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The World's Coolest Camping Experiences

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Written by
George Warren, Byron Thomas, Jennifer Richt, Katie Holmes, Keith Jarman & Alex Carey

Camping is a great way to immerse yourself in the surroundings of wherever it is you're visiting.

From sleeping suspended on a cliff-edge to high-style glamping in the Serengeti, camping is always adventurous.

Here's our pick of 11 of the world's coolest camping experiences.

Skylodge Adventure Suites
Peru
Mobile Tented Safari
Botswana
Night on the Ice
Antarctica
Skylodge Adventure Suites, Sacred Valley, Peru

Skylodge Adventure Suites, Peru

Not for the faint of heart, these transparent pods dangle 400 metres above the ground from a mountain cliff in the Sacred Valley, affording sensational panoramic views of this beautiful region of Peru.

Skylodge Adventure Suites, Peru

To reach the camp, you will have to either clamber up the 400 metres of Via Ferrata or hike and zip-line your way to the base, led by a professional guide. Once there, you’ll be rewarded by a gourmet dinner, wine – and those views.

Skylodge Adventure Suites, Peru

There are three sturdy pods with four beds in each ‘suite’, dining areas and private bathrooms. There’s solar-powered lighting to illuminate the pods when night falls, and even curtains, should vertigo get the better of you.

Skylodge Adventure Suites, Peru
Okavango Delta Mobile Camp, Botswana, Africa

Okavango Delta Mobile Camp, Botswana

Explore the Okavango Delta with the true flexibility that a mobile camp offers. Although there’s no electricity, you’ll be far from ‘roughing it’; the tents are decked out in 1920s-style furnishings, with feather bedding, cotton sheets, iron bed frames, copper water jugs and paraffin lamps.

Okavanga Delta Mobile Camp, Botswana, Africa

While this mobile camp is not the most luxurious tented camp in Africa, it does promise one of the most fascinating, exciting safaris you’re likely to experience. For the ultimate mobile safari, book one of the best guides in Africa: Ralph Bousfield.

Drinks cabinet, Okavanga Delta Mobile Camp, Botswana, Africa
Iceberg dramatic skyline

Antarctica

Surely a contender for any bucket list, camping in Antarctica is one of the most adventurous ways to experience the White Continent. A lot of our cruises include a night on the ice as part of their itinerary, and we can also arrange for a private jet trip to spend a few nights down there.

Penguins on the snow

For the ultimate adventure, the six pods of Whichaway Camp offer excellent levels of comfort in spite of the hostile environment. The domed white capsules are insulated and heated, with double or twin beds and an en-suite toilet. Rather than having to base oneself at sea, the camping option allows explorers to see more of this stark landscape, with ice caves, penguin colonies, hiking, abseiling and climbing all available from the camp.

Whichaway Camp White Desert Antarctica
Outdoor bath, Four Seasons Tented Camp, Golden Triangle, Thailand

Four Seasons Tented Camp, Thailand

Thailand’s north is one of the most beautiful regions of the country, with lush jungles and forest-clad hills. The Four Seasons Tented Camp features 15 spacious tents, each lavishly furnished with king beds, private decks, heating, outdoor showers and big, two-person copper tubs.

four-seasons-tented-camp-tent

Set in a thick bamboo forest and on a riverbank just outside Chiang Rai, you can also choose to arrive by traditional long-tail boat if travelling by car doesn’t seem quite exotic enough. Decompress with a luxurious 90-minute massage – the spa here is superb.

Four Seasons Tented Camp, Golden Triangle, Thailand
Exterior view, Bamurru Plains Camp, North West Australia

Bamurru Plains, Australia

This luxury bush camp can be found within vast swathes of land to the west of Kakudu National Park, providing its guests with unparalleled access to pristine coastal floodplains, savannah woodland and paperbark swamps.

The pool at Bamurru Plains, North West Australia

Combine ultimate luxury with a rare opportunity to reconnect with nature in the camp’s ten safari-style bungalows whose decor reflects the region’s indigenous, hunting and pastoral history.

bamurru-plains-bungalow-bed-australia
Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania

Leaving luxury to one side, Kilimanjaro is all about the experience. Climbing this world-famous Tanzanian mountain is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that leaves climbers – almost literally – breathless.

