The concept of glamping isn’t new to U.S. travelers, whose appetite for “glamorous camping” has only increased within the last decade. But what started as a handful of luxury canvas tent sites has expanded in both number and variety of glampsites nationwide, allowing outdoor enthusiasts greater access to natural lands without the outdoor know-how and gear required for camping. Instead of worrying about packing all the right gear and setting up a shelter, travelers can save their energy to hike, swim and experience adventure.
With more visitors than ever heading to America’s national parks, glamping is a popular way to experience them. Here are 10 of the best glampsites located near some of these treasured public lands.
Cowboy Up Near the Grand Canyon
A secluded cattle ranch located in Meadview, Arizona, just 10 miles from the rim of the Grand Canyon and two hours from Las Vegas, the Grand Canyon Western Ranch offers 10 rustic cabins, five glamping tents and plenty of Old West adventure. Enjoy 20-minute helicopter rides over the Grand Canyon, featuring views of the Joshua Tree Forest, Hualapai Reservation and Skywalk, the horseshoe-shaped glass walkway stretching over the edge of the Grand Canyon. Take a horse-drawn wagon ride along The Old Mormon Trail (or a sunset tour!). Or saddle up a horse for an authentic overnight campout with a real-life cowboy.
Stay in a Conestoga Wagon by Capitol Reef
Set against a backdrop of the Red Rock Cliffs, the Capitol Reef Resort in Torrey, Utah, features year-round options like 98 guestrooms and suites with traditional amenities, plus 22 standalone cabins (that sleep up to six) with verandahs and Adirondack chairs for soaking up stunning views. From June through September, Western-style lodging includes luxury Conestoga wagons with a king-size bed and two twin bunk beds, air conditioning, and a separate, private bathroom. Nine teepees feature air conditioning, a king-size bed, a television, a sitting area, and a separate, private bathroom. Located roughly 1 mile from the Capitol Reef entrance and 8 miles from the Visitor Center, the resort also includes community fire pits, an on-site restaurant, a 24-hour fitness center, a year-round outdoor hot tub, and a seasonal pool. Visitors can also schedule jeep excursions, horseback rides, and llama hikes.
Book an Airstream around Yosemite
Opt for a stay in Midpines, California, about 40 minutes from the national park’s Western gates, in one of AutoCamp Yosemite’s 80 Airstream trailers outfitted with a full bathroom, bedroom, kitchenette, and outdoor space. Or stay in a custom canvas tent with access to bathrooms in the clubhouse. (Both options accommodate one to three adults, or two adults and two children.)
Or, get the best of both worlds with a premium basecamp suite, featuring an Airstream and canvas tent or a premium basecamp mini-suite that combines an Airstream with a kids’ tent. All accommodations are equipped with everything from towels and linens to basic cookware, and a fire pit with a grill. The property also features a freshwater pond and seasonal pool; complimentary mountain bikes for on-property use; community fire pits and lounge areas; and daily shuttles to Yosemite National Park, as well as a General Store selling breakfast items, BBQ kits, beer, wine, and more. Book activities like horseback rides, a ride on the Yosemite Mountain Sugar Pine Railroad, or a skydive over Yosemite Valley.
Try a Family Tent near Yellowstone
Situated near Henry Lake, Idaho, just 15 minutes outside West Yellowstone, Montana, Wander Camp’s 48 canvas tents feature a variety of configurations, from a King Tent to a Family Tent (one king-size and one twin bed). Each tent is furnished with linens, including down comforters and 1,000-thread-count sheets, side tables, lounge chairs, fans, lanterns, and USB outlets. Communal bathrooms offer flush toilets and showers. Check out tours like guided safaris, horseback rides, fishing, and whitewater rafting.
Stay in a Mobile Cabin Near Glacier
Offering camping comfort less than 30 minutes from the gorgeous landscapes of Glacier National Park, stay in one of 24 tiny cabins on wheels at ROAM Beyond in Columbia Falls , Montana. Amenities include down comforters and pillows; dual electric heaters and fans; kitchenettes with basic cookware; and private bathrooms with hot showers. Guests can gather in communal cooking and dining spaces, and enjoy the property’s swimming pond, shaded cooking and dining areas, fire pits, evening bonfires, and more. Activities include mountain biking, scenic hiking, or taking a vintage Red Bus tour through the national park.
