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This experience is an accessible, enjoyable and practical family bushcraft holiday for parents and "bushbabies" alike!
From your base at a remote organic farm located deep in the Swedish forest, and under the expert guidance and instruction of your local hosts, you will explore the forest world while learning some fun and very practical bushcraft and outdoor cooking skills. Your hosts, who know the forest intimately and the many resources and riches it contains, will help you unlock some of the forest's mysteries. You will learn how to light a fire and prepare food out of doors, how to identify and gather edible foods, and how to understand and read some of the many tracks and signs left by the forest animals.
Discover Bushcraft for Families is enjoyable and relevant for both parents and children. Adults will find your hosts, who run the farm on traditional agricultural principles and produce much of their own food, a deep well of valuable information and knowledge on all aspects of rural crafts and forest foods - a wonderful chance to improve your skills in preparing food out of doors and learn more about the natural world.
Children will love the challenge and adventure of finding and identifying tracks and signs of animals in the forest, the excitement of sleeping outside by themselves in tents (parents can sleep out too if they wish!) and the simple freedom and fun of a Swedish summer - clean air, fresh, cool lakes for swimming and an endless forest playground to discover. As well as having fun, learning and practising bushcraft skills is an ideal way to encourage respect for and appreciation of nature as well as a sense of responsibility in the outdoors.
Each day you will head out in the company of your hosts to learn more about the forest world, with breakfast and dinner around the open fire using some of the ingredients you have gathered and putting into practice the skills and techniques you learn. Activities include horse and cart excursion to lumberjack cabin, berry/mushroom picking (depending on season) and possibilities for hiking, canoeing, fishing and wild swimming in the lake.
Accommodation is in family rooms at the forest farm, with the option for all or some participants to sleep out in tents for one or more nights during your stay.
Your hosts are excellent farmhouse cooks, and meals served are made from organic, local ingredients. Standard option includes full board with meals prepared (with a learning element for meals that you will prepare together with your hosts). For families with previous bushcraft experience and/or who are comfortable preparing own meals over fire, there is also a self-catering option for which provisions are provided for self-preparation (the kitchen at the farmhouse is also available for your use for preparing meals). Advice and assistance is always available from your hosts.
Discover Bushcraft for Families is suitable for the whole family, including younger children - an ideal family summer holiday for those with a taste for adventure!
Extra nights in Wilderness Cabin: Put your new bushcraft skills into practice!
After your bushcraft experience, why not extend your stay with nights in a simple cabin in the forest just a couple of km from the farm? The cabin is cosy and comfortable, with wood-burning stove, but has no electricity or running water, making it an ideal base for a real forest adventure! The cabin is fully-equipped for self-catering and food packages are available to add as an optional extra.
Day 1 - Arrival
NB: Itinerary information below describes "Full Board" option, where meals are prepared by (or in cooperation with) your local hosts. If choosing "Self-catering" option, which is intended for participants who are more comfortable preparing own food over open fire (the kitchen at the farmhouse is also available for your use for food preparation), guests will prepare their own meals, with the exception of the lunch during horse and cart excursion.
Arrival at the forest farm (time by arrangement from 17.00 onwards). You will have dinner together with your hosts and discuss the day's ahead. Your host, Åsa, is an accomplished farmhouse cook. All ingredients used at the farm are organic and locally produced/sourced wherever possible. Self-guided evening walk down to the lake (if you have the energy after dinner!). Accommodation for this night is in family room at the farm. The farm has just two rooms and offers a very personal and welcoming atmosphere.
The particular activities and order of activities during your stay are flexible depending on preference, but will typically include:
- Morning dip in the lake (if you wish!).
- Outdoor breakfast (regardless of the weather!). A short walk brings you to the spot where you will prepare breakfast together over open fire, under the expert guidance of your hosts - an ideal opportunity to learn about cooking techniques and hygiene considerations for preparing food out of doors.
- With your hosts to guide you, you will take a walk in the surrounding area to gather foods from the forest - these may include berries, mushrooms or other foodstuffs according to the season. You will also come across tracks and signs left by the local wildlife (large and small!), which your hosts will help you to identify. Back in the farmhouse kitchen, you will help to prepare a lunch based on the ingredients you have gathered.
- In the afternoon you will prepare your camping spot for the night. Everyone who wishes can spend the night under canvas, parents are welcome to sleep back at the farm and let the children experience the adventure of camping alone. Tents supplied are suitable for up to 4 children or 3 adults per tent. Sleeping bags and sleeping mats are provided, air mattresses are also available to borrow for "softies"!
- Dinner by the fire, prepared from local ingredients from the farm and surrounding forest. If weather and temperature permits, an evening dip in the lake is a perfect way to end the day!
- You will be given a packed lunch for self-guided day-tour to the local nature reserve - a laminated map is provided for walk to a beautiful viewpoint in the nature reserve. As an alternative, your day-tour can also be guided by your hosts. Other possible activities include canoeing and introduction to fishing.
- Dinner by the fire, with tales of the forest told by your hosts (for those brave enough to listen!). Overnight accommodation at the farm or in tents according to preference.
- Excursion with your hosts by horse and carriage to a lumberjack cabin for lunch together. After lunch you can explore the lake by rowing boat or simply enjoy the afternoon with a relaxing swim or paddle.
- Your last evening is spent around the fire with dinner and songs in the sunset and a chance to reflect on and discuss your experience and the new skills you have learned.