Tent, Mount Kilimanjaro

Kili is the highest peak in Africa and the tallest free-standing mountain in the world. Climbers will experience an array of landscapes before they reach the snow-capped summit – known as the ‘roof of Africa’ – from verdant forests to parched savannah.

kenya_amboseli_elephant_kilimanjaro

At the end of an exhausting day on the mountain, you’ll look forward to taking the weight off your feet at the Maasai-style dining table and then crawling into your warm sleeping bag in your own tent – even in the absence of a two-person Jacuzzi on its outdoor deck.

Maasai style diing table, Kilimanjaro
Dook, Selinda Explorers Camp, Botswana

Selinda Explorers Camp, Botswana

This private camp on the banks of the Selinda Spillway allows you to get out of the traditional safari vehicle and into the heart of the environment with guided walks and canoeing, offering you a magically different type of safari experience.

Tent interior, Selinda Explorers Camp, Botswana

Authenticity meets bohemian panache in the unobtrusive canvas shaded camp, drawing on the traditions of classic East African safari style with furniture made from recycled hard woods, and soft furnishings from Zanzibar and the East.

Hammock, Selinda Explorers Camp, Botswana

Luxury does not go unattended to here, each tent possessing its own private verandah from which to watch the prolific wildlife wander by, and en-suite, open air ‘bustani bathrooms’ with explorer themed hot water bucket showers and flush porcelain toilets.

Tent exterior, Selinda Explorers Camp, Botswana
Thorsmork Canyon, Southern Iceland

Thorsmork Canyon Camping, Iceland

From May to September, this private camping trip takes place in the stunning area of Thorsmörk, in a protected valley surrounded by three glaciers and close to the volcanoes Eyjafjallajökull (we all know that one) and Fimmvörðuháls.

Thorsmork Canyon Camping, Southern Iceland

Spend a night camping in expedition tents in a remote canyon, armed with warm sleeping bags, foam isolation mattresses and thermarest air mattresses to keep out the chilly night air.

Thorsmork Canyon Camping, Southern Iceland

During this expedition, you’ll hike around the trails, canyons and creeks of the area; embark on superjeep tours; enjoy evening barbecues around the campfire; and, for the adventurous, trek up the Fimmvörðuháls volcano.

Thorsmork Canyon Camping, Southern Iceland
Exterior view, Galapagos Safari Camp, Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Galapagos Safari Camp

A cruise is the most common choice for people visiting the Galápagos Islands, but being land-based often allows for a more in-depth and relaxed exploration of this unique land.

Family, Galapagos Safari Camp, Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

The Galápagos Safari Camp is based on Santa Cruz island and has nine luxury, safari-style tents, with double beds, en-suite bathrooms and private terraces. There’s a main lodge with an infinity pool, restaurant and lounge, all decorated with the eclectic antiques and furnishings collected by the owners during their travels.

Galapagos Safari Camp, Galapagos Islands, Ecuador

Being based on an island doesn’t mean you’ll miss out on all the activities of a cruise. There are various trips available from the camp, including scuba diving with gliding rays and colourful fish shoals; island tours to visit lazy sea lion colonies; and even specialised surf and yoga trips.

Galapagos Safari Camp, Galapagos Islands, Ecuador
Campfire, Luangwa Bush Camping, South Luangwa National Park, Zambia

Luangwa Bush Camping, Zambia

One of Africa’s most exclusive wilderness experiences, this tented camp gives you all the adventure of going back the basics without depriving you of your creature comforts.

Tent exterior, Luangwa Bush Camping, South Luangwa National Park, Zambia

Venture out from a fixed camp on a walk deep into the bush, camping out in the wild for a couple of nights as you journey towards your next seclulded lodge, accompanied by a top-class guide.

Game drive, Luangwa Bush Camping, South Luangwa National Park, Zambia
Tent interior, Amanwana, Moyo Island, Indonesia

Amanwana, Moyo Island, Indonesia

If you like the idea of camping, but aren’t so keen on the reality, then Amanwana might be just the ticket. From the island, which is also a protected nature reserve, guests can take a morning kayak around the bay; soak up the romance of the setting on a sunset cruise; discover waterfalls hidden in the jungle; or embrace the ‘glamping’ theme with a campfire dinner.

