No matter how much your kids may complain when they hear about camping, you all know that you’re going to enjoy it the second you get there. Camping gives you the chance to decompress and leave your other worries behind.
Even if camping with kids doesn’t necessarily eliminate all worries and responsibilities, it doesn’t mean you cannot have fun while changing the theme J
For many, camping is a lot about the simple life, so the list of essential items may be concise. Until you learn on your own skin which items you need and which you may skip, you should check our list. At least, it’s a starting point for making your very own list of essentials for the next camping trip.
The very first thing to do
Make a list with your route, all the places you want to see what you think you’re going to need on your next camping trip.
You may think that you’re not going to forget anything, but why take any chances?
Some items are fundamental when camping, so here are things you cannot do without:
- Tent- After all, it’s camping, and it’s useless to go when you don’t have a tent. Look for one that features a plug-in electric port and is spacious enough.
- Sleeping bags and sleeping pads
- Family first aid kit
- Camp chairs
- Camp stove
- Parachute cord- You can use it for a gazillion of things when camping.
The clothes and gear you need
The following items aren’t fundamental, so feel free to decide for yourself which one to get:
- A bag/backpack/hard-sided suitcase for packing your clothes
- Layering is essential when camping. Get the wool or synthetic clothes for keeping your family warm, but not sweaty.
- Warm fleece for lounging
- Wool socks- get as many as you can as you never know when your feet get wet
- Raingear- every member of your family should have a raingear. The fastest way to catch a cold is when you’re wearing wet clothes for some time.
- Warm gaiter, hat, and liner gloves for various activities
- Reliable footwear that provides traction grip on slippery surfaces and stays dry at all times, without causing blisters or strain on your feet. Break in the camping boots/shoes before the camping trip.
- A dry bag for storing the dirty laundry or wet gear
- Several outfits for your kids. Yes, they will get dirty, as that happens while camping!
- Gear for sun protection.
Pack personal camping comfort gear!
Everyone in your family (apart from babies) should have:
- A pack for the short hikes. Lumbar packs and fanny packs are quite comfortable.
- Headlamp for the night
- Does your kid have a favorite toy? Don’t leave it at home- you don’t have a place to shop in the middle of nowhere!
- Weather band radio, especially if they’re solar or crank/manual powered
- Compass and maps- Now it’s the perfect time to teach your kids how to follow North while in the woods
- Water bottles and energy bars
- Sun protective garments, swim gear, and sunblocks for the summer camping trips. You also need sun protection in the winter!
What do you need for the kitchen?
Should your camping trip last for a couple of days, some cooking may be necessary. Here’s what you need to pack:
- Camp stove
- Enough fuel for the stove
- Storage bags and aluminum foil
- Multi-tool and can opener
- Percolator or French press for coffee. Don’t forget to pack the ground coffee and beans, as well.
- Some seasonings to your liking in ziplock bags
- One set of utensils for every member of your family
- A collection of cooking tools, sharp knives included
- Matches and lighters. Store them in a ziplock bag to have them dry at all times.
- Bowls, plates, cups for everyone
- Frying pan or pot. You should go to various sizes if there’s enough storage space.
- Washcloths and sponges. Towels are also on the list, with paper towels as a standard option when camping.
- Duct tape- for everything
- Oven mitts (you can also use the towels, though)
- Trash bags and some grocery bags
- An eco-friendly soap
The items that you may/may not consider when packing
As we’ve already mentioned, it’s entirely up to how long is the list of essentials. Here are some suggestions to check from our part:
- Parachute hammock for taking a nap. They’re insanely comfortable, and you get sleepy only when thinking of it.
- Screen tent/sun awning- it’s entirely up to you
- Tablecloth- Do you like having comfort from at home while camping or not? If having dinner on a beautiful tablecloth is essential to you, there’s no reason for which you shouldn’t pack it.
- Solar charging stations- if you’re bringing solar-powered devices. And you should consider using solar-powered gadgets too!
- Insect repellent- It’s camping, so a lot of insects are going to be around. Don’t skip the insect repellent, especially if someone in your family is allergy-prone!
- Is your dog camping too? Get everything he needs to feel comfy when camping away from home!
- Glow sticks- They’re efficient, and kids really go for them!
- Firewood- You should buy it from a local area so that you don’t spread any diseases or insects.
- Solar shower- Once again, some like camping, but also love the comfort of a hot shower at any time.
- Water purifier- No matter how much water you have with you, you should always pack a water purifier!
- Batteries, batteries, more batteries- Do we need to say why?
The essentials for making camping fun!
Camping is all about exploring nature, but kids need a lot of variety even when outdoor. Here are some suggestions:
- Fishing gear- Why not teach your kid how to fish?
- Field guides and binoculars- It’s great to see the details that are far away!
- Camp games- everything that your kid likes and can be played when camping
- Activity books- coloring books or something that they like
- Scavenger hunts
- Spike ball
- Notebooks – we forget pretty fast, so encourage your kids to write down all the new and unusual experiences they live when camping.
- Books- Make reading more fun by using some headlamps while camping.
- Maybe a tablet so you won’t miss your NBA favorite’s game.