A personal defnition of travel:
Exploring a new place (or an old one) in search of adventure, relaxation, pampering, good food, good wine. Should also include getting lost at least once.
Usual accommodation preferences include hotels, resorts, apartments, or boats. The nicer and more luxurious the better.
(Yes, I am well aware that I am a brat- I am just being honest).
So when I learned about glamping last year for the first time…a glamorous type of camping, my ears perked up. The truth is that I have been camping twice in my life. Once as a brownie (that camping trip was the end of my participation in Brownies by the way) and a second time at the end of my senior year in high school (that camping trip involved vodka…shhhh). Suffice it to say, I am not a camper. But glamorous camping? With a bed? In a tent or cabin? With running water? Maybe just maybe.
Except that all of a sudden, earlier this fall, an opportunity to try glamping first hand, appeared. In Southern California no less. A trip designed to give us quality time driving some our favorite Toyota vehicles, with friends, where we would be cruising along the Pacific Coast Highway, a chance to kayak off the coast, and a chance to GLAMP.
El Capitan Canyon is no stranger to new Glampers. The Real Housewives of Orange County tried their hand at glamping during their last season. (I somehow doubt though that the Real Housewives “ooh’ed and ah’ed” over the wifi like a large group of bloggers did upon arrival.)
The question is: did glamping at El Capitan Canyon live up to my personal definition of travel?
A cabin in the woods exudes adventure even just from the porch. But more than that El Capitan Canyon works a fabulous local company to provide adventure filled excursions like taking a hike to see llamas, bicycling and kayaking.
Relaxation and Pampering
There is nothing quite as relaxing as waking up to the sounds of nature. Well ok, the constant knocking of the local woodpecker took some getting used to (and seriously, their work on the tree trunks are works of art), but being able to have tea or a glass of wine on the porch before bed, or a bonfire in the meadow with smores helped. Also? A surprise to me since although I appreciate birds, I do not consider myself a bird aficionado ..watching the hummingbirds buzzing about too my breath away.
Good Food and Good Wine
Well now. Yes. The breakfasts and dinner at El Capitan Canyon were scrumptious (yum bacon) but the real treat was a trip to nearby Sanford Winery for a wine tasting and dinner. Suffice it to say that a large quantity of wine may or may not have been ordered before leaving that night.
What about getting lost?
Indeed, I even found a way to get lost when left to my own devices. After spending the morning kayaking and the afternoon cycling in Santa Barbara, I decided I wanted to check out the general store at El Capitan Canyon. Figuring that a walk would do me good (because I had not done enough activity that day?) I told everyone they could drop me off and I would find my way back up to the upper meadow where our cabins were located. Well….I did eventually. But not before discovering the other sections of tents, yurts, and cabins on the property.
Would I go glamping again?
Yes. In a heartbeat. Although our stay at El Capitan Canyon did set the bar pretty high. Maybe I need to add a trip to Paws Up to my travel wish-list for 2013.
What about you? Are you a camper? Would you enjoy glamping?
This post was inspired by my participation in the Toyota Women’s Influencer Network. Disclosure: I was selected for participation in the TWIN community through a program with Clever Girls Collective. I did not receive any compensation for writing this post, or payment in exchange for participating. My travel expenses during our California adventure were provided. The opinions expressed herein are mine, and do not reflect the views of the Toyota.