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Sleeping under the stars has never been so stylish. From treehouses to teepees, discover these 16 luxury glampsites and you'll never have to share your sleeping bag with a scorpion again!
What is glamping and how is it different from camping?
'Glamping' is increasingly popular, and for good reason, as it combines the fun of camping with the comfort of a hotel. Glamping sites are well-maintained semi-permanent or permanent structures, meaning fewer creepy crawlies and more creature comforts. So instead of a leaky tent you've had to put up yourself in a howling thunderstorm, stay in a pimped-up wooden wigwam or get back to nature in a ready-prepared yurt, complete with a full-size bed, rugs and even a dining table!
Where are the best glamping locations?
The whole point of glamping is that it's not quite so dependent on the weather as your traditional camping, but it can be an incredible way to enjoy the scenery. Read on for 16 of the most beautiful luxury campsites out there...
Nearest town: Harads, part of Swedish Lapland and only 50km from the Arctic Circle.
The Treehotel in Sweden is a camouflaged cube of mirrors deep within a forest in northern Sweden. The owners were inspired by the film The Tree Lover by Jonas Selberg and with the help of some of Sweden’s top architects, they were able to create ‘tree rooms’ that are aesthetically beautiful, but still respect the natural environment. There are cabins that look like birds’ nests, one that looks like a spaceship and even one inspired by the wings of a dragonfly. And if your timing's right (roughly September to March is usually the optimum period), you might just spy the magical Northern Lights above the pines. For more on how, when and where to see the Northern Lights, check out our article!
Nearest town: Sal Salis is pretty much out on its own (which is the whole idea) but if you want restaurants, nightlife and reef tours, the resort of Exmouth is just around the peninsula, a little over an hour's drive away.
If paradise exists, it probably looks like Sal Salis: a safari camp protected between the dunes of Australia’s Cape Range National Park, with spectacular views of Ningaloo Coral Reef. The camp is environmentally-friendly and uses renewable energy, and there is no internet or phone signal, making this the perfect escape from the stresses of everyday life. White sands, crystal clear waters, bright stars above your head...what more could you want? Get out on the road and make the most of that wilderness while you're in Australia, with these 10 amazing Antipodean road trips.
Nearest town: Christchurch and the picturesque south coast are only around 10 minutes' drive, heading away from the forest.
Chewton Glen is a luxury hotel with an arboreal twist, on the edge of Hampshire's historic New Forest. Sleep like royalty in souped-up glass and wood tree houses, lofts and cabins, with every one a calm oasis. If you need a dose of civilisation, meander through the trees to the main hotel, where you'll find a first-rate restaurant serving modern British cuisine throughout the day (a three-course lunch is £26.50*) as well as an oh-so-dainty afternoon tea.
Nearest town: Puerto Natales, the 'gateway' and supply town for the Torres del Paine.
This sustainable resort in the heart of Torres del Paine National Park is something of a luxury camping paradise. Trust us, if you spend a night in one of the ecological geodesic domes, looking out across the dramatic snow-tipped mountains, fjords and glaciers just next door, you won’t want to leave. In total there are 25 bedrooms, and several shared 'Community Domes' where you can eat or plan your hiking route. One not to miss on the glamping map. See more of stunning South America, with our top 10 guide to its best beauty spots.
Retreat from city life (and the lobster-red throngs of tourists at the coast) and head for this eco-resort in rural Lanzarote. Stay in yurts and eco cabins kitted out with Balinese furnishings, powered by wind and solar power and set amidst a mesmerising expanse of volcanic landscape. As an added bonus, Lanzarote Retreats is also very close to Arrieta Beach, one of the most unspoilt shorelines on the island.
Nearest town: The city of Chipata is around two hours away by road.
Situated at the mouth of the Great Valley Rift in Lauangwa National Park, Tena Tena's lodge has treetops for a roof. The cabins of this safari camp could not be any more idyllic and you’ll enjoy being here whether you go in search of big game (leopards, elephants and zebras to name a few) or not. If you ever dreamed of having a house straight out ofOut of Africa, then now’s your chance to see what it feels like to live surrounded by the wild - with all the security in the world and a wonderfully comfy bed of course!
Nearest town: Idyllic Saint-Maurice, near Lake Geneva, is 25 minutes away from the hotel.
