Experiences Lifestyle Outdoors Wanaka

Destination Glamping in Lake Hawea

Written by Jane Brooke

The Camp at Lake Hawea has been helping people create memories in the Kiwi outdoors for 50 years, recently achieving the milestone anniversary.

Current owners Sarah and Richard Burdon who also own the neighbouring Glen Dene Station took over The Camp ten years ago with a goal of creating outdoor accommodation for people wanting to spend time in the greater outdoors.

“The Camp originally started out as a very popular campground where Kiwis flocked to the lakeside campsite with their tents and caravans to immerse themselves in nature,” says Sarah. “ It was that simpler time of people being able to camp together, connect with each other and enjoy the summer season outside.”

“When we took over the business our intention was to create a destination camping area that was both accessible and appealing to everyone. That meant being able to offer a range of accommodation options to cater for people who still wanted to sleep out under the stars in their tent or glamp it up with all the mod cons of a modern hotel at their fingertips.”

The Camp at Lake Hawea is currently home to a number of glamping options. They include the Little Lakeside Cabin, a tiny house with epic views out over Lake Hawea and the  Denver Cove and a cluster of lakeside glamping tents ideal for friends and families to hire as a group or individually.  

The Safari Tent at Hideaway Bay is a romantic, secluded glamping spot for two and the Tipi Tent caters for larger families or friends staying together.

Sarah says camping is a rite of passage for many Kiwis and connecting with the outdoors part of the New Zealand psyche.

“Kiwi style camping is definitely about getting away from it all but we knew that getting away from modern life, technology, television and creature comforts wasn’t for everyone.”

Their answer is their newest camping option, the eco-styled Cross Lodge and Domes consisting of a series of six geodesic domes nestled at the back of the property with private access. 

Each dome has its own modern ensuite bathroom with a large deck overlooking the forest and mountains and with access to Cross Hill Lodge for breakfast and dinner. There is also a hot tub for guests.

“We wanted to expand our offering to include year-round glamping which catered for the changing seasons,” says Sarah. “It was essential that each dome have its own ensuite and also very important to have a highly effective heating/cooling system with insulation along with a gas fire to create a warm and cosy ambience on cooler nights.”  

“The addition of what we call high-country hospitality at the lodge completes this elevated glamping experience making the domes a perfect getaway at any time of the year.”

The Camp at Lake Hawea is just a short drive from Queenstown and only 15- minutes’ drive from Wānaka.

About the author

Jane Brooke