Family camping is exciting and fun as always, what’s not exciting is preparing everything you and your whole family need without bringing your entire home.
If only we could fit it inside a giant cooler right? Not like we have to prep things like a survival challenge, although a little bit of that really helps.
Aside from the ‘expanded basics’ (we know most of them,) bringing too many unnecessary things makes the packing and unpacking needlessly stressful.
But hey! Once in a while, we need to leave our mental junk at home and just celebrate outdoors with our loved ones.
1. A One Supersize Tent Is Better Than 2 Smaller Tent
As parents, we could all agree on this. The fact that we are outdoors, which is often surrounded by trees, grass, and all its inhabitants, we can’t afford to keep our eyes off of our children.
But kids, especially teenagers would, of course, want to have some little privacy and exploration. This is when choosing the best camping tent comes to play.
We always suggest two-room tents for that very reason. Below are the 2 best picks for families of 5 to 10 members.
Both are durable, it is heavy and easy to set up, and the second room doesn’t have a door. Favorably, kids can have their privacy but they can’t slip out at the night without waking their parents!
2. Play It Safe
For some reason when going outdoors as a family to bring less is just a tedious decision to make considering you all have to agree on what NOT to bring.
For every outdoor situation, you just have to make sure you make your life easier while every member of the family whines because of this or that.
The point is, you don’t need to let the workaround be around when you can get ahead of the ‘what ifs.’ So, prep up wisely, especially when camping in rural areas!
Sleeping & Personal Care, The Next Level
We obviously bring towels, toothpaste, toothbrush, skin-repellant, deodorants, toilet paper, wet wipes, lip balm, lotion, and a large hand sanitizer.
Along with our sleeping necessities like sleeping bags, pillows, air mattresses, jeans, or thicker pants, socks, and blankets. That’s a lot but we need them!
This is in every parent’s and camper’s viewpoint in every family camping, skin hygiene, and care beyond the wounds are very important. When it comes to buying soaps, shampoos, and cleansers for outdoor purposes should be carefully selected.
The campsites and forests are nice, but it has their drawbacks which often attack the skin. Of course, at the same time, we avoid carrying too many in a bag.
2-in-1 Body Wash And Shampoo
Why need to bring a separate soap and shampoo when you can get a single product that does both?
Find a 2-in-1 body wash and shampoo that is gentle for irritated skin and bug bites.
We like the Aloe Vesta Body Wash and Shampoo because it is a gentle kind of body wash and shampoo.
Very important, don’t rely on only on bug sprays and skin repellents, especially when staying up late. Most kids enjoy the outdoors more than adults.
And so are the residents of the wilderness, loving them back in the most troubling way any parents could imagine.
Laundry line and pins
Obviously, we need to bring a sufficient number of warm garments, and that includes socks, not only for cold but also against bug bites.
Bringing clothesline and clothespins are necessary to hang clothes, wet towels, or the blanket (in case one of the kids weewee on the bed.)
Considerably, your degradable toilet paper and a flashlight’s partner in crime.
In case any member of the family gets caught, in the middle of the night, by the urge to pass out whatever you’ve eaten that day.
This gardening tool is a ‘must-have’ when you are nowhere near public toilets.
3. Survival Kit Prep
We have heard worrisome stories of a family with children getting lost in the woods, having animal encounters, being bitten by pesky insects, or worse injured by poisonous plants while exploring the forest.
We take these things very seriously. We need to make sure we are familiar or at least know some people who are familiar with the camping place.
Let’s admit it, kids can be very stubborn, and since they are our priority we cannot underestimate the possibilities.
More than just the water-proof matches, rain gears, ropes, a pair of boots (for each), and a compass, we need to consider additional survival means for our little ones.
Many tend to overlook whistles, but this is a must-have in your survival kit when camping in the forests.
Kids are more likely to explore the woods, making them carry one around their necks whenever in case they get stuck, hurt, or lost.
Life Straw or Sawyer MINI Water Filtration System
This is the best in forest camping. Used as a backup in case you run out of drinking water and for an emergency when someone gets lost in the woods.
It has a cute size you can simply pop it on a soda bottle, or use the included drinking straw to drink directly from the water source.
We suggest you get both the standard propane and battery-powered/ rechargeable lanterns. Gas lanterns have a longer shelf life, it gives heat for warmth, and they are brighter too.
The hissing noise of gas lanterns gives more of the outdoor feeling, that’s just a bonus. You can use a gas lantern inside most tents but since you have youngsters with you, LEDs are safer to use. Bring extra batteries!
Kids and teenagers are big fans of glow sticks. They are fun to play with in the dark while cozy on the mattress but not sleepy yet.
We suggest the GP 12-inch glow sticks that have an elastic cap. They are military grade and cheap, cost around $2-4.
Repairs and Spares
Nothing is worse than your car having hiccups or worse a total stop on your way to the campsite or on your way home. Kids do not have much patience for being stuck on the road.
Always bring repair tools and spare parts with you and check for all these gears beforehand.
4. Camp Cooking Necessities
When it comes to food prep for camping, the necessities are very basic. However, we have to be practical when it comes to bringing cookware and kitchen tools.
In a nutshell, you will want to start by considering bringing only the tools that are versatile and the conditions of your chosen camping locations.
Pot, A Large Wok, or A Double Boiler
All these have a great size and depth that can accommodate more food. They are pretty much multi-functional cookware.
You don’t need to bring a kettle since it can cook soup or simply boil water in it.
Whether wood or metal they are better than carrying a frying pan. It is actually fun to slide the bacon onto the skewer, not just hot dogs and marshmallows.
Folding wash basin or bucket
These collapsible water sink containers are very convenient when you need to wash your dirty plates and other utensils.
High-grade nylon is way better than plastic in terms of sturdiness and that they don’t decompose easily at high temperatures. You can give your kids the task to wash the dishes.
5. Try This On-The-Go Boredom Busters
The whole sense of the family camping trip is to have a fun time for you and your little rangers. We already know the classic camping games scavenger hunt, marking trails, hide & seek, and duck duck goose.
But, before you react about carrying any gadgets camping. First of all, nowadays, they are highly necessary for emergency purposes.
Second, you can always be firm about having your youngster when not using a mobile device. Some gadgets are very helpful in building your child’s learning and interests.
Not only that snapshots are fun, but it also gives children a whole new way to see the world. It introduces them to making creative memories that they can look back on when they become adults.
Start a photo journal contest for your kids, that’s fun learning!
Washable Markers, Crayons, And Coloring Books
If you have kids ages 3 to 5 coloring and drawing keep them quietly busy. Carry a bag with crayons or coloring markers, along with sketch pads, and coloring books.
Ask them to draw a leaf or trees or bugs, that help develop their creative skills and appreciate nature.
Whatever you bring when celebrating outdoors the needs of your adventure will depend on of the age of your children.
It is also important to keep them busy while you are managing things needed during camping.
And before we forget, bring a pen and your own notebook, those come in handy too.