Fairy lights are your friend
If you’ve got one of the portable power kits you can plug the lights straight into that. Fairy lights don’t take up a lot of energy, so you should get a lot of usage out of them that way. Obviously in winter with all our cloudy days and long nights, it’s a little harder to get full charge on them from your solar panel alone so they might need top up charges during the day.
Some things to bear in mind:
First up, most modern fairy lights use LED bulbs so there shouldn’t be a problem with them heating up next to your canvas or air pole. Older style light bulbs can get hot so it’s probably best to keep those away from your canvas and poles.
Also, a beautifully lit up tent is a glorious thing, but it doesn’t hurt to be conscious of the effect all those lights can have on the immediate environment. Too much artificial lighting in a garden or field can really mess with your local wildlife. Birds (particularly robins) can get really confused and will sometimes start their dawn chorus hours off dawn. Owls hunting in the dark aren’t fans either. The light also disorientates nocturnal insects. Some bats avoid these areas of lights, while others will be drawn in by the insect feast.
What to do? – dim solar powered lights are less likely to bother wildlife. Avoid coloured lights as these confuse and attract glow worms and instead go for warmer hues (warm white or the more yellow/golden tones). Or try and keep the majority of your lighting inside the tent rather than trying to light up the whole area too much.
Below are some examples of fairy lights put to good use by @coxhorne_glamping and @thelittlehippytentcompany.