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“Woodland Camping with the lads” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Hollybush Inn & Campsite

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Hollybush Inn & Campsite
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
75 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
“Woodland Camping with the lads”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 August 2014 via mobile

If you make the effort to leave a bad review surely you would have checked the reviews before making your choice? No? Just me then...

I did read the reviews and prepared myself, we wanted some 'wild' style camping with not many rules. Only 2 rules clean up after yourself and don't burn the trees down. We pre booked via pitch up and included our wood. We arrived checked in drove through collected our wood and pitched our tents up. We said we didn't mind being far aware so they directed us out to the woods which only had 1 other group. Babs did come along and questioned us being there but as we described who directed us she walked on and never came back. The toilets were as clean as we would expect for a site and yes there were cans around the bin etc. The group near us were up all night (bit of a mini rave) which probably bothered someone. The tipi people looked happy aswell.

Please remember this isn't glamping, if you want a wild experience for your children find a private farm that allows fires and fishing there are many in Wales. If you want a drinking random night with ok standards then Hollybush is fine.

Stayed August 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
3 Thank Holiday_Addicts1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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544 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    2.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    2 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (93)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Taunton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 August 2014

Spent the weekend there. The place is absolutely beautiful and the staff efficient and friendly. Some may not like the fact that it is slightly shabby but to me that is just another facet of its charm.As an added bonus there was live music which was excellent. I've heard rave reviewd about the food in the pub, but sadly it was closed on the Sunday. I'll definitely be back.

Stayed August 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
1 Thank Acacia23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lancashire
Level Contributor
408 reviews
101 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 225 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 August 2014 via mobile

To be candid a bit of a glamper the Hollybush filled me with dread we arrived to a ghost town no one there all gone away asked anothe new arrival and pitched up next to them then late in the afternoon we met the surly man so many times mentioned on this site who warned us to keep our dog under control she is two and friendly and was only making buddies with the local wildlife.

The siteslocation is its saving grace riverside and ideak for swimming and kyaking if you don't mind the mucky path down we camped and bought a voucher via Groupon so got it cheap personally I would say that £20 a night is steep for camping when you compare to what is out there but the site has spirit and a friendly atmosphere even mr surly called me mate this morning.

Barbara IS A CHARACTER and a font of useful information especially if you get her onto a watery subject.

Would we go back YES but at the Groupon rate preferably but would pay their rate if only to enjoy the water and Yak-a-du (see separate listing).

If you are a cider lover the have a great supply and their prices don't send you for the nearest cash machine... if, of course, there was one handy :)

Stayed August 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank paulnpaula
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 August 2014

Martin and Kieran (and a couple of the other guys who work/live on site) were very friendly and helpful. There was plenty of free hot water in the showers (except when something tripped and the campsite staff (including Barbara) were unable to gain access to the distribution board so the entire campsite was without power for a few hours - no hot water for hand washing (or showers) and no lighting in the toilets.

Our stay started very badly, it sounded great being able to camp in the woods and have fires, but when we phoned to book we explained the size of our tent and requested a pitch on the 'lawn area' with electric hook up. We made the mistake of paying in advance (DO NOT DO THIS). When we arrived we could see that there was no space on the lawn (overrun with doc leaves and chicken and peacock poo) due to a number of other tents from a larger party. We were offered a pitch on a concrete hard standing for a caravan with a barking guard dog in the caravan opposite, but that obviously wasn't going to work so the only other space was on a gravel hard standing for camper vans.... Yes they put us on the gravel in a tent...... I had to borrow a sledge hammer to drive the pegs in..... Overall this pitch was atrocious with the tent literally 2 foot away from the door of the neighbouring campervan and our tent door opening literally onto the muddy road to the car park area. We were told that if we had arrived earlier we could have had a space on the lawn: in my mind booking and paying in advance should have ensured that this space was reserved for us. From this point I wasn't happy but once the tent was up we decided it not worth the hassle to move on (and we were pre paid). I deliberately had nothing more to do with Barbara or her shop/bar as a result of the poor site. Lots of hot water but toilets and showers filthy and stink, one day we found one of the wondering chickens actually sitting on the toilet lid. At one point I think that the camp site may have been nice, but now all the electric hook ups have been condemned by health and safety and the whole place is in a state of disrepair and dirty.

