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Where Nature And Luxury Intersect

Where Nature And Luxury Intersect

From Private Safari Camps To Remote Nature Getaways, Glamping Marries The Great Outdoors With Unimaginable Creature Comforts

The use of the term glamping has been expanded in recent years to encompass a dizzying array of locations, environments, and experiences. Whereas the first glamping experiences were mostly billed as humble opportunities to camp out in style, modern-day glampers now find themselves enjoying world-class luxuries and wildly unique accommodations in all corners of the world. From cozy mountaintop pods and immaculate jungle escapes to futuristic offerings on a wind-swept, extraterrestrial landscape, these are the most notable and eye-popping glamping experiences around.

NORTH AMERICA

Around a two-hour drive from Anchorage, Alpenglow Luxury Camping offers an idyllic locale for city dwellers looking to disconnect by escaping into Alaskan nature. While Alpenglow’s canvas tents don’t feature electricity—there’s a charging station at base camp—each one offers gorgeous views of Alaska’s Matanuska Glacier. Open from late May to early September, the property is run completely on solar power, with furniture and buildings made in-house using local materials.

For an intimate audience with the natural world, it’s hard to beat Big Sky Country, aka Montana, where The Resort at Paws Up offers one of America’s most luxe glamping options. From mid-May through mid-October, a mix of couples, groups, and families, not to mention corporate titans and Hollywood celebs, descend on the six luxury tented camps, one of which features North America’s only three-bedroom/two-bathroom tents. All tents include rustic chic decor, en-suite bathrooms with heated slate floors, and camping butlers. The resort, which is open year-round, offers top-notch activities, most notably world-class fly-fishing.

In a remote patch of Southwest Colorado, Dunton Destinations offers various glamping options in the shadows of the San Juan Mountains, the most opulent of which is Christy’s Tent at Dunton Hot Springs. The all-season, canvas tent was built with reclaimed materials that date back to the 1830s, and contains a gas stove and spacious bathroom with views. Four miles away, the luxe Dunton River Camp (open May to October) is set on a 500-acre cattle ranch from the late 1800s. The original farmhouse sits in its original location near the Dolores River; nearby, guests relax in glammed-out tents, each sitting on a wooden platform anchored to the bedrock.

Alpenglow offers luxury camping in Alaska
Alpenglow offers luxury camping in Alaska

Luxury brand Under Canvas, which maintains stunning locations in and near some of America’s most popular national parks, removes the hassles out of camping. Active travelers looking to get the most from a visit to Yellowstone, Glacier, or Zion reserve their deluxe Under Canvas tents (each with a bathroom and private deck) far in advance. The safari-inspired Grand Canyon location wows with its Stargazer tents, so named for the viewing window above the king bed for stargazing at night.

Collective Retreats offers a modern chic, all-inclusive camping experience in or near popular destinations such as Yellowstone National Park, Texas Hill Country, and Vail, Colo. The company provides guests with lodging in Instagram-ready tents, chef-crafted meals, and fun, local activities. New York residents have a pair of locations to choose from; urban glampers can spend the night under the stars on Governors Island (across from Manhattan), while apartment-dwellers can escape to the peaceful Hudson Valley.

Camping in Beverly Hills? For a unique glamping experience, consider the Beverly Wilshire, A Four Seasons Hotel, where the “A Night With the Stars” package includes use of the entire 10th floor, including the legendary Veranda Suite. High above Rodeo Drive, guests enjoy a private 2,000-square-foot terrace with a gas fireplace and tricked-out tent for two. Illuminated by a crystal chandelier and marble lamps, the 10-foot tent includes a queen-size bed, antique nightstands, and fur rugs.

