Gone glamping: The best ways to camp in style in South Africa

Sleeping under the stars is one thing. But doing it in a king-size bed with gourmet meals and air conditioning sure beats a sleeping bag.Glamping, or glamorous camping, has become a safari staple in South Africa – and for good reason. It’s a unique way to enter the country’s wilderness and get up close with the local wildlife without ever having to set up a tent (or eat out of a can).

If you’re wondering what defines a glampsite from your average run-of-the-mill campground, they have three advantages: a unique structure, immediate access to the wilderness and of course all the luxuries of a hotel room, which means running water and a bed at the bare minimum. The options can range from a lone tree house to a sprawling resort of safari tents, and locations are just as varied. South Africa has a huge selection of glamping experiences that range from the lush tropics along South Africa’s coastline to the interior’s rolling grasslands and forested mountains. Take your pick.

So who should go glamping? The experiences are so varied that there’s something for every traveller. Couples and honeymooners can choose secluded and intimate settings while families can always find a happy balance for the kids. It’s also becoming a popular choice for parties, weddings and group getaways.

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Here are a few of our favourite glampsites in South Africa.

Honeyguide Tented Safari Camps

This spectacular camp is situated in the 23,000-hectare Manyeleti Game Reserve, bordering the Kruger National Park. The canvas tents are decked out with rugs, patios and overlook the local watering hole.

Grand Daddy’s Airstream Rooftop Trailer Park

Right in the heart of Cape Town is a quirky glamping destination complete with airstream campers on the rooftop of the Grand Daddy Hotel. An urban getaway with a twist!

Teniqua Treetops

This eco-friendly accommodation close to the shores of Western Cape offers lovely canopy-height tree houses where you can listen to birdsong from your own treetop bed and bathtub.

Thula Thula Game Reserve

Only two hours from Durban is the super-luxurious Thula Thula safari tent camp, nestled in an exclusive private game reserve. There are sweeping canopy beds, hammocks and views of the Enseleni River.

Garonga Safari Camp

Located in the Makalali Conservancy west of the Kruger National Park, the glamorous Garonga Safari Camp promises some serious wildlife spotting and super-luxe rooms.

Experiencing the great outdoors doesn’t mean you have to rough it. At South Africa’s lavish glampsites you can get off the beaten track and bring all of life’s little luxuries with you.