The eight weeks I spent at Camp Mataponi every summer during my childhood were some of the best weeks of my life. From learning to water ski on Sebago Lake and jumping off zip lines to weekly bonfires, I have nothing but fond memories of camp life. But who says all the fun has to be over now that I’m a few (okay, more than a few) years older than the average camper?
“Adult summer camps,” where you can relive the wonder of roasting marshmallows with your friends and shooting a bow and arrow, have become increasingly common over the last few years. In addition to the rest and relaxation that most of us are looking for on vacation, they also offer a seemingly endless number of activities that, as it turns out, are just as much fun in your 20s, 30s, and beyond as they were when you were 12.
Even better this time around? These cabins come with air conditioning, their own showers, and dining hall food that blows those old-school sloppy joes out of the water. Bonus: booze. So, we rounded up seven of the coolest adult summer camps (or, more like “glamps”) to inspire your next adventurous getaway. Get those archery arms ready!
Their tagline is “escape to happiness,” and it seems like that’s exactly what happens when you step onto the property, which could be described as a college campus meets campground. There are activities like wakeboarding, archery, and a ropes course, and breakfast is served with a side of Bloody Marys. Plus, there are nightly bonfires with a DJ and plenty of booze. The camp floats to different locations in North America throughout the summer and early fall, so you have the chance to enjoy no matter where you are located. The kicker? There’s a blob to make all your Heavyweights dreams come true.
Think of this place as a traditional summer camp meets wellness retreat. It has your usual summer camp staples, like a lake and campfire, but also has activities like paddleboard yoga, tarot card readings, group workout classes, and massive dance parties. Each summer there are East coast and West coast weekends, and people love it so much they return year after year (after year).
If arts and crafts was your favorite summertime activity, The Makerie is the place for you. This Boulder, CO, crafting spot, hosted on a farm, offers multi-day workshop “retreats” where you can learn how to create things like woven baskets and original textiles from local artisans. The meals feature a different local eatery each day, as well as teas and healthy treats throughout the day.
This is the OG of adult summer camps. Located in the Berkshire Mountains, there are activities for everyone from sports lovers (hello, tennis courts) to adrenaline junkies (um, high trapeze class). The daily schedule happens to be super flexible, so if you’d rather spend your days kayaking or floating on one of the lake’s massive trampolines, that’s cool, too. Plus, there are nightly beer pong and flip cup tournaments, which always make camp more fun.
As Camp Bonfire puts it, “you’re a grown ass adult, do what you want.” Here, this can range from pool parties to paddleboarding to s’more making to learning literal survival skills, plus every other activity you could possibly think of. You can even book custom retreats, and pack your schedule with all of the activities you love (and none of the ones you don’t).
If you’re more into the “glam” part of glamping, look no further than Telluride’s Dunton Hot Springs. The campgrounds-inspired resort has eight luxury tents with their own bathrooms and complimentary mountain bikes. In lieu of a lake, there’s a gorgeous pool, and the property is surrounded by mountains for daily hikes. There’s also yoga, horseback riding, fly fishing, and rock climbing, plus 5-star, locally-sourced meals that are served with reserve wines instead of bug juice.
Even if traditional camp activities aren’t for you, there’s one getaway that nearly everyone will love: Wine camp. Head to Sonoma for a four day food and wine experience where you can relax, learn, sip and stomp to your heart’s desire. Hangovers included.