This year, experienced travelers will swap decadent fixed walls for a night under the stars. Sustainable high-end holidays known as “glamping” (glamorous camping) have skyrocketed in popularity with the jet-set crowd who are opting for something a little more unusual. Whether this is a Treehotel in the treetops of Sweden or a fixed tent (complete with luxury bathroom amenities) in the heart of the Masai Mara, camping has never been more on-trend.
Recreate the magic of old-world charm with a stay at The Chamba Camp, Thiksey in Thiksey, India — one of The Ultimate Travelling Camp campsites. This luxury resort offers individually designed tents, en-suite bathrooms, private decks, crisp linens and your very own butler. The Chamba Camp, Thiksey is located in the nomadic area of Ladakh where guests can watch a game of polo — the sport of the Royals of Ladakh — raft down the River Indus, or enjoy picturesque picnic lunches.
If India is a bit far, then try spending a night high in the pine forests of Sweden with a stay at the Treehotel. Six categories of tree houses are offered here; The Cabin, The UFO, The Mirrorcube, The Blue Cone, The Bird’s Nest and The Dragonfly. Think of a grown-up and thoroughly chic version of a traditional backyard tree house, but one that is designed by renowned Scandinavian architects and complete with luxury amenities, minimalist décor and mesmerizing views across the pine forests of Harads.
Kenya is another country that has capitalized on the grandeur of glamping and has combined safari with luxury holidays. In the heart of the Masai Mara, nestled alongside the Mara River, you’ll find the elegant Fairmont Mara Safari Club. Here, wooden verandas meet camouflage canvas — these luxury tents are complete with huge beds and luxury bathrooms. Marvel at the monkeys who dangle precariously off of your veranda, which sits above the steep banks of the crocodile-and-hippo-infested Mara River.
A typical day starts with a game drive followed by a luxurious alfresco Champagne picnic breakfast. Next, relax poolside before journeying back out into the plains to spend some time with the endangered white rhino.
Finally, a top contender for the world’s most glamorous “back-to-nature” experience is found on the edge of the Great Barrier Reef in north Queensland, Australia. Arrive via helicopter or yacht to the eco-lux Orpheus Island, home to a seriously private resort hosting a maximum of 36 guests at any one time in upmarket cabins on the beach. Experience everything from beach barbecues to spearfishing to captaining your own boat to visiting the once-leper colony of Fantome Island. The cuisine is world class and sourced daily by the chef, the island is picture perfect and the service is simply top notch.