08 Jun Glamping in the Maine Woods with Huttopia
G L A M P I N G
Outdoor camping with amenities and comforts (such as beds, electricity, and access to indoor plumbing) not usually used when camping
This past weekend, my family and I headed into the Maine woods for two nights of simple living by nature. We were invited to stay at Huttopia Southern Maine, the newest of the Huttopia North American glamping sites. With our bags packed with fixings for s’mores, bug spray and our swimsuits, I felt all the feelings of summer that bring me such joy.
Huttopia is a twenty-year old family-owned outdoor glamping resort, founded in Lyon, France. Huttopia has now expanded their footprint in Europe, Canada and the US. The resort beautifully combines the simple art of camping and the great outdoors. The Maine location opened in the fall of 2019. There is another very popular US option located in New Hampshire, within the White Mountains.
Located in the town of Sanford, Maine, Huttopia sits in the southwestern part of the state. Just a quick 30-minute drive from the popular summertime coastal towns of southern Maine, the Kennebunks and Ogunquit; a 45-minute drive from both Portland, Maine and Portsmouth, NH; 90-minute drive from Boston and 4 hours from Fairfield County, CT. It is a fairly easy destination to reach from Northern New England.
Huttopia Maine sits cushioned among stunning pines of Maine forest on Sand Pond. Pulling down the dirt road, you will instantly feel you are leaving the world far behind as you head towards the ultimate natural relaxation in the wilderness. Immediately feel the stresses of your week fade and take in the invigorating fresh scents of Maine pine and cedar.
We arrived on a Friday at 4pm and checked-in at the woodsy yet modern main reception area. We were greeted by the kindest staff that would be on-site and fully hospitable for the duration of our stay. The service was fantastic! If we needed anything, the very friendly staff was always available to offer assistance.
The staff and the protocols in place for guests to stay socially distant and feel safe in the surroundings were evident.
At reception, you will find the sweetest provisions just in case you forgot anything. From food items to ice cream, to beautiful woodsy candles, and blankets, they have it covered. This is also where the Café is located. The café is open for breakfast, lunch, dinner as well as snacks. There is a pizza oven for homemade pizzas along with a crepes menu, beautiful pastries, coffee and smoothies. At the time of writing this, dining was open on the outside decks for guests.
Once we checked-in, we unloaded the car onto the trolley wagons and headed down the dirt path towards our Trappeur tent which was located on the lakefront. There are a few options of lodging to choose from, pending your preference. Our 450 square foot Trappeur tent sleeps 5, has a private bathroom, mini-kitchenette and dining table perfect for the family. I could not have been happier with our chosen accommodations. There are also minimal wood homes, called the Vistas, that can accommodate 5 people as well. If you are looking for a little more protection, this may be a great option for you. If you are a single and do not need one of the larger tents, there are The Trappeur Duo’s available for two people, for more of an intimate experience. It is important to remember, this is a form of camping. The accommodations are located near others who are camping.
What to Bring? What is there?
Huttopia provides newly packaged linens including: sheets, a duvet, a fleece blanket and pillows. We did bring our own sleeping bags and linens, which we did not need. All linens were packaged and brand new which made me feel comforted. I would double-check with them upon your trip.
The kitchenettes are stocked with all the amenities you would need such as dishware, serving sets, glasses, a wine bottle opener and more.
I would suggest bringing any / all food you wish to bring. We always pack a cooler with our own food. Part of the fun of camping is all of the fun camp food!
Do not forget your bug spray! Or if you do, they sell some! This is the woods, there are bugs and a lot of mosquitos. Be prepared for that and to leave with a few bites.
Probably the question I have been asked the most is the bathroom situation and whether there is electricity. Yes, to both. The Trappeur tent has a small, minimal bathroom with a stand-up shower. The tents do have electricity and lighting both inside and outside. There are outlets. There was limited to no internet at our tent, so I would simply walk to the main reception when I needed to have access. Typically, when I camp, I do not wish to have internet access or any access to the outside world. As this was a sponsored stay and I was providing live content, I opted to connect during our stay.
That first night we chose to grab a couple brick oven pizzas and some local wine from the Café. We headed back down to the tent, set up our fire and settled into our first night of glamping. The moon was full that night and as it rose up over the horizon, I really took in the moments; being away with my family, the crackling of the camp fire and the silence and stillness of the lake.
Is it Kid Friendly?
Absolutely- Yes! We could not have asked for a better experience to share with our daughter. There is a heated swimming pool where we spent a lot of our day on Saturday. The swimmable small lake is also great! We spent a lot of time fishing. There is a dock for fishing and a small beach with Adirondack chairs. There are canoes and stand-up-paddle boards available to rent hourly or per half of day. We had a ball canoeing around the lake together. Pippa made quick friends with the boys in the tent next door, which isn’t that what being a kid in the summer is all about?! The adventure of sleeping in a tent, cooking our food by fire and falling asleep under the stars left our little one asking for more and when we can go back. I am a firm believer in creating natural experiences for children.
Just a quick note about fishing. My husband is an avid fisherman and has a Maine fishing license. Sand Pond is public and a valid fishing license is required to fish for anyone 16 years of age or older. You can purchase a 1 day and 3 day license to fish here.
June in Maine brings a very early sunrise and a late sunset. We were woken daily at 4:30am to light outside and the birds chirping. Our days spent at Huttopia were long and plentiful. The first day we arrived, Maine was seeing a little heat wave, so our tent was hot. I might suggest bringing a mini fan if heat is an issue for you. The following day we saw on and off thunderstorms, which cooled things off quite a bit. I would definitely recommend checking your weather forecast for packing essentials. Typically, Maine nights are chilly so one can never have too many layers.
If you are new to camping, this would be a great option to get your feet wet! Because we are familiar with the coastal towns on the Maine coastline we did not want to leave the woods. If you are traveling to the area and it is new for you, a drive into the Kennebunks might be a great option for a dinner or to stroll around the charming Kennebunkport town.
I will note as I have been asked this a bit. Right now, for the month of June, Huttopia Maine is only accepting Maine residents for the month of June. The resort will be open to non-residents as of July 1st and are taking bookings. The resort has implemented policies and procedures for staying within the state guidelines of Covid -19. The tents and homes are all set-up with plenty of space amongst them. The pool is limited to 10 guests max at a time. The outdoor eating areas are properly sanitized over and over; all indoor game areas and dining seats are currently closed until the next phase opens. This will likely be changing in upcoming weeks and I will be sure to keep you updated.
In the meantime, please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions about Huttopia Maine. I have included all photos of our experience in my “Huttopia” highlight reel on Instagram (@stephstell).