As enjoyable in sunshine as in snow, these 15 igloos on a Swiss hillside are an slightly off-piste place to enjoy nature...and the commodities of a five-star hotel. If you have the energy to do anything more than recline on the huge comfy beds in front of an Alpine view, their outdoor activities programme will keep you busy all year-round - think glorious mountain walks, paragliding and pony rides in the summer, and skiing and dog-sleds in the winter.
Nearest town: The Roundhouse is located at Bodrifty, about a 15 minute trip from Penzance.
This round cabin in the Cornish woods was designed in the style of Iron Age homes. Its fireplaces, Egyptian cotton linens and canopy beds ease you into holiday mode, and after that, there's nothing to do except enjoy the tranquil sounds of birdsong outside your window. After a relaxing bath, swap fresh for saltwater with a dip in the (cold!) sea at one of west Cornwall's gorgeous beaches, from St Ives to Botallack. Discover more of one of Britain's most scenic destinations in our guide to the most beautiful parts of Cornwall.
Nearest town: Other than a smattering of small rural towns, Bilbao is about 50km away.
Zuhaitz-etxeak is the Basque name for The Cabins in the Trees in rural Vizcaya. They are the highest in Europe and are a good way of making your childhood dream of sleeping in the treetops a reality. In this sea of branches and leaves you can enjoy complete isolation, while looking across to the mountains and spotting wild deer on the ground below. You won't even be disturbed at breakfast - your morning feast will be winched up to you in a basket. But be warned, if you have vertigo, better not look down as you descend - it's 17 metres to the ground!
Nearest town: Tofino is about 20 minutes away by boat.
Famous for being Scarlett Johansson and Ryan Reynolds' honeymoon spot (what, you didn't know?!), this rustic resort on Vancouver Island is only accessible via a seaplane from Vancouver (or a boat ride from the town of Tofino). The tents are a refined combination of vintage and modern, without losing an ounce of charm, and (when you want them to be) they're completely open to the vast pine forests and peaks of the Canadian landscape.
Nearest town: The nearest hub is Arusha, nearly 200km away, where most people start their exploration of Northern Tanzania.
Entamanu Ngorongoro is one of Nomad Tanzania's most epic campsites. The reception and dining area are styled like Mongolian yurts, designed to represent the nomadic culture of surrounding villages, while the rooms are based on traditional Meru tents and are exuberantly decorated with bright fabrics and leathers. Step outside, and you'll find yourself on the edge of the Ngorongoro Crater, high enough and remote enough that you won't be sharing those sweeping views across to the southern Serengeti with anyone else.
Nearest town: Penzance, on the local 409 bus route.
Fancy a stay in Middle Earth? Deep in the Shire - sorry, Cornwall - you can stay somewhere that's more like a work of art that a house. Hobbit House is round, covered in grass and has large windows from which you can take in the surrounding landscape, which includes your own private patch of woodland. Spa treatments are on hand to make the stay even more peaceful.
Nearest town: Missoula is around 35 minutes drive away.
This resort is in the middle of an enormous 37000-acre estate and surrounded by the wildness of Montana, its luxury tents take the experience of glamping to a whole new level. On the banks of a stream, you'll find tents with comfy beds, bathrooms that are as good as any five-star hotel's and dreamy views of ranch life.
Nearest town: Parts of the Kimberley region are so remote than they're closer to Bali than to Perth, but the town of Kununurra is around an hour from the resort.
There's the great outdoors, and then there's the Outback. At El Questro Wilderness Park, you could bring your own tent and roll out a sleeping mat, or you can stay in the likes of the Emma Gorge Resort. Spend your days weaving around the nature trails beneath the rusty-coloured ridges of Western Australia's Kimberley region, before retiring to your highly civilised cabin, or washing the dust off in the outdoor pool.
This Mongolian-style luxury campsite is a perfect for a romantic getaway in the countryside. With its thick carpets, wooden stoves and many homey touches, Stuc a'Chroin feels like a home away from home. After resting like a king (or queen) get out and explore the beautiful Trossachs Natural Park and Loch Lomond.
Nearest town:Ayers Rock Airport is a short drive away and flights run here from nearby Alice Springs (50 minutes) and other major airports like Sydney (3 hours).
Staying at Longitude 131° is a sensory experience and a half. Nothing will ever be the same after waking up overlooking the sacred and reddish Monte Uluru, one of the most iconic views of the Australian outback. Pick from 15 luxury tents and experience the true meaning of glamping holidays: enjoying that view through floor-to-ceiling windows at the main lodge house, before retreating to the lofty canopy of your tent at nightfall. We can guarantee that you'll never have seen so many stars.
