Tent, guest house, luxury hotel or hostel? What’s your pick?
We’ve tried them all and each has a time and a place. Most of our camping has been confined to Australia, where camping is big news and the country is ideally set up for family camping adventure. We’ve camped at Cooktown, Alice Springs, Cairns, Uluru and deep in the bush at the Laura Aboriginal Dance Festival, an incredible experience and one only really possible with a good camping set up.
But what gear do you actually need for your family camping trip?
Camping Adventure With The Kids
One of the best ways to enjoy time with your family is to get out and experience the natural world together by taking a camping trip. This can mean anything from a trekking and camping adventure through the woods, or simply driving to a lakeside or oceanside campground and enjoying a little time relaxing by the water. If you’re thinking of planning your own family camping getaway and are wondering what things to bring along, here are a few essentials not to forget.
Tent or Tents
There are many different kinds of tents ( click through for tips on how to choose a tent) available to you for your camping trip, and your selection should be based of the style of trip you’ve planned.
If you are expecting to be carrying the tent on your back, then you will want something lightweight and easy to pitch and take down. It is very possible to carry camping gear in your backpack if you enjoy this style of travel.
On the other hand, if you’re driving in and out of your campsite, then you can easily get a larger tent, with more headroom and space, or possibly even bring multiple ones. If you’re not sure what kind of tent to pick-up then be sure to visit your local outdoors store and talk with an expert.
When it comes to sleeping bags its important to get ones that will both fit you and your family for size, and be appropriate for the temperature you will be sleeping in. Sleeping bags are rated according to how warm you need them to be, Often people will bring warmer or winter style sleeping bags on a summer trip, and you’ll quickly discover that having the correct sleeping bag will make a world of difference.
For tropical camping we found sheet sleeping bags to be adequate.
Don’t forget something to place your sleeping bag on,be it a foam mat or Thermorest for backpackers,a folding cot or more substantial mattress for longer stays.
This becomes increasingly important if you will be staying in one place for an extended period of time and won’t have to be carrying your things from one campsite to the next.
Camping furniture, such as chairs and tables, will provide you with all the comforts you need to ensure that your stay feels as easy and relaxing as possible. After a few days sitting on the ground, dining without a table can becomes quite a pain, and having these extra small luxuries will make everyone get along a lot better.
Having a table or other raised platform to store, food, water and equipment, is much easier on your back.
If you want to have an easy time cooking, and enjoy the meals you make during your camping trip, then be sure to bring some key cooking essentials. A pot and a pan are absolute musts, as well as general utensils for eating, and a good knife for cutting food.
If you’re looking to travel extra lightweight, then you can get away with just packing a pot, which will be more useful for you to do things such as boil water. If you don’t already own a camping stove, then purchasing a quality stove makes for a good long-term investment.
For backpackers a small methylated spirit burning stove is often enough. They fold down small enough to carry in your backpack and have their own integral pot and lid, you just need to find a bottle of metho at your camping spots.
The best thing to keep in mind when selecting clothes for camping is that you want versatility and utility. This is in no way a fashion show, unless you’re looking to appeal plants, birds, and animals.
Breathable fabrics are best, and of course, layering is a must. Be sure to bring waterproof gear with you as well, as there is nothing worse than being soaked when camping.
By following these easy tips, you and your family are bound to have a great time in the outdoors together.