Looking for a way to get back to nature with the family without leaving civilization totally behind? “Glamping”, or camping-lite, is a great way to experience the great outdoors while also enjoying some of the comforts of home. Whether you’re looking for a luxury experience, a turn-key campsite, a yurt in the woods or a tent in a meadow, we found all of that and more! Read on to find your family glamping match!
To Camp in a Meadow
Sleep in a canvas tent located in a private meadow on 18 acres of land. The tent sleeps three, but you can pitch an one or two additional tents for a $35 fee. The site is near the charming town of Mountain Dale in the Catskills (some good food here), as well as lots of hiking and biking trails. Chill by the campfire or in the hammock, get clean with the solar-shower and check your phone only when you need to via the wifi.
Distance from NYC: Two Hours
To Glamp In A Kids’ Play Wonderland
If you’re all about the family fun times (too much quiet gets boring!) this campground is located right on the property of the Lake Compounce theme and water park. With everything from basic tent sites to tipis and two-bedroom cabins available, you can choose your level of roughing it vs. hotel-style amenities. There’s also a playground, basketball court, and themed activity weekends.
Distance from NYC: Two hours
Rate: Varies, starting at about $90/night
For a Tiny House on a Working Farm
This popular spot sleep four thanks to an efficient layout and a loft. Located on the Peace and Carrots farm, which operates a commercial dairy, a brewery and vegetable farm. When you're not out and about enjoying nature or sitting by the campfire, get a tour of the farm from owner Laura ($15 fee at booking), collect eggs, meet the goats Violet and Frieda and enjoy that there's no wifi here.
Distance from NYC: 90 minutes
For a Ready-Made Tent Upstate
We wrote about upscale camping company Tentrr when it debuted, and it continues to offer family-friendly glamping spots with turn key campsites all over New York State and beyond. When considering campsites, prospective guests can filter options such as "features" (views, forest,river/stream); "activities" (canoeing/kayaking, mountain biking, hiking); "access" (drive-up, short walk, hike-in) and "seclusion" (right nearby, comfortably close, zombie proof). Pictured here is "River's Edge Sunrise" in Pond Eddy, NY, on the bank of the Delaware River. (It has a more outback "cousin" site nearby, "River's Edge Sunset", opening in the fall.) Some sites, such as this one, offer add-ons. Here, $100 will get you a three-person canoe, life jackets, and pickup downriver when you're done.
Distance from NYC: About 2 1/2 hours from NYC
To Glamp In The Poconos
The Poconos are a classic mountain getaway area, so why not head west for a relaxing stay at a landmark resort built in the foothills of the mountains in 1911? Stay in luxury, riverside glamping tents just 2 miles from the Delaware Water Gap and enjoy outdoor adventures like guided hiking and canoeing. Relax with a game of golf on the property’s course or a guided meditation, practice your swing at the golf academy or sample wares at the onsite brewpub. The kids will have fun with archery lessons or water games, and come night-time, you can all sit around a campfire, make s’mores and learn about some of the visible constellations.
Distance from NYC: Two hours
Rate: $299 and up
For a Treehouse Yurt
Stay in this treehouse-yurt mashup at the Harmony Hill Lodging and Retreat Center in East Meredith, New York. These circular shelters measuring 314 square feet come fully-loaded, with a king-sized bed, modern kitchen and flushable toilet, ceiling fan and doors that lock. (They're also insulated and weatherproof.) A small deck is perfect for relaxing morning or evening, and campsites also feature a fire pit and picnic table. Our favorite features? The dome skylight for stargazing in bed, and the large fieldstone labyrinth on site. (Treehouse Yurt too tight a squeeze? Check out the larger Mountain Chalet, also on the property.)
Distance from NYC: 3 hours
For Luxury Glamping On Governors Island
Thanks to Collective Retreats, you can glamp with a view of the Statue of Liberty at the its enhanced outpost on Governors Island. The luxury camping experience company has instituted numerous COVID-19 safety protocols, including contactless check-in and check-out. Expect gourmet meals, electricity, Wifi, deluxe bedding, yoga and wellness sessions, and more.
Rate: $250/night and up
— Mimi O’Connor & Gretchen Kunz