Diva alert: I only go “camping” if there’s air conditioning, luxury linens, electronic Toto toilet, fireplace, spacious bathroom, microwave, fridge and room service involved. With this said, my husband discovered West Gate River Ranch Resort & Rodeo because it checked all the boxes compliments of its deluxe teepees.
We stayed there this past weekend with three other families (it was our second visit) and I can only say that if you want to add “glamping” to your travel bucket list, well, this place is IT.
Located two and a half hours north-west of Miami, you’ll find West Gate which boasts several options for accommodations. Last year, we stayed in the glamping tents which were great because they can sleep up to four people comfortably (each room has three individual beds) but the bathrooms are far way and detached from the room. So if you pee in the middle of the night like me, I was not into this accommodations option.
This year, we shelled out $1,o50 a night for the luxe teepee because they have bathrooms — but the kids had to sleep on an uncomfy pullout couch. However, I will say that the common areas in the luxe teepee area are waaaay nicer than the surrounding options as there is a burning outdoor fire pit, rocking chairs, twinkling lights, bar-b-q, picnic tables, hammocks and playground for the kids. Also, all activities are included during your stay if you go the luxe teepee route.
And there are tons of activities. This time, we booked the swamp buggy tour, airboat ride, horseback riding and rodeo. In between these activities, the kiddos went zip lining, mechanical bull riding, rock climbing and bounce house-ing. See?
We enjoy West Gate so much that we’re making it an annual trip. Personally, I love disconnecting (the internet is spotty here), kicking back in a hammock and snuggling up with a good book. There’s also something to be said to be among trees covered in Spanish moss and woken up by the gobble-gobble noise of a roaming wild turkey every morning. Feeling worlds away from the city is priceless. Plus, their picnic basket brimming with freshly baked cinnamon buns, fresh fruit and hot coffee delivered every morning isn’t too shabby either.
West Gate Resort & Rodeo, 3200 River Ranch Boulevard, River Ranch, Florida; (863) 692-1321; westgateresorts.com