A growing trend called glamping is giving people experiences sort of like traditional camping – but easier and fancier.
Glamping is slang for glamorous camping, and there’s lots of it available in and around California’s popular Yosemite National Park.
Below is a list of some of the best Yosemite area glamping spots sorted by region, starting with what’s available inside the national park.
This list is focused on tent cabins, yurts, Airstream trailers and RVs (recreational vehicles).
Many vacation rental websites also list cabins and lodges in their glamping sections, but only a few unique earthy structures have been included here (plus a train caboose) in an attempt to stay mostly true to the dictionary’s definition of glamping: “The activity of camping with some of the comforts and luxuries of home.”
“The entire camping industry is growing as more people want to get outside and enjoy nature. … Glamping right outside the park is a great option for people who want more privacy, great amenities, and really comfortable sleeping,” Ravasio said.
“Glamping makes getting outside accessible for people who may not own all the gear or have expert-level knowledge of the outdoors.”
Inside Yosemite National Park
Glamping is available in Yosemite Valley via tent cabins at Half Dome Village (formerly called Curry Village), or Housekeeping Camp, clusters of three-sided concrete structures with canvas roofs and curtains.
Their operating seasons are longer than what’s available in high country Yosemite, which is inaccessible in winter due to snow. High country options include tent cabins at White Wolf Lodge and Tuolumne Meadows Lodge along Tioga Road (Highway 120 over the Sierra Nevada).
Otherwise, the park has numerous campgrounds and traditional lodging options (not glamping), including Yosemite Valley Lodge, The Majestic Yosemite Hotel (formerly the Ahwahnee Hotel), and Big Trees Lodge (formerly the Wawona Hotel).
Outside Yosemite’s south entrance, via Highway 41
One attractive offering in this region is a “romantic and secluded” yurt – a tentlike dwelling – in Oakhurst, the last big town before Yosemite’s south entrance.
Its description on Glamping Hub is promising: “The yurt is nestled in the middle of the woods in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, under the shade of towering pines and cedars near a babbling, serene brook.”
You can also sleep in a train caboose in Oakhurst, which is probably not really glamping, but it looks super cool.
Outside Yosemite’s west entrances, via Highway 140 and 120
AutoCamp Yosemite – a village of luxury Airstream trailers, tents and cabins – opened earlier this year in Midpines, a small town just past Mariposa before Highway 140 drops into a steep river canyon leading into Yosemite.
Covered wagons are available for rent in Groveland via Highway 120 at Yosemite Pines RV Resort & Family Lodging.
A unique listing near Groveland is Wondernut Farm in Big Oak Flat, described as “a ground-up-off-grid-sustainable-leaning-diversified-demonstration-farm-and-agricultural-enterprise-incubator experiment.”
Outside Yosemite’s east entrance, via Highway 395
Yosemite is only accessible via this entrance when Tioga Road (Highway 120) is open. The road over the Sierra Nevada in Yosemite closes in the winter due to snow and usually reopens in late spring or early summer.
Some eclectic Eastern Sierra spots can be found on Hipcamp, including a couple lakeside camping locations. One more primitive destination is the secluded Mono Camp with views of Mono Lake and an off-the-grid cabin and camping spots.
A drive farther north via scenic Highway 395 will take you to Paradise Shores Camp at Bridgeport Reservoir, where you can rent an equipped Airstream or RV camper for the night. Another glamorous trailer-sleeping experience is available nearby via Glamping Hub.