We go around seeking out weird and wonderful places to stay. This blog is full of things we love, things we’ve found and some vague outdoorsy musings.

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IPHONEOGRAPHY

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There is a great world-widely known saying - you know the one - “the best camera is the one you have with you”. You’d be hard pressed to find anyone without a camera phone in their pocket or rucksack nowadays, most almost as good as a top of the range DSLR (and a hell of a lot cheaper than forking out for one of those bad boys!). Follow these top tips to get the best out of yours.

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HOORAY! IT’S SHINY NEW OFFICE DAY…

…and our Becca is settling in nicely!

MAMMA MIA! PASTA MAKING AT CEDAR FALLS!

One of our lovely guests, Alice S and partner Dan stayed at Cedar Falls recently and wrote to us about their pasta making triumph.

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UPCYCLE YOUR WASHING MACHINE!

Got an old washing machine that you don’t know what to do with? Remove and upcycle the drum to make a cool firepit!

VINTAGE VARDOS - THE BIGGER PICTURE…

It’s that time of year again - when we hot-foot it out of the office for the day to one of our Special Places for jollities and frolics in a field, forest or horsebox (and to talk Canopy & Stars tactics). This time, we chose The Vintage Vardos in Umberleigh, Devon; a trio of Gypsy wagons on Fisherton Farm, and arrived to a lovely surprise of our ‘currently on maternity leave’ Booking Exec, Rosie already settled in with our newest recruit to the ranks: four-month old Sasha!

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Even the hard worked Sawday’s staff love to take some ‘me’ time out at a Canopy & Stars place! Here’s our Alec at The Rising Sun.

IN THE WORDS OF DARA O’BRIAIN… SOMETHIN FER DA DADS

With Father’s Day hurtling its way towards us at full pelt, you may be pondering on thoughtful gift ideas. So rather than a potato gun or (another) mug, why not treat him to a surprise trip with a difference? Whether it’s salmon fishing on the Eamont, a climbing extravaganza or a wild boar hunt, we have everything you need to impress your old Dad. And if he’s a really tricky one to please, there’s always the Canopy & Stars Gift Card

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SPARKLERS AT SAWPIT WAGON!

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One of our awesome guests Peter N visited Sawpit Wagon Camp in Dorset last weekend and sent us a selection of his holiday snaps. Needless to say, he had a great time!

Not so lonely goatherders: A weekend at Woodspring Farm

Not counting festivals or nights in caravans, I have only camped once. It was a practice trip for a school expedition to Vietnam and we were forced to go to Buxton in January. (Quite how pitching a tent on snow prepares you for trekking in the rainforest I’ll never know). One night I woke up and was shaking so much, I genuinely considered waking my tent-mates and asking them to tell my parents I loved them should I freeze to death. Let’s not even get started on the trauma of putting on new underwear. Overall, not a life highlight.

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A LITTLE WILD GARLIC RISOTTO

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The lovely Bella at Longlands sent us this photo yesterday of the beautiful bluebells and wild garlic in her Devon woodland over the weekend. And being the hungry beasts we are, it stirred up thoughts of this favourite from the Riverford recipe books. Bon appetit!

Ingredients

  • 30g butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 wet garlic, sliced thinly
  • 1 small onion, chopped finely
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
  • 250g risotto rice (arborio)
  • splash white wine or vermouth
  • 1 litre vegetable or chicken stock (hot)
  • large handful wild garlic leaves, roughly chopped
  • 50g parmesan, grated finely
  • wild garlic flowers to garnish

Method

  1. Cook garlic and onion slowly in some butter and oil for about 10 minutes without colouring. Add rice, turn up the heat and cook until the rice is coated with garlic mix, season and add alcohol. Stir until the wine has been absorbed.
  2. Next, add the stock until rice is just covered and turn down the heat. Maintain rice at a gentle simmer and keep adding stock once the last addition has been absorbed. After about 10 minutes add wild garlic leaves and stir into rice. Add more stock. After another 5 minutes, when rice is just cooked but has some bite, add the butter and cheese.*
  3. Season and serve with a sprinkling of cheese and some wild garlic flowers if the fancy takes you!

*NADA’S TOP TIP - Add a little lemon zest for an added zing.

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