The Nature Resort: A glamping weekend in Austria

After a 30 minute bus ride from Innsbruck, the capital city of Tyrol I arrived at Austria’s first and only glamping resort. The peaceful resort is located in midst stunning scenery of snow-capped mountains, lush green trees and a small lake that gives the resort its name: the Natterer See (Lake Natters). The site consists of a camping ground that accommodates campervans and tents, as well as mobile homes and of course the Nature Resort. I received a warm welcome from the ladies at the reception, making me feel comfortable straight away. They checked me in and handed me the keys to my home for the next 48 hours, which I could not wait to see.

Sleeping Barrels
The Ferienparadies Natterer See offers three exciting glamping options: the sleeping barrel, the wood lodge and the safari tent. The barrels accommodate one to two people and while they do not contain a rest room or kitchen, their charming interior is everything you need for a cosy stay in the Austrian countryside.

Safari Tent Patio
Safari Tents
The safari tents are the biggest and most luxurious accommodation of the Nature Resort. Each lodge tent is named after a different animal that you would typically see on safari in Africa and the name is very much the theme for the interior design. The lodge tents can accommodate between five and eight people and are ideal for groups and families.

Wood Lodge Inside
View from the Wood Lodge
I stayed at one of the smaller panorama wood lodges, which are completely sustainable. The whole interior was designed with attention to detail and nature in mind. My favourite feature was without a doubt the stunning panorama glass front that presents a spectacular view of the landscape. The smallest wood lodge sleeps two people and has not only got a kitchenette with a hob and fridge, but a small bathroom with a toilet and shower to keep you from having to venture outside to get ready in the mornings.

Ferienparadies Natterer See Campsite
The weather upon my arrival was gorgeous and sunny, perfect to relax and enjoy a BBQ. Each of the wood lodges and safari tents has their own outdoor lounge space with a BBQ grill. A little convenience store at the reception offers everything you need to get it going. I spent the evening on the panorama terrace sampling local sausages and watching the sun set over the majestic mountains of Tyrol.

During the summer the site offers a variety of different activities such as guided nature walks, water sport and an aqua park at the lake, as well as a variety of on-site entertainment. The activities vary depending on whether you are visiting during the winter or summer season.

Lake Natters in the rain
Hiking View Meadow
Unfortunately I woke up the next morning to a rhythmic sound and as soon as I opened the curtains, a view out of the window confirmed my dreaded suspicion: it was raining. I was set on exploring some of the nearby hiking routes and decided not to let the rain cancel my plans. The receptionist recommended a 4km route through the woods that would be at least partly protected from the rain. The starting point for the hike was just outside the campsite and the route took me through fairy-tale like forests and meadows. The scenery was absolutely breath-taking, even in the rain. After an hour I arrived at a cosy Austrian restaurant which due to the great menu, outdoor space and petting zoo is a popular destination for a day trip for tourists and locals alike. The menu featured a variety of local and national delicacies, including my favourite dish from Tyrol: spinach and parmesan dumplings.

If you don’t fancy walking back the same route, there is the option of hiking back via the small village Natters, which is only 2.5km from the campsite.

Sightseeing in Innsbruck
The surrounding area has plenty of indoor and outdoor activities to choose from to plan your day trip. One that I definitely did not want to miss is a day of exploring Innsbruck. If you are a guest at the Nature Resort you have the opportunity to use the local bus service to Innsbruck for free, which was an added bonus as I did not have access to a vehicle during my stay. The bus takes you right into the centre of town from which you can set off for a fun day of sightseeing. I started my day with a visit to the Hofgarten, which is a protected park with lots of green areas to relax. The park has a beautiful music pavilion, a small duck pond and an adventure playground for kids. The old town of Innsbruck is only a short walk from the Hofgarten and features the “Goldenes Dacherl”, the city’s most famous landmark. This part of town was my favourite. I could have spent hours walking the historic alleyways. If you are getting hungry from all that sightseeing, make sure to try some apple strudel, a popular Austrian pastry.

The Nature Resort at Lake Natters has brought glamping to Austria and with a combination of mountains views, outdoor activities and luxurious accommodation that is embedded in nature, it is here to stay!

