Scotland

Is this the Most Scenic Drive in Scotland?

July 12, 2017

After experiencing the beauty of Loch Lomond first hand while glamping at Portnellan Farm, we knew we wanted to share all of the details of our trip. Perhaps our favorite part (other than the epic sunset we witnessed at Portnellan Farm) was this scenic drive around Loch Lomond. While Loch Lomond does not necessarily have a ‘ring road’ or ‘golden circle’, it does have it’s own circular route, even if it doesn’t come with a fancy name. We did not make it all the way around, but we did map it all the way out in hopes that we would. This may or may not be the most beautiful scenic drive in the UK, but it’s definitely high on the list regardless. Continue Reading…

Scotland

Glamping on Loch Lomond

June 27, 2017
Glamping on Loch Lomond - Portnellan Farm, Loch Lomond, Scotland

When we decided to make a weekend trip up to Loch Lomond, we knew we wanted accommodation with a view. However, we also knew we didn’t want to break the bank. While we considered Lodge on Loch Lomond and Airbnbs, we were so excited when we stumbled upon Portnellan Farm. Glamping on Loch Lomond seemed like the perfect match of affordability, comfort, and beautiful views. And that’s just what Portnellan Farm could offer!

While the weather did not cooperate with us during our stay on Loch Lomond, we couldn’t complain while we listened to the peaceful music of the rain through our bell tent as we went to sleep. Portnellan Farm is located on a gorgeous plot of land in the perfect location. Our only regret is not spending more time there!

Staying at Portnellan Farm

After a day of travel and braving the heavy rain that chose to welcome us to Scotland, we arrived at Portnellan Farm to the friendliest welcome we’ve ever experienced. David and his son, Chris, met us by the bell tent we would be sleeping in, which was conveniently located next to the toilet/shower building and with stunning views of Loch Lomond. David and Chris walked us through the basics of staying at Portnellan Farm before leaving us to settle in and make ourselves at home. It was the perfect welcome to our accommodation on Loch Lomond.

Bell Tent Glamping on Loch Lomond

Glamping on Loch Lomond - Portnellan Farm, Loch Lomond, Scotland

While the bell tent comes with gorgeous views, that’s not the only area the tent excels in. The little 5m diameter bell tent on Portnellan Farm is equipped with everything you need for a cozy night on Loch Lomond. The decor is simple & practical and perfect for a glamping experience. There are three futons in the tent – one double and two singles – which can be converted into (extremely comfy) beds. There is a wood-burning stove in the corner for both warmth and brewing a cup of tea, with a full basket of wood stocked next to it on arrival. Lastly, a vintage trunk where you can find a welcome packet, the lighter for the fire, and a guest book full of compliments.

Glamping on Loch Lomond - Portnellan Farm, Loch Lomond, Scotland

We had a lot of exploring to do in very little time, so were often away from the farm. However, the time we did spend there was absolutely wonderful. As we laid in bed listening to our favorite trivia podcast and drinking local beers, the sound of live bagpipes on the farm filled the air. When we finally decided to close our eyes and go to bed, the sound and smell of fresh rain overwhelmed our senses. And, of course, when we peeked our heads out the tent opening, we were welcomed with the most stunning of views.

Exploring Portnellan Farm

Glamping on Loch Lomond - Portnellan Farm, Loch Lomond, Scotland

One thing that’s for certain: we definitely need to return to Portnellan Farm in order to properly explore it. The farm is a working farm, so you can pop on your wellies and wander around. We didn’t have time to wander too much, but we did go down to the dock to check out the views up close. We were also lucky that the cows chose to bid us adieu by grazing right along the road as we were driving away one last time. I (Kelly) have a slight obsession with farm animals so it was the perfect farewell!

Portnellan Farm also offers water sports, including kayaking and paddle boarding. Again, the weather wasn’t on our side for this trip, but we definitely want to venture out onto the lake with a kayak if we visit again! Alternatively, Chris offers speedboat tours around Loch Lomond. The speedboat pub hopping tour was the one that sounded most appealing to us (of course); we’ll have to bring some friends up next time to really make the most of it!

When the weather is cooperating, Portnellan Farm is an absolutely stunning place. The location is perfect and the views of Loch Lomond are unforgettable. When the rain stopped for a couple of hours on our final evening, we sat outside for a bit until the midgies started annoying us. Then, we escaped to our tent for the rest of the evening; when we stepped out to brush our teeth, we were blessed with the most incredible sunset we’ve ever seen – at 10:30pm, thanks to summertime in Scotland!

