Why camp when you can stay in a hotel, you might ask. The question you should be asking yourself is: why not camp instead of staying in a hotel? We live in a country with spectacular natural beauty, and there are few accommodation options that let you get as close to nature as camping does.

From the great Himalayas, where you can set up camp in the snow or in a fragrant pine forest, beside a clear mountain lake or with a view of a glacier; to the sand dunes of Rajasthan, where you’ll camp under the desert stars; to the rolling hills in Maharashtra where you’ll camp in the green Sahyadris, India has it all. So where do you start?

Here’s a list of the best campsites we’ve found:

Camp Water’s Edge, Lonavala, Maharashtra

Camp Water's Edge, Lonavala

Camp Water’s Edge, Lonavala


This camp is not far from Mumbai, Pune and Lonavala, but it nestles deep in the hills and away from the crowds. You’ll be surrounded by nature, on the banks of a large lake, with plenty of greenery to explore. You’ll spend the day on a sprawling 18-acre property, enjoying swimming, kayaking, river crossing and nature walks. There are also charming gazebos to while away a few hours, and a plant nursery and well-manicured gardens for you to spend some quiet time at. There are clean and large restrooms and changing rooms, with separate blocks for men and women for your use. A large dining hall provides a comfortable place to eat your meals, which a team of chefs conjures up for you.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Camp Purple, Mukteshwar, Uttarakhand

Camp Purple, Mukteshwar, Uttarakhand

Camp Purple, Mukteshwar, Uttarakhand


Located in Mukteshwar, high in the Kumaon hills, this camp is an idyllic getaway. Camp Purple is a dreamer’s paradise, named after the colour of the clouds at sunset. In the spring months, the orchards around the campsite blossom with gorgeous flowers, turning to luscious peaches and plums as the summer months come along. During winter, the morning mists lie low on the mountains, turning all shades from baby pink to blazing reds and purple. You’ll be staying in American safari tents, equipped with cots, mattresses, blankets/sleeping bags, and lamps.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Bull’s River Camp, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand

Bull's Riverside Camp, Rishikesh

Bull’s Riverside Camp, Rishikesh


This riverside campsite is located in the midst of nature, with the Tons river flowing by right outside. At 4500 ft, the campsite also allows you stunning views of the valley and forests around. You can take kayaks out to battle the rapids, race mountain bikes over the hilly terrain, or go swimming in clear freshwater pools and waterfalls. It’s your own little paradise, with mist floating in in the morning, boulders to sit on and admire the river, and forest trails to explore. Every evening, you’ll gather around a campfire, enjoy a few snacks, and wish this trip would never end.

You’ll stay in cosy tents with cots, mattresses, thick blankets and a carpeted floor. For your comfort, there are separate toilet tents and shower tents. This campsite is only open for three months of the year, from April to June, so don’t leave it till too late.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Letscampout, Pavna lake, Maharashtra

Pavna Lake Camping, Maharashtra

Pavna Lake Camping, Maharashtra


Camping by Pavna lake offers you the chance to get away from the city with just a short drive. The campsite has a perennial lake on three sides, giving you beautiful views at any time of the day. While the campsite turns lush green during the monsoon, it is also gorgeous during the winter months, when mist descends on the lake in the early morning and there’s a nip in the air at night.

This is one of the best campsites in India and when the temperature drops (Nov-Mar), the chilly nights make the bonfire even more fun. You’ll camp in weather-proof tents with foam mats to ensure you get a good night’s sleep, with comfort facilities like dry toilet tents with Western commodes.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Camp Suryagaon, Nainital, Uttarakhand

Camp Suryagaon, Sattal, Nainital

Camp Suryagaon, Sattal, Nainital


Camp Suryagaon perches on a hilltop about 22 kms from Nainital, at an altitude of 4500 feet. This campsite allows you to explore fragrant pine forests, swim in a beautiful lake fringed with greenery, and splash at the base of a waterfall with water so pure that it leaves your hair and skin silky soft. The views from the campsite are spectacular, with the seven lakes that Saat-taal is named after.

