Have you always wanted to escape your daily life and the hustle and bustle of the city you live in? Do you want to spend some time away from technology, reconnecting with yourself, a friend or a partner? Do you feel like you need to be surrounded by nature to truly relax? Well, staying in a cabin in the woods might be just what you need!
Two years ago, my boyfriend and I decided to spend a long weekend in a small house surrounded by nature, not so far away from Brussels. During that time, we also decided we wouldn’t use the internet at all, in order to spend some true quality time together and disconnect for a bit. It was such a nice experience that I wanted to share that with you and maybe inspire you to go on a similar local adventure!
Step 1: decide the time and place
First of all, you’ll need to determine the length of your stay as this will influence many things in the next steps, from the location to the things you will do once you are there. Then, you’ll have to decide more or less in which geographical area you want to stay: do you want to be in the same country or region? Go abroad? Stay close to your place?
Step 2: pick the place!
This is a fun part for me: once you have decided when you want to go and have an idea of which areas you are going to look at, just open Airbnb or a similar platform and start searching. These types of stays are increasingly popular, so many platforms actually have a filter for “cabins” or “tiny houses” that you might want to look into. Play around with this, see what fits your budget, your style and liking, then look closely at the details and comments.
In some countries you might end up in a cabin with no electricity without realising it (it almost happened to us in Canada)! Similarly, you’d want to know if you need to bring your own towels or bedsheets. Another important thing to look at is the privacy situation: is it next to a public path? Are you completely isolated? Can you see other houses from the windows? There are no right or wrong options here, it just depends on what you want to do!
Step 3: determine the rules
During our stay with my boyfriend, we decided we could only use our phones to answer calls or important messages, but you can do whatever you prefer of course: do you want to completely stay away from technology? Only read books? Only allow screens for movies but no scrolling through Instagram? Telework during the day but turn everything off as soon as the work day is over? You decide!
Step 4: plan your activities
Now that your ideas are a bit clearer, it’s time to decide what you will do once you are there. For this, I recommend checking if there are nice walks, cute towns, lakes to swim in or hiking trails nearby, just so you know which options you have.
Then of course, distractions! These could be the books you’ve always wanted to read or the new painting set you want to try. It can also be a nice puzzle, your embroidery kit or even your guitar! If you don’t go alone, board games are perfect for this! Don’t see it as a to-do list though, and keep in mind that you want to relax and not stress out about your hobbies!
Step 5: get cosy
When you’re in your little cabin, you’ll want to get nice and comfortable, so try to make the stay as homey as possible. If you can, bring some fluffy and soft blankets or pillows, or even fairy lights to create a nice atmosphere. If you can’t bring your whole house, you could also just take a nice candle, a home scent to make the place more “yours” or even curate a nice playlist!
Step 6: sort out the food question
Depending on the place you picked, Uber Eats deliveries might not be available, so you’ll want to decide ahead of time what you’ll be eating. With my boyfriend, for instance, we had meal prepped some things that only needed heating or to be cooked in the oven for a bit, so that we didn’t need to cook too much but could still enjoy a homemade meal.
Then, you’ll need snacks and comfort food: from easy-to-make soup or your favourite brand of tea to popcorns, chocolate bars or fresh fruit, the choice is yours!
There you have it! With the cosy season well under way, I hope many of you will be able to enjoy a nice getaway or staycation to slow down for some days. I know I surely loved that experience as it was so nice to just be in the presence of each other and go on walks in the woods, take the time to read, cook and explore the area, play board games (we brought an escape “room”) and watch the stars at night.
Have you ever stayed in a cabin in the woods?