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BaseCamp Tipi

UK England North West England Cumbria Grasmere

  • Laundry
  • Dogs welcome
  • Groups welcome
  • Short walk to pub
  • Good walks nearby
Tipi camping in the heart of the Lake District

The idea behind Basecamp Tipi is altogether rather simple. Take a campsite, one with a sought after location, some of the UK’s finest scenery on it’s doorstep and a National Trust-earned reputation as one of the most welcoming spots around, and then add a trio of tipis in the corner for those without their own tent.Genius right?

Taken from the nomadic Sami people of northern Sweden, the basis for the Tentipi design certainly fits the criteria of ‘tried and tested’. The simple conical shape, with a partial opening at the top to let out campfire smoke, has been used by the Sami for centuries. Basecamp Tipi’s modern day version uses the latest fabrics and techniques (including a raised wooden floor for insulation and a level surface) but there are still pleasant traditional touches, like reindeer skin rugs and a toasty log-burning stove.

Occupying a secluded corner of Great Langdale Campsite (they also have a second site at Hoathwaite, Coniston Water), the tipis cluster together in their own, slightly more private space. Cars are permitted onsite but not allowed on the grassy areas. There's also a reception area with an impressively well-stocked shop. It’s reputation as one of the best sites in the Lake District is certainly well earned, primarily due to its awe-inspiring surroundings. A surprisingly flat, sheep-dotted valley floor ends where the foot of mighty grey rocks begin, topped in browning heather and rising up into some of the Lakes most impressive mountains. To the north, the sublime Langdale Pikes. While to the west Bowfell and Crinkle Crags command the skyline, shielding the great hulk of Scafell Pike – the highest mountain in England – behind them.



Tipis are on a raised wooden platform and are furnished with a woodburning stove and reindeer skins for a warm rustic and nordic feel. Campers must bring all their usual camping and outdoor equipment (apart from a tent). Tipis are 5m in diameter with a central wooden pole supporting a height of 3m in the middle. It can sleep 3 adults comfortably and there is floorspace for one double mattress and 2 singles (for those in a family of four). Elsewhere: 2 large shower-and-toilet blocks; well-stocked shop and laundry facilities. Off-the-ground BBQsare fine, but no campfires. Bread oven for freshly-baked bread in the mornings.

Suitable For

Families, couples, groups, dogs (£1.50 per night and well-behaved) – yes. Hen and stag parties, noisey groups – no.


Easy walks around the valley shown on a map available from reception, while many visitors conquer the renowned Langdale Pikes – the starting-point for which is just a few minutes’ walk from the campsite. For more gentle treks there is Blea Tarn, Stickle Tarn and Cathedral Cave in Little Langdale. Climbers can enjoy some of the most spectacular routes in the UK with myriad routes on Middlefell, White Ghyll, Raven and Gimmer Crags, while cyclists can tackle the notorious Wrynose and Hardknott passes or try the slightly easier family friendly cycle paths along the valley floor to Lake Windermere and beyond.

Food & Drink

There are three good pubs within 10 minutes’ walk of the campsite: Sticklebarn (01539 437356), The Old Dungeon Ghyll (015394 37272) and The New Dungeon Ghyll (015394 37213). Like the campsite, Sticklebarn is owned by the National Trust who provide tasty local food and ales and make sure every penny goes back into looking after this incredible valley.


Open from March - November at Great Langdale

Open from April - September at Hoathwaite.

BaseCamp Tipi are also located at another National Trust site in the Lake District at Hoathwaite, Coniston Water.

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Contact BaseCamp Tipi, Great Langdale Campsite, Great Langdale, nr Ambleside, Cumbria LA22 9JU

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Getting There

Great Langdale: by car

Take the A593 from Ambleside. At Skelwith Bridge, turn right onto the B5343. The campsite is six miles down this road; look out for the sign on the left after Sticklebarn and the New Dungeon Ghyll Hotel.

Cars are permitted onsite but not allowed on the grassy areas. There is no main parking area.

Hoathwaite, Coniston Water campsite: by car

From the M6 motorway - junction 36, take the A590 signposted to Barrow. At Greenodd, turn right on to the A5092 to Lowick Green. Turn right at Lowick Green on to the A5084 and continue along this road to Torver. Turn right at Torver on to the A593. The turning for Hoathwaite campsite is approximately half a mile on the right-hand-side of the road (immediately after a wide lay-by). Look for the green railings where you’ll see the sign for Hoathwaite Campsite.

Once off the main road, take the next left turn and follow the track all the way down to the campsite.

From the central lakes - take the A593 from Ambleside to Coniston. Drive through the village and on towards Torver. Drive past the entrance to Park Coppice and on through Little Arrow (where you will see a garden with topiary on the right hand side). The turning for Hoathwaite campsite is the next turning on the left (shortly before a wide lay-by on the left hand side of the road). Look for the green metal railings where you’ll see the sign for Hoathwaite Campsite.

Once off the main road, take the next left turn and follow the track all the way down to the campsite.

Sat Nav - we recommend that you don't use your Sat Nav to find Hoathwaite campsite

Great Langdale: Using public transport, take the train to Windermere, then the 599 bus to Ambleside, where you can pick up the Langdale Rambler. The 516 bus from Ambleside stops a 5-minute walk from the site, for times call 0871 200 2233.

Hoathwaite, Coniston Water: By busThe X12 service runs between Ulverston and Coniston, stopping off at Torver on the way. After alighting at Torver you will have less than a mile walk to the campsite. Regular train services run to Ulverston from the West Coast mainline via Lancaster. If you're heading to Hoathwaite from the Windermere direction, then the 505 bus service will take you to Coniston where you can connect to the X12 service down to Torver and walk from there.


Add Your Review

Rated ★★★★★ over 2 reviews


Cosy camping in the Lake District

A mate and I travelled to Langdale to spend a few days in amongst the glorious surroundings of the Lake District peaks. We opted to stay in a tipi as they offered us more space than my two man tent - after a hard day out on the pikes, crags and fells it was nice not to have a struggle into a tent then wrestle our own clothing off. Being able to stand upright in the tipi was nice. The wood burning stove was an amazing addition that kept us toasty throughout the night. My favourite feature was the view - you open the tipi to look out upon the breathtaking Langdale Pikes. Tucked at the rear of the campsite they are also in a quiet spot, 5 minutes walk from the Old Dungeon Ghyll - a legendary climbers' pub. Walking back to the tipi after a few pints of Old Rosie and stargazing became a favourite evening pastime.
Oct 10, 2016 by agmadeley

Lambs galore!

My boyfriend and I have just returned from a lovely stay at Basecamp Tipi. The views are incredible, it was our first time in the Langdale valley and it has captured our hearts! We stayed in Red Tarn tipi which is tucked away in the corner and we woke to sounds of lambs bleating and birds twittering, we even saw a lamb being born! We were lucky with the weather so did all the walks - the Langdale pikes and Crinkly Crags etc. Staff on campsite very helpful with route advice.  It was chilly at nights so we were happy to have a woodburner and sheepskin rugs to keep cosy. Pubs are great, the Old DUngeon Ghyll had music on a Wednesday so may have to bring along my guitar next time :) We will be back!

Apr 29, 2016 by Julie

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