At the campsite, you’ll spend evenings around a bonfire and sleep in cosy American safari tents. During the day, you can hike through oak and pine forests, go rock-climbing, or head for a spot of kayaking or fishing. At night, you can go on a moonlight trek to a haunted lake, or you can stay tucked in your sleeping bags in a tent.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Aspen Camp, Rishikesh, Uttarakhand
aspen
This campsite is nestled at a peaceful location along a tributary of the mighty Ganges, away from the city and the crowds. You’ll love the freedom and peace at this beautiful riverside forest campsite, in the middle of a national forest. Every morning, you’ll wake up wishing you could just live here forever. The skies are clear, the birds chirp happily, and the blue river gurgles all day. You can choose to head to the river for swimming, or try your hand at high-adrenaline sports like rock climbing and rappelling, or you could maximise your time in nature with a waterfall trek, nature walk, or bird watching.

You’ll be staying in Swiss tents with attached washrooms and electricity. Each tent is equipped with carpeted flooring, towels, personal utility kits, electric heating bags, fans and lights. The beds have thick mattresses, and pillows and blankets. Apart from this, your campsite has delicious buffet meals in a variety of cuisines. There are barbeques every night, bonfires, and lots more.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Riverside Camp, Jayalgarh, Uttarakhand

Camp Jayalgarh, Uttarakhand

Camp Jayalgarh, Uttarakhand


This delightful lodge lies about 90 kms from Rishikesh, along the banks of the Alaknanda. The emerald waters contrasts perfectly against the white sand beaches, with the greenery all around and blue skies above. And you’ll be right in the midst of all this beauty, enjoying bonfires and falling asleep to the sounds of nature outside. The location offers you temples, forest trails, local village walks and more, but the highlight is the adventure activities available. The river has stretches of tumbling rapids on which you can go whitewater rafting, but there are calmer stretches where you can try kayaking, body surfing or swimming.

You’ll live in Swiss tents, with a permanent roof and ensuite washrooms to shelter you from the elements. Inside your tent, you have queen size beds, luggage racks, side tables, and a coffee table and chairs. However, you’ll probably spend most of your time on the delightful private sit-out that looks over the river.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Camp Kyari Sat, Corbett, Nainital, Uttarakhand

Camp Kyari Sat, Corbett, Uttarakhand

Camp Kyari Sat, Corbett, Uttarakhand


Camp Kyari is located in the foothills above Kotabagh, on the periphery of Jim Corbett National Park. It lies at an altitude of 2800 feet, with spectacular views of the Baur river and the Kotabagh valley. This wild campsite is one of the best campsites in India and distant call of the leopard often punctures the peace and quiet, and the rustling of wind in the leaves. It’s Corbett country, and your campsite brings to mind all the books you’ve ever read as a kid. You can climb into machaans, ramble through thickly forested lanes, go on bicycle rides through charming villages, or take a dip in the stream nearby. You’ll be staying in American safari tents, equipped with cots, mattresses, blankets/sleeping bags, and lamps.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Camp Ramganga, Munsiyari, Uttarakhand

Camp Ramganga, Munsiyari, Uttarakhand

Camp Ramganga, Munsiyari, Uttarakhand


Camp Ramganga is located at Nachani village on the banks of the river Ramganga. The river has clear, sparkling water and white sand beaches dotted with banana trees. From the campsite, you can go mountain-biking to small villages, or hike out to secret caves, swim in hidden natural pools, and go on forest walks. Munsiyari is a short 30 kms away from the camp site. The camp offers accommodation in alpine tents, as well as a host of activities like kayaking, trekking, fishing, swimming and more.

You can hike to an emerald-green lagoon surrounded by forest, and go on a peaceful swim. In the evening, you’ll light a campfire and dine by its warmth. Fall asleep to the rhythm of the river and wake up to the sounds of birds.
Click here for more about this campsite.

CAMPING DURING TREKKING
All of the above are permanent campsites, set up to cater to those looking for a stay in the wild. But if you’re looking for a stay that is truly close to nature, you can’t beat the cosy alpine tents set up in the middle of the wild when you’re on a trek. These are some of the best campsites in India, and you can only get to them by doing these spectacular Himalayan treks.

