As Easter bank holiday weekend dawned upon us, we had 2 days spare to fill with a micro-adventure. I went straight to pitchup.com and snapped up 2 nights at Bird Rock campsite in Wales, deep within the valleys.
We hurriedly grabbed our small 4 man tent, camping stove and chairs, and shoved them in the car. The destination was set, and we traveled down on Saturday night, after I had finished work at 4 o’clock.
The instructions we received via email were very straight forward, and the advice about the road to the campsite was true. The road is not very wide, so the chance of coming face to face with another car was quite high.
Bird Rock campsite is set on a working farm, so as you enter, there are visible barns, housing farming equipment and the noises of animals. This was not off putting. In fact, it was lovely to see sheep and cows in abundance.
The site manager (possibly owner?) came running up to us and welcomed us to the site. She gave us directions as to where we could pitch up and said we could pay her in the morning. It was very casual and friendly and we were right at home from the moment we arrived.
Smells Like Home!
The smell of camping hit us straight away. Grass, fresh air and barbecues ignite a sense of happiness within me. We found our spot, started setting up the tent and the kids ran around happily with a ball. The fields are large, as all the cars park around the edge leaving a huge green space in the middle for the kids to play in. No worries about them getting lost as they can be seen very easily, and there were no odd corners to hide in.
The Bird Rock campsite allows fires, so we trudged off to find some wood to light. There is a trail along a river that leads up to a small hill. Dicky and the boys went to explore while Molly and I filled up the water butt and collected small twigs for kindling.
The facilities are basic, 2 toilets per gender and 3 showers. There is an area for washing up, a waste disposal site and also fresh drinking water from an outside tap. Hot water is 20p to activate and the showers are 50p. There are small boxes on the wall to take your change, which I think is justified, considering how cheap the campsite is in general. This is a small holding and the owners still need to make a living.
There is little to no signal, and no WiFi at all. I love this, as it made us put down our phones and connect as a family. Although, I didn’t take as many photos as normal as I didn’t have my phone in my hand!
Stars, Stars, Stars
As the night drew in, the stars appeared. I have never seen so many. The night was clear and the whole sky seemed to sparkle. It was beautiful. We sat around the fire and gazed up, trying to name all of the constellations. We settled down to sleep, the night warm and the sheep from the nearby fields keeping us company with their bleating. The first lambs of the spring calling out for their mommy’s.
Easter Sunday is spent at the nearest beach, Barmouth, which is 20 minutes away. The drive in and out of the campsite is gorgeous. We pass Lake Llyn Gwernan, which is absolutely stunning and sits underneath the foothills of Cadair Idris. We were going to climb Cadair but felt it was a bit too hot and we weren’t very prepared.
After getting slightly sunburned on the beach, we arrive back at the campsite and cook a nice tea of jacket potatoes, burgers and sausages, of course! What else are you going to cook on a barbecue?
Bird Rock overlooks the campsite and at a height of just under 300m, it was steep enough for us to burn off our food. We took some photos and watched the sun set on a beautiful landscape, consisting of green luscious fields, a river running through and mountains scaling all around us.
This little trip helped us all disconnect from work, school, and normal life. Sadly, the time away was too short and we all long for a bit more freedom.
Bird Rock is a primitive camp site, with basic facilities. I could write this review as somebody who loves luxury and give the site poor ratings, or I could write it as somebody who loves to connect with the outdoors and show a positive light on it. In all, I think that if you are after somewhere with a toilet and a shower, while being self sufficient, this is a perfect surrounding to be in.
We will definitely return, as the beauty of Wales calls us back. The campsite is cheap and cheerful and the host is very friendly. This was a great experience which we would love to repeat.
Bird Rock Campsite. Tel: 01654782276
Postcode: LL36 9TN
Price : We paid £30 for 2 nights, for a Saturday and Easter Sunday night.
For more holiday reviews, check out Gardeners Cottage. Our Scottish, Christmas adventure!