Glamping has become a pretty hot topic in the past five years or so. Before then practically nobody had ever heard of the term. Now loads of people are talking about it. So, what is this glamping thing all about?
Well, firstly let’s decode the word. Admittedly you’ve probably done that already but ahem, just in case. The top entry on Urban Dictionary helpfully tells us that it’s shorthand for glamorous camping.
So, essentially, glamping is camping with mod cons and creature comforts (wanna see some deals? We have some stunners here!). But, wait a second; doesn’t adding glamour to camping defeat the very point of camping? We thought camping was all about becoming at one with nature and temporarily simplifying life (like in the piece we wrote on August 11: Forget booking a hotel, go camping!). Oh, and not paying much for the privilege.
Well, glamping is for people who love the idea of staying in a beautiful natural place, but can’t face roughing it. It’s for people who want to get up close and personal to wildlife during the day, but avoid it at night … people who want to toast marshmallows under the stars before bedtime, but get a comfortable sleep once they’ve turned in for the night.
The term may be new, but the practice isn’t. Wealthy, discerning European and American travellers on safari in the early 20th century were accustomed to enjoying all the trappings of home – namely beds, luxurious linens, Persian rugs and antiques – in the middle of the African wild. To us, glamping seems to be an attempt to bring back the good old days. Think of it less as camping and more as the opportunity to try out an old school, more adventurous travel experience – one, crucially, that the typical modern day traveller doesn’t have.
Today you can go glamping anywhere from the African wilds to the Welsh countryside. There are countless organisations offering everything all sorts of lavishly furnished lodgings, some of which are eco-tourism certified. Yurts, tepees, tents (read: wood and glazed bungalows), they come in all shapes and sizes. Though all have one thing in common – a decidedly un-camping comfort lies at their heart.
Written by insider city guide series Hg2 | A Hedonist’s guide to…
(Featured image: footloosiety]