oTENTik Glamping at Fort Langley National Historic Site

If it wasn’t clear enough yet, our family loves camping. Most of the time, camping brings up close to the best places Mother Nature has to offer. But occasionally, camping can lead us to a completely different experience.

Such was our amazing stay at an oTENTik tent in Fort Langley National Historic Site, where we camped in a 19th century Canadian fort.

oTENTiks provide some unique glamping experiences in select National Parks and Historic Sites across the country. They are somewhat of a hybrid between a cabin and a tent. The sides are soft but durable canvas mounted permanently on wooden A frames on a raised platform. Mattresses, bunk beds, and basic furniture come standard.

The other equipment provided in each National Park and Historic Site vary slightly. The oTENTiks at Fort Langley National Historic Site are incredibly comfortable, even better equipped than some camping cabins; power outlets, lights, a fan, an electric kettle, a fridge, and an electric heater can be found in every tent.

A covered shared cooking area with 2 full-sized natural gas BBQ, a hot water sink, and picnic tables were available near tent #1. Outside each tent, another propane BBQ was also available if you didn’t want to cook with others. A washroom with flush toilet was available, but somewhat surprisingly, there is no shower facilities.

shared cooking area

To check in, we had to visit the visitor center between 3-5pm and leave our credit card info in case of damage. We were given a set of keys and directed to drive to the back door of the fort where there’s a designated parking area for oTENTik campers.

back door of the fort leading to the designated parking area for campers

Wheelbarrows were provided to unload our stuff into the tents, which were only a few dozens of meters away from the backdoor.

A shared fire ring was located in the center of the fort, and firewood bundles were available for purchase ($8/bundle).

We came with our friends Andrew and Kimberley and their 3 children. We booked tent #1 and 2 for the shoulder season, knowing that the weather is likely cooler and less predictable.

John the camp host provided each camping party an enthusiastic orientation and ground rules. Outside the fort’s opening hours (5pm to 10am), we have the fort to ourselves. We can bike around the entire place, and since the fort is locked, it’s safe for the kids to explore freely. Check out time was 11am, after which we are welcome stay and explore the fort further.

We cooked up a fancy BBQ dinner with beef short ribs, cheese coated chicken breast, buffalo wings, stuff potatoes, and veggies. Since the cooking area is closest to our tent #1, we by far used it the most out of all the campers.

After dinner, Big Bro and Middle Bro went on some night time biking around the fort while we joined the other campers at the campfire. We shared food and stories late into the evening with a friendly Korean family who initially immigrated to White Horse for 2 years before relocating to Vancouver.

At night, the tent was overly hot with the heater on full blast. We turned the heater off and it got too cold. Eventually we found a good balance by cracking open the “window”, which was really just a piece of tarp with velcro tape that we moved down an inch.

There was constant train noise right outside the fort, and they always blared their horns as they sped through town. Thankfully the noise was dampened inside the tents, so the sleeping kids were not disturbed.

The next morning we woke up to a peaceful overcast fort. Soon after breakfast, the rain arrived.

While Andrew and I were busy packing up, the kids explored every building in the fort after it opened to the public.

The town of Fort Langley was also worth spending a few hours in, with lots of antiques and interesting shops. The Fort-to-Fort Trail and Brae Island would be good destinations for a stroll, and I still want to paddle the Bedford Channel one day.

Glamping at Fort Langley National Historic Site was the perfect choice for history buffs and those who want a very unique camping experience. At $128/night + reservation fee though, the price is pretty steep. Combined with the lack of shower facilities, I think a one-night stay is just the right length.

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