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Your essential guide to glamping

If you love the idea of getting close to the great outdoors, but aren’t as drawn to the concept of tents or roughing it in the wilderness, glamping is here to save the day — and your holiday. Glamping in the UK has become progressively more popular as travellers aim for a combination of comfort and style on their camping exploration. The range of glamping options can be slightly overwhelming for a newcomer; what distinguishes a yurt from an average tent, a pod from an Airstream? Here’s your ultimate guide to the many types of glamping accommodation and how they can turn your camping holiday into a luxury getaway.

Yurts and tipis

Yurts are based on the homes of nomadic travellers in cold parts of the world, and combine cosy warmth with expansive indoor space. A yurt is constructed out of padded canvas and waterproofing in a circular shape, and while the ones owned by nomads were designed to be easily deconstructed for travelling, glamping yurts are sturdy, usually possess their own timber flooring and combine a close-to-nature feel with home comforts like proper beds, lighting and electric appliances.

The circular design provides a lot of interior space, with a family yurt easily able to take two adults and two children. By contrast, tipis are based on Native American tents and have a conical structure with sloping sides. They’re made of the same reinforced canvas as yurts, and are often popular as festival glamping options, though they can have smaller amounts of space inside than yurts.

 

Airstreams

For winter glamping holidays, you may want something a bit hardier, and that’s where options like Airstreams come in. Airstreams are the famous campervans made legendary by American travellers of the 1940s and 50s, and in glamping accommodation their sleek aluminium lines are transformed from mobile hotels to stationary delights.

Airstreams were designed for family living, complete with transformable interior spaces with dining, bathing and sleeping areas, and glamping Airstreams will come with luxurious fittings: top-of-the-line kitchens, central heating, even bathrooms that wouldn’t look out of place in a more luxurious establishment. It’s the equivalent of a seriously good hotel with the wilderness just outside the front door.

 

An Airstream caravan on our Abbey Wood site

Pods

Glamping pods are small structures designed to minimise impact on the landscape while also preserving the high-end amenities expected on a glamping holiday. Pods are smaller-scale houses in beautiful surroundings that create comfort and luxury through clever uses of indoor space, rather like having a tiny villa for your own private use. Pods can be excellent bases for family glamping trips, or provide a remote and romantic escape for an off-peak glamping holiday: just two people, champagne and the night sky.

 

Tree houses

In better weather, tree houses can be a good glamping escape. These aren’t the tree houses you built when you were a kid, full of spiders and liable to fall off a branch in the slightest wind; glamping tree houses are often built in a circle around a central trunk, or nestled among trees and nature in ways that aren’t necessarily visible from a distance. They’re often showcases of eco-friendly design and comfort. For privacy and intimacy with nature they’re an excellent idea, though many will require comfort with heights and they can be unsuitable for young children.

Every kind of glamping accommodation has its own benefits and unique charm, so selecting an option may prove tricky — but ultimately it’s the perfect way to blend an outdoorsy, natural experience with the creature comforts you can’t go without.

Inside our glamping pods at Coniston