Domecilië: five atmospheric domes at Camping BuitenLand in Drenthe
We have found one of the nicest campsites in our country: Camping BuitenLand! Quirky, colorful, full of unique accommodations, and hidden in the woods of Drenthe – what else could you be looking for?
BuitenLand (that translates to ‘abroad’) is an initiative of five friends, one of which probably looks very familiar to you: Floortje Dessing! Thanks to their tons of travel experience, this bunch of enterprising friends couldn’t help but create a special place. It was 2017 when they found this overgrown campsite, and today they have already transformed it into a quirky hot spot. But it doesn’t stop there. They always keep dreaming and building. Camping BuitenLand will never really be finished!
This site, of about 9 hectares, is hidden between the forests of Drenthe. We love this province, but the journey is always quite .. long. On the bright side, it really helps you imagine yourself being ‘abroad’. We took the train to Nieuw-Amsterdam, certainly not to be confused with the old (ha) Amsterdam. From there it is a 3-kilometer walk to the campsite. For those less interested in walking, it is also possible to order a taxi for €10. We never say ‘no’ to a walk through a new environment, so even with a full pack and 25-degree weather, we set out.
Colourful, quirky and friendly
The campsite is not only quirky but also colorful! Immediately when you arrive, you are greeted by colorful works of art, a pink barrier, and tons of colorful wildflowers. We were welcomed warmly, despite us being a bit shocked – after our walk – when we learned that our accommodation was completely on the other side of the site. Fortunately, one of the employees was ready to give us a lift!
During this ride, we immediately heard enthusiastic stories about the campsite. A place where everyone is very welcome. Although there is plenty to do for families with (young) children, it is also a great place for young adults.
A campsite is of course not a campsite without normal camping spots! And there is more than enough space for this – in a lot of different fields. The great thing is that all pitches are very spacious, each field is surrounded by greenery and you can choose a spot for your tent, camper, or caravan.
But if you don’t have your own camping equipment, you can also choose from a large number of unique accommodations! All these accommodations are from self-builders who have built and decorated the unique designs themselves. If you still want that real camping feeling, there are various, furnished Bell tents spread throughout the fields. If you prefer a glamping experience, you can opt for an airstream, blues barn, cabana, the big friendly bus, Breaking Bad camper, or a church (with the fantastic name Spaghetti Church)! Plenty of options make sure you check them out here!
Although there were many great options, we had our eye on Domecilië, a small ‘village’ of five unique dome-shaped houses, located in a fairytale spot on the edge of the forest at the rear of the campsite. These unique buildings made of natural and recycled materials have a visible geometric structure, which, together with the warm interiors, creates a unique atmosphere.
Although they all look the same from the outside, each dome not only has a special name (Bipindi, Lumbini, Woolloomooloo, Cochabamba & Bilbao) but also its own atmosphere and decor (see photos) – inspired by a particular continent. They are all suitable for 1 to 6 people and are located around a (car-free) lawn. You can enjoy the veranda of your own dome, or seek out the coziness by the campfire located in the middle of the field. The accommodations do not have their own kitchen or bathrooms, you share these with your fellow residents of the village!
We spent the night in the Australian-inspired dome: Woolloomooloo, named after perhaps the most special place in Australia! The coral-colored walls were the deciding factor for us. 😉
Downstairs in the dome, you will find a seating area with a robust sofa, which you can also sleep on, sturdy butterfly chairs, and a cozy corner seat. There is a kitchenette where you can make coffee and tea and a cozy dining area with a dining table. You can sleep downstairs in the double bed with a box bed atmosphere or under the large skylight in the loft, where there are four single beds. A little chilly? There is always the option to crank up the pellet stove!
We arrived a little earlier than the rest, and after an extensive exploration of our temporary ‘village’ and the other domes, it was time to discover the rest of the campsite. Unfortunately – as always when we go camping or glamping – it began to rain, so we sought refuge in the heart of the site: De BuitenBar.
This is the place where camping guests meet! It feels a bit like a living room, despite it being outside. You can regularly come here for fun activities or live music, but this Monday it was fairly quiet. Still, we had a good time, with a good glass of wine (or three) and something delicious to eat. BuitenLand strives to reduce its ecological footprint and that is reflected on the menu: no unnecessary waste, everything local, and a lot of attention to vegetarian dishes!
Cool Down or Warm-up
The site is not only located in the middle of a forest, but also at a natural pool (De Zandpol). Perfect for taking a dip or sunbathing on the beach during the hot summer days. ‘Unfortunately’ the rain prevented us from going there, instead, we opted on having a dip in the swimming pool at the campsite itself! Later we learned that there is also a unique hot tub, in a beetle (!), but we have yet to see it ourselves .. so you just have to do some research yourself. 😉
BuitenLand or abroad?
We had a great time in the evening, with, among other things, the guitar that we found in our dome. After an evening of singing songs, we woke up wonderfully relaxed in the morning to the forest and bird sounds around us. After an iced coffee – of course – at the BuitenBar, unfortunately, the fun was over and we headed home again.
Are you looking for a few days of rest? Do you want to enjoy camping with friends? Go on holiday with the kids? Or just want to escape the city? If you can’t or don’t want to go abroad, Camping BuitenLand is a fantastic replacement!
Watch our vlog here!
→ This article was written in collaboration with Camping BuitenLand. We were allowed to stay here for a night for free, in exchange for content. Of course you can read our own opinion here!