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Last Updated on 11/04/2021
Glamping has recently exploded in popularity. It’s perhaps attributed to the satisfaction of sleeping under the stars with the added luxury of home comforts. Nowadays it’s easy to find a glamping site or turn your camping trip into DIY glamping. However, if you can’t get away you can just as easily go glamping in your own garden.
If you have a garden, glamping can be a great way to make the most of a staycation at home. You have the excitement of sleeping somewhere different and setting up a campsite of your dreams without the faff of packing it all down and transporting it.
What’s more, it’s incredibly easy because you have all the necessary home facilities to hand. Fancy a candlelit bath halfway through? Go on then!
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DIY garden glamping is a fun activity for families and couples. Even those who live alone could use it as an opportunity to create an at-home retreat.
So, without further ado, here are some fun backyard glamping ideas to get you started:
What is glamping?
Glamping is essentially fancy camping. It’s all the enjoyment of sleeping in the great outdoors with the comfort and luxury of a good night’s sleep.
Glamping offers home comforts like bedding and decent kitchen equipment. Accommodation is typically more upmarket than your average tent and can range from tipis and bell tents to glamping pods, cabins and shacks.
Plan what you need
Before you set up your epic garden glamping extravaganza, you first need to think about what you need. The obvious place to start is your glamping accommodation. After all, comfort and luxury are key.
If you want to go all out, you could:
Hire a bell tent or tipi
Bell tents and tipis are the best glamping tents because they epitomise luxury camping. They’re roomy, warm and sturdy in windy weather. Bell tents and tipis are the halfway mark between a tent and safari tents, yurts and glamping pods.
Spacious though they are, they can be a bit heavy and bulky so it’s just as well that you’re setting it up in the garden.
You can either buy or hire a tipi or bell tent. I would do the latter as you don’t need to worry about where to put it afterwards.
Build your own
If you’re in the mood for some DIY, you can build your own wooden structure out of recycled wood like this. The great thing about this option is that you’re completely free to design it however you like. Cosy hideaway? Sure. Roomy cabin? Why not!
It will take a bit of time to set up, and you’ll have to think about what to do with it afterwards. Still, it could be an option to consider if you have the resources.
Use a standard tent
If you would prefer to keep things simple and budget-friendly, your standard tent will do. Just make sure it’s a decent size so you can easily accessorize it.
If size isn’t on your side, get your hands on a gazebo (garden size allowing, of course) and pitch it half over the tent so it acts as a covered porch area. That way, if the weather turns you’re not confined to the tent or forced to abandon the entire venture.
Glam up the tent
Now here’s the fun bit. The key to glamping is luxury so don’t be afraid to go a little extra. It’s not like you have to pack it all up in a car.
Start with your bed. You want to make it as cosy as possible so get a blow-up double mattress, luxurious sheets, blankets, duvets and heaps of pillows. Truth be told, you can never have too many blankets in this situation. Heck, you could even delight your inner child and make a pillow fort!
As a bonus, add a few hot water bottles to make getting into bed at night that extra bit toasty.
Next, throw down a rug for your feet and add a small bedside table for your personal effects if there’s room. Fair warning, you may run the risk of making the tent too cosy to get out of in the morning.
Handy glamping accessories
For a true glamping experience, you’ll want to decorate your tent. Some of my favourite accessories include:
- Fairy lights
- LED lamps
- Bluetooth speaker (just be mindful of your neighbours, of course)
For more glamping accessory ideas, check out my complete DIY luxury camping packing list here.
Keep it eco-friendly
Since you’re glamping at home it should be even easier to keep it eco-friendly. Any leftover food can be put back in the fridge and any scraps can be put in the food waste bins.
Use eco-friendly lamps and fairy lights where possible to decorate your tent. If you’re setting up a fire pit or barbecue, use sustainable fuel like Bio Bean Coffee Logs and natural fire starters instead of coal.
Even though you’re outside you can still use real plates and cutlery or reusable alternatives rather than paper plates and plastic.
Set up an outdoor seating area
No glamping site is complete without an outside seating area where you can eat and hang out on your mini staycation.
If you’ve gone for the gazebo, you can put up some garden chairs and a table. Make sure your chairs are comfortable. You may need some extra cushions. A tablecloth and candle might also make a nice addition to the setup.
If the weather holds you might want to put chairs or benches around a fire pit in the evening. DIY enthusiasts even build benches and tables out of wooden pallets. Then all you need to do is add some outdoor cushions and you’ve got yourself a sofa (sort of).
Take the seating area a little bit further by adding a mini drinks bar and snacks station. You can easily store any spares and leftovers in the fridge in the kitchen too for convenience.
Glamping food ideas
The best thing about glamping in the garden is you can really go all out with the food because you’re not confined to what you can make in a camping stove or on the barbecue. You could whip up some tasty delights in the kitchen or get a takeaway. Why not?
If you want to stay traditional then having a barbecue is your best bet. Check out this list of recipes by BBC Good Food that will take your barbecue game to the next level. Mouthwatering highlights include halloumi skewers, prawn & pepper skewers and buttery baked corn on the cob.
Other campfire snacks
You can’t have a campfire without some traditional camping snacks to nibble on. Here are some treats you can rustle up:
The epitome of campfire treats. Load up a wooden skewer with marshmallows and hold it over the fire until they become browned and gooey. Eat straight away but mind you don’t burn your tongue!
You can easily make popcorn in a campfire. Simply make a pouch out of heavy-duty tin foil and pour in a tablespoon of oil and two tablespoons of popping corn. Seal up the pouch and place it straight in the embers.
Make sure the pouch is roomy enough for the corn to pop. Once done, open the pouch and sprinkle with salt or sugar or throw in a knob of butter and enjoy.
You can’t go wrong with an American campfire classic. It’s a chocolatey, marshmallowy goodness stuffed in a biscuit sandwich. For the biscuit, you can get creative with cookies, rich tea or digestive biscuits. In the US, they typically use graham’s crackers but we don’t have them in the UK.
Next, place some chunks of chocolate on one biscuit then toast a marshmallow on a stick until golden and gooey. Then, place the marshmallow on the chocolate covered biscuit and put another biscuit on top like a sandwich.
Pull out the skewer, wrap up the s’more in foil and place it by the fire to allow the chocolate to melt. Eat it like a sandwich.
Now that you’ve set the scene, all that’s left is to plan what you want to do on your glamping staycation. You could set up:
An outside cinema
If you have space for a projector and a big white sheet you can have a film night complete with campfire popcorn. Add some blankets, throws and cushions for a cosy film under the stars. Make some hot chocolates to go along with it and you have the perfect evening.
Get active with some games like twister and frisbee. If you’re not the sporting kind then you could get out a deck of cards or some of your favourite board games.
DIY wine tasting
If it’s an adult-only garden glamping session, you could set up your own DIY wine tasting. Get a minimum of two bottles of wine, notepaper and pens, water and delicious snacks like cheese, charcuterie and grapes.
Or just relax
Don’t forget you’re on holiday too so you can simply spend the time relaxing. Put all electronics inside for a digital detox, read, do some journaling, hydrate, and pamper yourself with a face mask.
Glamping allows you to switch off and be entirely in the present. By being mindful there’s no reason why you can’t turn your at-home glamping experience into a soothing wellness retreat.
With a bit of planning, backyard glamping is easy to do and a lot of fun. It’s a creative way to spend a staycation if you want to bring the holiday spirit to your home.
Are you planning to go glamping in the garden? Let me know in the comments!
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