Nestled between enchanting, ancient trees on the edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds, you will find the perfect spot to relax, unwind and reconnect with nature. We left behind the city lights and spent a night at Stewton Stars Hideaway, a luxury countryside glamping retreat with a special difference: stargazing! Lincolnshire, famed for its big skies, is an amazing place to spot constellations and contemplate life as you stare into the endless stars, and this is the perfect place for it in one of the quietest corners of our vast county. Here’s my review of our stay.
Disclosure: we were given a complementary night’s stay at Stewton Stars Hideaway so we could try out the experience. Views are our own, and we always give honest reviews and recommendations.
First impressions of Stewton Stars Hideaway
Alex and I spent a night at Stewton Stars Hideaway to try the experience for ourselves. We realised quite quickly that it is a glamping site with some truly unique characteristics.
First of all, its cabins and amenities are crafted within nature rather than imposed on it. You get the sense of luxury as soon as you walk onto the site, but it still feels natural.
Secondly, this is a small, family-run site, and you can see just how much Jess and her family care for the grounds and the cabins. The accommodation has a genuine hotel feel when you step inside, made all the more personable with thoughtful added extras.
Finally, the site has been designed with stargazing in mind. From the high windows in the cabins to the Solis Terrace, everything has been well crafted to encourage you to enjoy Lincolnshire’s big sunsets and late-night starscapes.
Even the most reluctant campers will fall in love with its charm. It’s not just stars you will find here. The grounds are teeming with wildlife. Watch the squirrels while you sit on the terrace and enjoy a glass of wine, see the birds play in the trees as dusk sweeps over the grounds, and be soothed by the night owl chorus as you sit back and appreciate just how exhilarating it is to be completely disconnected from modern technology.
What to expect in the cabins
At Stewton Stars Hideaway there are three log cabins of varying sizes, plus The Old Coach House, which is a one-bedroom house located on the grounds.
We stayed in the cabin called Lyra, which is fitting as I’m currently reading His Dark Materials and I couldn’t help but feel the adventurous nature of Phillip Pullman’s Lyra as I traversed the woodland walkways!
Each cabin has outdoor seating and a gas-fired BBQ for preparing meals, with atmospheric lighting on the patio. It has a lovely secluded feel, and there’s also a firepit, so you can stay toasty and warm while you stay up chatting, playing games or just absorbing the sounds of nature until late into the night.
A peek inside the cabin
Inside the cabin there is a comfortable double bed, fitted with heated blankets and supplied with fluffy hot water bottles. It’s such a lovely homely feel, especially if you’re staying in the winter months!
Lyra has a small log burner, which was the perfect way to take the chill out of the evening air as we got ready for bed. Everything is supplied, so no need to worry about packing any kindling or lighter.
The cabins are fitted with electricity, so you’ve got everything you need from a bedside lamp to a kettle and mini-fridge. There are even fitted USB plugs so you can just bring a charging cable if you want to stay switched on.
You will not find any Wi-Fi on the grounds, as you are encouraged to disconnect from the internet and get back to basics with good conversation and mindful relaxation. That’s what a retreat like this is all about, after all.
The cabin floor is covered with luxurious sheepskin rugs and you are welcome to leave your shoes in a box by the doorway, which only adds to the coziness of the cabin.
All the amenities you need
So much is provided for; you would be able to rock up at Stewton Stars Hideaway with nothing other than a modest overnight bag, and have an extremely enjoyable evening. Not like those camping trips where the car is loaded with the entire contents of your house “in case” we need that egg slicer or a spare set of bedding.
Things like chopping boards and knives will be useful to bring if you’re preparing a meal for the grill, but otherwise, plates, cups, glasses and cutlery are provided within the cabin. BBQ utensils are also supplied.
We decided to make the most of the BBQ, and stocked up on some steak, chicken skewers and Lincolnshire sausages from one of our favourite local Lincoln butchers before we set off, along with some baby potatoes and Mediterranean veggies.
The BBQ was really easy to use, and the results were great! We were lucky to get a beautifully still night, so we could enjoy our food peacefully with a bottle of wine and nothing but the sounds of nature.
Stargazing at Stewton Stars Hideaway
We arranged our stay at Stewton Stars Hideaway to coincide with a new moon, which gives the best possible opportunity to see the stars at their most dramatic brightness. A full moon creates too much light pollution, so you don’t get the same wondrous sense of a dark sky blanketed in stars.
You can use Moon Giant to look up the phases of the moon and plan your stay accordingly.
Even if you time your trip perfectly, you still need to rely on the weather. Unfortunately, we didn’t get so lucky and the skies were covered in cloud all evening. But a glance at the forecast told us there was a good chance it would clear up much later at night.