Solo travel, or rather, the Ego-Trip is on the rise: single travellers accounted for 24% of all travellers in 2015, compared to just 15% two years previously. Skyscanner has found that eight out of ten British travellers would travel alone*, and 70% of the people questioned claimed they are now more likely to travel solo than they were five years ago.
So, which destinations are the best for solo travellers?
We've got some top city break suggestions, whether you're looking to meet other like-minded adventurers or simply enjoy your own company in new surroundings, plus tips on how to stay safe when travelling solo.
This is tipped as one of the friendliest cities in the UK, so it’s no surprise that it’s rated the number one city for solo travellers. One of the best ways to meet people when solo travelling is on walking tours, which are very common in Glasgow – there’s plenty to get around with the Kelvingrove Gallery, the School of Art and the People’s Palace all within walking distance. Both the locals and the students from the University make it a pretty easy place to make friends too: here are some local haunts in Glasgow for you to try.
Tokyo is often voted one of the safest places to go as a solo traveller, even more so for solo female travellers. If you’re wondering how safe, Tokyo was rated the safest city in the unsurprisingly titled 'safest cities index'. There’s plenty to do here either night or day, from singing in karaoke bars in Roppongi, to shopping in Harajuku and sitting under the blossoms in Ueno Park - we've got more ideas on what to see and do in Tokyo this way. One of the best (and most indulgent) things to do when travelling solo is taking train journeys: try the Yurikamome line to experience one of Tokyo’s high speed bullet trains, just don't plan on getting through War and Peace though!
One of the most obvious pulls for America as a solo traveller is that English is the main language, which makes it easier to meet people and travel around the city. It’s also handy for those who are dating, as 70% of the population are single! The Sculpture Garden is one of the best places to visit, whether you're going solo or if you’re looking for somewhere to unwind. Of course, there are the traditional attractions in Washington too – the Monument and a visit to Abraham Lincoln being at the top of our list - see the full Washington city guide here.
12% of solo travellers are willing to try an adventure sport, and Queenstown is famous for the wide selection of adrenaline junkie sports on offer. If you’re looking for a way to bond with strangers, or test your nerves, throwing yourself off a suspension bridge is a pretty good place to start. Bungee-jumping, river canyon riding or sky diving, however you get you thrills, you're bound to have a few laughs and meet some like-minded people along the way.
Nashville has now been voted as the friendliest city in the USA by Americans, making it the ideal solo city break destination if you're looking to make some friends across the pond. The dive bars and country music gigs on Music Circle and 2nd Avenue are perfect for bar crawls – even if you’re a solo traveller, Tennesseans will warmly welcome you in, whiskey in hand! If you're not looking for nightlife, the Hermitage and General Jackson Showboat make for fun activities during the day, and don't require a large party to enjoy them.
Like Nashville, Manchester has a lively underground music scene, and it's broody roots (Oasis, Blur) laid the foundations for the current state of the Northern Quarter - a hipster hood with more hole-in-the-wall bars and cafés than you can fit into the weekend. Takk, an icelandic-inspired café is the perfect place to meet other travellers and locals, sipping brews along the central communal coffee table. Alternatively, take a few hours of alone time at the Whitworth. This art gallery is smack-bang in the middle of Oxford Road (student-territory), which makes it an ideal destination for independent, artsy types looking to enjoy an art exhibition or a grungy gig in Satan's Hollow.
Like Tokyo, Hanoi is constantly rated as one of the safest countries to travel solo in. It’s also very easy to meet like-minded travellers in Vietnam's former capital. The locals are friendly, it's a popular destination for backpackers, and you’re bound to get chatting with another traveller if you’re on one of the local walking tours of the Old Town. If don’t spark up a conversation wandering through the narrow lanes of Hanoi, dodging scooters and market stalls, then pull up a plastic stool beside someone at a food stall and bond over how delicious (and cheap) the steaming bowls of pho are. And if you've got time to see the rest of Vietnam, you might to add a few of these places of you're must-see list.
Stockholm contains 25% of the country’s population but it's still the safest city to visit in Europe, making it a top choice for a solo city break! Whilst the first language is Swedish, English is widely spoken and the public transport makes it a dream to travel through too. But if you're happy spending time in your own company then escape to the surrounding fjords and National Parks, pull on your boots and get lost (hopefully not literally) in natural wonder. For more ideas on how to spend time solo in Stockholm, check out our city guide.
