As the weather warms and the great outdoors beckons, camping trips rise in popularity. Not everyone though, is enticed by thoughts of roughing it in the wilderness. While visions of sitting by campfires and sleeping under the stars can seem romantic, the realities of sleeping bags on uneven terrain, arguing with tent posts, and being constantly caked in the stench of bug spray, have a tendency to put off even the most adventurous of personalities. But it doesn't have to be that way. Check out a few of our favorite camping destinations that, with a few tweaks of your own, can feel far more like 'glamping' than camping; without the typical glamping price tag!
4 Paws Kingdom Campground & Dog Retreat
For those that can't bear the thought of traveling without their canine companions, 4 Paws Kingdom Campground and Dog Retreat is the ultimate mecca of an all creature comfort camping experience. Located in the beautiful foothills of Rutherfordton, NC, this campground offers onsite amenities to thrill both 2-legged and 4-legged campers alike. Accommodations include cabins, log cabins, trailers, and even yurts if you prefer to sleep with a starry view of the night sky. All come equipped with kitchenettes, covered patios or decks, and some even have the option of fenced yards. Got an RV? This campground offers multiple RV area options including back in or pull-through sites that can include paved pads, decks, and fenced yard areas if desired.
The amenities at 4 Paws Kingdom are nothing to be growled at. 4-legged campers and their humans can enjoy multiple off-leash dog parks, an agility park, a private pond for swimming, and an onsite doggie bathhouse and grooming station. Every Friday through Sunday the campground hosts a different event, including games, contests, dinners, doggie parties, and live music. Be sure to check the 4 Paws campsite events calendar to see what's upcoming. All of this paired with its ideal location that's only minutes away from Lake Lure and a variety of hiking trail options, make it the perfect spot for vacationing with furry family members.
4 Paws Kingdom Campground and Dog Retreat offers so many included amenities, that the only glamorization you'll want to bring is some simple decor. Liven up your porch or patio with a couple Chinese lantern string lights or a set of fairy light strings. Either can be purchased as solar or battery operated, and will provide a lovely ambiance at the end of your furry family member play day. Grab a decorative lantern or two and place battery powered tea lights inside. The glow will be as beautiful as real burning candles without the fire hazard; and since 4 Paws boasts a well stocked camp store, even treats to enjoy while relaxing in your beautifully lit oasis are easy to come by. Pet friendly glamorous camping has never been easier!
Foothills Family Campground
Nestled in the picturesque area of Forest City, NC, this campground offers enough amenities and campsite options to make anyone's camping trip an enjoyable experience. From basic tent sites, to RV hookups, to onsite cabin options; Foothills Family Campground is ideal for rugged and glamorous campers alike. Rather stay in a pop up camper or trailer than a tent or cabin? Nearby Southern Pop Up Rentals will deliver one to your campsite so it's ready for your arrival. Boasting onsite laundry facilities, multiple bathhouse sites, a pool, a fishing pond, hiking trails, and a well stocked camp store, this place makes it easy to camp out no matter what your camping personality.
Amenities aside, Foothills Family Campground sits amid a number of great activity options that are sure to thrill even the most opinionated of campers. Multiple golf courses, gold panning, gem mining sites, and the KidSenses Children's Interactive Museum are only minutes away. If antiquing is your thing, check out Forest City’s Flea Town USA. Car aficionados will love the nearby Bennett Classic Car Museum, and McNair Field is right around the corner if you want to catch a Coastal Plains League baseball game. Honestly, you would have to work hard to run out of things to do staying here!
In addition to solar or battery powered string lights that are always easy glam decor inside tents or alongside a camper, grabbing your favorite sheet set for the air mattress or bringing a decadent throw rug and some floor pillows will have your campsite feeling like the lap of Moroccan luxury while relaxing at the end of the day. Don't forget to pack the shaker set & some plastic stemware for sipping your favorite cocktail or mocktail while chilling under the stars. Who said glamorizing a campsite was hard?
Rutherford Mountain Campground
If majestic mountain views and idyllic nature scenes are more your thing, then Rutherford Mountain Campground is a perfect camping fit. Located approximately 20 minutes outside of Lake Lure, this rural campground is the perfect location for those who prize serenity over daily hubbub. Offering full site hookups, primitive tent sites, and everything in between; this family and pet friendly campsite is the perfect location to call home base when you want to truly enjoy the great outdoors and get away from it all.
While the campground offers amenities such as an outdoor salt water pool, onsite laundry area, and private showers, it is also ideally located near a variety of activity options. Local bouldering and rock climbing areas, Lake Lure Adventure Company, and various horseback riding stables are only a short car ride away. Nearby, Chimney Rock Village boasts the Rocky Broad Riverwalk with natural walkways and bridges nestled near riverside shops and restaurants, and Lake Lure offers boat rentals of almost every kind in addition to hourly covered boat tours. There really is no end to the local and nearby activities easily available at Rutherford Mountain Campground.
With an unobstructed evening view of shadowy distant mountains and stars, the only glamour you’ll probably want for your camping space is a decorative tea light lantern or two to create just the right amount of ambient battery powered light, or to attach battery powered string lights to the tops of the poles inside your tent for a yurt feel without the actual skylight. Battery and solar powered candles for camp-side tables now even come with citronella scent to keep away bugs, so be sure to grab one or two to create an intimate campsite relaxation experience without the deep woods bug spray. More into sunrises than starlight? Make those camping sunrises even more fabulous by bringing a metal french press so morning coffee is as delicious as the view. You truly can ‘have it all’ while roughing it!
Your Style, Your Personality, Your Way
Glamorizing your camping experience is easy regardless of where you pitch your tent. Just plan accordingly. If you plan on cooking out while camping out, don’t forget the hard plastic plates and cutlery. You can even bring a fire pit fondue pot and skewers if you want to take s’mores and campfire cooking to a whole new level. Local artisan shops and campsite stores offer a variety of camping tools to make taking your retreat up a notch easy and stress free, so don’t worry if you’ve been too busy to shop beforehand. The main thing to remember with adding a touch of glamping to your camping experience is that you’re bringing a touch of home into your surroundings. It’s only as glamorous as you want it or dream it to be!