Tent exterior, Amanwana, Moyo Island, Indonesia

Located on its own Indonesian island, Moyo, Amanwana is just a 90-minute flight from Bali. There are 20 tents that make up the camp, but the term ‘tent’ is to be used loosely; with hardwood floors, large windows and even air-conditioning, the only thing that really makes these structures seem like tents is the canvas roof.

Bedroom interior, Amanwana, Moyo Island, Indonesia
Tent interior, Patagonia Camp, Torres del Paine, Chile

Patagonia Camp, Torres del Paine, Chile

Luxury camps in South America are hard to come by, but Patagonia Camp is undoubtedly amongst the best. Overlooking a Patagonian lake, surrounded by emerald-green forests and jagged, snow-capped peaks, each of the yurts is – thankfully – heated, but with plenty of opportunities to imbibe the scenery, from the private terrace to the star-gazing skylight.

Balcony view, Patagonia Camp, Torres del Paine, Chile

The 18 luxury yurts are located just outside the sublime Torres del Paine National Park, making for easy access from the camp. You can take treks of varying difficulty, go horse riding, kayak around the lakes, or take a boat trip up the Serrano River to visit some of the region’s gigantic glaciers.

Trekking through the mountains, Patagonia Camp, Torres del Paine, Chile
Camp fire dining, Bukima Camp, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Africa

Bukima Camp, DRC, Africa

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) used to be a very difficult place to travel to, but things are changing and the country is slowly opening up to visitors. Virunga National Park – Africa’s oldest national park and the subject of a major new award-winning documentary – is one of central Africa’s new top destinations.

Ape, Bukima Camp, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Africa

The main draws are the mountain gorillas; indeed, they were the main reason the park was founded back in 1925. From Bukima Tented Camp, which is just outside the park and was originally used by researchers, you can head off on gorilla treks – unless they happen to come to you, which sometimes happens much to the park staff’s disapproval.

Tent interior, Bukima Camp, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Africa

The tents are set on platforms with thatched roofs and adjacent bathrooms. From the camp, the view is spectacular, with Mt. Mikeno towering in one direction and the active volcano Nyiragongo illuminating the night’s sky with its ominous red glow in another.

Dining table, Bukima Camp, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Africa
tents at night sal salis north west australia

Sal Salis, Australia

The vibrant Ningaloo Reef is one of Australia’s best kept secrets, and there’s no better way to discover it than from Sal Salis‘ 16 wilderness tents nestled in the dunes of the Cape Ranga National Park.

Woman walking into tent, Sal Salis, North West Australia

This glamorous eco-luxe camp has been constructed to cause minimal impact on the environment, and provides no internet connection or WIFI, offering you a rare chance to escape from the non-stop noise of everyday life.

sal-salis-wilderness-tent-australia

Each of the spacious tents enjoys an en-suite and private viewing deck. The minimalist style here allows you to let go and embrace your natural surroundings in a way most people rarely ever get the chance to do.

Aerial view of Sal Salis, North West Australia
Meno a Kwena Pool View Sunset, Makgadigadi Pans, Botswana

Meno a Kwena, Makgadikgadi Pans, Botswana

Get a complete desert experience like no other at this family-run camp with its nine classical and comfortable canvas tents, en suite bathrooms and verandahs overlooking the river.

Meno a Kwena - Bushman Saltpan Panoramic, Makgadikgadi Pans, Botswana

When you’re not watching the incredible wildlife from your veranda (or even from the camp’s swimming pool), head out on cultural walks with the Bushmen and sleep out on the pans under the stars for a night you’ll never forget.

Tent interior, Meno a Kwena, Makgadikgadi Pans, Botswana
Al fresco dining, The Serai, Jaisalmer, Rural Rajasthan, India

The Serai, Rajasthan

Travel back in time and experience the grand royal caravans of the Rajput era at The Serai, an oasis of calm set amongst the dunes of a vast private desert estate just an hour from the “golden city” and UNESCO World Heritage Site of Jaisalmer.

Al fresco dining, The Serai, Jaisalmer, Rural Rajasthan, India

21 spacious canvas tents with stylish interiors and a terrace lounge, 6 of which have their own private walled garden and plunge pool, ensure the ultimate luxury. For the full experience, choose the Royal Tented Suite which has its own spa, outdoor pool and separate tents to dine and lounge in.

The royal tent private encampment, The Serai, Jaisalmer, Rural Rajasthan, India