There are plenty, almost too many, fancy gadgets you can pack for your camping trips. From the collapsible table with pop-up candelabra to the solar powered hairdryer, you can find yourself jamming the contents of your garage into your boot, or tying more things to your back than a one man band. Ok, so glamping might be the soft option for a lot of people, but check out this list of the essential things you can gleefully leave behind if you do side with softies.
Take one big rucksack, roll up your squidgiest bed rolls, stuff in your stuff pillows, bag up your sleeping bags, ram them all into the rucksack and leave it in the cupboard. Then throw a day pack over your shoulder and stroll on down to sleep in an impressively large French antique bed. Wake up surrounded by a garden that’s been featured on the cover of the Royal Horticultural Society Magazine. Missing the feel of stones in your back? Thought not.
Midland Farm in Herefordshire – Midland Farm yurt sleeps 2, from £80 a night
The Kitchen Sink
As much fun as it is trying to cook for five people on a badly balanced gas stove in high winds, you could always indulge yourself, just a little, and upgrade to broad oak work surfaces in an oil-lantern-lit canvas kitchen (read more here) with a Belfast sink and all the tools you could need. Come on now, put down the spork and step away. You know it makes sense.
Scales Plantation in Cumbria – Shepherd’s huts and Herdwick camp sleep 2-4, Eden sleeps 6, from £70 a night
Folding them into the car and trying not to get your fingers taken off in the process is second only to untying kite strings as one of those great challenges of the camper’s dexterity. So why not arrive to have them laid out on a lovely deck for you already? Places like this lovely camp come fully equipped with a lounging space set up and soporific the moment you arrive.
Glottenham Farm, Sussex – Bodichon and de Glottyngham sleep 4, de Etchyngham sleeps 2 from £56 a night
It seems that to get the best views and the most amazing scenery, you have to compromise on comfort sometimes. Well, sometimes you don’t. On the edge of the Perche Natural Park in France, you can climb up into the trees and survey the countryside and the forests from a fully insulated and heated treehouse. You’re more than welcome to clip yourself onto the side of a mountain instead, naturally, but it’s much less likely that someone will bring you breakfast on a tray if you do.
Cabane du Perche – Treehouse sleeps 2-4, from £116 a night
Find loads more ways to travel light on your camping trips at Sawday’s Canopy & Stars.
Picture Credits: Canopy & Stars