28 of the Coolest Glamping Sites Around the World

Luxury camping options around the globe for those who like to get back to nature but don’t want to let go of creature comforts.

Village- Sherpur Khiljipur, near Ranthambore National Park, Sawai Madhopur, Rajasthan 322001, India
Arriving at this insanely beautiful luxury wilderness camp located on the fringe of Ranthambore Tiger Reserve is akin to time travel. 10 Mughal-style, air-conditioned (!), 6 ft high tents provide utterly breathtaking accommodations. They echo the rich Moghul traveling tents of bygone days with ‘rooms’ separated by cotton drapes. The tents even have a shower, soaking tub and separate toilet. But the secret weapon of Aman-I-Khás is the batman–your own private butler. I’d thought I’d gone to heaven. I have NEVER been taken care of like this in my life. Noteworthy excursions from the camp are first and foremost the tiger safaris into Ranthambore National Park, and an early morning hike to the old Ranthambore Fort.
71895 CA-1, Big Sur, CA 93920, USA
For such a remote region, Big Sur has more than its share of amazing places to stay. One of the most unique is Treebones Resort, nestled high in the foothills of South Big Sur overlooking the Pacific. The off-the-grid property offers 16 signature yurts as well as oceanfront campsites, a 500-square-foot “autonomous tent,” and the “human nest,” a spherical dwelling woven from tree branches by local artist Jayson Fann. Even nesters have access to the resort’s pool, hot tub, and restaurant, which highlights produce from the on-site organic farm and houses what has to be one of the world’s most scenic sushi bars.
Eagle View’s nine tented suites opened a year ago on a ridge that overlooks a broad swath of savannah in the Mara Naboisho Conservancy. The camp pays a guaranteed income to each of the approximately 500 families who own the conservancy. Masai guides lead guests on night drives or walks and use animal-friendly spotlights to illuminate nocturnal creatures. Suites overlook a salt lick that attracts one of the highest densities of lions in Africa. On occasion, guests may find a lion’s kill in the morning. From $380. 254/(0) 73-333- 3909. This appeared in the August/September 2013 issue. Image courtesy of Basecamp’s Eagle View
A recent refurbishment has brought larger tents, Moroccan rugs, and four-poster campaign beds to this woodland property near the Makgadikgadi salt pans. A visit to the nearby meerkat conservation project is a must. From $430. 27/(0) 11-447- 1605. This appeared in the August/September 2013 issue. Image courtesy of Uncharted Africa Safari Co.
90 Armstrong Rd, Johnsburg, NY 12843, USA
This family-owned retreat within Adirondack State Park is geared toward campers who want comfort. Adirondack chairs (of course) sit on the decks of six canvas tents equipped with wood-burning stoves and cedar-lined showers. The platform canvas-sided cabins are open from late May through early October.
Dubai Desert Conservation Reserve - Dubai - Al Ain Rd - Dubai - United Arab Emirates
An hour’s drive from the densely packed skyscrapers and shopping malls of Dubai, Al Maha, which opened in 1999 as the United Arab Emirates’ first luxury desert resort, lies within a 55,600-acre nature reserve. Al Maha operates on the African safari model, with early morning and sunset excursions by 4x4, camel, and horseback. Linked by paved pathways to the restaurant, spa, and lobby, the resort’s 42 tented suites are spaced far enough apart from one another to feel entirely private. Decks and plunge pools provide panoramic views of sand dunes and a water hole that lures some 400 Arabian oryx, an indigenous species brought back from near extinction following 19th and 20th-century overhunting.
52068 W Fork Rd #38, Dolores, CO 81323, USA
Among the most lauded hotel openings in recent years, Dunton Hot Springs is a glitterati mainstay, with its batch of former mining community cabins that look straight out of a Ralph Lauren catalogue. You don’t have to book a pricey stay at this Relais & Chateaux property to be part of the experience, however—the spa is open to the public. Make an appointment for the indulgent, only-in-Colorado Dolores hot-stone massage, which uses heated stones culled from the Dolores River to work out your kinks. Then, take a soak in the on-site sulfuric hot springs, which were once a restorative playground for the Ute Indians.
Bordering Serengeti National Park
Whether you’re up for the adventure of a mobile tented camp, or would prefer a private house staffed with personal chefs, Singita Grumeti is the place for the ultimate safari experience and unbeatable Great Migration views. The 350,000-acre protected nature reserve is home to five distinct properties (plus an exclusive private villa option), ensuring there is an option for any traveler—though luxury, service, and attention to detail are constants across the board.