Maria Berz

A 26-year-old travel addict with an appetite for life, passion for international music and love for global cuisine. She has just relocated to her home country Germany, after spending six years in the beautiful North of England. Maria is the founder of Global Brunch, a freelance digital expert, writer, hobby photographer and radio host.

Family Easter Glamping Holidays

The Easter Holiday is a great excuse for the whole family to get together for an adventure. Whether you’re looking for a place to escape close to home or an active break abroad, here are some ideas for your perfect family Easter glamping holiday this year.

A Luxury Nature Break in Andalusia

Miguel Paez

The Natural Reserve “Parque Natural de la Bahia de Cádiz” in Andalusia is the ideal destination for an Easter family glamping adventure. The pine tree forests, sandy beaches and freshwater lakes are home to a wealth of wildlife, making this a fantastic spot for animal observation, nature hikes and family picnics.

Glamping Dehesa de las Yeguas’s luxury safari family tents are situated in the heart of this Nature Reserve and offer plenty of space for the whole family inside, as well as lounging space on the front deck to take in some of those beautiful views.

A Countryside Retreat in Northern California

Stonewall Ranch Barn House

Stonewall Ranch Barn House 02

Northern California is the perfect destination for an Easter glamping getaway to the countryside. This is a fantastic choice for outdoor families and nature lovers.

The Barn House at the Stonewall Ranch is an excellent setting for a family barbecue and offers a great range of outdoor activities such as wildlife observing, hiking and fishing. You can even bring your pet along on this family adventure!

A Winter Adventure in Alaska

Log Cabin Wilderness Lodge Alaska

Log Cabin Wilderness Lodge

The Mentasta Mountains of interior Alaska have everything you need for a winter adventure with the whole family. Enjoy the beautiful winter wonderland during a snowshoeing trip or a day of skiing.

The Log Cabin Wilderness Lodge is an all-inclusive accommodation that offers breakfast, dinner and fun winter activities for your family Easter break. The site also offers a relaxing sauna and hot tub for you to warm up after an evening of star gazing and Northern Lights chasing with the kids.

A Road Trip in Queensland

Maui Motorhomes

Queensland not only offers 7000km of coastline, but it is also home to the world largest coral reef, the Great Barrier Reef. If you’re looking for sunshine and water sports this Easter, then this might just be the right destination for you.

Maui Motorhomes is an experienced campervan hire brand in Australia that provides you with everything you need for a family road trip through this beautiful state.

Image Credits: Maui Motorhomes, Log Cabin Wilderness Lodge, Stonewall Ranch, Glamping Dehesa de las Yeguas.

Maria Berz

A 26-year-old travel addict with an appetite for life, passion for international music and love for global cuisine. She has just relocated to her home country Germany, after spending six years in the beautiful North of England. Maria is the founder of Global Brunch, a freelance digital expert, writer, hobby photographer and radio host.

Caravan Glamping in Berlin

I slowly started to stir in my little bed. I turned over and pulled my covers up to my ears. I could hear the campground waking up around me and morning light started to illuminate my little caravan. I heard people whispering morning conversations, searching for toothbrushes and taking the walk to the campground bathroom. This is actually one of my favorite things about camping, this group campground mentality – that we are all in it together – out here in nature.

But we weren’t actually out in nature. Six other caravans surrounded me, but we were all inside a large building with a cement floor. We didn’t drive our caravans here, they were already in the building as a permanent fixture in this unique ‘hotel’ in Berlin’s hip Neukölln neighborhood. This was not your typical glamping – instead it was one of the most inventive ideas for urban glamping I had ever experienced.

I took my morning walk to the ‘campground’ shared bathroom and it was all toasty and warm inside as the radiator was going full blast. I said hello to the other campers and took my hot shower. This was much better than regular camping! And instead of sitting around a campfire, people gathered at the little wooden breakfast bar in the morning. I grabbed one of the croissants and apples that were available to all of the ‘campers’, made myself a cup of coffee, and sat on the chairs neatly arranged outside of my caravan planning what I was going to do in Berlin for the day.

