Going off the beaten track no longer means rough sleeping and no toilet or shower. In Russia, a new type of ecotourism is rapidly gaining ground: glamping (short for “glamorous camping”). Glampers in Russia have a range of options — from staying in a safari tent, yurt, or trailer to sleeping under a glass dome or in an eco-house.
All these cozy alternatives offer stylish, modern infrastructure, and, most importantly, are eco-friendly. And despite (or thanks to) the remoteness from civilization, they provide numerous leisure activities: from trekking and fishing to quad biking and yoga. Not to mention the mind-blowing views.
Les & More (literally 'Forest & Sea') campground is sited on an island in the Volga River near the town of Kalyazin in Tver Region (200 km from Moscow). The place is famous for its photogenic flooded belfry. The price includes transfer to the island aboard a yacht, “room” service, water activities, and three meals a day from the onsite chef (all glampers eat together at one large table). The nine tents can accommodate up to 20 guests; toilet and warm shower are separate.
From 2000 rub. ($30)
There is another branch of the campground in the Altai Mountains, which offers organized tours (150,000 rub. ($2200) + 40-60,000 rub. ($600-900) for a helicopter drop). Both camps are open from May to September.
Here, from under a large glass dome and a warm duvet, you can observe the incredible natural beauty and the Northern Lights. The snug tents on the shore of the Barents Sea are designed for two occupants. Bathhouse and toilets are shared. Since it’s too remote to get there on your own, the only option is to take a tour from Murmansk (summer months only).
The organizers promise plenty of natural and manmade wonders: rocks and waterfalls, jeeping and quad biking, as well as a visit to the northernmost point of mainland Russia — Cape Nemetsky. What’s more, the chef offers new local delicacies and seafood dishes every day, with three daily meals included in the tour price (from 78,000 rub. ($1200)).
Russia’s most fashionable village and open-air art park (220 km from Moscow) offers art lovers the opportunity to stay inside art objects, such as a villa built out of slabs from a Soviet concrete fence. And then there is Skater’s House, which even has a skating ramp. There are other, more commonplace options: an ascetic barn, a kibitka (wagon) on wheels, large-windowed huts made of eco-materials, and a hostel-style “art barracks.” Some options have amenities right inside the room. It is open all year round.
Bed in shared/separate accommodation from 1500 rub. ($22) / 6000 rub. ($90)
The first glampsite on the Black Sea lies in the village of Kabardinka, Krasnodar Territory. The four-person safari tents with two bedrooms are situated right on the beach, each with a terrace offering sea views. There are also less glamorous tents available, as well as places for caravans. Near the beach is a common area for romantic evening bonfires.
The camp facilities are located separately, and meals are not included in the price; the glampsite operates all year round.
From 3000 rub. ($45)
SFERA is located on the shores of Lake Pleshcheyev, where Peter the Great once built his first ship. Today, it is a place for kitesurfing in summer and skiing in winter. Nearby is the famous Golden Ring town of Pereslavl-Zalessky, with many museums and monasteries. The best part of this year-round glampsite is the wide choice of accommodation: from tepees and Mongolian yurts to a geo-dome and eco-huts. Every guest has their own dry closet; the shower room is separate.
From 2799 rub. ($42)
Just 130 km from St. Petersburg, you find yourself on the border with Karelia and Finland in an unbelievably picturesque region, full of lakes and cliffs. The stylish Hills & Huts campground offers detached cabins with private dry closet and fireplace; showers are in a separate building.
The locality is great for outdoor activities and trekking, plus there’s boat and bicycle rental, a lakeside bathhouse, and a Japanese-style hot soaking tub. The season here opens in May and runs till September.
From 6000 rub. ($90)
Shanti Home has two branches: in the forest and next to a lake. Both are ideal for romantic getaways. Here you can enjoy the crackling of an open fireplace, aromatic tea, outdoor hikes, and, of course, amazing views. The two-storey hut has everything you need: double bed, hammock, toilet, shower, equipped kitchen, terrace, and personal spa tub with hot water.
The glampsite is open all year round: cross-country skis can be hired in winter, and standup paddleboards and bicycles in summer.
From 5000 rub. ($75)
This summer glampsite is located on the Curonian Spit, famous for its sandy dunes and fantastically shaped trees right on the shoreline of the Baltic Sea, next to one of the finest beaches in the region.
Each tent has a double bed, stylish coffee tables and chairs, and a private terrace; shower and toilet are shared.
From 6000 rub. ($90)
Zelenaya Tropa (literally 'The Green Trail') glamping ground is located 120 km from Moscow, so it gets plenty of visitors from the Russian capital. It features a library with antique books and a forest where roe deer are sometimes spotted. Nearby is the picturesque Polenovo Estate, which is worth a look on the way there or back.
The site works all year round (Friday–Monday in winter); the 12 warm huts are equipped with shower and toilet, and some even have their own mini-sauna.
From 3500 rub. ($52)
If you’re lucky enough to get to Kamchatka, you might want a more "connecting" nature experience than simple walking and hiking. This glampsite on the Pacific coast offers double, quadruple, and VIP tents with all amenities, as well as a small bathhouse and a quaint transparent dome for romantic dining. Summer only.
From 7000 rub. ($105)
If using any of Russia Beyond's content, partly or in full, always provide an active hyperlink to the original material.
to our newsletter!
Get the week's best stories straight to your inbox