Swallowtail Hill Glamping
'Idyllic' doesn't do this East Sussex hideaway justice. Nestled within the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Swallowtail Hill is a landscape like no other with six special places to stay. The farm’s forty acres of wildflower meadow and woodland are run purely for conservation and offer guests a complete getaway from the pace of modern life. In a world increasingly full of ‘content’, Swallowtail Hill is about finding contentment and connection – the things that really matter. Their portfolio of places includes a completely off-grid cottage for those looking for absolute peace, a matching pair of cabins perfect for families wanting space, a woodland retreat, and two new luxury spaces complete with wood-fired hot tubs.
The whimsical Meadow keeper’s Cottage is straight out of the Brothers Grimm and masterfully crafted using locally sourced timber. Once featured on George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces, Meadow Keeper’s Cottage is a ‘gingerbread cottage’ of so many children’s story books, it can sleep a family of four and sits in perfect pond-side seclusion between two wildflower meadows.
There are two cosy timber cabins – Wood and Penfold - each perfect for up to four people, complete with wood-burning stove, kitchenette and firepit for some bonfire grilling under the stars. The cabins are a wonderful choice for two families holidaying together. Woodcutter’s Cottage is a woodland retreat that can sleep a family of four. It lies tucked away in a dell at the end of The Dean Wood, an eight-acre chestnut and oak coppiced woodland surrounded by hornbeam, holly, hazel, oak and chestnut hedge lines.
If you prefer your glamping as luxurious as it can get, then The Long View is a gorgeous timber hut on wheels that enjoys seclusion at the end of the Eight Acre Meadow. Perfect for couples or young families it has wonderful views and a wood fired hot tub. Or there’s the Roundhouse a luxurious romantic woodland retreat for two, complete with its own hot tub.
A truly special time is assured, and it's a great place for a celebration – indeed you can have your wedding/hen/any-excuse-for-a-countryside-celebration here, or to just explore the local area: you're just six miles from Rye and easily placed to access the South Coast's many other delights, Ticks all boxes really, doesn't it?
The Owner Says
Our landscape is truly unique and the tranquillity of a break here is something guests comment on time and time again.
Three of our spaces are completely off grid – Wood and Penfold Cabins and Meadow Keeper’s Cottage. They each sleep up to four and have a small indoor kitchen with gas hob and a wood burning stove for chilly evenings. The cabins each have an outdoor gas fired shower, Meadow Keeper’s has an outdoor wood fired shower. Each has an outdoor compost loo. Accommodation is lit using rechargeable lanterns, supplied daily.
Woodcutter’s Cottage can sleep a family of four. It has a kitchenette with hot and cold running water, gas hob and wood burning stove. There’s electric light, a small fridge and charging points. Just next door is your very own washhouse – a small cabin with gas fired shower, basin and modern compost loo.
Long View is the ultimate in glamping luxury. One end of this beautiful wood cabin is fully glazed and opens out onto a wildflower meadow. The handmade kingsize bed faces the window so guests can wake up with the sun or watch the stars at bedtime. The well-equipped kitchen and dining space has a microwave, gas hob, fridge and wood burner, and the cosy seating area can convert to bunk beds for small children if required. There’s an ensuite loo and shower room. Outside is a private dining deck and wood fired hot tub.
The Roundhouse is equally luxurious and designed with couples in mind. It has a kingsize bed facing a huge picture window framing the changing view of the woodland outside. It has a well equipped kitchen and the dining space has a microwave, gas hob, fridge and wood burner. The loo and shower is ensuite. Outside is a private dining deck and hot tub.
All of our accommodation spaces have firepits and we provide all the equipment you need for campfire cooking and BBQ’ing.
Our favourite spot
Perfect for couples and families, Swallowtail Hill is also the ideal venue to host small groups for special celebrations, we’re happy to help you create a ‘landmarkation’ stay to commemorate a birthday, anniversary, hen weekend or even your wedding. A small number of additional tents are permitted to be pitched if all six accommodation spaces are hire exclusively. Nominal pitch fees apply.
The local area
Just five miles north lies the historic medieval port town of Rye. Its quaint cobbled streets are aligned with many famous buildings including Ypres Tower (01797 226728) and Lamb House, one-time home of author Henry James. If you've not had your fill of picture-postcard castles, Sissinghurst (01580 710700) and Bodiam are both but a short drive away. Further afield, be sure to visit charming Winchelsea, Rye Harbour Nature Reserve (01797 227784) and the sweeping beach at Camber Sands. Further along the coast lies Hastings Old Town – home of the largest beach-launched fishing fleet in Europe. The iconic black net huts make for a great holiday snap. On a beautiful summer's day, there are fewer settings lovelier than the gorgeous gardens of Great Dixter (01797 252878) – former home to one of the country's finest gardeners, Christopher Lloyd.
Best local places to eat and drink
We have our own Glampsite Chef available to provide a range of catering options from campfire suppers, picnics and teas through to special meals and group catering. We also have a range of BBQ boxes and breakfast hampers available and a small tuck shop on site.
The nearest pub in Beckley is the popular village boozer The Rose & Crown (01797 252161). For a wealth of charming drink and dinner options head to Rye; The Globe Inn Marsh (01797 225220) and The Ship Inn (01797 229 256) are two favourites, or for a special meal try The Tuscan (01797 223 269).
For some of the south coast's legendary seafood, The Beach Bistro at The Gallivant Hotel (01797 225 057) takes some topping, not least for the views of Camber Sands' iconic dunes.
Why stay with us?
Sustainability is a central tenet of the Swallowtail ethos, our conservation work on the farm has been going for nearly 30 years. Nature walks and bushcraft sessions are available subject to weather and availability and there’s a forest school style Wild Woodland Club for kids through which we encourage eco-education.
We have a visiting yoga teacher and also a massage therapists for guests looking to unwind, reset and recharge during their stay.
Two timber cabins – Wood and Penfold – that can each sleep up to four.
Meadow Keeper’s Cottage and Woodcutter’s Cottage can each sleep two adults and two children.
Long View can sleep two adults and two young children (bunk beds).
The Roundhouse is designed for couples but has a convertible space for one small child’s bed if needed.
They do not permit dogs/pets.
A two night booking minimum applies. Cabins from £210 for a two night break, Cottages-on-Wheels from £230 for a two night break. Long View and Roundhouse from £290 for a two night break.
Wood and Penfold Cabins, and Meadow Keeper’s Cottage open April-October
Woodcutter’s Cottage, The Long View and The Roundhouse open all year.
Trains from central London run from St Pancras to Ashford International Railway Station. From here, there is one train an hour to Rye Railway Station. The site is six miles from Rye. You can get a taxi (01797 224016) from the rank outside the station – the journey will cost around £15 one way. Alternatively you can get a bus from Rye in the direction of Northiam and alight at Beckley Four Oaks. Swallowtail Hill is then a half mile walk along Hobbs Lane and you’ll find it on the left hand side.
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