comfy bed. The wider site is also great with the shared facilities being top class. Charlie has managed to create somewhere special & makes you feel like part of the 'family'. Already planning when we can come again & to bring friends as well.
A beautiful, relaxing, easy family holiday
Charlie and his staff run an amazing glamping site at Fir Hill. We received a very warm welcome on arrival, and either Charlie or his staff were available throughout our stay to help with anything we needed or just a friendly chat. The yurts are in great condition, and they provide everything you need for a fantastic camp experience. There are loads of lovely things to explore onsite (including a great place to watch the sunset over the reservoir). And the beaches are only a short drive away. We’ll definitely be back!
We loved it!
The whole experience was just great: we were warmly welcomed at our arrival, introduced to the whole place and received everything we could possibly need for our stay (cool packs, lights,...). Also were amazed how many communal places can be used additionally to the large yurt. During the stay we enjoyed the very comfortable beds, big shower rooms with place to put all your stuff and of course the fireplaces. We used the oven in the yurt once and with 1-2 logs the yurt heated up quickly and nicely. Last but not least, additionally to perfect helpfulness, we enjoyed Richard's company and stories about the place and life in general - thank you so much for the great time we had! Cheers from Stuttgart
This was our first ever glamping experience with our 3 kids and by chance we chose perfectly! Charlie and Rich (owner and manager) are so welcoming and hospitable. The yurt was clean, beds super comfy and having our own cooking and seating area at the yurt plus use of communal areas was brilliant. We are converts but perhaps have been spoilt by our first experience! The kids LOVED it and are already asking when we can go back so we will definitely be seeing fir hill again soon!
We loved our 3 days staying in ‘Top Dog’ - with our kids and dogs Richard and Charlie have made so much effort to make the place so much more than posh camping - and we cooked all meals on the big log burner, with the help of generous amounts of wood and firefighters - and even when the weather was bad we had such a freest time Highly recommended
Amazing glamping experience in a stunning location with excellent facilities and friendly, helpful staff
We spent an amazing 3 days at Real Glamping and loved every minute of it - beautiful location, amazing views from all the yurts and social spaces, fantastic staff (Charlie and his b-in-l were really welcoming and helpful), high-spec toilet/shower facilities, super cool yurts with really comfy beds, close to the beaches etc. etc.. We would highly recommend a stay here for any occasion!
Response from Real Glamping at the Fir Hill
Vicky ...thank you for this generous review. We look forward to seeing you again. KR Charlie
In the middle of the countryside with all the freshness of camping but with the luxury of staying dry and having hot showers!
The only thing any husband/partner needs to know is that my wife, who won't even go camping in Dubai (and previously ran from a camping site to the nearest hotel!) absolutely loved it and wants to go back next year! My children loved it and made new friends and I had time to fishing at Porth reservoir
New Year Celebration 2017!
A great experience of comfortable Yurts with log burning stoves to warm us at night. Really well insulated. Great beach and cliff top walks all within 20/30 mins by car. The showers in the main barn had loads of hot water and communal areas in the second barn were warm and comfortable. Highly recommend it, especially if you are fed up with tripping over guy ropes and and struggling with camping gear.
As a first time "Glamper" I found the experience truly delightful. Set on a beautiful, private estate - Charlie has gone to enormous lengths to ensure guests are made to feel welcome and well provided for. The palatial yurts are literally gale proof and very comfortable indeed. The barn facilities are excellent and the whole enterprise is inspiring in its efforts to be "off grid" and sustainable.
Highly recommended for family and friends. The host, Charlie is great fun, so welcoming, knowledgable and made us feel so at home. Very atmospheric, relaxed, laid back and completely private.
A jewel in the Cornish Crown
A unique location for a fun and enjoyable Glamping experience. Beautiful yurts with wonderful views and log burning stoves which keep them toastie and cozy. Each yurt has its own bathroom facility and under floor heating - perfect for us New Year visitors. Lovely communal barn with two floors and log burning stoves. We enjoyed both floors for yoga and New Year festivities. Easy drive to glorious beaches, walks, surfing and restaurants. Charlie Hoblyn our host could not have been more accommodating or helpful and even made the dogs feel welcome in our party of 14 people!