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Lady sunbathing at her campsite

The idea of exuding glamour while camping in the great outdoors would strike many true enthusiasts as peculiar. For many modern day urbanites luxury camping is the latest trend that is switching hiking boots for warm fluffy slippers. "Glamping" surrounds you with lush creature comforts, often offering a menu of pampering treats, and all this while enjoying the great outdoors.

Glamping has endless appeal to those who cannot live a few days without their fresh-brewed coffee, hot showers, warm bed, gourmet foods, dry-clean-only shirts, hairdryer, mirror, and make-up. In this world of camping (where gladiator shoes are an option, if not a necessity) most of the same activities and rituals apply, but getting back to nature is made easier with a more stylish manner at an upscale campground.

Typically designed for the young and the rich (not necessarily one in the same) the level of glamping can vary between staying at a resort that caters to glampers, or just a few steps above a traditional camping by adding a DIY glamper style.

According to GoGlamping.net, resorts and camping sites catering to glampers are located in all regions of the world from Asia to Africa, Oceania to Europe and the Americas. So it seems pampering does stretch to the four corners of the earth! Some have hi-tech barbeques to replace the campfire, while others have gourmet on-site restaurants and some even offer yoga and massage treatments.

These places, which are more in line with a five star hotel, usually come with the matching price tag. Glampers can "calm your mind and soothe your soul" on platform beds with 100% white goose down pillows, bamboo blankets and Egyptian cotton sheets. Accommodations span the spectrum - from trendy white canvas tents to yurts with views of the Pacific Ocean, and this luxury costs anywhere from $200 to $1000 a night.

With the gamut of amenities ranging from not once - but twice-filtered well water, eco-friendly toiletries, maid and turn down services to boot, glamping is sure to capture every princess at heart! However, for those who may find this just a little out of their price range, it is still possible to create the glamping experience for a fraction of the cost. All it takes is the right glamping mindset, a few added luxuries, and a little extra thought in the preparation and decor of your campsite.

DIY glamping tips:

  • Swap foam mats for air mattresses.
  • Forget the sleeping bag and bring proper sheets (thread count matters!), comforters and pillows.
  • Choose the brightest colored tent available, instead of the dreary military regale. Or better yet, set up a walk-through tent (or yurt) large enough for entertaining.
  • Forget the single lining fold-out chairs and go for the cushion-infused linings.
  • Alcohol should stretch way beyond the usual beer menu. Bring a nice bottle of red for dinner and champagne to toast, but make sure you opt for plastic or glass bar ware (no Styrofoam allowed).
  • Deck out your tent with the latest camping-friendly equipment, including iPod dock, reading light, fan, portable DVD player, and of course all the latest camping gadgets.
  • Don't skim on food condiments or resort to chicken in a can; splurge on food items and turn that mac 'n' cheese into gourmet Grier mac 'n' cheese, or try a new tapas recipe. It should go great with the wine.
  • Finally for the ladies, a fellow glamper coined her experience as, "getting the men on your trip to help you with setting up and doing all the hard work, while you sit back, drink wine and make nice food over the camp fire." Need I say more?

Who says camping can't be five star?!

Happy Glamping!

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