AFRICA

Asilia Africa, a company with ties to the original family-run safari companies of East Africa, lures adventurous types to Tanzania for The Highlands. Perched on the edge of the mountain forest hugging the Olmoti volcano, just north of the Ngorongoro Crater, each perspex-and-canvas domed suite features an en-suite bathroom, wood-burning stove, and floor-to-canvas-ceiling bay windows with incredible views. Guests follow ancient Maasai trails to the summit of the Olmoti crater and go on game-watching drives in the surrounding Ngorongoro Conservation Area.

Asilia Africa offers adventurous types an opportunity for high-end glamping in Tanzania.
Asilia Africa offers adventurous types an opportunity for high-end glamping in Tanzania

Safari lovers trek to the heart of Katavi National Park in remote Western Tanzania to reach Nomad Tanzania’s Chada Katavi camp. Open June through November, the space resembles a classic expeditionary outpost, albeit one with countless comforts. Guests have ample wilderness to themselves, and game-watching opportunities are never far away; elephants commonly walk through the camp, depending on the time of year. While each well-designed tent features an en-suite bathroom, true adventurers looking to get as close to nature as possible opt for fly camping out in the wild.

Nomad Tanzania's Chada Katavi Park
Nomad Tanzania's Chada Katavi Park.

Natural Selection, a collection of owner-operated safari camps and mobile safaris, maintains a handful of notable destinations in remote, wind-swept Namibia. Intrepid types venture to the isolated Skeleton Coast National Park, where the Shipwreck Lodge’s handsomely appointed, solar-powered cabins resemble grounded ships. Set in a sheltered valley against a backdrop of granite mountains, the mesmerizing Hanoib Valley Camp disappears into its natural surroundings while leaving almost no footprint on its fragile ecosystem. Guest tents, which feature local materials and design inspired by the local Himba people, look out onto a unique landscape that’s home to desert-adapted elephant, giraffe, lion, and rhino.

Shipwreck Lodge at Skeleton Coast National Park in Namibia.
Shipwreck Lodge at Skeleton Coast National Park in Namibia

Kenya’s Angama Mara is an ideal choice for first-time glampers looking to check a safari off their bucket list. Constructed from classic safari canvas, each stylishly appointed tent features a 30-foot-wide, floor-to-ceiling window overlooking the Great Rift Valley. The space sits on the edge of the imposing Oloololo Escarpment, made famous by the film Out of Africa. Guests enjoy game-watching any number of ways, including from hot air balloons, and most famously during the annual Great Migration, when millions of wildebeests and zebras pass through the area.

ASIA

Adventurers journey to the Thai jungle of Chiang Rai, where the Four Seasons Tented Camp Golden Triangle sits on elevated ground near the confluence of the Ruak and Mekong rivers. The 15 luxurious, air-conditioned tents sit in the heart of the Golden Triangle, overlooking Thailand, Burma, and Laos. The tropical, bamboo-filled environs stand in contrast to upscale comforts such as a cocktail bar and wine cellar. Each uniquely decorated tent—designed to evoke 19th-century adventure expeditions—features hardwood floors and a hand-hammered copper bathtub.

Located in a UNESCO World Heritage site in Laos, the luxurious Rosewood Luang Prabang offers hilltop tents filled with colors, textiles, and patterns utilized by the area’s indigenous hill tribes. Each tent contains a king bed and oversize daybed alongside a refreshing rain shower and oversize balcony. Inspired by a traditional Laotian hill station, the resort is surrounded by stunning, untamed forests.

Kenya’s Angama Mara, shown above, is a bucket-list glamping destination
Kenya’s Angama Mara, shown above, is a bucket-list glamping destination.

EUROPE

In stark contrast to the fancy ski resorts in the Swiss Alps, Whitepod offers unique mountain units that were designed to combine ecology and luxury. Upon check-in at the reception area, guests receive a backpack with a map, headlamp, and walking stick, then venture 20 minutes uphill to reach their pod. Each unit is equipped with wood‑burning stoves, fully serviced bathrooms, and a large terrace with breathtaking views. For a next-level experience, there are pod suites with air conditioning, an unlimited minibar, and a private sauna.

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