Glamping is a new luxury travel trend that has become immensely popular among travelers who want to experience the thrill of camping without compromising on comfort in any way.
So what exactly is ‘glamping’? As the name suggests, it is when glamour meets camping … because why should an appreciation of outdoor life have to be at the cost of creature comfort, right? Can’t we be close to nature without having to necessarily rough it out?
But let’s not make the mistake of assuming that glamping is a modern concept. The term may have been coined in 2007, the practice started in the 1900s when wealthy Europeans wanted to go on African expeditions, but they weren’t too keen on the idea being parted from luxury. That lead to a trend of furnished camps with luxury goods, like comfortable beds, exotic rugs, exquisite furniture, good food. Comfort became an indispensable factor of camping and today, glamping tents include luxury like you wouldn’t believe to give campers (or is it glampers?) a taste of richness out in the wild.
So appealing was the idea of coming back to a luxurious tent, complete with a soft bed, gourmet meals, and clean restrooms after a day of adventure, that it became a global trend in itself. Heck, it’s a standalone category of traveling these days. Tents, eco pods, tree houses and more are available for your picking and glamping destinations are only getting more and more exotic by the day. Here are our top picks to tickle the luxury-loving adventurer in you.
1. Aman-i-khás | Rajasthan, India
The Aman-i-khás is a part of the Aman Resorts. The 10-tent sanctuary is situated in Ranthambore National Park, giving you the best of nature and man-made comfort. You can go out on guided safaris to track tigers, leopards, hyenas, crocodiles, antelope, deer and more and come back to tents (if you can call it that) that includes 20-foot canopy ceilings, air conditioning, and a fully furnished bathroom!
2. Treebones Resorts | Big Sur, California
Pic courtesy: http://www.treebonesresort.com/autonomous-tent/
This is the perfect place for those who can’t get enough of sunsets. You can enjoy serene scenes of the Big Sur coast from this 500 square foot tent that resembles a giant cocoon. Perched atop a cliff, the tent even has a private deck overlooking the Pacific Ocean. You can engage in day activities like hiking and kayaking, and return to your tent just in time to be mesmerized by sight of the coast turning brilliants shades of orange and gold as the sun sets peacefully in the horizon.
3. Hotel Whitepod | Monthey, Switzerland
Pic courtesy: https://www.whitepod.com/photos/?lang=en
The hotel provides eco-friendly, igloo-esque domes called pods from which you can enjoy the alpine grandeur. The innovative design, with its geodesic domes and central chalet, make winter camping in sub-zero temperatures appealing. While the resort, its design, and the stunning views are reason enough to check into this place, they also offer activities like skiing, snowboarding, and dog-sledding for those who may be interested
4. Greystoke Mahale | Mahale Mountains National Park, Tanzania
This camp in Western Tanzania has been providing glamping experiences since 1988. Located in a remote area that isn’t connected by roads, the only way to get to this camp is by small planes and boats. Every hut has their fourth wall missing which makes for a great view of the vast expanse of the Tanzanian landscape. Also, you can go on guided treks to observe the local chimp population.
5. HintokRiver Camp | Kanchanaburi, Thailand
This glamping site has received many rewards for its top-notch quality in the service industry. Hintok River Camp is located on a cliff overlooking the River Kwai. You can enjoy yourself in one of the 32 spacious canvas tents that come with air-conditioning, a private bathroom, an outdoor shower with hot water, a private veranda, and luxury furniture.
With all these options available to you, why would you want to go back to sleeping bags, bugs, and bad bathrooms? Camp the glamorous way and show the world how it’s done. Happy glamping, folks!