Breakfast followed by departure.
- Not Included
- Optional Extras
Flexible start days by arrangement between May and October 2016. Minimum stay 4 days/3 nights, additional nights optional.
Prices are in British Pounds. If you wish, you are also welcome to make your payment by bank transfer in Euros or Swedish Kronor. If this would be of interest, please let us know and we will be happy to provide prices.
Full board vs Self-catering: Guests may choose either full board or self-catering (with provisions provided) for all nights or some nights of their stay. Typically on Day 1 and Day 2 you will be given an introduction to preparing your own food and may wish for subsequent days to choose self-catering option. Self-catering options for all nights is intended for guests with some previous bushcraft experience/comfortable with preparing meals over open fire, etc. Whichever option is chosen, assistance and advice from your local hosts is always available if required. Minimum stay 3 nights.
- £142/adult/night, £71/child/night 3-15, children 0-2 free of charge.
Self-catering (provisions supplied)
- £112/adult/night, £56/child/night 3-15, children 0-2 free of charge.
Three or more nights in family rooms at forest farm. Shared bathroom/WC. For one or more nights, all or some participants may choose to sleep in tents close to the farm. Additional nights also have accommodation in forest farm and daily bushcraft activities (unless choosing Wilderness Cabin option as outlined below).
Tents (suitable for up to 4 children or 3 adults/tent), sleeping bags and sleeping mats are provided for participants who wish to sleep in tents on one or more nights. An inflatable mattress is also available to borrow on request.
- Full Board option: All meals from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day. Ingredients used are organic and sourced from the local area, the farm itself and also gathered from the forest during the tour as far as possible. Please let us know in advance if you have any special dietary requirements. Everyone will assist in collection and preparation of some foods and as far as possible guests will prepare own meals under the guidance and instruction of your hosts.
- Self-catering option: Provisions are provided for self-preparation of all meals (over open fire and/or using the farmhouse kitchen) from dinner on arrival day to breakfast on departure day. The lunch during horse and cart excursion activity will be prepared by your hosts.
Instruction in bushcraft and cooking skills from your hosts. Typically 3-6 hours' guiding per full day.
If you are travelling by public transport, transfer is required to/from Söderhamn (approx. 45 minutes each way). Price 500 SEK (about £50) per transfer one way for up to 6 persons. Transfer must be booked in advance but is paid locally (cash or card) to your hosts on arrival.
Extra nights in wilderness cabin
An ideal opportunity to use some of your newly-acquired skills by spending one or more nights in a simple but comfortable forest cabin just 3km from the farm. Your hosts will transfer you there to/from the farm at the start and end of your stay.
Traditional red and white cabin located 3km east of the farm, approx. 50 sq.m. One small room with bunk beds for 2 persons and larger room with wood-burning stove and additional sleeping space for 4 persons. Approx. 10 mins' walk from the cabin is a lake with rowing boat available to borrow. The cabin is located in the middle of the forest, 3km-11km from the nearest neighbour depending on direction. There is a grill area outside the cabin and a dry wilderness outdoor toilet, as well as an old forest stable previous used by forestry workers in the 1960s. The cabin is a traditional forest cabin dating from the 1920s and built using "horizontal log" technique, originally used by forestry workers. The cabin has always been in at least partial use since that time and was added to in the 1970s.
Price £70/cabin/night (min. stay 2 nights). Price includes:
- Hire of cabin suitable for up to 6 persons. The cabin has no electricity or running water and has outside wilderness dry toilet.
- Drinking water provided in 25 litre container, end cleaning and bed linen/towels.
Provisions package can be added for £24/adult/day, £12/child 3-15 per day (guests without own car will require this), which comprises organic and locally-sourced produce for one day's meals including breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks/treats. For guests travelling by car, there are also opportunities to purchase own provisions locally within convenient driving distance.
- Getting There
- Eco Info
You should be in general good health, enjoy the outdoors and be able to walk in a forest environment over uneven terrain. No previous bushcraft experience is required. This experience is suitable for the whole family.
A detailed recommended packing list will be sent with your booking confirmation.
NB: We advise you not to buy equipment or clothes for your trip or to incur other non-refundable expenses such as flights until you have received confirmation of your booking from us in writing. Note of course that the most appropriate clothing to use as well as the level of challenge experienced during any outdoor activity may vary significantly depending on factors such as the time of year and the particular weather/temperature conditions during your trip.
Detailed information on travel options to this experience will be provided in response to your enquiry. We are happy to advise on suitable connections and assist you with any aspect of planning your journey.
Please ensure that you make a booking with us first and wait for confirmation that your spaces are reserved before making any travel arrangements.
Fly to Stockholm for onward travel by train to Söderhamn (travel time around 2-2.5 hours), from where transfer is available as an optional extra.
Ferry Dover-Dunkirk or Newcastle-Amsterdam for onward connections to Söderhamn.
There are two rooms at the farm, each accommodating a family of 4-5. Max. group size is therefore two families total 8-10 persons.
Food served at the farm is locally-produced and organic as far as possible and this experience offers a very personal atmosphere. The farm is run using traditional farming techniques. This host has received a prestigious Swedish Ecotourism award for commitment to high standards to cultural and environmental sensitivity.
This provider is a member of the Swedish Ecotourism Society.
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- Comments from previous guests