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- Tentrr connects campers with private landowners and State Park grounds for secluded camping experiences.
- Campers can choose from fully-equipped sites that come with canvas tents or cabins with beds already set up, or they're able to opt for a more traditional campsite and bring their own gear.
- Prices vary depending on the time of year and the type of site, but the cost for fully-equipped sites typically start in the low $100s.
- 5 trip-booking sites where you can find last-minute camping reservations, including for private campsites
- See also: 17 of the best campsites across the US for a scenic outdoor getaway
Due to the pandemic, camping has skyrocketed in popularity since it presents a relatively safe way to vacation. However, not everyone knows how to (or enjoys) pitching their own tent and sleeping on the ground. Additionally, as camping has increased in popularity, campsites have become increasingly booked up and crowded, which defeats the entire purpose of a secluded getaway in nature.
Tentrr is a booking site that connects vacationers with private land owners for an upgraded camping experience. Campsites are generally on acres of private land for a truly immersive experience, and users can opt for campsites that come with canvas tents or cabins and true beds for a slightly more luxurious night's rest.
What is Tentrr?
Most Tentrr campsites fall somewhere between camping and glamping. While the campsites aren't as luxurious as top glamping destinations, they're firmly a step up from pitching your own tent and sleeping on the ground.
Each spot comes with either a thick canvas tent that's already set up, or a small cabin. All sites have a Queen-size bed inside with the basics ready to go, and many have extras you can add on for a low fee, such as firewood and fire starters if you don't want to pack your own. But you'll still largely be roughing it in the outdoors and you'll need to pack and cook all your own food.
What truly sets Tentrr apart is the fact that it exclusively connects campers with private landowners and State Park grounds for a far more secluded stay than typical campgrounds. Forget parking your car amidst hundreds of other campers and pitching your tent within earshot of that other family's crying kids — most Tentrr sites are secluded on 10 acres of land or more, making them ideal both for social distancing and for truly immersing yourself in nature.
The service also offers a smaller selection of backcountry sites that are closer to traditional camping. At these sites, campers bring all their own equipment, but can still enjoy a more secluded setup.
Tentrr is a four-season company and when searching for sites, they have an icon designating those that are "winter-ready" and that come with cozy winter extras to ensure you'll be nice and toasty even in the snow. Campsites specifically designated as winter sites include insulated tent flies and flooring, along with propane heaters and, generally, extra blankets.
How much is Tentrr?
The cost of Tentrr varies depending on the type of campsite you choose and the season. Backcountry campsites with no equipment start as low as $35, while signature sites with tents or cabins start from around $125. Generally, signature campsites start in the low to mid $100s.
The very best signature campsites can cost upwards of $300 on weekends in the summer high season but even these drop closer to $190 in the fall and winter. While that might sound pricey for a bed in a canvas tent, it does allow novice campers to avoid having to invest in their own equipment. For others, the price of total seclusion, especially amidst the pandemic, is more than worth it.
Where does Tentrr have campsites?
Tentrr currently includes listings in 41 states, plus Puerto Rico. You can filter campsites by Signature or Backcountry listings depending on whether you prefer roughing it or more of an upscale experience. Signature sites include canvas tents or cabins with simple beds set up inside. Backcountry sites are more traditional campsites where you bring your own equipment, but are still in a secluded area without other campers around.
My experience with Tentrr
Like many travelers, my lofty vacation goals for the year were abruptly put on hold due to the pandemic. After several months spent self-isolating, I was longing for an outdoor escape but still had safety as a main priority. I grew up camping with my family in New Mexico, but haven't done as much of it since moving to the East Coast. However, camping felt like a relatively safe way to enjoy a short getaway.
My first venture out was to a campground near a beach on Long Island with rented camping equipment. However, when a nearby car alarm went off at 3 a.m. followed by someone accidentally turning on their headlights right into our tent, I knew crowded campgrounds were not the peaceful commune with nature I was dreaming of.
So, when I first learned about Tentrr I lept at the chance to stay in a secluded spot. My fiance, who is a novice camper, was thrilled by the idea of not needing to pitch our own tent and having a slightly comfier stay. I did a quick search for fully-equipped campsites within easy driving distance of New York and was drawn to the checkbox that let me search by those by a river or stream. When I saw a site that was called "Waterfall Paradise, Walking Distance to River," I was sold. It came with a small cabin, a fire pit, and was set directly next to a peaceful stream.
We arrived in the afternoon after following the driving instructions we'd been sent and drove down a long dirt road past a small house and into a wooded clearing with a yellow sign marked "Tentrr" nailed to a tree. The cabin came into view and we parked right next to it. While the campsite was actually just a short drive from the small town of Port Jervis, it felt like we were a world away immediately.
Fresh air filled my lungs and the forest symphony of the stream and small waterfall was the only audible noise. The tiny wood cabin was minimalist but extremely cozy. The bed came with linens and a colorful blanket for added warmth. There was a tiny wood-burning stove in the corner (which proved very necessary once the sun went down), as well as two kerosene lanterns on either side of the bed. The ceiling was made of a thick, see-through plastic so I could gaze up at the trees or night sky from bed.
There was also a little porch with two Adirondack chairs, a fire pit, a picnic table, and a wooden platform built right over the waterfall with a table made out of a tree and an umbrella. A sink for washing up was just across the river and there was a simple shower set up right at the river for the ultimate outdoor bathing experience. The listing was not exaggerating when it called this spot "paradise."
Our hosts, who lived in the small house we passed on our way in, left us a nice note explaining where everything was, plus their phone number in case we needed anything. Cell service, however, was mostly non-existent, making that a challenge if we actually did need something.
We followed a map our hosts left for us to a large waterfall just a short 10-minute walk away. The entire area was stunning and we had it all to ourselves — a serious treat for city dwellers.
Because we were only staying for one night, we didn't do much cooking and instead brought on-the-go meals and snacks. However, we ate them at the picnic table while enjoying the scenery and even built a fire in the fire pit to keep warm and roast some marshmallows.
At sunset, I walked to a nearby field and found a family of deer nibbling on the tall grass, truly making for a fairytale experience. The night was perfectly capped off when solar-powered twinkle lights on a few of the trees slowly began to turn on, adding to the enchanting setting.
We did run into a brief issue trying to light the kerosene lanterns, as neither of us had ever done this before and there were no instructions, but eventually we figured it out. The wood-burning stove and extra blanket proved extremely useful since it did get cold but when I woke up the next morning, all I wanted to do was stay longer.
The bottom line
While Tentrr is certainly more expensive than traditional campgrounds, it's on par with or less expensive than many glamping sites. For those seeking secluded stays, an upgrade from a sleeping bag, or novice campers who just want to experience an outdoor escape without needing to bring major equipment, Tentrr is an ideal option.
For those looking to save on costs or who already own all their own gear and prefer the typical camping experience, Tentrr's backcountry sites still provide an alluring and peaceful alternative to crowded campgrounds. For me, camping is really about reconnecting with nature, and the private campsites truly achieve this regardless of if you opt to stay in a traditional tent, a canvas tent, or a small cabin.
However, I found the fully-equipped campsite to be well worth the cost during my stay. My waterfall campsite was nothing short of magical, and I'm already planning on booking another stay. In an undoubtedly taxing year, escaping for even one night with Tentrr was a true highlight.
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