Festival Camping Gear with Quechua

Festival Camping Gear with Quechua - A Pretty Place to Play

Last weekend at Love Trails Festival was absolutely EPIC. Three days surrounded by amazing people, in a beautiful location, playing in the outdoors. It was all the things I love the most and I can't wait to share a little film of our adventures soon!

In the meantime though, I'm going to chat festival camping gear! I love camping. There's something about bedding down in a cosy tent after a day of outdoor adventures that I find really satisfying, and nothing beats waking up somewhere beautiful where you can roll out the door and get on with having fun. Nothing excites me more than digging out my tent and heading to a field for a weekend, and I'm gutted that our schedules mean we don't get to sleep under canvas more (I'd love to be exploring a different campsite every weekend!), especially as we've got some great Quechua camping gear!

Festival Camping Gear with Quechua - A Pretty Place to Play

I've loved Decathlon brand Quechua's camping gear for long time, and even before I got involved in the Decathlon blogger's community Mike and I had kitted ourselves out with everything we needed for a comfy night's sleep under canvas. So you can imagine how excited I was to meet the design team behind the products I love when I was in the Alps last month

The thing that impresses me the most about Quechua products is how thoughtfully they're designed. Talking me through the design and development process for a new (top-secret!) product it was fascinating to see how the team works together to refine their designs using everything from 3D prototypes to feedback from customers to make sure that what they create works as well as possible. That's why the products are often so unique, they've been designed to meet real needs as efficiently as possible. 

Festival Camping Gear with Quechua - A Pretty Place To Play

When I chat to people about Quechua they often raise an eyebrow at the price point. The tent we have retails at £54.99. I get that this feels really cheap, and that this might lead you to question whether the tent is any good. I can assure you that it is. It's really good. Robust, well designed and easy to put up and take down. So how do Quechua do it? They're efficient. The design focuses on how to get the best quality, most functional product for the best price. This doesn't mean cutting corners, but it does mean thinking creatively, things like reducing packaging, eliminating stockrooms in store and restocking shelves just in time. 

Decathlon is all about making sure sport is for all (and I've got an exciting project coming up to make exactly that point!), and that it's brands support this ethos. If you're after camping gear you just have to look for Quechua, which is great if you're new to camping and aren't sure what you need, or if you need to grab something in a hurry. Or simply top up your kit stash - our latest addition is a cool bag, because camping without cold beers just isn't on! 

Festival Camping Gear with Quechua

Here are my Quechua camping essentials:

a pop up tent 

I love our three man pop up tent (we go big so that there's room for our bags and other bits and bobs). The design is surprisingly user friendly pop up design (it really isn't as hard to put away as you'd imagine!) to quirky practical details like a 'sunroof' to let in light and ventilate the tent, its design is above and beyond anything else in the market at the same price point and it's the perfect option for a festival (the pop up means no time wasted putting it up, so you can get on with partying).

an inflatable mattress and cosy bedding 

You never get much sleep at a festival (hello early morning wake up call from Project Awesome!), so you want to make sure you're as comfy as possible when you do get to snooze. 

One of our favourite buys has been our inflatable camping mattress. A couple of years ago at Wilderness we discovered our airbed had a slow leak. Cue four nights of a gradually deflating mattress and not a lot of sleep. As soon as the festival was over we knew we had to find something better. Although this camping mattress was an investment, it's been a good one. It packs down small, has a foot pump built in and inflates quickly and easily. The double is perfect for festivals and camping where you're staying at one site (it might be a bit bulky for backpacking).

We take sheets and a duvet to festivals (it's more practical than it sounds!), but if we didn't I think I'd go for a couple of these Quechua sleeping bags, which look really cosy!

a lantern

If you've ever been to Decathlon you know you pick odd things up on a whim, and that's exactly what happened with this lantern. Turns out it was the perfect purchase! There's a hook in the roof of our tent where we hang it and it means we can see what we're doing without faffing around with handheld torches. 

What are your camping essentials? 

*I am part of the Decathlon Blogger's Community, but I purchased all the products mentioned here myself.



Our Favourite Beaches in Menorca

Our Favourite Beaches in Menorca - A Pretty Place To Play

Both Mike and I are massive beach people. We love being by the water, and when we visit Menorca beach days are at the top of our to do list! While we've not explored every beach on the island (give us time), there are a few that we really like, both for chilling out on the sand and messing about in the water! 

