Camping is a great family-friendly activity. It costs very little to take the kids camping for a weekend and once you have bought your main items, they should last for many years. The best thing about camping is that it provides a useful detox from electronic gadgets. Whilst you may be lucky enough to receive a cell phone signal in a large campsite, your kids won’t be able to hook up their x-box or go on Facebook in the middle of nowhere.
A camping trip brings families closer together, but you need to make sure you are adequately prepared for the trip. Here is a quick checklist of essential items you need for a successful family camping trip.
Book a Spot on a Family-Friendly Campsite
Unless you are happy to wing it and head out into the Great Outdoors looking for an adventure, it is sensible to book a spot on a campsite before you leave home. Popular campsites in National Parks soon fill up over holiday weekends and the last thing you want to do is to disappoint the kids.
Head Out Early
Plan the journey with military precision. Work out the best route and plan ahead for rest stops. It is better to head out nice and early, so you arrive in daylight. Pitching a tent is no fun in the dark.
As well as a suitable tent, sleeping bags and cooking equipment, there are a few other items you should pack for the trip.
The first is a flashlight. Most campsites are miles away from civilization, so unless it’s a clear night with a full moon, natural light will be in short supply once the sun goes down. Pack a flashlight for each person, along with plenty of batteries. This will prevent any late-night accidents on the way to the restroom block.
The next item you can’t afford to leave behind is a bottle of insect repellent. Insects love human blood and out in the wilderness there are trillions of little biting bugs eager to drink it. Don’t give them what they want. Apply insect repellent and pack a mosquito net if you are camping in a swampy area.
Sleeping under the stars, cooking al-fresco, and enjoying a tech detox is all well and good, but most kids need a bit more to be suitably entertained. Fortunately, Mother Nature has plenty to offer hyperactive kids.
Are you camping near a lake or stream? If so, have a go at fishing! You can pick up some fishing supplies from Woodbury Outfitters so you are well prepared. Collect some live bait at a local store on your way to the campsite or encourage the kids to dig for worms. Alternatively, practice your photography skills or teach the kids how to track animals.
Always check the weather forecast before you head out into the Great Outdoors with a tent and a car full of excited kids. And if the forecast is hot and sunny, make sure you pack sunscreen to protect the kids from sunburn.