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Glamping: Camping in comfort in Vietnam

Glamping: Camping in comfort in Vietnam

Thursday, September 08, 2022, 09:21 GMT+7
Glamping: Camping in comfort in Vietnam
A dome-shaped tent at Tropical EGlamping, a glamping site in Dong Nai Province, southern Vietnam. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

Have you ever tried glamping? It is a more luxurious form of camping that is becoming ever more popular in Vietnam with accommodations popping up across the country.

Recently, I took a trip to the Tropical eGlamping near Tri An Lake in the southern province of Dong Nai to experience glamping for myself.

Glamping is not a new form of holiday. As cities get bigger, the ability to experience nature becomes harder.

Glamping in Vietnam is kind of a process. Most people only visit for one night, so, unlike visiting a hotel or resort, it is a kind of system of experiencing dinner, sleep, and breakfast as a group. In between these times, you can play games, sit, and relax or simply walk around and admire the trees and view.

A dome-shaped tent at Tropical EGlamping, a glamping site in the southern province of Dong Nai. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

A dome-shaped tent at Tropical EGlamping, a glamping site in Dong Nai Province, southern Vietnam. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

Camping with the AC

The heat of southern Vietnam is such that the tents are just too hot to use until just before sunset. If you arrive around lunchtime, you will spend the best part of the day sitting in the communal area. It’s ok though, because there are beers, drinks, and food to buy and the place we visited offered free coffee, tea, and instant noodles.

Around 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm you will be shown to your tent. The tents are either the Teepee style of the American Indians or a dome shape that is rather futuristic looking. Inside the tent there is, basically, nothing. You have a mattress, pillows, and a power socket to charge your phone.

Inside a tent at the campsite. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

Inside a tent at the campsite. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

However, the one item that makes this experience more comfortable is air conditioning. Yes! The tent has an air conditioner. This is both significant and important. Apart from the comfort aspect, it also repels many of the mosquitos and other nighttime bugs that can make camping a really uncomfortable experience.

At the venue where I stayed, there was only a single bathroom block. This meant it was a bit of a walk to get there from many of the tents. For me, I had to climb three sets of stairs and walk about 100 meters. It doesn’t sound far but try doing it at 2:00 am after it's been raining.

The toilet/shower block was rather well put together. They were clean and offered all the facilities you needed like soaps and paper. The toilet and shower were in a single cubicle and there were four for men and four for women. It appeared to be sufficient for the number of guests at the venue.

The toilet and shower area at the site. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

The toilet and shower area at the site. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

Magnificent sunset and sunrise

After we checked into our tent around 5:00 pm, we had some time to rest and watch the sunset. It was beautiful sitting upon the hillside watching the sunset over Lake Tri An. A magical array of colors filled the sky as the sun slowly sank over the horizon to signal the end of the day. It was a moment to take a breath and reflect on the beauty of Vietnam and how lucky I am to be able to share in this wonderful community.

View to Tri An Lake from the campsite. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

A view of Tri An Lake from the campsite. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

Dinner was offered around 7:30 pm. There was a BBQ-style selection prepared on a per person basis. You were able to sit out in the open or sit in one of the V-shaped tents to enjoy a romantic or family celebration. This is all included in the price of the accommodation.

Once you finish dinner, you are required to take your dishes to a wash bucket. This place is not a hotel or restaurant so there was an amount of 'doing it yourself' that was required as part of your stay. This included washing your cups after use and returning all bottles, cans, and garbage to the main area after usage.

View to Tri An Lake from the campsite. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

A view of Tri An Lake from the campsite. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

For some, the vibrant night sky was an opportunity to sit up most of the night and gaze at the stars. For others, it was a chance to get to bed early to have a good sleep after a large dinner and awake early to see the sunrise.

The next morning, for the early risers, saw the sunrise with all the excitement and mystique of the new day. Just a short 10-minute walk from the venue took us to an open hilltop where we could see the sun rise over the mountains toward Da Lat. From the darkness of the early morning, the vibrant red and orange colors slowly appeared over the mountains, filling the sky with the beauty and warmth of the new morning.

By 7:00 am, breakfast was ready to be served. A basic selection of eggs, sausages, bread, and noodles were available but you had to prepare them all yourself. It was sufficient and ok for a country-style breakfast. One really good thing about this venue was that the coffee was rather good and even better than I find in most local cafés in Ho Chi Minh City.

After cleaning up from breakfast, we took a shower and then, with a coffee, relaxed under the warming sun until 11:00 am. At 11:00 am, the venue had arranged a car to take us back to Ho Chi Minh City for a small extra cost. This took the stress away from having to drive ourselves or find buses that would get us to the site.

Being around 90km from Ho Chi Minh City, riding your motorcycle, driving a car, taking a bus or using the venue transport service are all good options to get there safely.

You are best to arrive just after lunch and take the time in the afternoon to relax. Leaving the venue usually begins around 10:00 am the next morning but they are rather flexible and there is no problem staying there until mid-afternoon before riding back to Ho Chi Minh City.

View to Tri An Lake from the campsite. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

A view of Tri An Lake from the campsite. Photo: Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News

For me, it is not a place I would stay for two or three nights. It’s more of a place that I would enjoy for a night. It is a romantic experience for couples, a fun time for friends, and a great experience to enjoy with your family.

The price is a little higher than regular hotel accommodation, but it does include food and other items in the price. They also ask that you take your own towels and toothbrushes as they attempt to be eco-sensitive and protect the environment.

My conclusion from spending 24 hours glamping at Tri An Lake was that it was well constructed, and I had no issues with food or drinks.

There were things for children to do and adults could have a cold beer whilst enjoying the outdoor. The sleeping was rather good, and the tents were very well constructed.

On the negative side, I found the toilets to be a long walk in the middle of the night and it was rather hot in the afternoon.

But I am happy that I experienced this adventure for the first time in Vietnam.

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Ray Kuschert / Tuoi Tre News Contributor

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