The five main Grumeti properties offer a singular setting and experience, along with the option to visit any of the others for meals, or to make use of their facilities. Choices include traditional tented-style camps like Sabora Tented Camp, with its plush, 1920s-explorer-inspired decor, and Explore Mobile Tented Camp, an eco-friendly setup that can be moved as the migration progresses. Faru Faru Lodge features contemporary interiors and boasts two striking pools, while Serengeti House is a four-suite private house favored by honeymooning celebs. The grande dame of the reserve, Sasakwa Lodge, boasts luxury cottages, a spa, a wine cellar, dining room, a bar and lounge, a billiards room, a conservatory, and even an equestrian center.

With all this to choose from—not to mention the endless panoramas, gourmet cuisine, and unforgettable wildlife viewing—Singita Grumeti has become known as the pinnacle of safari getaways. And with good reason: the experience here is so impeccable, it just might spoil you on safaris for life.
Mbomo, Republic of the Congo
Since opening last August, two jungle camps, Ngaga and Lango, have become a gateway to the lesser-known tropics of Central Africa. Located on the edge of more than 3.3 million acres of parkland, the camp’s 12 raffia-thatched huts were inspired by the building techniques of local B’Aka Pygmy groups. Travelers watch for lowland gorillas and crowned monkeys in comfortable hideouts built near bai (forest clearings). Flat-bottomed, motorized canoes transport guests down the area’s interweaving rivers. From $5,885 for six nights. 27/(0) 11-807-1800. This appeared in the August/September 2013 issue. Image: Wickerfurniture/Foter.com
Last summer, Tim and Kathy Turner took a break from the Mont Blanc hiking circuit for a night at Refuge des Mottets, a French backcountry lodge decorated with cowbells and old iron cookware. The Turners, from the United States, were the only trekkers there besides the jovial members of a French hiking club. All enjoyed a hearty, family-style dinner of beef bourguignon, tomato salad, and homemade bread. After the meal, the lodge’s owner pulled out an accordion, and the club burst into song. “Everyone was swaying back and forth, locked arm and arm,” says Tim. “These were classic French anthems—tunes that every Frenchman knew.” For more than 200 years, hikers from Europe and farther abroad have explored the ancient hunting and trading routes that make up the 112-mile Mont Blanc trail. Named after the highest peak in the Alps, the trek winds through France, Italy, and Switzerland, looping around the Mont Blanc Massif range, past conifer forests, glacial waterfalls, and alpine meadows covered in bright blue gentians and golden buttercups. The co-owner of tour company Distant Journeys, Andrea Ellison Mulla, led the Turners on the 12-day trip. “Andrea often knew three generations of locals at spots along the route—the grandmas, mothers, and daughters,” says Kathy. “We’d stop by a hotel or shop whether we needed to or not, just to say hello or have a coffee.” At night, the travelers stayed in comfortable mountain village lodges, some with wooden balconies draped in red and pink geraniums, or at rustic, family-owned refuges. Tim recalls, “Cultural barriers break down very quickly at the refuges. Everybody comes together to wash the day’s hiking clothes in tubs and string them up on clotheslines. Then you sit down at big, communal tables for a meal of risotto or polenta, plus plenty of beer and wine.” As the Turners experienced, sometimes a spirited round of singing follows. What the couple will remember the most, though, is the way the Europeans approached the trail. “They know how to hike. They just slow down and enjoy it all,” says Tim. “In the States, we’re too damn fast. You don’t need to get there as quickly as possible. Talk to people along the trail. Stop, take off your backpack, have a snack. You’re on vacation.” —Kelly Lack
9530 Rue de la Faune
