Then Chaa Creek is the place for you, according to the Daily Beast
As we noted earlier, glamping is no longer the next big thing – it’s now simply big.
And now, according to the Daily Beast (a Newsweek affiliate that reaches some three million readers a month, according to the NY Times), Chaa Creek’s Macal River Camp is one of the top best five places in the world to glamp. Yes, in the entire world, and with one country, Botswana taking two of the five coveted spots.
There’s no longer any doubt that glamping is big worldwide.
And why not? You have all the woodsy fun of camping with none of the dreary bits such as setting up and taking down tents, trying to impress with fire making skills you may not possess, burning fingers (and food) on unfamiliar cooking gear, making difficult bathroom decisions… the list goes on.
Now, we’re not for one moment suggesting that true back-to-nature camping experiences aren’t a lot of fun. It’s just that more and more people are opting for the easier route by combining glamour with camping.
Years back certain people at Chaa Creek (c’mon Mick, take a bow) reckoned that there was a group of people out there looking for something in between the casual luxury that The Lodge at Chaa Creek is famous for, and full-on camping out. After years of canoeing down the Macal River, a spot had always stuck out that seemed perfect for the realisation of this idea; something close enough to the main eco-resort, yet removed enough to have its own identity. Over time the trail leading into this beautiful little spot was widened to accommodate 4WD vehicles, a canoe landing established, and ten casitas (small bungalow type cabins) were built without disturbing the big trees and natural environment.
Each casita is raised above ground and have private verandas to take in the beautiful sights and sounds of the surrounding jungle, and an airy communal dining and hanging out spot lit with kerosene lamps, environmentally friendly restrooms and showers complete the very charming scene. As with all things Chaa Creek, guests can rest assured that everything is done in the most environmentally sustainable manner possible, and that 10% of all room revenue goes directly into environmental and social upliftment initiatives via the Chaa Creek Cares program.
In addition to regular guests, the Macal River Camp is also a valuable resource used by various groups, such as the annual Eco Kids Educational Summer Camp Chaa Creek sponsors, so this is one idea that grew into something special.
This is what the Daily Beast has to say:
This collection of canvas-roofed tents is located on the grounds of the luxurious Lodge at Chaa Creek, and guests at the camp are welcome to use the lodge facilities, such as the swimming pool. But the tents allow guests to truly feel alone in the jungle. There is no electricity, and after dark, the tents are lit by the glow of flickering gas lamps. At night, guests can fall asleep listening to the cicadas and the chorus of howler monkeys. Bathrooms and showers are shared, excellent meals are served in the thatched-roof dining area, and campfires are lit on chilly evenings. (The Daily Beast “Five Top Spots to Glamp Like a Champ” September 2013)
We wouldn’t describe the casitas as tents, but having enjoyed more than a few of the meals served in the comfy communal dining room, heartily agree that they’re excellent and with the beautiful surroundings, probably the best way to sample real Belizean home style cooking at its finest. Camp compère Docio and family receive consistent praise for their friendly hospitality as much as the meals they serve, and all things considered, it’s no wonder that the Macal River Camp rates so highly.
But then again, what else would you expect from Chaa Creek’s more bucolic, woodsy cousin?
Oh, and just in case you’re wondering, the other four best glamping spots, according to the Daily Beast are:
&Beyond Nxabego Okavango Tented Camp – Botswana
Lakedale Resort at Three Lakes -San Juan Islands
Curry Village -Yosemite National Park
&Beyond Xaranna Okavango Delta Camp – Botswana
Hit all five of these rustic-luxe locations, and you’ll be a Happy Glamper for sure…