No-Fuss, All-Inclusive Camping
In this day and age of all-inclusive resorts, it was
only a matter of time before someone came up with the concept of
all-inclusive camping. Imagine going to a campsite that is
completely set up with tent, sleeping bags, food, firewood, and
more—all you do is show up! Now, thanks to two savvy Maine
entrepreneurs, sleeping in the woods has never been
Creating A Niche
"We are catering to
urban and suburban families along with individuals who want to camp
but only have limited time, or don't have the equipment or know
how," says Kristen Dremann of Krismark
Outfitters, a Falmouth, Maine, based company that sets up
campsites and excursions on the out fringes of Acadia National
Kristen and her husband Mark grew up in Michigan and
always had travel wanderlust—but not a lot of money. "Camping was
always a cheap way to explore," Kristen says. Now with two small
boys, they continue to camp, but realize the hectic pace family life
"Camping may not be an option for many families
because of the planning involved," Kristen notes. She adds, "Friends
always wanted to go camping with us, but they didn't have any
equipment." By combining these two ideas (difficult planning and
lack of equipment) Kristen and Mark realized they were on to
So far, there appears to be a lot of interest.
"We've booked people from New York and Maine, and have had inquiries
as far away as Israel," she says.
While primitive "Survivor
style" camping is all the rage, this experience is a traditional
camping one that's geared toward the soft adventure traveler. In
fact, when you arrive at your campsite, it might look like a cover
of an L.L. Bean catalog—and all Krismark's equipment is
top-of-the-line L.L. Bean gear too.
Before the campers arrive, the Dremanns (or their
on-site manager) will set up a six-person tent with sleeping bags
and pads. They will string a tarp, arrange camp chairs, and organize
a kitchen complete with a Coleman stove, lanterns, eating and
cooking utensils, and a cooler filled with food. "We'll even provide
marshmallows, roasting forks, and the firewood to roast them," says
Kristen. "We've made sure the food has a regional flare," she adds.
And she's not kidding; meals include lobster stew, Jordan's hot
dogs, blueberry muffins, yogurt, fresh-baked bread, and whoopie pies
for dessert. You'll also start each day with the explorer's
breakfast, delivered fresh to your campsite with steaming hot
The Dremanns have taken great pains to ensure all the
details are taken care of. For example, upon arrival, campers will
be greeted by a Krismark representative and will receive a welcome
basket containing area maps and guides. They'll also get
instructions on how to light the stove and lantern. If problems
arise, campers can call Krismark 24 hours a day. "Someone is always
on call at the company's Bass Harbor summer office to handle a
late-night emergency," says Kristen.
The Dremann's chose Mount Desert Island and Acadia
National Park because of the beautiful scenery and wide range of
activities nearby. Campsites are reserved at the White Birches
Campground in Southwest Harbor. "The main reason we picked White
Birches is because it's a very wooded, private campground that backs
up next to Acadia National Park," says Kristen. "It's also away from
the high traffic areas of the island," she adds. Furthermore, the
campground has the added comforts of a general store, hot showers,
and a heated pool.
How Much Does It
Krismark is offering three different "Adventure
Packs" that begin May 25 and run throughout the summer.
Prices range from $345 per person for
the kayak adventure to $295 for the do-nothing trip. Children go for
less than half the adult charges, and children under three are free.
All the guides are Maine registered.
- Adventure Pack 1 - Kayak & Camp: A great way to explore
the dramatic coastline of Acadia National Park and Mount Desert
- Adventure Pack 2 - Bike & Camp: Acadia's interior is best
experienced by bike. The parks numerous trails offer a lot of site
- Adventure Pack 3 - Relax & Camp: Do absolutely nothing…or
take in absolutely everything, including shopping, hiking,
swimming, and more.
Is It Really
Some may argue that all-inclusive camping isn't
an authentic camping experience. That's debatable. No matter what,
it sure looks like a lot of fun. Over fifty years ago, people said
the same thing about Club Med's all-inclusive resorts not being a
real vacation. Today, we know that's not true.
Acadia National Park
Bar Harbor Chamber of
The Maine Attraction: Maine
Department of Tourism
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