Source: Sandy Pines Campground

Today, the need to relax in nature is more and more felt. The frantic pace of the city is surely for many. If camping is one of the best ways to reconnect with Mother Nature, it is not easy. It takes a minimum of preparation and equipment. If only we could fix the scenery offered by the campsite to the comfort of a cottage...

The success of "glamping" or "ready-to-camp" is based on these two principles.

Comfort in originality

The glamping - contraction of "glamor" and "camping" - is a type of tourist accommodation that offers unusual accommodation: cabin of all kinds, Airstream caravan, tree house (arboreal cabin), trailer, tipi, yurt, etc. The success of the concept is based on the originality of the accommodation and the level of comfort. Depending on the type of accommodation, comfortable bedding, a wood stove, storage space, a table, technological equipment and sometimes even a catering service can be made available. Packed lunches can be delivered directly to the accommodation. Comfort is a concept that also applies to small spaces!

Glamping has been particularly popular in Europe for quite some time now, but it is also popular abroad. It exists in England, Spain, Morocco, Canada, Ireland and the United States. Just like every country, accommodations can become an excellent way to discover a cultural tradition or a "way of life". For example, in the United States, the glamping western trolley allows you to sleep in a cozy bed and enjoy the wilderness of the Wild West. In Morocco, it is possible to stay comfortably in a Saharan tent, take tea and enjoy a traditional meal on a beautiful Moroccan carpet. In Canada, the glamping tipi pays tribute to the nomadic way of life of First Nations. Other popular types of "glamping" accommodations in Canada include tree houses, yurts, huttopia tents and container lodges.

The tree house (arboreal cabin)

Source: Futuristic Dome, eight metres above ground level, Saguenay Fjord • Photo: Cap Jaseux

A child's dream come true! If Peter Pan has romanized the idea of ​​living in the hollow of trees in his imaginary country, the idea has indeed materialized in our realities. The concept was not born yesterday. Some tribes, including the Papuans (the indigenous peoples of New Guinea), were building - and still building - to put people and food supplies out of reach of animals and protect themselves from other tribes. Today, the arboreal tourist cottage allows rather to flee the daily! Without being supported by trees, but rather around and in height, the feeling of sleeping at the top of these is unparalleled. Some are so well equipped that they become real small hilltop cottages. Queen bed, BBQ, air conditioning, fireplace and terrace elevate comfort to the pleasure of holidaymakers. Dry toilets and shared showers are nearby. You have to know how to choose your battles. Having the best view of a sunset or a starry sky prevails.

The yurt

Source: Bic National Park • Photo: Mathieu Dupuis

The yurt, a tent with a removable wood frame covered with felt, is the traditional habitat of many nomads living in Central Asia, including the Mongolians and Turkmen. The family home includes a single room lit by a skylight at the top, which offers a magnificent view of the stars. The tourist yurt remains fairly in keeping with tradition. There are more than one bed that serve as seats during the day, a table, cupboards, a wood stove, the necessary to make food. The toilets are located outside. Its round shape invites relaxation. Well insulated, the yurt can "glam" all year!

The Huttopia tent

Source: Private Huttopia Tent • Photo: Jeremy Bishop

Installed on wooden platforms, these ready-to-camp tents of French origin, generally include two separate bedrooms. Like a small cottage in summer, the tent is furnished with a bed base, a table, a few chairs and a small refrigerator. Some tents have electric or gas heating. Given the popularity of glamping in Quebec, the Quebec Outdoor Establishments Society (SEPAQ) has also increased its offer by building 70 additional Huttopia tents. It seems that fans of these accommodations must book 4 months in advance to stay! The craze is certainly there.

The tipi

Source: Wild River Tipi • Photo: Quebec Original

Like the Huttopia tent, the tipi is mounted on a wooden floor. Formerly used by the plains first nations, the tipi is a very ingenious shelter. It offers a spacious and clean shelter that protects from the cold by a suitable insulation and heat thanks to a natural ventilation system. It is therefore possible to "glam" in the winter! Some have 3 beds (one double bed and two single beds), a wood stove, an outdoor picnic table, an outdoor fire pit and even electrical outlets. The wood stove is a must in this type of traditional accommodation. Around the fire, the tepee regains its spiritual atmosphere!

Container cottage

Source: Shipship at Repère Boréal, Charlevoix • Photo: Repère Boréal

Although the largest recycled sea containers can serve as homes, the smaller ones (20 X 8 feet) are perfect targets for glamping. This type of housing adapted to ready-to-camp is particularly new in Canada, but yet the craze is there! Once fitted with large windows, the boxes allow you to live in synergy with nature. In Quebec, the Repère Boréal is a good example of a successful offer. In their SHIPSHIP, there is a space for cooking including all kitchen items, a round ceramic hob and a fridge, electric heating, a composting toilet, a table for 4 people and a comfortable bed worthy of major hotels. All in an enchanting woodland in the heart of the boreal forest. All the necessary is there for exile in comfort.

Finally, glamping perfectly matches the comfort and rusticity of accommodation, some of the oldest in the world. The experience certainly helps to break the routine and better connect to nature. In this regard, more and more companies working in type of accommodation are part of an ecotourism approach to offer an eco-responsible glamping experience. One more point for glamping!

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