Part 1 of the series: The Best Camping in the World
Of all of the places you could camp, where would your ideal bucket list camping start? Would you rather camp in an exotic paradise location? Or one of the coldest places on earth?
Are you into mountain peaks? Or remote islands?
Whatever you are looking for, be it solitude or bragging rights, have we got a bucket list for you!
This is the first part of a series exploring some of the best camping spots in the world. We asked some of the most intrepid travel writers what they have knocked off of their camping bucket list.
We were blown away! As you’ll see, they are now our heroes. Not only have they made a bucket list, but they have also checked some extreme examples off of theirs.
From Antarctica to Nepal. From Indonesia’s famous tropical island Bali to Yemen’s little-known Socotra, these are a few examples of what you have been missing out on.
You better hurry! These are bucket list camping experiences you have to do before it’s too late.
Extreme Bucket List Camping:
by Pamela from The Directionally Challenged Traveler
One of the best places to go camping doesn’t include sitting by the fire with s’mores. Camping in Antarctica is the ultimate bucket list experience since it’s unlike any other campground in the world.
Travelers can visit Antarctica during the summer months – November through March. Expedition cruises, which are limited to under 500 passengers, can take you to one of the most remote places on Earth. Even though it’s summer, the temperature will remain in the ’30s (Fahrenheit) – and camping can only be done during nice weather. Everything that is used on land is brought from the ship and brought back – including the bathroom! You are not allowed to go #2 on land since the bathrooms are so small. Ship staff do not bring campers back to the boat until the morning unless it is absolutely necessary.
Environmental conservation is very important in Antarctica. You will camp on the ice that is free from any greenery. The ship staff will confirm that the area is free from any dangerous wildlife and far enough away from penguins and other birds.
Hiking is one of the best things to do while camping – and Antarctica is no different. Depending on the camping site, you can hike mountains or dormant volcanoes! Enjoy breathtaking views of mother nature including the late-night sun, penguins, and whales!
It might be one of the most primitive forms of camping, but spending a night with penguins and seals is worth the lack of sleep!
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Forgotten Bucket List Camping:
Socotra Island, Yemen
by Ellie from Ticking the List
Socotra Island is one of the world’s best-kept secrets, a forgotten paradise, 200 miles off the coast of Yemen. Because it belongs to Yemen, Socotra is often neglected by tourists. However, while there may be some aspect of political instability, the island itself has never seen any war and is very safe.
What makes Socotra one of the most unique camping spots in the world is its natural beauty and rich biodiversity. More than a third of the flora and fauna on Socotra are endemic to the island. Probably the most famous endemic plant to the island is the majestic Dragon Blood Tree (or Dracaena Cinnabari).
While each eco-campsite on the island has something different to offer, Arher Beach, on the northeast coast of the island, is pretty special. Although there are no shower facilities at this campsite, there is a beautiful natural freshwater stream to bathe in.
The campsite lies between the beach and two huge sand dunes, created by summer sandstorms. While it’s a pretty difficult climb (think one step up, two slides down), you’ll be rewarded with stunning views of nearby mountains and the surrounding sea.
Just a short drive from the campsite, at a small fishing village, you’ll find where the Indian Ocean meets the Arabian Sea.
Also close to the campsite is a trek up to Hoq Cave, one of the largest caves in Socotra. A challenging trek, especially in the summer heat, but you’ll be able to cool down while you explore this underground complex of chambers almost 10km long, featuring stalagmites, stalactites, and natural pools.
One of the best things about camping on Socotra, other than the spectacular scenery, is that it’s not overcrowded with tourists. You can hike, swim and camp without ever meeting another camping group if you choose.
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Exotic Bucket List Camping:
by Angela Goh from TourHero
Bali might be famous for its pristine coastlines and resorts, but look inland and you’ll discover the sublime and dramatic landscapes of its volcanic terrain. Here, you’ll find one of the best camping spots in the world on the iconic Mount Batur. One of two active volcanoes on the island, Mount Batur sits within a magnificent double caldera and towers 1,717 meters above sea level in the Kintamani District, an hours’ drive from Ubud.
Adventurers who’ve been to Mount Batur will agree it’s one of the best places to hike in Indonesia. Many choose to do the sunrise trek, one of Bali’s most popular activities. But the greatest secret is an overnight camping experience that allows you to wake up to pure tranquility: zero crowds, the silhouette of Mount Agung in the distance, and otherworldly scenes of rolling mist painted in soft sunlight.
The best way to camp at Mount Batur is to join a dedicated tour. The day before, you’ll climb to an altitude of 1,500 meters — a challenging hike, to be sure — to set up your tents. From there, panoramic views and a majestic sunset awaits. Sip on Balinese coffee and bite into simple sandwiches prepared with eggs cooked using volcanic steam. Your camping experience is made even more incredible as evening descends and you’re left sitting under a stunning canopy of stars.
Wake early the next morning to the whisper of waking wildlife and a mountainscape veiled in fog. There’s plenty of time to watch the sunrise wash the sky in warm hues before completing your hike to the summit — it’s first dibs to the top for the most magical views! There’s no doubt: the breathtaking Mount Batur in Bali makes it one of the best camping spots in the world.
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Namche Bazaar, Nepal
by Sarah Carter from A Social Nomad
The campsite at Namche Bazaar is quite simply stunning. Located at an altitude of 3,440 metres above sea level the only way to reach it is to hike here or arrive by helicopter.
The site is a 5-hour hike up the valley for those who are heading towards the Khumbu Valley and onto Everest Base Camp. There’s a lodge here, with a stove and food to be purchased as well as showers for US$3.
The campsite here also sells boiled water, which you’ll also want to filter to be safe – which is a necessity here at altitude.
The views here are truly spectacular, while you can’t actually see Mount Everest from the campsite, you can see a huge array of the Himalayas.
And the only sounds that you’ll hear are the bells attached to the yaks, who, along with their herders, ply the routes here hauling gear, equipment, food, and sometimes people up and down the valleys of the Himalaya.
Namche is the setting-off point for the Khumbu Valley, where you can visit the school built by Sir Edmund Hillary.
Also not to be missed in the area – just a short walk from the campsite is a location where you’ll find a statue of Hillary’s co-trekker and conqueror of Everest, Tenzing Norgay, and where it’s possible to see the sunrise above Everest itself.
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Wrap Up – The Bucket List Camping Highlights
You may have noticed that these are some amazing places. Most people will never get within 1,000 miles of any of them in their lifetime.
But that doesn’t have to be your story. These writers were once like you and me. They saw a picture or heard a story and they said, “I have to do that someday”. And instead of repeating that, they made someday come true.
We want to thank each of the writers for contributing snippets of their travels. Be sure to check out their full stories on their prospective websites.
As we mentioned though, this is just the beginning. Stay tuned for the second part of this series as we explore the best camping around the world.
If you want to camp closer to home and would rather have a few more creature comforts, we have the pivotal introduction to car camping. It is one of the most complete guides to camping to get you set up in your own campsite in no time!