Courtesy of Shiftpod
Photo by Moise Sebastian/Shutterstock
With design-forward camp furniture, mood lighting, and accents, you can transform your next camping trip into a seriously chic glamp-out.
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Long gone are the days when camping was synonymous with damp nights spent shivering on the ground with nothing but canned beans for sustenance. Today, boho-dreamy glamping has grown into a travel category all its own, and outdoor gear companies have blurred the line that once separated high performance from high design. Camping culture has become downright chic, and you can have durable, functional camping gear that looks good too.
Whether you want to turn your next camping trip into a full-on glamping experience, or you’re just tired of looking at your beat up old camp chair, consider adding some (or all) of our favorite, stylish camping gear to your packing list.
Buy now: $796 USD (was $876 USD), homecamp.com.au
This stately 4M Bell Tent ($796 USD) from Australian outdoor supplier Homecamp is a total showstopper. It’s made of a cotton canvas poly blend, so it’s a surprisingly tough, all-season tent. There are only two poles—one in the center and one for the door—for easy set up, as well as enough room for three or four adults.
Once up, decorate with your dreamiest ideas: Cover the floor with blankets, pillows, and sleeping bags for a padded paradise or ring four cots around the center pole for the ultimate slumber party. It’s currently available for preorder at a special, discounted price until October 2020.
Buy now: $399 (was $799), shiftpod.com
Prefer something more futuristic in fashion? The California-based designers behind Shiftpod, a space age–looking tent that will definitely make you stand out in the campground, created their tents with the extreme temperatures of the nearby Nevadan deserts in mind. Using reflective fabric, these tents are temperature-regulating and built to keep you warm when it’s cold out and cool when it’s hot out.
For those of you who prefer not to wake with the morning sun, it has blackout walls to give you a nice, dark sleep, as well as windows for ventilation or a bit of light. The 56-inch-tall tent sleeps up to four adults. And the collapsible structure makes it easy to pop it up in a minute flat before staking it into the ground.
Buy now: $35, backcountry.com
The BioLite SiteLight XL Lantern ($35) isn’t your average camp light. Unlike the bulky and harsh camp lamps you may have used in your old Scout days, this 3.25-ounce, foldable, fabric lantern is chic in design and emits a soft ambient light when on.
Yet it doesn’t sacrifice function for form. The 150-lumen, USB-chargeable lantern includes a 15-foot cord that you can use to hang it from a tree or daisy-chain it to other BioLite products. Pair it with the BaseLantern XL ($130), which can charge it—and your phones—in addition to acting as a light.
Buy now: $45, rei.com
No glamping setup is complete without a string of fairy lights, like the solar- and USB-chargeable Luci Solar String Lights ($45) by MPOWERD. Made for outdoor adventures, these little lights are waterproof, bright enough to illuminate your entire campsite, and come equipped with USB outlets so the solar panel unit can double as a charging station for your phone. (Most reviewers note it runs out of battery before a phone is fully charged.) After breaking down camp, store all 18 feet of light-dotted-cord in an expandable case that keeps it from getting tangled.
Kammok’s Roo Double Hammock ($79) was designed for hammock camping, so while its tear-resistant, ultrasoft material is a welcome perk for the casual user, its packability, 500-pound weight capacity, and sturdiness will impress any gearhead.
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The Roo comes in seven colors; ember orange in particular pops in redwood forests and when set up along a coast. You could opt for a single ($69), but the double is best for snuggling with friends. Don’t forget a set of the Python straps (from $29) to actually hang it up.
Buy now: $324, blueridgechair.com
Logs and stump seats are useful as makeshift chairs go—especially when you’re getting serious about toasting marshmallows—but the best camp chair allows you to lean back to gaze at the moon. The retro classic Outer Banks Chair ($324) from Blue Ridge Chair Works is perfectly angled for lounging back or curling upright around the campfire, and its padded headrest comes in handy when you’re counting shooting stars. It also includes two mesh cup holders in the arm rests for keeping your favorite camp beverage near.
When it comes to camp comfort, there’s no such thing as too many blankets. Drape one over a camp chair for a cozier seat, place one on a cot to ward off a night chill, fold one up to pad a picnic bench.
Rumpl’s machine-washable Sherpa Puffy Blanket ($149) in red buffalo check is lightweight, durable, and designed for the outdoors. It pairs the company’s signature sleeping bag–like blanket with a synthetic, super soft sherpa fleece.
For a natural fiber, it’s hard to beat the warmth and comforting weight of a wool blanket, like those from Pendleton. A portion of the proceeds from its navy-and-orange Grand Canyon National Park Blanket (from $269) helps fund park restoration projects.
Buy now: $90, kelty.com
Comfortable, functional, and cute, the Kelty Kush 30 ($90), which can be used as a sleeping bag, comforter, or pillow, will complete your cozy camp sleep setup—no matter which way you decide to use it. The rectangular cut allows you plenty of space to move around in as a sleeping bag, while a three-side zipper allows you to transform it into a plush comforter. Stuffed inside its ultrasoft stuff sack, it also serves as a fluffy, full-sized pillow.