Juda ka Talab, Kedarkantha trek, Uttarakhand

Kedarkantha campsite, Uttarakhand

Kedarkantha campsite, Uttarakhand


On the Kedarkantha trek, each trek is prettier than the last. You’ll camp at Juda ka Talab on your first night, a small pond amidst oak and pine forests that is frozen in winter. After that, you’ll be camping at the base camp of the Kedarkantha peak. This campsite is one of the best campsites in India, and offers stunning vantage points of snow-capped peaks all around.
Click here for more about this trek.

Nagtibba top camp, Nagtibba trek, Uttarakhand

Nagtibba Top campsite, Uttarakhand

Nagtibba Top campsite, Uttarakhand


At the top of Nagtibba, your campsite will be set up for a complete outdoors experience, with basic comforts like tents, sleeping bags, toilet tents, all led by a friendly team of guides and porters. The ground is covered with wild mint, which the cook will pluck to make you a deliciously refreshing cup of tea. You’ll eat meals with views of the mountains around. Then you can explore the campsite, and fall asleep in a tent under the stars.
Click here for more about this trek.

Triund camp, Triund trek, Himachal Pradesh

Triund campsite, by Whitehatguru on Wikimedia Commons

Triund campsite, by Whitehatguru on Wikimedia Commons


The Triund trek has one of the best campsites in India. Set in the midst of an alpine meadow at Triund summit, it rewards you with absolutely breath-taking, 180-degree views of the mountains and the gorgeous Kangra valley. Just the view of the evening sky from Triund is a reason enough to pitch a tent here for the night.
Click here for more about this trek.

Bakarthach campsite, Beaskund trek, Himachal Pradesh

Bakarthach, Beaskund, Himachal Pradesh

Bakarthach, Beaskund, Himachal Pradesh


The trek to Beaskund is one of the best treks for beginners: it starts from Manali (so it’s easy to get to), it’s not too steep, and it takes you into some of most gorgeous terrain you’ll see. You’ll be camping in the midst of a wide open valley, so you can look back and see how far you’ve come. You’ll also camp in Bakarthach, a high altitude meadow with shepherds guarding their flocks. All around you, small streams of glacial water criss-cross the land, avalanches rumble in the distance, and you’ll be able to see glaciers and famous peaks.
Click here for more about this trek.

Dodital lakeside camping, Dodital trek, Uttarakhand

Dodital Lake | Image credit: Seekpeak.in

Dodital Lake | Image credit: Seekpeak.in


Dodital is a freshwater lake that is home to the rare Himalayan trout called Dodi, after which it is named. It’s one of the most picturesque lakes in the Western Garhwal Himalayas, and is surrounded by oak and rhododendron trees. You’ll be camping beside this lake, nestled amidst an amphitheatre of mountains.
Click here for more about this trek.

Kareri lakeside camping, Kareri lake trek, Himachal Pradesh
Image by ENVIS Centre, HP
Situated at an altitude of 10,500 ft, Kareri Lake is fed by the melting snow from the Dhauladhar Mountains. The campsite at Kareri Lake offers captivating views of alpine forests, sparkling streams and mountains all around.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Deoriatal lakeside camping, Chopta trek, Uttarakhand
chopta (1)
Deoriatal is a small lake but what it lacks for in size, it makes up for in sheer beauty. It is surrounded by mountain peaks that reflect in the still waters, adding to the splendour. You will love camping here and just soaking in the natural beauty before you head into your tents for the night.
Meadow camping on the Dayara Bugyal trek – This trek is considered to be one of the most scenic Uttarakhand, and you must stop for a night of meadow camping here. From this high altitude meadow, you’ll see beautiful valleys dotted with wildflowers, sparkling streams running past, and woolly sheep grazing in grassy highlands.
Click here for more about this campsite.

Sarchu camping
Sarchu Campsite
At a soaring altitude of over 14,000 feet, Sarchu stands at the boundary of Himachal Pradesh and Ladakh. It is 222 kilometers away from Manali on the Leh highway and is a popular stop over for those travelling on this route. Sarchu offers spectacular views of stark landscape with some small oasis-like spots around water bodies, the shimmering Tsarap Chu river in the distance, and a chance to escape the crowds of Manali or Leh during season time. During the summer and monsoons months, this is a popular stop for motorbiking trips between Manali and Leh, but it shuts in winter due to heavy snowfall.
Click here for more about this campsite.

If you’re looking for something else, or want to talk to someone, get in touch with us, and we’ll help you decide.