Quebec really knows how to throw a party. It may be cold, but the Quebecois absolutely love it. The Hotel de Glace is just one example. Covering 32,000 square feet, this glistening example of “ice engineering” is just too much fun to pass up. If you’re feeling adventurous, make a reservation and spend the night, all of the rooms are themed differently with unique ice carvings in each room. The hotel will provide you with arctic-style sleeping bags designed to keep you warm well below zero. If perhaps you would like a libation, there is a bar that serves signature drinks. I sampled a Hotel De Glace cocktail that consisted of vodka and ice cider served in a shot glass carved from ice. After dark, the hotel comes to life with beautiful colored lighting that really highlights the structure. For a bit more fun for you adrenaline junkies, you will find a climbing wall made of ice, the gauntlet is now thrown down. For more information visit the hotel’s web site at http://www.hoteldeglace-canada.com. Photograph by www.xdachez.com
Lighthouse Road, West End, Negril ., Jamaica
The Caves, just west of Negril, is aptly named. While the 12 cottages and one villa sit atop honeycombed cliffs, the Blackwell Rum Bar, a private dining venue, and the massage table of the hotel’s Aveda Concept Spa are actually in underground grottos open to the sea. The setup is very Treasure Island, and the flicker of candlelight and the echo of waves off cave walls make it uniquely romantic. Each of the thatch-roofed cottages is as colorful as a paint box, and each gives a sense of being alone at the end of the land. This is one of music mogul Chris Blackwell’s Island Outpost properties, so the vibe at the Jacuzzi, sauna, or salt-water swimming pool is hip but relaxed. Although famed Seven Mile Beach begins almost where the cliffs end, the hotel itself has no beach, which is why a tradition at the Caves is to begin the day by jumping from the cliffs into the usually calm Caribbean below—or at least thinking about it.
Babaji Ka Modh, Goner Rd, Jagdish Colony, Prem Nagar, Jaipur, Rajasthan 302031, India
Situated on 32 acres of land on the outskirts of Jaipur—but still a quick drive from the city’s historic forts and palaces—this massive hotel mixes traditional Rajasthani style with modern amenities. Although there are a number of lovely garden rooms with four-poster beds and deep soaking tubs, many travelers opt for the property’s tent-style accommodations, with campaign-style furnishings and block-printed fabrics, or splurge on one of the villas, which come with private pools. Restaurants are just as romantic, serving Indian specialties against a backdrop of gold-leaf details, cane-backed pieces, and intricately carved architecture. While The Oberoi Rajvilas makes a great base for exploring Jaipur, it also offers plenty to do right on the property, including a luxury spa, gigantic swimming pool, cooking classes, and meditation sessions with the resident Hindu priest.
Gornergrat, 3920 Zermatt, Switzerland
A trip up to the Gornergrat provides the best view of the Matterhorn without ripping a huge hole in your wallet. For less than 10 Francs, we were able to ride the lift up to Gornergrat and see one of the most spectacular views. At the top there is a little restaurant where you can enjoy a coffee or some lunch and sit outside to enjoy the Matterhorn in all of its glory. From here, you can either walk down which takes about 2 hours, through little ski chalet towns, or take the lift back down to Zermatt. From my experience, one of the best views of the Matterhorn in Switzerland!
Edeforsvägen 2A, 960 24 Harads, Sweden
Five futuristic tree houses, from the Bird’s Nest to a full-size UFO, were built with minimal impact on the Lule River Valley. The newest tree room, Mirrorcube, has reflective glass walls that disappear into the pines. After a meal of local elk or reindeer, visit the treetop sauna until it’s time for a midnight fishing trip or a mountain-bike ride. From $453. This appeared in the July/August 2012 issue.

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