The retro gray-and-teal design and pintuck detailing gives it a stylish appearance, yet it’s still built with function and durability in mind. With CloudLoft synthetic insulation and a temperature rating of 30 degrees, it will keep you warm from spring to fall. Plus, a stash pocket sewn in the lining lets you keep small items close while you sleep.
Buy now: $70 rei.com
It’s the three little feet that make this 12-inch, five-quart cast iron Camp Dutch Oven from Lodge a must-have. They help it nestle neatly in the coals of a firepit to evenly bake a batch of dutch oven cinnamon rolls for breakfast, and they prop it proudly in the center of a table, teeming with chili.
You can also flip the lid over and use it as a griddle. Of course, good cast iron only gets better over time, and this one is sure to last: Time-tested Lodge has been making cast iron cookware since 1896.
For camp-side cooking ideas, pick up a copy of The Campout Cookbook, which is full of recipes like cheesy monkey bread and backcountry beef stew that involve your new dutch oven and coals from a campfire.
Buy now: $320, rei.com
The campfire is the cornerstone of any overnight outdoors: providing warmth, a place to cook, and an area to gather with your fellow campers. But if you’d rather skip the wood-chopping or trying to cook over firepits with no grill grates, a portable grill and firepit like the Takibi ($320) by Snow Peak will help you come prepared.
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Sleek, compact, and collapsible, this ultra-portable, design-forward grill is a functional centerpiece to any camp kitchen. Simply get the charcoal going (preferably with a charcoal chimney, like the Lodge Charcoal Chimney, $24, amazon.com, which will save you time), pull up your chairs and a cooler full of grillables, and settle in to a leisurely evening cooking while circled around the grill’s warm coals.
Buy now: $228, terrain.com
Whether you’re serving hot dogs and hamburgers or you’ve packed and prepped a multi-course menu, a beautiful tablecloth transforms any meal into an outdoor feast. The soft, neutral colors of Terrain’s Water Resistant Linen Tablecloth ($228) subtly brighten any outdoor space and provide an excellent backdrop for wildflower bouquets. Plus, it’s coated in acrylic to keep it water (and wine!) resistant and make for an easy clean-up.
Psst! If you’re balking at the price, try the $20 Vardagen cotton-linen blend tablecloth from Ikea. Although it’s not water-resistant, it is machine washable and inexpensive enough that you won’t fret over a bit of dirt on it.
When one of the best parts of camping is sipping a hot cup of joe in the fresh morning air, there’s no room for cowboy coffee. Enter SnowPeak’s Titanium French Press ($56): a versatile, and stylish accessory that will also make a delicious cup of coffee. You can even heat water directly in the French press—so save the pots for cooking up a hearty breakfast instead.
For drip coffee fans, Snow Peak has your back with its Collapsible Coffee Filter ($30). Made of titanium and folding flat when not in use, this camp coffee accessory is lightweight, easy to pack, and sturdy. Throw it in your bag with a couple of #2 coffee filters and your favorite beans and you’ll have everything you need to make the perfect cup.
Some things are classic for a reason. Sturdy, dishwasher-safe, nearly unbreakable enameled steel dinnerware is one of those things—at least in the outdoors. Family-run GSI Outdoors offers 12-piece, traditional speckled enamelware sets in blue, green, and red ($70), as well as by-the-piece plates ($8) and bowls ($6) in a cream design with green accents.
United By Blue’s playful enamel message mugs (from $20) are handmade and painted with mountains, trees, and messages like “Leave the world a little better than you found it” and John Muir’s famous words, “The mountains are calling.” It has 13 designs available, and since the conservation-minded company pledged to remove a pound of trash from the ocean for every product sold, we recommend one of each.
Buy now: $18, parksproject.com
As outdoor enthusiasts know, these little squares of printed fabric can be used in many ways around the campsite—like napkins, dish towels, or pot holders, for starters—and they’re a fun way to add a little style to your camping outfit or packing list.
While you can find generic bandanas at just about any outdoor store, a bandana like the Sun Rug by Parks Project ($18) is a sunny and fashionable alternative to more common paisley prints. Plus, a portion of the proceeds from this 100 percent cotton bandana go to the Open Outdoors for Kids Program, which helps kids get outdoors and explore our national parks.
Buy now: $75, teva.com
After a long day hiking or exploring outdoors, you’ll want to kick off your hiking boots and slip into something more comfortable. Rather than settle for a beat-up pair of flip-flops, add a bit of style to your fireside ensemble with the Ember Moc by Teva ($75). With a collapsible heel and plush, quilted top fabric, these sleeping-bag-meets-slippers are made for easy nights lounging around the campsite. Comfortable, cushy, and easy to slip on/off, these chill sneakers will quickly become your favorite campside companion.
This article was originally published in May 2018; it was updated on September 22, 2020, to include current information. Products we write about are independently vetted and recommended by our editors. AFAR may earn a commission if you buy through our links, which helps support our independent publication.
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