While camping purists might detest the word, glamping is one travel trend that keeps going from strength to strength. While it once meant a portable charger and a plug for your hairdryer, glamping in the UK now encompasses shepherd’s huts, yurts and plush tipis, so you can be at one with nature without a crick in your neck or soggy socks. So, whether you’re looking for an all-inclusive outdoor stay, or a DIY luxury camping experience at next year’s festivals, consider this your guide to the best glamping in the UK…
Best Glamping in the UK
Carrowmena Glamping Site, Limavady, United Kingdom
Explore some of the most beautiful spots in Northern Ireland including the Causeway Coast, Sperrin & Binevenagh Mountain Range and Lough Foyle from the Carrowmena Glamping Site at Limavady. Perfect for families, activities include water sports, campfires, archery, and a kids station. BOOK IT booking.com
Shepherd Huts at Beacon Hill Farm
Get lost in a luxe shepherd’s hut in the middle of nowhere for the ultimate glamping experience. Situated between the Northumbrian coastline and the Cheviot Hills, Beacon Hill Farm is surrounded by 50 acres of ancient beech woods, and 300 acres of parkland and grass fields. Shepherd’s Huts Bluegrass and Ryegrass are located in a south-facing wildflower meadow and feature three rooms and a westerly-facing terrace, with heating and hot water provided by a gas boiler. Forget kumbaya and ghost stories, the huts are equipped with Wi-Fi, a Bose Bluetooth speaker and a digital radio plus a Smart TV in the bedroom. You should probably get out and explore at some point though, and when you do, head to nearby Northumberland International Dark Sky Park. Beacon Hill has its own purpose built observatory with a range of telescopes for viewing the magical night skies. BOOK IT www.premiercottages.co.uk, 01670 780900
Plush Tents Glamping – Chichester, England
Choose from luxurious Mongolian yurts and cosy bell tents in a little forested wonderland in Chichester. If you don’t want to go completely off-grid, the W-Fi will come in handy for Instagram sharing / boasting. There’s a communal campfire and hot tub, plus a scattering of hammocks for day dreaming, and when your stove runs out of gas, order up a fancy breakfast or lunch hamper prepared by the experts at Fork & Field. BOOK IT booking.com
The Shepherds Hut, Durham
The Shepherd’s Hut is perched on the unspoilt, rolling countryside in Lower Teesdale on the Durham/Yorkshire border. The picture-perfect spot for a romantic getaway, it is fitted with a two-seater sofa, Hobbit wood burning stove, Neff hob, granite worktops, spacious shower, and king size bed. There are plenty of historic sites, beautiful walks and cycling routes within easy reach if you feel like exploring, but if it’s alone-time you seek, this is the perfect spot for practicing life as the last two shepherds on earth. BOOK IT www.premiercottages.co.uk, 01325 730339
The Little Hide – Wigginton, United Kingdom
A great base for exploring the historic city of York, the luxury, adult-only camping pods of The Little Hide offer cosy self-catering accommodation for people who ‘don’t do camping’ to camp. The Little Hide camping pods all contain a zip-link bed with under-bed storage, a sofa, and a heater. BOOK IT thelittlehide.co.uk
Still want to go it alone? As long as you pitch your own tent, you’ll keep the traditionalists happy. But bringing your own doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the glamping experience. Just make sure it’s a seriously nice tent, with all the added extras. Here’s our hot list…
Best Luxury Camping Equipment
When you think ‘glamping’, it has to be a bell tent, and for the ultimate festival glamping tent, it has to be a rainbow bell tent. This polyester bell tent by the Boutique Camping Company is half the weight of their canvas counterparts, making them ideal to transport, and can be put together by one person.
Rent it: Baylily Bell Tents, from £145
OK, so technically you’re not pitching your own here, but you’re renting it and someone else is doing the hard bit, so everyone’s a winner. Baylily Bell Tents allow you to rent one or more pretty bell tents for your next luxury camping trip, which are available on a ‘tent only’ or fully furnished basis, for when you really just want to arrive and crash (in style). baylilybelltents.co.uk
Sherpa Folding Cart, £79
You’ll need a hand lugging all your glamping kit to the perfect spot. If you only have one pair, make things simpler with this folding cart, which you can load up with your tent, kit and a bottle of bubbles for once the work is done.
Save yourself from a deflating air bed with this Boutique Camping roll up waterproof camping bed.
Don’t get caught out without a hammer, bottle opener, blade or screwdriver; pop this Orvis tool in your kit for all emergencies, including beer-related ones.