Glamping gets the family outdoors without the fuss


Come August, everyone is ready for an end-of-summer getaway.

A glamping trip is the perfect way to pack in some socially-distanced family fun to close out the season and to soak up the last of the sun outdoors while still enjoying first-class comforts.

“A growing number of leisure travelers are seeking unique outdoor experiences with the services and amenities that are similar to upscale hotels or resorts,” said Whitney Scott, chief operating officer of Terramor Outdoor Resort, a glamping destination in Bar Harbor, Maine.

Natural luxury

Glampers are guaranteed to connect with nature on their stays, and the choice of views are endless – mountain ranges, forest floors and sandy beaches are all within reach. Tents can be found clustered in small groups or out in their own private wilderness.

“Terramor is a thoughtful retreat committed to authentic, immersive experiences in nature,” Ms. Scott said of the resort’s 60 acres outside of Acadia National Park.

“Our tents are spaced apart from each other and offer their own private fire pits and outdoor seating so that guests can connect with one another and immerse themselves in New England’s beautiful landscape,” she said.

In western Montana, the Resort at Paws Up showcases scenery on the other side of the U.S. with its 37,000 private acres in Big Sky country.

“Paws Up’s six glamping camps overlook the legendary Blackfoot River, which allows guests to completely connect with the great outdoors,” said Steve Hurst, managing director of the resort. “Our guests are guaranteed pristine natural beauty outside their tent flaps.”

Inside those tent flaps, guests will not find the usual cramped quarters with sleeping bags and lanterns. Instead, creature comforts abound.

The finer things inside a tent at the Resort at Paws Up. Image credit: The Resort at Paws Up
Luxury accommodations at Terramor Outdoor Resort. Image credit: Taylor Watts for Terramor

At Paws Up, the safari-style tents feature “chic rustic furnishings, art-adorned walls, electricity, air conditioning, heat and, most importantly, a camping butler at your beck and call,” Mr. Hurst said.

“Glamping guests get their own private master bathroom with a Montana-sized rain shower, jetted tub, heated floors and organic spa products,” he said. “All the modern resort comforts, from spa treatments to fine dining are just steps away.”

At Terramor, “the rustic-luxe tents feature king sized beds with premium linens, private fire pits and outdoor seating. Most tents include upscale en-suite bathrooms and a few offer private outdoor showers so guests can enjoy a steamy shower in the open air under white birch trees,” Ms. Scott said.

The canvas tents at Terramor are oriented around a lodge with a restaurant, bar and outdoor heated pool and hot tub.

Adventures await

A nature-filled escape is the point of any glamping trip, and resorts have no shortage of opportunities to commune with the outdoors.

At Terramor, guests can borrow gear such as walking sticks and binoculars to explore the national park and Celestron telescopes for evening stargazing.

“Our guests also have the opportunity to connect with local purveyors and experts,” Ms. Scott said. “Hosted onsite, these unique events provide families the opportunity to create memories that will last a lifetime.

“For example, families can explore the expansive history of Maine’s timber industry with local celebrity Timber Tina and try their hands at a cross-cut saw to see if they’d make a good logger,” she said.

At Paws Up, 100 miles of trails are available for hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding.

“Families enjoy the wide-open spaces, plenty of Montana big sky, beautiful sunsets and over 50 activities to choose from,” Mr. Hurst said. “Cattle drives, ATV Tours, fly fishing, our Sky Line Aerial Adventure Park and sporting clays are just a few!” 

Activities at Paws Up in Montana include horseback riding. Image credit: The Resort at Paws Up

Back at camp, activities abound for the whole family to enjoy.

“Paws Up offers various unique outdoor dining opportunities such as the authentic Chuckwagon Dinner,” Mr. Hurst said. “Guests will have access to a freshly grilled menu overlooking the Blackfoot River while enjoying pitching horseshoes, live music and Paws Up’s own cowboy poet.

“Another guest favorite is our Big Sky Bash on the expansive lawn of the Saddle Club,” he said. “Guests are served Paws Up’s signature ranch-to-table gourmet in a festive setting with lawn games, canoeing and fly-fishing on the Saddle Club Pond.”

Offerings at Terramor include stargazing, yoga, lawn games, and paint-and-sips and “build-your-own-6-packs” for the adults featuring local breweries.

“The pool and hot tub are a perfect place to relax and breathe in nature, and have been quite popular among families this season,” Ms. Scott said. “Our private fire-rings have also been a popular spot for families to gather around as they sit back, relax and enjoy some s’mores after a long day of exploring.”

Nighttime relaxing at Terramor in Maine includes stargazing. Image credit: Taylor Watts for Terramor

Whichever wilderness location a family chooses for their glamping adventure, resorts are prepared to make the experience both easy and unforgettable.

“Glamping is a great way for individuals, groups and families alike to experience the beauty of the outdoors in an upscale, comfortable way,” Ms. Scott said. “People are able to enjoy nature, fresh air, starry skies, and the adventure of a camping trip without the hassle.” 

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