The écovallée yurt camp has everything the eco-minded family will need for a green and luxurious holiday. We should know – we live in yurts with our two young children all year round.
Something to think about before you read on: Facilities here are shared between the yurts; if you are not comfortable sharing your space with like-minded strangers and potential new friends, you may want to book the whole site or bring someone you already know.
Two handcrafted 18-foot coppiced chestnut yurts, each furnished with one double and two single beds, somewhere to keep your clothes, comfortable mattresses, pillows, duvets, and linen and towels that are washed in planet-friendly liquid but (in line with our all-things-eco policy) not ironed. New in 2013, a 12-foot coppiced ash yurt furnished with one double bed and a Moses basket if required, with its own kitchen area - perfect for a couple or new parents.
Communal canvas-covered safari-style kitchen, with pots, pans, utensils, crockery, cutlery, coolboxes, fresh herbs, gas oven, large gas barbecue, solar fairy lights, recycling bins and buckets for animal scraps. Free-range eggs from the orchard and seasonal produce from the veggie patch will be left here as available.
A special 12-foot yurt filled with kids’ books, puzzles, games and toys. Also available as an extra bedroom when booking out the whole site, a reading or meditation space, or to enjoy one of the many healings on offer. A great place for bat watching at dusk and stargazing at night.
Over 12 acres of woods and fields to run and play in, tractors to sit on, animals to meet, swings to swing, hammocks to doze in and dens to find. Plus a trampoline, badminton set and loads of other garden games.
Washing and bathing
A compost toilet and solar shower give you all the other facilities you need just metres from your yurt.
Baby and toddler
Guests with very young children are welcome to use our high chair, all-terrain buggy, travel cot and baby bath at no extra charge.
Bookings in July and August are from Saturday to Saturday, with check-in after 4pm and check-out before 10am.
A picnic of fresh baguette, cheese, salami and our own pâté (for meat eaters), and a home-made tart will be yours on arrival, washed down with a bottle of good local wine.
April to September: from £300 to £600 per week.
Massage, alternative therapies, healings and babysitting are all available for equally reasonable rates.
A damage deposit of £200 per yurt is also required and will be returned to you when you leave. Full Terms and Conditions will be sent by email at the time of booking.
No campfires. We live in a highly flammable environment. Open fires are banned by the authorities for the whole summer – and in a country with no apparent regard for Health and Safety, they must have Very Good Reasons for doing this. (This is also why the only barbecue allowed is the one in the kitchen area, which runs on gas.)
No loud music. This may seem harsh, but we have neighbours and young children, and neighbours with young children, and sound travels a long way in the countryside – especially at night. If you want to appreciate some excellent music that can only be heard with the volume turned up to 11, please pack some earphones.
|Address: D2, 24750 Atur, France|
|Latitude/Longitude: 44.8277637174285 / 0.736363642700212|
|Nearest airport||Bergerac||20 km|
|Nearest beach||Plan d'eau, Lanquais (lake)||6 km|
|Nearest restaurant||Lalinde||400 meters|
|Nearest train station||Lalinde||700 meters|
Our greenest guests arrive by train in nearby Lalinde. But hiring a car is recommended (you’ll need a credit card for this) as taxis are outrageously expensive and not always available when you want them.
In the past we have tried:
Seemed like a bit of a farce, having booked a time both ways and ending up on a different train each time. The road from Calais was long, made longer by staying overnight too close to Paris. Not for us a second time, although other people do it, using the fast road north-west of the capital.
Newhaven to Dieppe. Stayed in an excellent Sawday’s B&B near Alençon on the way, and an unnecessarily expensive hotel on the way back. The overnight cabin home was definitely worth the money.
Portsmouth to St Malo. Arriving in the morning, it’s possible to drive to écovallée in one day. Pop into Brantôme and visit the caves behind the abbey if you have time.
Southampton to Bergerac. Frighteningly quick, cheap, easy and trouble free (if air travel catches on, there’s no hope for the planet).
From the church by the bridge in Lalinde, cross the river, take the second turning (signposted Coste-Perie) and go up the hill. After 400 metres, there is a sharp right turn (signposted Falaise de St Front) - ignore this. Keep going, past the pylon, until the next sharp right turn (about 300 metres from the Falaise junction). Go left/straight on here. After 20 metres, turn left onto a very small road between the horse field and flowery embankment. About 100 metres down the hill on the left you will see a postbox, some bamboo, our little building and yurt. You have arrived.
Ecovallée is 300 metres from the medieval market town of Lalinde. With two butchers, three bakers, four cafés, three supermarkets, restaurants, take-away pizza places, wine shop, banks, pharmacies, playground, tourist information office and more, it has everything the yurt dweller could possibly need. Including a spectacular market on Thursday and small market on Saturday morning.In the surrounding area, you will find:Over 1,500 chateaux (Lanquais, Milandes, Castelnaud, Biron, Monbazillac, Tiregand)Some of the most beautiful villages in France (Cadouin, Limeuil, Domme, La Roque-Gageac, Beynac-et-Cazenac, Issigeac)Caves with prehistoric art or rock formations (Proumeyssac, Villars, Domme, Lascaux II)Bastide towns (Lalinde, Beaumont, Monpazier, Molières, Villefranche)Markets (Beaumont, Cadouin, Le Buisson, Issigeac, Couze, Limeuil)Museums (Castelnaud, La Roc Saint-Christophe, La Maison Forte de Reignac, Les Eyzies, Couze)Canoe rivers (Dordogne, Vézère)Gardens (Marqueyssac, Limeuil)Walking, cycling and horse riding trails, tree climbing parks, water parks and whatever else takes your fancy.But many people like to just sit, cook, read in a hammock, watch the chickens, give Pepito a carrot or two and enjoy the peace and space of écovallée.
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