Taking Camping in Grey County, Ontario, and Giving It an Upscale Twist

Back Forty Glamping provides a nature escape to one of the most beautiful parts of Ontario without roughing it.

Photo by Kyle Baumen

Curled up in the plush king-size bed at Back Forty Glamping, you can easily forget you’re in a geodesic dome in cottage country. And then a breeze picks up and the dome wall flutters and you may even hear the scurry of a little four-legged creature outside on the deck.

This spring, the luxe glamping property in Meaford, Ontario, has added another dome, Nova, bringing the total number to five. One of the Meadow domes in open fields, this newest one offers more privacy than the three original Forest domes and delivers a view of the expansive meadow in the centre of the 25-acre property. Native wildflowers such as daisies, chicory, and aster fill the meadow through spring and summer. Back Forty worked with the nonprofit group 10000 Trees to plant a tree seedlings throughout the meadow.


Photo by Elora Evans Photography


Inside, each dome is unexpectedly roomy at 450 square feet with 17-foot-high ceilings. With a neutral combination of natural materials from the warm tones of the rattan furniture and sisal area rug to the cold concrete walls dividing the open-concept space into kitchen, bedroom, and bathroom areas, the entire space exudes serenity. Soft organic viscose bamboo linens from Canadian brand Hush complete the plush bed, and tucked behind the bedroom area is a contemporary bathroom, where you’ll find fluffy white robes and two pairs of Crocs to use as slippers. Comfort is paramount: the domes feature both air conditioning and heat, and in the Meadow domes, the polished-concrete floors are heated too, plus there are heated mattress pads for the bed, ensuring guests are as comfortable in the winter as in the summer.

The modern kitchen only adds to the upscale camping-lite atmosphere. Equipped with a mini fridge, French press, kettle, induction cooktop, and basic kitchen essentials, preparing simple meals here is a breeze (there’s a propane barbecue outside on the deck, too). That said, with a food-service add-on, guests can kick back and enjoy a plate of braised beef short rib or a delicious curry from Bruce Wine Bar in nearby Thornbury rather than pack groceries. Keep in mind, it’s not your standard food-delivery order, though—you will have to do some minimal prep work—but this is intentional. “It’s meant to be convenient but with a little time spent in the kitchen so guests still feel like they’re camping,” co-founder Elizabeth Mcintosh says.




Prefer to dine out? Heart’s Tavern in Kimberley (from the team behind Toronto’s Union and Côte de Boeuf) and chefs Jonathan Gushue and Philippe De Montbrun’s restaurant The Gate in the town of Flesherton are all about a 30-minute drive away.

If you’re planning to use your dome’s private fire pit for some treats and a movie under the stars, options for a s’mores package and movie package are also available, with a movie projector to stream from a device onto your dome wall along with movie-theatre candy.




As inviting as the dome is—you may not want to tear yourself away from your private hot tub on your deck, after all—new this year, for guests keen to explore, are outdoor excursions with a local company. Go caving at Metcalfe Rock and head 80 metres underground or explore Georgian Bay and the Bruce Peninsula from above on a scenic private flight to enjoy the view of the area’s brilliant turquoise water. Scandinave Spa Blue Mountain is a mere 30-minute drive away for a water circuit, spa treatments, and relaxation.

Later this season, guests can look forward to enjoying a sauna in the meadow, and before the end of the year, Back Forty will also be adding a sixth dome. With another dome on its way, it’ll be a little easier to book a stay—the property has been running year-round just shy of full capacity—which is great news for those looking to immerse themselves in nature but with all the creature comforts of a luxury escape just a couple of hours’ drive from Toronto.