There’s nothing like a night out under the stars, getting back to nature away from home. But while camping might seem like a great idea, the reality can mean lugging gear to and from the car, pitching tents in the dark, and a lack of quality bathroom facilities.
As a result a growing number of travellers are opting to add a little glamour to the experience. Here are few of the more relaxing ways to spend time in the wilderness, without getting too wild.
The accommodation at Sierra Escape feels more like a small house than a tent and was designed to withstand Mudgee’s brisk winters and hot summers. Glass sliding doors, large screened windows and an outdoor deck invite guests to make the most of magnificent countryside views.
The roomy 18-square-metre bedroom has a king size bed. A separate bathroom has a freestanding bath, shower and flushing toilet. The tent also has a camp stove, camp fridge, power for charging devices and an ethanol fireplace.
The retreat is 20 minutes from town on a 110-hectare property full of wildlife, ridges, hills, creeks, trees and spectacular views.
Prices start at $250 per night including breakfast supplies.
The trickiest thing about booking with Simple Pleasures is choosing a location. All seven campsites are hand-selected, tried and tested, and within easy driving distance from Sydney. There’s a pet-friendly spot by Wallis Lake, a few sites behind Seven Mile Beach, and a more secluded space at Wallingat River.
Packages are all-inclusive and are designed for those unfamiliar with camping or for campers who know their stuff but want to change things up.
Guests can relax in a five-metre bell tent with a queen bed and duck-feather pillows, Persian rugs and citronella oil burners. There’s everything you need to cook up a storm, too (and a jaffle iron in case cooking is not your bag). Just remember to bring your own food.
Tents start at $220 per night with a two-night minimum.
While sleeping within four walls and a roof may not technically be considered glamping, Unyoked’s tiny, off-the-grid cabins have been strategically placed in four secret locations on private properties around NSW allowing guests to feel as isolated from the outside world as they might at a remote campsite.
Each cabin is named after someone the founders – brothers Chris and Cameron Grant – have met on their travels around the world. They were built using sustainable materials and are all solar-powered and fitted with a comfy bed, stovetop, fridge and warm shower. There’s also plenty of natural light from oversized windows.
While there’s no wi-fi, each location offers plenty of opportunity to explore, and all cabin locations were chosen for their proximity to wildlife.
Cabins start at $199 per night with a two-night minimum on weekends. It’s worth booking early because there may be a waitlist.
There’s something undeniably romantic about sleeping under the stars, but less so when you consider the inevitable exposure to the elements.
Located roughly halfway between Mudgee and Lithgow, 200 kilometres north-west of Sydney, the Bubble Tent overlooks Capertee Valley, the second-largest canyon in the world. Guests can enjoy uninterrupted views of the spectacular surrounding area thanks to the tent’s transparency.
Inside is a comfortable bed, an eco-friendly bathroom with a compost toilet, running water, a shower, toiletries, a telescope for stargazing and an iPad with an app that offers a virtual tour of the solar system.
The exact location of the site is kept secret until you’ve booked, so the experience is private. Travellers will need to stock up on supplies before arriving – check out Artisan on Lewis in nearby Mudgee.
Rates per night range from $250 to $310.
Gypset Glamping is a roving village of fully furnished pop-up tents. After packing down its most recent set-up at Lake Lyell Recreation Park in the Blue Mountains, Gypset’s organisers are preparing to pitch tents at the Elvis Festival in Parkes in January 2018.
Each four-metre-high canvas bell tent comes fully furnished with a double bed, luxurious bedding (including silk cushions), lighting and solar phone-charging ports. In addition, Elvis Festival attendees booking with Gypset will be treated to an exclusive, fenced-off camping area; private toilets and showers; rugs; communal lounge access; and staff on-site 24/7.
Prices start at $160 per night in addition to the cost of a festival pass. Check the Gypset website for upcoming village locations.