For a stag party it may work well (although best men beware that other guys may think you have really low standard) as you are allowed to be as raucous and messy as you like. The place is filthy though so DO NOT take you loved ones there!

In some reviews people have said how great it is to have fires in the woods and allowed to take dogs..... This was what attracted us to the place too..... I have stayed in numerous campsites that offer these options and most of them have been great...... At one point holly bush may have been the same, but now it isn't.

Only book if you have low standards. (The canoe hire side of the business looks quite well run though)

Room Tip: Book a different site.
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Oliver M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 August 2014

Its disgusting! Its not 'basic' its vile! We couldn't even stay as it stank of a rotting toilet an was so filthy i think i need a tetanus shot just stepping on the premises! The photos i took don't even do the vile place justice. Good thing we were only suposed to stay 1 night and good thing the swan hotel had a room spare!

  • Stayed July 2014
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
8 Thank Newtothis01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
St Albans, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 August 2014

The website gives the wrong impression and is probably cause of a lot of disappointment. This is NOT a luxury campsite, it is basic and a bit eccentric (the peacocks are now literally running amok). We have been coming once a year for a long weekend for 6 years. This year there were 10 adults and 8 children ranging from 10 to 2. Why do we keep coming? Because it is the only place we know where you can camp amongst the woods, right next to the river and have proper fire, one you can restart from the embers the next day. There is the added bonus that you can set off in a canoe from your own beach and in our case, for the 2nd year running, a raft. I am not a fan of camping and there are moments when only a stiff drink is getting me through but it is all worth it to see the kids sitting round the fire grubby, excitedly chatting about their near death experience on a raft and toasting their mashmallows.

There are things that could be off putting about the Holly Bush but to us are now the source of amusement. Barbara is one of a kind. There were swallows last year in the toilet block. The Caravan park looks like something out of Deliverance.

Looking forward to next year and reading the latest reviews - part of my pre trip ritual - never fail to make me laugh.

Room Tip: We always camp in the woods.
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  • Stayed August 2014, travelled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Vicky R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
1 review
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 August 2014 via mobile

Yes!it was damp n dirty but its a campsite - what do you expect? Once we got the fire going it got rid of the dampness.could not do much about the smell of pet though. People stay over with pets so it can't be helped.The toilets/wash rooms were very clean when we got the but we downhill over the weekend as the place got packed with campers. Barbara,- our hostess - is a ball breaker(she makes a mean Pimms by the way) but she has to be in order to run a place like that. There were bins for:plastic,paper,food waste etc but some unscrupulous people just dumped their rubbish anywhere and everywhere. We had a party and abide by the rules so although our camp fire went way pass the curfew, we had no problems with our hostess,because we kept the noise down. Over all it was a pleasant stay and we (a group of 10) will absolutely go back again. Thanks to Barbara n her lovely team (build more toilets and wash rooms though)you are on the right track.

  • Stayed August 2014
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank out66back
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hollybush Inn & Campsite

Property: Hollybush Inn & Campsite
Address: Old Brecon Road, Hay-on-Wye HR3 5PS, Wales
Region: United Kingdom > Wales > Powys > Hay-on-Wye
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 9 Speciality Lodging in Hay-on-Wye
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Whether Its a pampered break or an action packed weekend. The Hollybush can can cater for all your needs. Located just a short distance from the famous book town "Hay on Wye" and surrounded by some of Wale's finest beauty spots. Treat yourself to a Luxury room in our B+B and experience the fantastic Cuisine! Set up your tent, Then relax around your Campfire! Experience a Day's canoeing along the Wye or take one of our guided Wild life tours! Camp in style and Hire a Tipi! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Hollybush Inn And Campsite
Hollybush Inn & Campsite Hotel Hay-On-Wye
Hollybush Inn & Campsite Hay-On-Wye, Wales

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