Friday, August 30, 2013

Will somebody please build me a tented camp?

A 'tented camp'. We mentioned these during our safari in Tanzania (remember Oliver's Camp?). Yet, except as a fancy (and crazy expensive) accessory to a safari, my mind never really moved past this foreign and exotic idea of glorified camping.

That is, until we found the Hoerikwaggo Tented Camps…

Let’s back up a bit-
Charles and I wanted to do an overnight hike. There are many of these in S. Africa but I had a really hard time finding info. However, from what info I found it was apparent that we were missing a few critical items. Like sleeping bags and camping stoves, you know, small things for simple needs.

But we found some tented camps in Table Mountain National Park. You could drive or hike between them and they were cheap and seemingly amazing looking.

Sleeping bags was still a problem, but we had our friends Kerry and Phil in Cape Town come to the rescue.

Ask Charles and he will tell you that one of the happiest he has seen me on our trip was watching the sunset of the first of the two Camps that we visited. And this was after a big debacle of them having lost our reservation (details). Translation- I was pretty psyched about this find (and watching the sunset G&T in hand).

Sunset night 1- me in a happy place

Sunset night 2- as if it could get better

 Camp 1- Smitswinkel

deck and firepit made from stumps

our cabin

Deck off our tent

ensuite bathroom while camping? Why not...

I love the outdoors. And I like camping. But I don’t always love sleeping in a tent, meals out of bags, carrying a bag, and peeing in the woods. I know, getting old and high maintenance over here…

Interestingly enough, the parks were opened by and are maintained by South Africa's National Park Service. Each of the camps have been created to carefully blend in with the local vegetation, using native material all throughout the construction. There are 6 tents at each camp, sleeping a total of 12 people, creating a small intimate experience.  The cost is $30-$45/tent/night.  We were the only guests there for all three nights of our stay.

Back to my original question, will someone please build me a tented camp? I had the devastating realization (after dreams of taking it upon myself to pave the way for this revolutionary camping in Colorado) that the winters might be a bit long and cold for tents to be the most reasonable (much less profitable) idea. Yet, the idea still stays with me, whether it's adapting for the winters or constructing in areas with more temperate climates.

Camp 2- Slangkop
Yep, that's a lighthouse viewed from our camp

Oh yeah, and the ocean

Whale vertebrae for the common area lights

Our tent

Common area deck

view from the deck on our tent

bathrooms and showers

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