In 2016 the term hygge (hoo-gah) was one of the top 10 words of the year in Great Britain -this is quite an achievement considering its a Danish word! The world hygge simply translated means cosiness reminding us to slow down, light a candle, read a book, binge watch a favourite TV show or simply do anything that finds comfort indoors.
Fast forward a few years and there’s another word stepping in – friluftsliv. Pronounced Free-Loofts-Leaf translates to mean ‘open air life’. It’s the outdoorsy version of hygge – to be friluftsliv means to embrace nature and enjoy the great outdoors.
The word encompasses everything that we encourage guests to do while on holiday here -explore our 30 acres, visit local beaches, Cornish countryside and immerse themselves in the joy found in being outside no matter what the weather or season.
The real bonus of the friluftsliv culture is that is doesn’t require a lot of money (if any) or expensive equipment. Activities like walking, den building, nature spotting, marshmallow toasting or rock pooling – anything that can be experienced outdoors makes it onto the list. In Scandinavia opportunities to live an open air lifestyle are widely encouraged – workplaces typically adopt a flexible work environment as they believe employees work best when they decide when to work their hours around their families. In the winter months daylight hours are extremely limited so if that means exploring the outdoors when the sun’s up and working when dark, then so be it.
Winter in Scandinavian countries plummet to minus figures, however parents bring their babies outside to nap all year round – this was something I remember (unintentionally) doing with my son, Oskar (note the Scandinavian spelling of his name) when he was little.
Oskar fell asleep in his buggy when walking back from the local beach, I didn’t want to disturb him he looked so cosy in his buggy. The autumn sun was beaming onto the sheltered patio, so I positioned him perfectly so he could continue his snooze alfresco. Having family in Sweden I recalled how this was the norm there and how my late Auntie would have spent nap time with my 5 older cousins. I sat in the garden with a hot drink enjoying the extra time in the open air listening to nothing but the sounds of nature – it was calming and felt really special. It also came without the distractions of social media or getting any of the usual nap time chores completed.
So much more time can be spent outside than we think, with suitable clothing we can experience nature in all weathers, even rain! Muddy puddles aren’t just for jumping in, the British brand ‘Muddy Puddles’ started on a farm in Devon 20 years ago selling all the kit little ones need to be outdoors keeping them warm, dry and happy in any weather. They consider themselves rain experts! Muddy Puddles say on their website that they believe in the importance of growing up to be confident and independent, which comes from the freedom to take risks, learn your limits, and use your imagination. They are on a mission to make childhood magic in the great outdoors and we couldn’t agree more.
Bosinver is THE place to play outside. Our 30 acre site is a giant playground to embrace friluftsliv with hidden adventures around every corner for the whole family to connect with nature and each other. After you have had plenty of time outside come back to your cosy cottage and enjoy some hygge moments indoors.