kids looking at a jar

It's easily done - you call a household meeting to suggest a quirky holiday cottage for your half-term break or summer holiday, and before you know it somebody says "it would be just like camping" and the kids are demanding a tent.

But while your vision of a luxury stay in an unusual holiday cottage might be replaced by one of sleeping top-to-tail with your partner and kids in a three-man tent that took five hours to erect, there is an alternative that still delivers luxury in the midst of the great outdoors.

A safari tent is the best of both worlds, in one sense a quirky holiday cottage made of canvas, while in another it gives the kids a true camping experience with mother nature right outside the door.

roaring fire in front of safari tent

Safari tents and glamping

You've probably heard the word 'glamping' before - it's a short term for glamorous camping and has been used in the UK since 2006 and the US since 2007 - and it's one of the big trends in luxury family holidays in 2018.

It gives you a way to get the kids out in the great outdoors, without having to huddle together for warmth in the middle of a muddy field, or sleep on little more than the bare floor.

Glamping safari tents offer true 'comfort under canvas', with solid floors, separate bedrooms that offer some privacy, a proper kitchen, and plumbed bathroom facilities with hot running water.

If the thought of lying shoulder-to-shoulder in sleeping bags every night for a week sounds a bit too 'real' for a luxury break, these unusual holiday cottages really do deliver an alternative experience on a whole different level. And with real beds too!

Kids sleeping in luxury safari tent

Safari tents: a little luxury in the great outdoors

Just because safari tents are a luxury way to sleep under canvas, it doesn't mean you lose out on the traditional camping experience either - there's just no tent to erect at the end of your drive, with real beds made up and ready to sleep in instead.

The great outdoors is still on your doorstep, and glamping tents are usually found in remote or rural locations, so you can explore surrounding fields and woodlands, and in some locations may be able to pet and feed onsite farm animals.

But they can still give you that sense of being 'off the grid', with standalone sustainable hot water systems, rooms heated by wood-burning stoves, and in some cases even the opportunity to cook over an open log fire if you wish.

And once night has fallen, there’s little else to beat staring up at the stars, a glass of wine in your hand, whilst someone toasts you a marshmallow over the firepit before you all retire to the comfort of your bed.

kids carrying logs

Making memories with the kids

A glamping holiday is a great opportunity to make some memories with the kids, so get out and explore the surrounding area, go on a hunt for pond wildlife, or play hide and seek in amongst the trees.

You'll generally be supplied with plenty of wood for the stove and other essential supplies, but it's a good idea to bring a plentiful supply of kitchen foil as it's really versatile to parcel food up ready to cook over open flame or in a log burner.

And of course all of the usual Holiday Cottage Compare filters can be applied to your search to help you choose between the different safari tents and other glamping holiday accommodation we have available.

That means you can single out glamping tents with a pub or restaurant nearby, or within easy reach of a playground for the kids - you can even specify a dog-friendly tent if you wish.

wheelbarrow race with kids

If you still can't find exactly what you need, get in touch and use our holiday cottage concierge service, and we'll do our best to suggest glamping accommodation that will tick all the boxes for you.

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