July 14, 2009

Native camping in Wales

Camping the Native American way:  a tipi eco retreat in Wales

By Anna Melville JamesDeep in Mid-Wales’ Dyfi valley the ‘glamping’--glamorous camping--revolution is in full swing at the Eco Retreats tipi camp.

The Native Americans had it down to a fine art, long before we temperate campers crawled out of the primeval sleeping bag for painful encounters with guy ropes in the night.

And:Surprisingly, camp owners ChaNan and Michael say many tipi guests are first-time campers, presumably swayed by the softie pleasures of a bed and a ready erected home.

On arrival, they’ll match you with a tipi that matches your vibe--the four tipi sites, in keeping with Native American earth philosophy, each have their own energies--mellow Meadow, adventurous Mountain or Forest. My friend Maggie and I were in the Waterfall tipi, overlooking a valley of pop-eyed masticating sheep.
Comment:  "The Native Americans" didn't use tipis. Only the Plains Indians did.

"Native American earth philosophy"? Campsites with their own "energies"? Sounds like New Age nonsense to me.

Let's hope the camp owners aren't spreading too many Native stereotypes. They should use their business to inform people about Indians, not misinform them.

For more on Native-style retreats, see Ramona's Eco-Friendly Retreat.

P.S. Awesome photograph, Anna!

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