Now one year on - and 5 Tentsile Experience Camps up - Tony reflects on the lessons learned, challenges faced and what’s next in store for the future of camping!
We’ve learnt you can't start a Tentsile Experience Camp without these 3 elements, so here’s the behind-the-scenes knowledge and what makes these camps exciting for all of you to visit…
FIRST, THE IDEA
Every Tentsile Experience Camp starts with an idea: a vision for the future of camping and connection to nature. You must yearn for adventure and new experiences! Then when the dream is fixed, other tricky questions must be considered: How will different cultures, local officials and existing camps take to this new form of ‘green hotel’?
Tony: “With a few pilot camps in my homeland, Finland, feedback was great and the idea started to grow. We realised these camps would not only be for people trying the Tentsile tree tent, but also to protect precious parts of the world.
With years of travel under my belt, I see far too often unique and beautiful places ruined by big investors and heavy infrastructures for tourism. Testing taught us that Experience Camps can be an eco-solution; easy to move, advocates for Leave No Trace camping, and available to local and small operators to manage, keeping their land in a natural state. Not a bad idea is it?”
THEN, THE LOCATION
The best spots are places with existing natural significance: National Parks, UNESCO World Heritage Sites and protected flora and fauna. These sites have green guidelines and a strong community of nature lovers involved. To set up the TECs we must work with local travelling authorities, planning offices, National Park Rangers and many other specialists. Even though it’s not always been easy, when these experts work together we can give these naturally rich places the attention they deserve - while maintaining the history, culture and local lifestyle.
(that's right, we have a Tentsile Experience Camp here!)
MOST IMPORTANT OF ALL, THE PEOPLE
Without our local operators, these Tentsile Experience Camps quite frankly wouldn’t exist! Tony has gathered an amazing group around the world ready to welcome you to their individual camps. We've had messages from Thailand, Ecuador, India, Costa Rica, Canada, Sweden and so many other places eager to bring this new form of eco-travelling to their country. While some conversations simply fizzled out, others thrived with the passion and drive needed to set up these camps.
Tony: “The internet and social media helped to spread the Tentsile Experience idea worldwide, using #TentsileExperience. We’ve had people working in the film industry, preservation schemes and outdoor sports, all exploring how the Tentsile Tree Tent can work for them.
Our camps are just the start… with more people, more places and more insane ideas we can all take to the trees and try something new!”
So, for those looking to try-before-you-buy, or looking for a place to relax and unwind, or even those interested in setting up a camp, we hope you’ve learnt a thing or two about Tentsile Experience Camps – we’ve certainly learned a lot so far!
And we're not done yet!
Watch this space for more exciting locations coming soon...