Playa de Cavellaria 

This gorgeous beach is in a secluded cove surrounded by dunes, vegetation and high cliffs and is the perfect place to hang out for a day of lounging on the beach interspaced by some snorkelling! We were so lucky to swim over schools of fish and be able to explore rock formations not too far out in the bay - it's a great choice if you're curious about snorkelling or sea swimming as it's not too deep and there are lifeguards on hand. 

Cala Mitjana

Cala Mitjana is considered one of the best beaches in Menorca and it's an opportunity to experience swimming in a beautiful cove without a trek along the Cami de Cavalls. The water is clear and warm, you can swim out and explore the coast (watch the cliffs!) and if you're lucky you might see some cool sea life (like a jelly fish! So pretty, but I swiftly swam in the other direction). The downside of this beach is it's really busy, so get there early and leave before the crowds descend. 

Our Favourite Beaches in Menorca - A Pretty Place to Play

Cala Galdana

I think this might be Mike's favourite beach. Situated in the south of the island it's a sweeping bay of golden sand and calm sea that's perfect for a swim. It's even been awarded a Blue Flag for it's environmental credentials. The area around Cala Galdana is more built up than other beaches, so it's the perfect place to spend a day, with lots of restaurants and bars where you can grab lunch or a drink. It's also a good spot to base yourself when visiting the island. 

Playa Arenal den Castell

This is one of my favourite beaches to run to when I'm in Menorca, and it's also home to one of Mike and I's favourite restaurants - Restaurante Alcalde.  Although the area is quite touristy, the beach is quiet in the mornings and the bay is a really nice spot to chill out and swim. 

Our Favourite Beaches in Menorca - A Pretty Place To Play

Son Parc

Located in the north of the Island, Son Parc has a beautiful sweeping beach surrounded by lush vegetation and is the perfect place to stretch out and relax for the day. Son Parc is a quieter resort, but there's still bars and restaurants if you fancy a snack and you can hire sun beds if you really fancy bedding in for the day! The only downside for me is that the water can be pretty shallow, so I have to head further out if I want to snorkel - it's a hard life! 

Check out a review of our Decathlon masks here

My Favourite Sunscreens

My Favourite Sunscreens - A Pretty Place to Play

It's that time of year when I seem to spend a disproportionate amount of time smearing white goo all over me in a slightly desperate attempt not to burn (only to find I missed a spot and have weird patchy sunburn across my stomach). Fellow Celts will sympathise, summer is TOUGH if your ginger. Especially if you're ginger and you like to play outdoors. 

When I was a kid I hated sunscreen. It was thick, gloopy and left a weird whitish tinge on your skin. My Mum's proudest achievement is that I never burnt while she was responsible for slathering me in suncream, so you can imagine quite how much of that gooey mess I came into contact with! These days formulas have improved and applying sunscreen is no longer a painful chore, some times it's as simple as spraying myself with a deliciously coconutty mist. In fact, I've become pretty obsessed with the stuff, always on the hunt for the best formula for different occasions. I'm sure I'm not the only sunscreen obsessive out there, so I thought I'd share some of my favourites, tried and tested by a ginger!

Coola SPF 30 Sunscreen Spray Tropical Coconut

I used this spray SPF in Ibiza and became a total convert! It’s big selling point is how easy it is to apply, I find spearing on gloopy cream tedious (and I always get some in my eyes!) so it was so nice just to be able to spritz and go! The aerosol gives you nice even coverage even in the hard to reach parts and it smells amazing, like a tropical cocktail! The only downside is the spray is expensive and doesn’t last all that long.

La Roche Posay Anthelios XL Ultra Light Fluid SPF 50+

This has been my day to day go to for a few years now. I really like how light the cream is while still giving good coverage. The bottle is so light and portable, but a little goes a long way so it lasts for ages.

Shiseido WetForce Water-Resistent UV Protection

I’ve not tried this one myself, but I’ve heard amazing things! The SPF is actually boosted by water, so it’s an awesome choice when you're swimming, snorkelling or running. I really want to get my hands on a bottle! 

Aptonia Sun Spray SPF 30

This one is a total bargain, compact and it kept me from going pink during all my adventures hiking in France, what's not to like? It is a little more traditional in terms of texture, but it’s still great when you need solid protection you can rely on.

What's your go to sunscreen? Is there anything I need to check out!

*images: Anna Rachel Photography