Experience Nature in America’s Newest National Park
Head to Southern West Virginia’s Adventures on the Gorge to glamp near the country’s newest national park, the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve. The whitewater rafting resort in Lansing, W.V., offers more than 100 cabins, from one- to four-bedroom options, as well as tent/RV campsites. New in 2021, four glamping offer access to a new, centrally-located bathhouse with individual bathroom/shower stalls. Each tent provides two queen beds, a dining table with four chairs, a small refrigerator and coffee maker, air conditioning, electrical outlets, lighting, and a private fire pit with picnic table. On-site adventures include whitewater rafting trips, an aerial park, two different ziplines, mountain biking, and more.
Glamp Minutes from Acadia National Park
Set just minutes from the Acadia National Park entrance, Terramor Outdoor Resort in Bar Harbor, Maine (open mid-May through mid-October), offers five different styles of custom-designed tents, providing maximum comfort with minimal environmental impact. Private bathrooms are available in tents except for the five-person Alder tents, which feature access to a bathhouse. All styles include electricity, an overhead fan, cozy blankets, and screened-in porches. Heaters are available for chilly evenings. The lodge features a complimentary grab-and-go breakfast and to-go sandwiches; dinner includes food and cocktails at on-site counter Kitchen 207 (counter-service only). Activities include on-property yoga, paddle-board adventures, and more.
Aim for Adventure Around Great Smoky Mountains
Located in Townsend, Tenn., on the Little River less than a mile from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s entrance, the Little Arrow Outdoor Resort offers a variety of lodging, from RV sites to cabins, glamping tents, and tiny homes. Opt for full conveniences like cable TV, and a kitchen and bathroom in one of nine cabins or try one of three tiny homes complete with two queen-size bedrooms, each with its own separate full bathrooms, plus a luxurious full kitchen, spacious deck, and a fire pit with a grill grate. Stay in one of four glamping tents, offering a bathroom, heat and air conditioning, wood floors, and an economy kitchen. There’s even a luxurious Airstream complete with a queen bed, linens, cable TV, bathroom, dining area, and kitchen with kitchenware, as well as an outdoor patio complete with a fire pit and cooking grate. In addition to river access, property amenities include a swimming pool, on-site store, coffee lounge, and a clubhouse. Enjoy on-property live music, yoga, and visits from REO Cheesewagon, a gourmet-grilled-cheese food truck.
Glamp Near the Great Sand Dunes
Set in Mosca, Colorado, about 19 miles west of the Great Sand Dunes National Park & Preserve Visitor Center, the Rustic Rook Resort features glamping in furnished canvas tents perched on wooden decks. Fully-furnished tent styles include the Homestead, with a choice of a king-size bed, two full-size beds or three single ones with use of community bathrooms; or Estate, with a king bed or two double beds, private in-tent bathroom with shower, sink, and toilet. Some include roosts, a single-pole 10-by-10-foot tent with a fabric floor, which includes two cots, a nightstand, and lanterns, perfect for adventurous kids. The property also offers board and sled rentals, hot breakfast, on-site dining, nightly community fires, yard games, a kids’ sandbox, a dog park, night-sky viewing programs, and more.
Rent an RV Stay around Crater Lake
Located in Idleyld Park, Oregon, roughly an hour’s drive from the North entrance of Crater Lake National Park, Umpqua’s Last Resort, Wilderness Cabins, RV Park & Glamping is nestled along the North Umpqua River. In addition to RV sites, the property includes cabins with linens and basic hotel-room amenities like a TV, microwave, coffee maker, and refrigerator; community bathrooms and showers are located just steps from the cabins. Or, opt for a Tiny Home XXL, featuring two loft queen bedrooms, a full kitchen and bathroom; or a retro-inspired camper.
Editor’s Note: Anne Howard also contributed to this story.
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