If you have looked at booking a festival, a sporting event or even one of the UK’s more arcane local celebrations the chances are you will have been given the choice of glamping as one of the potential styles of accommodation on offer. You might expect to see a glamping field at Glastonbury and in fact there are several glampsites attached to the festival, offering a range of experiences from bell tents to multi-room safari tents with private showers and toilets.
Even sporting events now come with associated glampsites, so if you want to spend the weekend flitting between a woodland glampsite and the British Grand Prix you can! The Isle of Man TT is one of the best known motorsport events and one which has a long history of camping, and of course now you can book a luxury bell tent with all the mod cons to rest your head after a long day of spectating.
You can even glamp when you’re on a layover on a long haul flight. Changi Airport in Singapore offers glamping alongside the usual array of hotels for travellers needing stopover accommodation. Private pilots can avail themselves of the fly-in glampsite at the Hinton-Alderson Airport in West Virginia, where you can land your plane and taxi right up to your safari tent that can accommodate six people.
If you live in the countryside the chances are there’s a glampsite within a few miles of your home. Planning permission rules were recently relaxed to allow farmers to host pop-up glamping for up to 60 days without having to go through lengthy applications. This means that a two-month glamping offering over the summer months with bell tents, yurts and tipis is a viable income stream for rural landowners, one which also benefits the local economy as visitors spend money in the area. It’s a way of testing the water to see whether running a full-time site is viable, so some temporary glampsites may go on to become permanent fixtures if planning permission is granted.
If you live in a town or city there’s probably a glamping option near you too – with a rise in back garden office/cabin conversion projects, triggered by lockdowns and now serving as an additional income stream on sites like AirBnB you might even live next door to a solo glamping cabin. Vehicle conversions, shepherd’s huts and even bespoke glamping pod builds have all been seen in back gardens in the past few years and their popularity shows no signs of waning.
Perhaps stretching the definition of glamping is the Underwater Room at the Manta Resort in Tanzania. This floating cabin has an underwater bedroom and is anchored in a private lagoon offering guests complete isolation with a sub-sea experience you won’t get anywhere else. The accommodation has a rooftop tanning deck, a sea level lounge and bathroom and then below decks is the double bedroom with windows looking directly into the ocean.
The last example might well be considered more of a boutique hotel than authentic glamping, but it does at least fulfil the requirements of seclusion in nature and the absence of a brick and mortar structure.
Glamping really does get everywhere. You can spend the night glamping at festivals, sporting events, airport stopovers, up in the treetops and even underwater. We think the last place that glamping has to conquer is a cliff face – but there are already options for portaledge camping available if you’re feeling brave enough!