Going camping with the kids can be a great experience. Camping with kids in a tent or camping in an RV with kids is a great way to make awesome family memories. However it is important to be prepared and have the essentials for camping with kids to make the most of your time spent.
Essentials for Camping with Kids
Camping with your kids can be a lot of fun. However if you are not prepared then things can go down hill pretty quickly. Which totally stinks because then a family fun trip becomes stressful and no ones like a stressful family trip.
No matter if you are sleeping in a tent or sleeping in an RV there are things you need to make sure you have on hand. It is especially important if you are camping somewhere other then a camp ground to make sure you have everything. It is not always easy to run to the store when you are camping.
If you are just getting started with camping with the kids, be sure to check out tips for camping with kids. Camping in an RV? Check out our tips for camping with an RV.
What to Pack for camping with kids?
Medical Supplies/First aid Kit
A first aid kit should be standard fare for any vacation destination but it is especially vital out in the middle of the woods. You can’t just run out to the drugstore when you are sleeping under the stars in the forest. Be sure to have a fully equipped first aid kit along with bug spray, sunscreen, aloe vera, hand sanitizer and plenty of bandages. You will want to have all that you might need in the case of an emergency. This includes some way to make an emergency phone call.
When you are camping you do not want to leave trash where you were. Always bring trashbags. They also come in handy for if things get wet and you want to keep them away from your dry stuff.
Something to Do When Things Slow Down
Not everyone goes camping just for the serenity and quiet. Some like camping for the adventure. Bring along fishing gear, books, magazines or cards….whatever will help your boredom if you start to feel that way. No electronics, however! That is a cardinal rule in the woods.
Bring as little as possible without bringing not enough. I suggest bringing an extra outfit more then what you will need for each person. Camping can get a bit dirty.
You will also want to bring solid shoes. If you are camping in the woods you will have rocks and sticks that you will step on. You need to make sure you shoes protect your feet.
Flashlight or lantern.
If you are camping in the woods there is probably not going to be electricity nor will there be lights. Some camp grounds will have things electricity and water but it is still helpful to have a flashlight with you.
If you don’t want to sit on the ground then you will want to bring chairs with you. They make light weight camping chairs that are easy to fold up and light enough to carry.
Toilet Paper. You will for sure want to bring toilet paper for obious reasons. You may also want to bring along baby wipes as they are great for cleaning up things and washing hands and bodies.
Camping Food Tips & Essentials
Plan Meals and Prep ahead of time
It is easy to write down a list of every meal you plan on having while you are camping. Then prep any of the ingredients that you can at home. This will cut back on prep time but it is also much easier to cut cup veggies on the kitchen counter then at a campsite.
Easy to Prepare Foods
Even if you intend on hunting or fishing for your food, you still need to have emergency reserves on hand. Dehydrated foods, foods that won’t spoil and a cooler full of easy cook meats are always a good idea.
You definitely want to consider if you are in bear country. Most of America is bear country so you likely are. If so, make sure you invest in some good bear proof containers to keep things safe. Finally, make sure you bring some way of cleansing and filtering drinking water.
The last thing you want is to be lost in the woods without that. Keep it on your person at all times. You can also check out my meal ideas for camping post that will give you some great ideas of easy to eat meals when you are camping.
Dishes and Cooking equipment
Speaking of food you will need something to not only store your food but also cook with. If you have an RV then you most likely have a kitchen right there. If you are tent camping then you will want to bring things to eat on and cook with.
- tin foil
- pots and pans
- plates and bowls
- cutting board
- cooking stove and fuel for cooking stove (if you are not planning on using a campfire)
Camping Sleeping needs
A Good Sleeping Bag
If you bring nothing else into the woods, bring a good sleeping bag. You will be very thankful for it when the time comes that you need it and a good night’s rest is even more important in the woods. Camping and sleep rarely go together without a nice, comfy sleeping bag.
Tent or Tarp for Sleeping
Some campers like to rough it and build their own shelters and that is fine. If you insist on doing it this way, you need to at least bring along a tarp for rainy nights. When the rain is not coming down, you can use the tarp to warm the ground under you or countless other things. Bringing it along will never be a waste.
If you are not particularly worried about “roughing it” in the great outdoors, a nice cozy tent is always nice to have. There are many different styles and sizes of tents that make it perfect for getting the whole family camping.
If using a tarp or tent is not your style try glamping at a campground in a cabin or in an RV. You can still have a TON of camping fun that way!
Blow up mattress. If you are someone who doesn’t like to sleep on the hard ground that packing an air mattress might be something you want to do. If you don’t want to carry a mattress, a tent cot might be perfect for you!