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Camping sounds romantic… until you’re confronted with its realities. Setting up tents, combating mosquitoes, and sleeping on a flimsy air mattress isn’t for everyone.
But if you seek comfort and luxury, there is another way. In the past decade, glamping (or glamorous camping) has become increasingly popular, as it offers all the joys of camping without sacrificing modern conveniences.
But the industry has grown fast. Not all glamping resorts are made equal – so if you’re looking for the cream of the crop, we’ve hand-picked the top glamping spots in the US, just for you.
Let’s get started, shall we?
Moose Meadow Lodge – Waterbury, Vermont
Tucked beneath the stunning Green Mountains of Vermont, Moose Meadow Lodge’s wood cabins offer that feeling of hygge (coziness) you’ve been after.
This rustic resort offers four rooms in its main lodge – but if you want to glamp, they offer a tree house. It is situated 200 feet from the main lodge and offers pristine views of the on-site pond.
In this abode, you’ll enjoy more than just a room – with a living and a dining space, it’s perfect for entertaining friends & family. But as perfect as it sounds, don’t delay booking it, as it’s only available from May to October.
After sleeping in, cast a line in the stocked fish pond, or hike through the 86 acres of forest surrounding the lodge. Or just kick back and read a book – this is your holiday, after all!
Space Cowboys – Terlingua, Texas
In frontier country, things can get pretty weird – ever visit Wall Drug or see the Cadillac Ranch? Case closed.
So, as striking as Space Cowboys is, it might not actually be out of place. Situated in a stunning desert landscape near Big Bend National Park, Space Cowboys offers an experience unlike any you’ve seen before.
As you roll up to the property, you can’t miss it. While most of Space Cowboys’ tents are canvas, they also have a futuristic glamping dome available.
In each space, you’ll enjoy a queen-size memory foam bed, a stylish mini-fridge, and a lamp that’ll light up the roof of your tent with stars and nebulas – groovy!
But it’s their Hypedome that steals the show. Covered in reflective panelling, its chrome exterior makes it look like a landed pod from another planet. But inside, you’ll enjoy unencumbered views of the West Texan desert (and, in the distance, Mexico).
When you aren’t at camp, epic hikes in nearby Big Bend National Park await. And if you are not up for that, you can explore a ghost town ten minutes down the road. But whatever you get up to, it’ll make for great stories with fellow guests later that night.
Firelight Camps – Ithaca, New York
Set in a pristine wooded area, you wouldn’t ever guess Firelight Camps is four miles from one of America’s most hyped college towns.
But it is, offering a privileged mix of convenient location and priceless tranquillity. This resort offers five well-appointed canvas tents, each with cloud-like queen/king beds, hardwood floors, battery-powered lanterns, a writer’s desk, and a tented balcony.
The onsite amenities are impressive, too – you’ll take showers in the stylish bathhouse, enjoy drinks with fellow guests at the bar, and trade stories around the communal campfire.
And you’ll have plenty to talk about, as you can hike to waterfalls, tour local vineyards, and in Autumn, the area offers some of the best leaf-peeping in the Northeast.
Westgate River Ranch Resort & Rodeo – River Ranch, Florida
When you think Florida, does a dude ranch come to mind? Probably not – but this is Florida we’re talking about.
Situated 90 minutes southeast of Orlando in rural Polk County, Westgate River Ranch Resort & Rodeo is a great place to unwind after a week of theme park hopping. Located amidst some of the last remaining tracts of wilderness in Florida, it’s a complete 180° from life in the city.
Glamping options include chuckwagon-style cabins, luxurious tepees, and canvas tents. While they have a rustic feel, they come equipped with all modern conveniences, including air conditioning, microwaves, coffee makers, and an en-suite bathroom.
By day, you can horseback ride on local trails or go for a jet boat ride on the Westgate River. After you get back, you’ll have access to a barbecue and fire pit. But if you don’t feel like grilling, the resort has a steakhouse.
Fortunate enough to be here on Saturday night? Lucky you – rodeo competitions featuring cowboys from across America happen here every weekend.
Under Canvas Mount Rushmore – Keystone, South Dakota
South Dakota isn’t on the radar of most glampers – but it should be. In the state’s west, the Black Hills, an island of mountains in the Great Plains, is the setting for Under Canvas Mount Rushmore.
As their name suggests, this resort boasts dramatic views of America’s most iconic mountain. But the stands of ponderosa pine and juniper trees surrounding this glamping resort put it over the top.
Their canvas tents pair perfectly with the wild-west vibe of the area. They range in size from cozy abodes (suitable for couples) to suites perfect for travelling families.
Power isn’t available, but the resort provides USB-compatible battery packs to recharge your electronics. And private bathrooms mean you won’t have to make a 3 am trek to an outhouse.
Spend your days at Under Canvas Mount Rushmore experiencing highlights like Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse Memorial (under construction), touristy (but fun) attractions like Big Thunder Gold Mine, and numerous wilderness hiking trails.
Then, when you get back to Under Canvas, enjoy free s’mores over a roaring fire – you’ve earned it!
The Resort at Paws Up – Greenough, Montana
POV – you’re in an isolated valley amid Montana’s breathtaking Rocky Mountains. All around you sits 37,000 acres of land, containing more than 100 miles of trails and 10 miles of frontage on the Blackfoot River. The nearest town of any significance is more than 30 miles away.
Welcome to The Resort at Paws Up.
The ethos of this place: it’s like a national park but privately owned. And it won’t take you long to figure out why. After awakening, glampers often find mule deer munching on grass outside their tent. And in the fields beyond the camping area, you can often sight bison.
But while you are in the “wild west,” Paws Up has made its name offering the most luxurious wilderness glamping experiences in America.
Guests can either stay in a rustic log cabin, an executive lodge, or a canvas tent (but a well-appointed one). Even in the latter option, you’ll have access to perks like heated floors, copper bathtubs, and butler service.
Paws Up has the most robust menu of activities and events of any glamping resort in the USA. You can go on a cattle drive, practice yoga in the fitness centre, learn how to fly fish, work on your shot in the clay shooting range, and so on.
Winter opens up new possibilities, with cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, fat biking, and even curling being possible.
And one more thing: this is an all-inclusive resort. So eat & drink ’til your heart’s content – that’s what a glamping vacation should be all about!
Alila Ventana Big Sur – Big Sur, California
Don’t want to spoil the vibe of your Pacific Coast Highway adventure? Don’t settle for a night in an old motel room (that vaguely smells like cigarette smoke) – go glamping instead.
Alila Ventana Big Sur is a resort sandwiched between the hills, redwoods, and ocean of Big Sur. And while its hotel is eye-wateringly expensive, its glamping tents offer a taste of luxury AND the outdoors.
These units are cozy but stylish canvas tents, equipped with a delightfully soft queen bed, end tables, power plugs and USB ports for charging devices, and two fire pits (one propane, one for wood fires).
While you cannot access resort amenities, you can hike amidst the redwoods, enjoy ocean views, and walk the beach – that’s why you came to Big Sur in the first place, right?
Discover America’s Natural Wonders In Luxury
When it comes to wild spaces, America is a blessed country. From mountains to vast open plains, most are a quick drive or flight away from these therapeutic places.
But gone are the days when camping meant sleeping on the ground. With glamping, you can have comfort AND adventure – no trade-offs required!
Stay at any of the properties mentioned above, and we’re confident you’ll have an experience that’ll stay with you for a lifetime.