Swimming in the lake, telling scary stories around a campfire and weaving friendship bracelets with your bestie. Ahhh , those were the days. This summer you can relive your youth with a wide variety of “adult summer camps” that offer everything from competitive color wars and water slides to wine tastings and gourmet farm-to-table meals. Here are five awesome options for the throwback adventure you really want…but with the upscale accommodations you need.
IF YOU’RE THE OUTDOORSY TYPE: REI OUTESSA
Say buh-bye to the boys for a weekend. REI Outessa is a ladies-only, three-day adventure in South Lake Tahoe ( July 14 to 16 ), where you’ll have your pick of outdoor activities like kayaking, hiking, yoga and trail photography. And because it’s run by REI, you’ll get to try out top-notch gear. A dedicated chef will cook all your meals and there will be plenty of wine for unwinding. Have no fear if tent camping just isn’t for you—you can curl up in a real bed at Kirkwood Resort instead.
IF YOU LIKE YOGA AND MUSIC: WANDERLUST
Unlimited yoga classes by day, DJ dance parties by night. Wanderlust Squaw Valley ( July 20 to 23 ) promises everything from meditative sessions of sun salutations against mountain backdrops to body-bending acro-yoga with some of the best instructors from around the country. Once you’ve downward-dogged yourself silly, throw on a tie-dye maxi and sway to the beats of Little Dragon and the Dustbowl Revival.
IF YOU WANT TO FEEL LIKE A KID AGAIN: CAMP NO COUNSELORS
Every morning at Camp No Counselors in Yosemite National Park ( August 24 to 27 ) starts with Bloody Marys and mimosas. Then you’ll move on to weaving friendship bracelets, riding down waterslides and challenging yourself on epic rope courses. But the day’s not over yet. After dinner, sidle up to the open bar and dance the night away at themed dance parties (think Jock Jams and Wet Hot American Summer ). Choose your camp group wisely—bunks sleep eight in cozy cabin quarters.
IF YOU’RE MORE OF A GLAMPER: CAMP COVERT
Camp Covert’s daylong “camp” experience is no child’s play. You’ll start the morning harvesting organic vegetables from a Coombsville farm. Then you’ll head over to Covert Estate—which lies completely in disguise underneath the hillside—for a tour and tasting of limited-production Sauvignon Blanc and Cabernet. After that, you’ll be whisked over to a converted barn, where chef Malcolm de Sieyes will put you to work transforming your freshly picked veggies into a farm-to-table midday meal…with lots more wine, of course. And since this luxe day camp is as underground as the winery
IF YOU NEED A SPIRITUAL RETREAT: SOUL CAMP
Anyone who’s ever lived in a city knows that sometimes you just need to get out of Dodge. That’s where Soul Camp Wonder Valley ( October 24 to 28 ) comes in. Only a few hours from the concrete jungle you call home is a serene camp with heated pools and hot tubs nestled in the Sierra Foothills—and there’s even a special Soul Camp shuttle bus to take you there. Health-ified camp meals and good-for-you snacks like coconut water and kale chips will keep you energized for dance classes, boating on the lake and spiritual sessions crafting dream catchers. Then drift off to sleep in a shared room or private cottage.