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“Huttenpalast means cabin palace in German – we wanted a play on words,” Silke explained. Silke and her partner Sarah dreamed up the idea for this adorable indoor caravan campground in 2009. She was at a crossroads in her career, a burned out event planner, in desperate need of a change in her life. Silke knew nothing about how to run or start a hotel, but she was familiar with how to be a customer in one. She had grown up in a family that moved around a lot, living in many countries and staying in hotels for much of her life.

She had three goals for Huttenpalast
1. Every guest should have a place to sleep that is clean and tidy with attention to detail.
2. Have good beds – no cheap mattresses. After all, people are paying for a good night’s sleep when they book a night in a hotel.
3. Keep it personal and create experiences where people can easily meet and mingle from the employees to the guests.

Caravans with Attention to Detail

Kleine Schwester (little sister), Friedel, Dubener Ei (egg), and Schnewittchen (Snow White) – each caravan has a name and a story. No two caravans are alike at Huttenpalast as each one was researched and bought via ebay around the region by Silke and Sarah. Once they transported them back to Berlin, they gutted, and refurbished the retro caravans to their original glory. The kitchenettes and tables were removed in the caravans to make room for comfy large mattresses.

We stayed in the Schwalbennest (swallow’s nest), which was the only West German model among the family of caravans. It had a little closet and a table with cushioned seats that also converted into a single sleeping ‘bed’. I adored the modern touches in the retro caravans like the wooden shelving designed by a local artist. Sarah and Silke had curated each caravan beautifully giving each a personality.

shallows nestSwallow’s Nest – our glamping home for 3 nights

shallows nest intSwallow’s Nest

The other caravan that stole my heart was the Snow White caravan – perfect for the solo traveler. Outside 7 little Garden Gnomes surrounded it and inside it was only big enough to sleep one person…Snow White of course.

snow whiteSnow White’s Solo Caravan

The Dubener Ei had been elevated so that you had to go up a flight of stairs to enter it. It was the penthouse of the caravans. In addition to the retro caravans, there were also 4 little cabins at Huttenpalast that were created special for the space.

penthouseThe ‘Penthouse’ Egg complete with flower box

tiny cabinsTiny Cabins intermixed with Caravans

Comfortable Beds in a Small Space

Most of the caravans consisted of simply a bed inside, but these were not typical European beds. You won’t find any split twin beds pushed into a queen at Huttenpalast! Instead you have a proper queen mattress in most of the caravans that’s super comfortable and outfitted in luxurious thread count sheets. In fact, I’m pretty sure the beds were a big upgrade to the original beds in the caravans! I slept like a baby during my nights in the caravan.

bedEvery bit of space in the caravans are filled with comfy beds

Meet and Mingle

It’s an indoor campground, and it’s a super place to socialize. Outside of each caravan was space for people to sit, mingle, read, work or drink. Little faux trees dotted the space and funky 60’s inspired chairs, couches, and lamps made the place cozy. Every little nook had a cushion, and there was even a community ukulele. Every detail was impeccable down to the glass mugs for unlimited tea and coffee.

If you want to get outside for real and enjoy nature you can do that in the summer months in the Huttenpalast garden. It’s full of plants, picnic tables and hammocks – a warm inviting place to mingle with other visitors.

nook
seating
shared ukuleleA shared ukulele
gardenGarden space

Not only is there shared space in the caravan area and a garden, but Huttenpalast also has a sidewalk café that serves coffee and breakfast accessible by guests and locals. So you may even get to mingle with Berliners while staying there.

Instead of having to hitch a caravan to your car and fight traffic and mosquitos, you get a lovely indoor glamping environment in the city. Berlin is full of creative, innovative ideas, so why would you want to stay in a normal hotel when you could be glamping in a restored, cozy caravan?

Sherry Ott

Sherry Ott is a long term traveler, blogger, and photographer with one goal in mind – to make you wish you were somewhere else.  She seeks out epic adventures to intriguing places and writes about her around the world adventures on Ottsworld.com. You can also follow her live travels on Instagram and Twitter.