While we enjoyed the evening tranquility, the colourful sunsets (clouds often make them better!) and made the most of the BBQ, we were still determined to gaze longingly into the great beyond, so we kept an eye on the hour-by-hour forecast. There’s something quite romantic and adventurous about setting your alarm for 3am to witness a starry night!
It doesn’t feel quite so energising at the moment the alarm goes off. But nevertheless, we woke eagerly from our sleep and stepped outside to see the great black diamond-strewn blanket that is Lincolnshire’s big sky at night.
Heading for the Solis Terrace with soft steps, we heard animals scuttle about in the underbrush and owls hooting way off in the distance. And once we arrived at the viewing point… wow. Just, wow.
We spent a couple of hours admiring the view and capturing as many pictures as possible. It’s always more impressive to witness starscapes in person, and a camera will never recreate what you can see with the naked eye. But here are a few shots of what we saw that night. I hope you like them!
Even when the glow of dawn started to show as we stayed up past 4am, the stars were still shimmering brightly. It’s really a stunning contrast to see as night meets day. Worth every bit of the sleep loss we had to endure. The best things in life don’t come without a little bit of sacrifice.
I’ve always been fascinated with the stars, and I picked up a camera to capture them a few years ago. I’m definitely close to the amateur end of the spectrum when it comes to astrophotography, so if these photos make you feel like you want to see the Lincolnshire skies at night, then don’t waste any time and book your stay now!
How to book a stay at Stewton Stars Hideaway
It’s very simple to plan a stay at this luxury glamping retreat. Simply head over to the Stewton Stars Hideway website, where you can see the accommodation options and book a stay. Alternatively, you can give Jess a call on 07824 324932.
It’s open for bookings all year round and would make a lovely stay in any season. But we really think it will be an especially cosy and memorable experience in winter, with the most spectacular skies. The five months between the clocks going back at the end of October and going forward at the end of March are known by astronomers as “observing season”, as it’s when you will get the longest, brightest nights.
Exploring the grounds in the morning
We were treated to a glorious morning of sunshine after we awoke, which gave us a chance to see the grounds in a different light.
The bathroom facilities are a short walk away from the cabins, and again, everything is provided, including lovely soft towels. They’re in a building called “The Pig Sty”, where there is a picture on the wall showing the state it was in before renovation. It’s so impressive how the place has been completely transformed.
The Pig Sty is just opposite the Solis Terrace, where we had been stargazing just a few hours earlier. Here, two big lounging chairs with plumped-up cushions face out onto the fields. It’s the perfect spot to unwind with a book or just take in the natural scenery.
A well-kept pathway weaves through the grounds, surrounded with vegetation and the occasional colourful flower decorating the way. And if you wander outside the grounds, you’re straight into pure countryside by the little village of Stewton.
Things to do nearby
Stewton Stars Hideaway is just a couple of miles outside of Louth, one of Lincolnshire’s charming old market towns. You wouldn’t know that you’re so close to a town; we couldn’t hear a thing from outside our cabin other than the relaxing sounds of nature.
There are lots of things to do in and around Louth, so you could combine a retreat at Stewton Stars Hideaway with some exploration of the area. After checking out, we went into town for some breakfast and a look around, including a climb up 199 steps to the top of St James’ Church tower for an incredible panoramic view of the area!
As it was a Saturday there was a market on as well (Wednesdays and Fridays are also market days in Louth). The town has lots of quaint independent shops and a great little museum where you can see remarkable footage from the great 1920 flood.
Here are some other fun things you can do nearby:
- A 20-minute drive along the border of the Lincolnshire Wolds will take you to the village of Ludborough, where you can take a ride on the Lincolnshire Wolds Railway. This is Lincolnshire’s only standard-gauge steam railway running on a line that was first opened in 1848.
- Hubbard’s Hills a beautiful mini-valley right next to Louth that was formed by melting glaciers at the end of the last ice age. It’s a lovely place to go for a leisurely walk or a have a picnic by the River Lud.
- Stewton Stars Hideaway is less than ten miles from the Lincolnshire Coast, so it’s also a great base for a trip to the beach. Saltfleet beach is one of our favourite beaches in Lincolnshire and is the closest one to the glamping site, less than 20 minutes’ drive away. There’s a vast stretch of sand here that’s usually very quiet and is dog-friendly all year round, so it’s great for walks or just hanging out.
- A very short drive will take you into the heart of the Lincolnshire Wolds. You could rise early and see the sun rise over the hills on one of the many beautiful walks in the area, such as this circular from Belchford with a pub lunch.
- Louth Distillery is the home of Pin Gin, Lincolnshire’s most popular craft gin. You can take tours, tastings or even book onto a gin school and make a bottle of your own.
Have you stargazed in Lincolnshire before? We’d love to know about your experiences. Let us know in the comments below.