What better way to make friends in a city where English is not the main language than during a long pub crawl - and Prague, with a huge choice of fantastic bars, is the perfect place to test this out. ‘Beer’, luckily, is one of the most universal words regardless of the tongue speaking, and it’s one you’ll hear a lot in Prague. Stat in a high end hostel - like Sophie's on Melounova 2 - to meet your drinking buddies. It’s also an extremely walkable city, which always makes solo travel a little easier. Feel confident getting lost in the streets, knowing eventually you’ll manage to wind up back in the centre - you can always use Prague's fairytale castle, which you can see from pretty much all parts of the city, as a good point of reference. Here are more weird and wonderful things you should try in Prague, whether you’re travelling solo or with a partner in crime.
The timing of this new twice-weekly flight is perfect, because there are plenty of reasons to visit Las Vegas this autumn, including the recently revamped Aria Las Vegas, where you’ll now find personal iPads in every room. Also worth checking out is The Park, which can be found between the New York New York and Monte Carlo resorts. It’s a tree-filled landscaped area perfect for a few moments’ respite from the bright lights of The Strip. And the best bit? Sin City accommodation is no longer just about huge casino resorts - there are now a number of budget boutique hotels for visitors looking for cheap accommodation in Las Vegas. Our favourite? Oasis at Gold Spike, which is a vintage-themed boutique hotel in the up-and-coming downtown area. Finally, don't forget that it's just a short drive to one of the most spectacular wonders of the world, the Grand Canyon.
This new route will operate twice a week. Gran Canaria is less crowded than Tenerife, but the landscape is just as spectacular. You’ll be able to clamber up the towering, barren sand dunes in Maspalomas in the south, which is also where you'll find a beautiful botanical garden. If you like your beaches rugged, head to the northern coast. The eastern side of the island attracts water sports fans – there are some great windsurfing and kitesurfing opportunities here. The biggest resorts are in the south, although the largest town, Las Palmas, is on the island’s north-western tip. Make sure you check out Columbus House, which was once the governor’s residence. The famous explorer is also believed to have stayed here.
There are several reasons why Texas will be in the spotlight next year. 2017 is the fiftieth anniversary of the movie Bonnie and Clyde, which was filmed predominantly in the Lone Star state. Houston is the US’s fourth most populous city, with a buzzing Museum Quarter and easy access to NASA’s Space Centre. And while travellers might well find they get less dollars for their pounds post-Brexit, a visit to Houston is unlikely to stretch the purse strings. The Downtown neighbourhood has some fantastic, wallet-friendly restaurants, including the Hubcap Grill for fresh, juicy burgers and Vietnamese delicacies at Huynh. Accommodation needn’t cost the earth either. Retail therapy addicts will love the luxuriousHotel Indigo Houston at The Galleria where rooms start from just £120 per night.
Bremen is Germany’s rising star, and it’s not hard to see why. It’s a beautiful city which hugs both banks of the River Wesser. Highlights include the Dom St Petri cathedral and the UNESCO World Heritage listed Rathaus, or Town Hall, and there are also plenty of brewery tours to sign up for, including tours of the famous Becks’ brewery. Bremen is also surrounded by nature. The birdlife-filled peat bogs which encircle it attract twitchers from all over the world and the coastal roads which wind from the city along the East Frisian coast are popular with cyclists. Despite its size, Bremen has some fantastic bars and clubs. Find out which other cities have a fantastic nightlife with the help of our guide to the best places to party in Europe.
Famous for its bustling souks and spectacular Museum of Islamic Art, Doha is a both historic and modern. A shiny new Metro system (being built for the 2022 FIFA World Cup ) is under construction, too. Make sure you visit the mind-blowing Pearl-Qatar, an artificial island covering almost four million square metres. It’s where you’ll find some of Doha’s finest restaurants and boutiques, most of which are built around a Venice-like network of canals. Keen to explore more of the Middle East? Dubai certainly has it all, and you'll be able make the most of a visit with our guide to the ten best things to do in Dubai.
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Wondering where to go on holiday in October, or where's hot in December? We've got ideas for a full 12 months of holiday ideas right here, from atmospheric city breaks in March to the best beaches to escape to this December!