Wild and Wacky Places to Stay in the Countryside

Shepherd hut Dorset.photo

Image from Tilley's Hut

With autumn days coming soon, what a lovely place to stay and watch the leaves: an original shepherd's hut in the heart of the Dorset Downs. It's not exactly rough and ready any more and the shepherd wouldn't know what to do with it, but what a delight.

The narrow (4 feet wide) hut has all the conveniences, except t.v. and the solar panel on the roof provides energy for lights and lap tops. More bliss in the countryside after the fold.

hay hotel.photo

Image from heuhotels

If you really want to do countryside, what about a hay hotel. Popular in Germany, and called "heuhotels", the idea is very basic: farmers let guests sleep in their barns on the hay. As described, you bring your own sleeping bags, pay a minimal amount ($14 ) and sleep like a baby. It's clean, eco and natural. Most are located on farms so you get the benefit of the farming adventure--checking out the pigs and chickens, a campfire by night and the birds in the morning. Plus a fresh farmer's breakfast is served.

kolarbyn hotel.photo
Image from Kolarbyn

Calling itself Sweden's most primitive hotel, Kolarbyn consists of twelve little forest huts set in the forest by a lake. There is no electricity, just candles and a fire to keep you warm. Built in 1996, the traditional huts were created for people interested in the art of charcoal burning, but now they have been turned into tourist accommodation.


If you are looking for all the conveniences this is not the place. Here is what comes with the room: "sheep skin rugs, candles and matches, firewood for self-cutting, fresh water to be fetched from the spring, primitive kitchen facilities and equipment, dish place with running water in the creek."

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