Review: Glamping at Belvoir Castle, Leicestershire

Pack your boots (and the booze) for a weekend of picturesque bell tent glamping at Belvoir Castle in Leicestershire.

With endless natural beauty on your doorstep, plenty of quintessentially British activities and even on-site pizza, editor Sophie Ritchie shares why sleeping outdoors is the perfect slice of sanctuary

I’m going to be entirely honest with you. I’ve only been camping twice in my life. The first involved an experience aged three in the Scottish highlands, on a rainy weekend getaway with my father and older sister. He wanted to give our very worn out mum a break, I vaguely remember a clichéd tartan sleeping bag and that’s about it. The second, aged 17, featured a night involving a considerably larger volume of low quality alcohol and the unforgettable memory of unzipping the tent the following morning to find a horse trying to break in. 

As a runner I spend a lot of time outdoors, but I’m not ashamed to admit I’m a hotel and bubble bath kind of ‘gal. A bug-free zone is my idea of heaven. I like my slippers where I can see them. But keen to push the boundaries of my somewhat limited accommodation mindset, I packed my hiking boots, stocked up on dry shampoo and headed up the M4 for a weekend of glamping at Belvoir Castle, the regal Leicestershire-based estate that’s been transformed into a mini world of fun experiences, foodie outlets and charming attractions. 

About Belvoir Estate

A historic castle and stately home in Leicestershire, situated 8 miles west of the town of Grantham, Belvoir Castle is the ancestral home of the Dukes of Rutland. The family have lived at Belvoir in an unbroken line for almost a thousand years – you’ll find endless archaic portraits of the Belvoir family around the castle itself, as well as a number of family photos from its current very glamorous inhabitants. The glamping site sits separately from the main castle, located across a main road with its own private entrance and carpark. 

Segmented into two fields, the tents are found adjacent to The Engine Yard, a chic array of various foodie outlets and shops housed in buildings. Designed to offer visitors a full 360 degree retail experience, these range from rustic wood-fired pizzas at The Fuel Tank and a number of tempting victuals at the Belvoir Popup through to an oasis of trinkets and clothes at The Duchess Gallery.  

Being somewhat skeptical of sleeping outdoors, I was pleasantly surprised to arrive and see just how picturesque Belvoir Castle’s glamping site really is. The August weather was not on our side (we’d been driving for hours in an on/off deluge of pouring rain) but despite the clouds and consequential mud, the pretty 5m bell tents sat invitingly across several fields, overlooking the Vale of Belvoir with plenty of space between each tent to allow a sense of privacy. 

After a quick scope, I made peace with the fact that white trainers were out of the question, pulled on my sturdy boots (plus Berghaus waterproof jacket) and said sayonara to the suitcase (the tent, whilst adorable, was not designed for heavy-duty packers like me). 

The Tent

Both durable and sturdy, the bell tents at Belvoir Castle unzip to reveal a simple but sweet setup of fairy lights, rugs, and snug seating – plus a a double bed decked out with a comfortable mattress and warm, soft bedding. Within the walls of the tent it’s warm and more importantly, dry – immediately easing my mind about the dire weather conditions beyond the zips. 

As well as multiple shower towels and hand towels, plus a box of essential camping gear, the space also features multiple lamps for added ambience when night falls. It’s worth noting that there’s no electricity within the bell tents, so charge your phone in advance or prepare to life your best Amish life for the weekend.

For larger groups, the tents can also be set up with multiple mattresses to accommodate up to four people. As well as bell tents, Belvoir Estate also offers the option of a Shepherd’s Hut and Gypsy Wagon for added outdoor ambience. 
On the hygiene and skincare regime front, fellow princesses will be delighted to know there’s also a new state-of-the-art shower block created specifically for glampers, with each tent given a designated key. 

This space includes seven shower wet rooms; each kitted out with shower, sink, toilet, mirror and changing space – one also features disabled access, with a ramp outside the block for easier access. Cinderella shall go to the ball (and do her skincare regime too – just make sure to bring your own shampoo, conditioner and other toiletries).

“We’re wild women now,” I tell my friend with the confidence of Bear Grylls as we eat our freshly-baked pizza and sip Prosecco later that evening at The Balloon Bar. “Okay Sophie,” was the somewhat exasperated response. 

Things To Try

1 Take your time to experience the magnificent Belvoir Castle on a free flow visit. This impressive property is as easy on the eye within as it is from the grand honey-hued exterior. Make your way through the different state rooms and interpret the array of artwork in your own time – from the Ballroom to the State Dining Room, it’s hard not to feel like royalty as you journey through beautifully designed rooms with Regency-style décor. 
2 Indulge in a delightful, dainty afternoon tea experience at Belvoir Castle, where you can devour a selection of delicious sandwiches, scones, cakes and elegant pastries. Served in an Austen-esque tea room, kitted out with pillows and pretty decor galore, it’s ideal for a pitstop with poise. 
3 There are endless walking, running and cycle trails on the doorstep of Belvoir Estate. With routes that transition effortlessly from forest backdrops to patchwork fields, switch off and immerse yourself in nature for hours with a walk, run or bike ride. And of course, within Belvoir Castle’s grounds itself there are over 16,000 manicured acres to discover too.

Make it happen
Where: NG32 1PA
How: To find out more and book a glamping adventure, please visit To find out more about Bevoir Castle, visit

Words by Sophie Ritchie, editor

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