Glamping – like camping but not as you know it

Glamping in Australia - like camping in nature with a touch of luxuary

As we drove through the Sunshine Coast the cragged Glasshouse mountains loomed up around us.  It’s not much more than an hours drive from Brisbane but the relaxation started almost immediately.  To get a perspective on the mountains, our destination for the next couple of days, we detoured off to Wild Horse Mountain.  The walk is only 1.4 km return but the first 700m is straight up on a smooth path, no weaving and circling the hillside just a short sharp climb.  My calves were burning a little by the time we reached the lookout but being to the east of the main mountain group we were rewarded with fabulous views.  The  outlook isn’t only to the rest of the Glasshouse mountains but out towards the coast, Pumicestone Passage and enormous tracts of forestry in all directions.  On a clear day you can see as far as Morton Island and Brisbane city.

With the layout then fixed in our minds we continued our drive seeking out interesting perspectives on the peaks and spots to explore.  We passed through the township of Beerburrum and it was only a few kilometres from there until we start a steady ascent surrounded by nature, the Glasshouse Mountains National Park on one side and Beerburrum State Forest on the other.

After several more detours and a delicious lunch with sweeping views at the Lookout Cafe we arrived at our destination.  We stayed at Glass on Glasshouse, a ‘Glamping’ experience in the Sunshine Coast Hinterland.  It was our first introduction to the world of  glamping and while I had some idea of what the term might mean I was in for some surprises too.  The general concept of glamping is getting out into nature, like camping but with a degree of luxe and comfort.  Glamping experiences range from high-end tents to yurts, tree houses and eco-pods.  Others are cabins and nature lodges in spectacular natural settings with all the comforts of home and more.

Like most things in life glamping fits on a spectrum and it became clear very quickly that our glamping initiation was going to be hitting the heights of glam plus the best nature can offer with its location, views and wildlife.  At the top of the drive way a flock of 10 yellow-tailed black cockatoo caused a ruckus as they flew over head.  As we approach our Glasshouse pod we could see kangaroos resting on the grass bank, a king parrot sitting on a tree off our deck and a chorus of bird song surrounds us.  We love to get out in nature, we hike and get so much enjoyment from seeing the wildlife in its natural habitat but the body isn’t really up for a sleeping bag on the ground any more and canned food has little appeal so the concept of glamping has a definite attraction.

Tawny Frogmouth chick and parent

Yellow tailed black cockatoo
Kookaburra

You know what they say about people in glass houses …

The accommodation is really something special.  There are only three units and while I believe they were at full occupancy we didn’t see any other guests the whole time we were there.  The spacing and positioning on the property maximise the view and also your total privacy.  The architecturally designed pods as they call them are open plan with two full walls made of glass which incorporate louvre windows that open to allow airflow to keep the inside cool in summer.  The floor to ceiling windows give incredible views from the living space, bedroom and bathroom.

Glass on Glasshouse

The bathroom is a feature in itself with a huge free-standing spa bath that looks out to the mountain peaks beyond.  As an added novelty the bath fills from the ceiling keeping plumbing out of sight and continuing the feeling of space and minimalism.

Innovative bath design - glass on glasshouse
Bath view Glass on Glasshouse

The pods are fully self-contained and come with an integrated galley style kitchen that uses minimal space but has everything you need.  It’s stocked with the cooking basics like oil and seasonings and all the makings for a lavish breakfast.  A variety of breads, bacon and eggs, cereal, yoghurt and fresh fruit are all supplied.  There’s a jug of milk, butter and a gorgeous hand-made chocolate each for an evening treat.

With a drink in hand the deck is the perfect spot to relax close to the wildlife, we could watch kangaroo from there and an impressive variety of bird life.  It’s set up with a table and chairs for relaxing or dining and an electric BBQ if you prefer to cook outdoors as we do.

Glass on Glasshouse - pod kitchen
Glass on Glasshouse - Pod living area

All in all it was a super comfortable space, we loved the feeling of being truly alone in the natural surroundings.  There’s no reason to shut the blinds and it is such a treat to wake up to the peaceful bird song and gentle light touching the mountains beyond your window.

Our thoughts on glamping in the Glasshouse Mountains

We loved our introduction to glamping, the property and the surrounding area provide so many options to spend your day.  Whether you want to hike the trails, scramble to the top of the more rugged peaks, savour the views from the lookouts or simply relax in nature in the beautiful surroundings.  There are options to eat local at the Lookout cafe or venture further afield to Maleny and Montville in the nearby Blackall ranges.  Small towns in the Glasshouse Mountains offer other meal options or it’s only a 25 minute drive to Caloundra if you want to spend some time by the sea.

I can definitely see more glamping in our future – the serenity and relaxation that comes with time out in nature with all the comforts of home has a lot of attraction!

Glass on Glasshouse is located an hours drive north of Brisbane off State Highway 1. The Glasshouse Mountains provide an interesting contrast to the popular beaches of the Sunshine Coast and an alternative base for a holiday in the region. The area is a perfect romantic escape from the city or a unique stop on your road trip along Australia's east coast.

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Glamping in Australia - like camping in nature with a touch of luxuary
Glamping in Australia - like camping in nature with a touch of luxuary

Disclosure:  We received a complimentary stay at Glass on Glasshouse on this visit. 

14 Comments

  • Wow, this is my kind of glamping. This is quite luxurious and great. Love your view from the bathtub. Your pictures are superb and the place looks so romantic. Wonderful experience and fun!

  • AS I don’t really care for camping much you have inspired me to look more into “glamping”. The idea of a comfy bed and surroundings but out in the middle of quiet beauty like that is very appealing.

  • I love the large windows! It really does seem to be a perfect compromise between luxury and nature. I haven’t really ever been glamping before, but I’m sure I would love it! The pictures of the birds and mountains are beautiful!

  • Ahh, I want to go to Australia so much, and “Glamping” sounds like the perfect way to do it! The space looks beautiful. And there’s even a hand-made chocolate?! Sign me up!

  • Glass on Glasshouse looks like a great place – especially that bathtub with the view! I will have to take a trip to QLD and stay there with my Hubby. We lived in Brisbane for a few years and I’m not sure why we didn’t explore the area more. We’ve been to the Glasshouse Mountains only once.

  • Wow that looks incredible. I haven’t gone glamping yet but it is definitely on my list after reading this post! The apartment looks really luxurious and has all the amenities needed to have a comfortable stay. What I love is the amazing view of nature around it!

    • Yes glamping here really does run the full spectrum from tents to something like this gorgeous glass house. They all enjoy a natural setting and something special that sets them apart from mainstream hotels and lodges.

  • Your pictures of the birds are awesome! Looks like a really nice place to glamp! I’ve looked a few places down here in Melbourne, but have not got around to booking yet. I should really get onto that!

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