Best glamping sites in the UK, from luxury spots to eco pods
Credited with bringing nights under starry skies to people who swore they would never camp, glamping has become a popular holiday choice in the UK. There are many ways to do it. You could snuggle up under blankets in an old-fashioned bell tent or stay in an architect-designed cabin or treehouse that comes with a sauna and hot tub with views. All across the UK, there are glamping sites to suit every type of traveller, from families looking for access to the countryside in comfort, to walkers needing a warm bed and couples seeking intimacy in natural surroundings.
Here we recommend 10 of the best glamping sites in the UK for different types of breaks, in the countryside and by the seaside.
This lakeside glamping site has a grown-up, artsy and – when DJs play – happily hedonistic atmosphere. That’s not to say children aren’t welcome, it’s just that the bar, restaurant and disco balls are the focus. Gather some pals and book a string of bell tents along the lake edge. Chat beside the individual fire pits then pad down a wood chip path to the Wild Spa area, which should see a sauna joining the plunge pool and hot tubs this summer. Food in the restaurant for 2023 is expected to be Japanese, with a local twist, while an award-winning cocktail bar takes over libations in the horsebox. Fancy a splurge? Stay in Futuro – a model UFO from the 1960s.
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Leave the world behind and lose yourself in a secluded wilderness on the shore of Loch Nell. Not far from Oban but reached by a remarkable drive, three design-led bothies have rustic-chic interiors and are set beside ancient oaks. With decking outside, kayaks and paddleboards, the idea is to slow down and take pleasure in simple things. A couple of hours in the lochside sauna, amid wildflowers, helps. Cook for yourself on a stove or pizza oven and heat your own outdoor shower, which comes with an impressive view. Those in need of spoiling can arrange for a private dining experience with a chef in a secret location.
From £440 for two adults to experience a two-night stay
A short hop from London, this retreat suits those who want to breathe in some country air for a few days while dabbling in a workshop or enjoying the At Home Farm music and feasting festival happening during the summer. The bohemian bell tents and yurts sleep up to four or five and are set among woodland and historic parkland that includes a lake. Sign up for a watercolour, flower-arranging or writing class, or a massage, facial or yoga inside a yurt. Gourmet breakfast and barbecue food boxes can be ordered if all that leaves you peckish.
From £100 a night
The striking tree houses at this well-established wooded glamping site on the Dorset/Devon border incorporate gnarled tree trunks into their design and have won architectural awards from RIBA. Making an otherworldly impression but crafted from natural materials, these indulgent suites feature private hot tubs on wraparound decking beneath the canopy. The Woodsman’s Treehouse has an open-air shower and a sauna, plus a copper bath that looks onto the branches. Other luxuries include bathrobes, toiletries, log burners, kitchens and Nespresso machines. This is a child-free wood and guests are encouraged to turn phones off.
From £990 for two nights
Set above a lake and with festoon lights strung above private, outdoor bathtubs, these four immaculately dressed shepherds’ huts are perfect for an intimate break for two. The interiors are made cosy with log burners and feature pretty, busy patterns on fabric headboards and cushions, which are designed by the owner. Couples can try yoga and reflexology by the lake or they can swim. Hampers come with champagne or guests can cook their own fireside supper, featuring lobster tails, steaks and burrata. The two newer huts have fancy tiles wrapped around their open-air bathtubs and two crittall doors that let the outdoors in.
From £185 a night
The private plots in woodland clearings above a flooded quarry are a real treat at this much-loved, low-impact campsite. The tipis have wooden poles, stoves, firepits and cool boxes and are carpeted with Turkish rugs, sleeping up to six in two sizes. Cars are kept in a separate meadow and the peaceful spot is busy with wildlife, contributing to the feeling of being in a magical, faraway place. The spring-fed lake is a picturesque spot where you can swim or take a rowing boat out. If you can bear to leave, Port Isaac is just minutes away.
Tipis from £160 a night