AutoCamp Cape Cod is the easternmost outpost of a California-based Airstream hotel chain that converts sleepy campgrounds into sleek, stylish year-round destinations that combine the pleasures of camping with modern design.
And since my own family loves glamping as the perfect way to enjoy nature while still sleeping on good sheets, we were eager to visit AutoCamp just weeks after it opened in April 2021.
The property is located in West Falmouth on Cape Cod and boasts beautiful views of Little Sippewissett Marsh. There is no pool, but the property abuts the 10.7-mile Shining Sea Bikeway, one of the most beautiful bike paths in New England, with alternating views of seashore, forest, harbors, glacial ponds, and cranberry bogs. Cruising bikes are available free of charge to guests, though they are first-come, first-served, so be sure to claim yours first thing in the morning (or bring your own). The campground’s store sells ready-to-cook barbecue items, s’mores kits, and other camping essentials. There’s always (very good) coffee and tea at the ready, as well as light snacks.
There are several lodging options at AutoCamp, including “luxury” platform tents with king-size beds and electricity, as well as tiny house–style suites, some of which are wheelchair accessible.
But we were here for the Airstreams. My own obsession with the trailers predates Instagram by at least a decade, but if nothing else the capacity to summon 600,000 #airstreamliving photos with a simple search has reassured me that I’m not alone. Still, it can be hard to access an Airstream for yourself. Sure, you can rent one, but do you have a truck to tow it? And how are you at six-point turns? At AutoCamp, the trailers are parked in tidy rows. You leave your car in a common lot and then bring your luggage to the site.
The trailers are packed in tightly, but not more so than in a typical RV park. And they’re oriented so that the patios have a reasonable amount of privacy from the nearest neighbor.
Indoors, the Airstreams feel light and airy, with a central living/kitchenette area that’s stocked with all the essentials (no need to remember dish soap or sponges). There’s no proper indoor dining table, but an outdoor picnic table comfortably seats four. That said, the Airstream felt a bit tight for our crowd of two adults and two pre-teens. It was manageable, but not ideal.
The bedroom was compact and very comfortable, and we loved the high-thread-count sheets and soft mattress. Storage is limited to a half-closet, two bedside built-ins, and space under the bed for suitcases, so pack accordingly. At night, with the curtains closed and the reading lights turned on, the space felt like a cozy nest.
The bathrooms were much larger and more luxurious than your typical camper, feeling more like a hotel amenity and less like an RV. Which leads me to my primary insight: AutoCamp is for design-savvy people who want to unplug and enjoy simpler pleasures without roughing it. And that comes at a price. In April 2021, our camper cost about $300 per night. For a July weekend, that rate jumps to about $515, depending on the date.
So, is it worth it? For our money, yes, given that we don’t like real camping. We’d happily return during the shoulder seasons (spring and fall), when rates are lower and cool nights make those fire pits more appealing. Midsummer, not so much. That said, it’s hard to beat the pleasure of waking up to the lingering scent of woodsmoke, hopping on a bike, and making the short trip to downtown Falmouth for a breakfast of Maison Villatte pastries, followed by a day at the beach.
Are you hoping to check out AutoCamp? Do you have another favorite New England glamping spot? Let us know!
This post was first published in 2021 and has been updated.