Glamping on Loch Lomond - Portnellan Farm, Loch Lomond, Scotland

Getting Around Loch Lomond

As mentioned before, Portnellan Farm is in literally the most perfect location, on the South East corner of Loch Lomond. This made it the perfect base for exploring the entire region. It’s also close to Drymen, which has a couple of pubs, and the Oak Tree Inn in Balmaha. The best part? It’s like 30 minutes door to (tent) door from Glasgow Airport!

Glamping on Loch Lomond

Glamping on Loch Lomond - Portnellan Farm, Loch Lomond, Scotland

Glamping on Loch Lomond was unlike any glamping/camping experience we’ve had before, but we had a blast! Our most recent glamping experience was at Wriggly Tin Shepherds Huts in South Downs National Park. We thoroughly enjoyed both experiences, but in completely different ways. While Wriggly Tin was quite luxurious and heavily focused on “old fashioned” cooking with the wood burning stove and firepits, Portnellan Farm offered those options while keeping it more relaxed by offering a microwave and an electric hob inside, as well. We also felt much more connected with nature at Portnellan Farm, hearing the rain pitter patter against the tent as we were trying to go to sleep and waking up as the light from the sun started to make itself known. At Wriggly Tin, it was much easier to shut it all out and pretend we were in a hotel!

This just proves how each and every glamping experience can be totally different, and it’s worth trying them all. The location, the type of accommodation, and how you get around all have an impact on the glamping experience. For example, while we got around without a car at Wriggly Tin, we would definitely recommend a car for exploring Loch Lomond (our scenic drive itinerary is coming soon!).

If you are planning a trip to Loch Lomond soon, glamping on Portnellan Farm is the way to go! For larger groups, the Old Farmhouse is also available, with equally stunning views. And who could possibly say no to those views!?


Have you been glamping in the UK?

Share your experiences in the comments below – we are always looking for new glamping adventures to try out.


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Glamping on Loch Lomond | Glamping at Portnellan Farm | Loch Lomond, Scotland

London

10 London Tourist Attractions Actually Worth the Hype

June 7, 2017

There is so much to do in London that it’s hard to know where to start. Most ‘What to do in London’ lists cannot even narrow things down, leaving tourists with a list of 25 ‘must see’ attractions to cram into three days – not even taking into consideration the queues and opening times, that’s pretty much impossible! To help you make sense of the London tourist network, we’ve decided to publish a list of the 10 London attractions actually worth the hype. Forget trying to cram in 25 attractions, most of which require a fee; instead, visit the best of the best and leave time to spare to wander around or become familiar with pub culture!

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Wine Trips

5 Must Visit Wineries in England

May 10, 2017

Many people associate England with pubs, beer, and gin. And rightly so! However, it’s time that England also becomes known for something that we love just as much as those things – wine. English wine, and particularly English sparkling wine, is produced at a quality expected from the top wine regions of the world, which only means one thing: in the future, England will be one of the top wine regions in the world.There are already over 100 wineries in England, many of which offer tours and tastings throughout the year. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to experience England’s wineries now, before they become flooded with tourists.

As wine lovers, we are incredibly excited to share our English wine experiences and hopefully help spread the word about English wine and encourage wine tourism in England. At this point in time, we have visited 9 of England’s wineries and we plan to visit all of them at some point. Here’s a deeper look into English wine and our recommendations for 5 must visit wineries in England.

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London

25 Instagrammable Locations in London (& How to Get the Perfect Shot)

May 2, 2017
Instagramming the London Eye - one of the best photo spots in London, most instagrammable spots in London

Ah, the joys of photographing The Big Smoke. It doesn’t sound like the most photogenic place when you really think about it, but London has some prime photo spots. The secret to discovering the best photo spots in London is really just to wander, but there are some that are so popular it’s worth knowing before you go. If you look up these spots, and see what existing photos look like (90% of them look the same), you can approach the location at your own angle and truly make your photo your own. That results in total #instasuccess – or, so we hear…we have yet to actually master Instagram.

However, we are good at London (or so we think…we aren’t actually that cool, and the people who are really good at London are, like, really cool). We live here, and we occasionally leave our house and go out and about here. But even when we do not, I am always perusing TimeOut and The Nudge for the latest and greatest openings in London – and the prettiest spots in our city. From pretty cafes and restaurants to quintessentially English streets, these are some of the top photo spots in London.*

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