How to Plan for Family Camping

One of the best ways to spend some quality time with your family is to completely disconnect from the hustle and bustle of every day life and submerge yourself into nature. Camping is one a great family activity. It allows you to spend one on one time with each other, while working through simple tasks like pitching a tent or starting a fire together. In order to have a full-proof successful camping trip with your family, it is very important to take the right planning measures and to prepare for everything that you and your family might need while out in nature.


Like any other family vacation, you want to make sure that you take all of the right steps to planning your camping trip.


Pick the Right Location


One of the most important decisions you will make when planning your family camping trip is the location that you decide to go to. Picking the right place will either make or break your family’s camping experience. While you may be up for hiking and backpacking several miles before setting up camp, your little ones might not be so up to the challenge. There are a number of campsite selections based on what your group will need and their abilities. Some of the choices you will have are backpacking, car camping, canoe camping and boat camping to name just a few. If this is your first time on a camping excursion, we recommend choosing a site that is more established in a state or national park. A remote campsite gives you the option of spending the days hiking and exploring local towns. If you are looking to participate in other activities, you should consider a campsite that is closer to other locations that you can explore.


Reserve Your Spot in Advance


Some places book up almost a year in advance. Many state and national parks require some type of permit in order to camp on their grounds. Thanks to the internet, you can now make most of your campsite reservations online. However, not all places offer the luxury of booking in advance. There are still some parks and sites that are only available on a first-come, first-serve basis. If the destination that you have chosen is one that requires you to show up early, plan to arrive with enough time to find a good spot for you and the family.




It is better to come prepared than to realize that you need something last minute. Especially when camping normally involves remote locations, it is best to be prepared in the case that an emergency arrives. Some of the camping essentials in your packing should include:


  • First aid kit with all of the things you may need
  • Tent and ground cloth
  • Sleeping bags
  • Camping cots or pads
  • Rain gear including ponchos
  • Batteries
  • Flashlights
  • Lanterns and extra fuel
  • Sunscreen
  • Bug repellent
  • A cooler
  • Water carriers
  • Waterproof containers
  • A cook set with can openers


One of the tips to storing all of these supplies is to pack them into storage bins and label them with what you plan on packing in them. They are easy to store in the back of the car or put it somewhere on site with you without running the risk of wild animals getting into your stuff.


Try to Stay Dry


One of the worst things that can happen is having the rain put a damper on your camping trip, especially when there are kiddies involved. It’s obvious that you cannot control the weather, but you can control how prepared you are for whatever the weather decides to throw at you. Rain gear is definitely an essential when it comes to staying dry. It is a good idea to bring a tarp with you and pace it under your tent. Make sure that the tarp is fitted to the perimeter of the tent so that rainwater doesn’t collect on any extra material that might stick out. If you have not yet done so, or if this is your first trip, it might be wise to make sure that your tent has been seam sealed. You will thank yourself for doing this if it begins to rain. Another great investment will be a rain fly to put up over your tent.


Make Food a Priority


Nobody wants to be a hungry camper. Plan to bring some foods that your family likes. In fact, plan on bringing a lot of it just in case. You will also want to make sure that you pack enough simple snacks like crackers, trail mix, granola, veggie sticks and the like. Most importantly, stay hydrated. Bad things happen with dehydration. So in order to avoid any types of mishaps or negative situations make sure your family has enough access to water at all times.


Give Everyone a Role


An effective way of making sure your family camping trip runs smoothly and effectively is to assign roles for each one of your family members. These do not have to be heavy-duty jobs by any means. It might be a good idea to assign the cooking to one person, the set up to another, and the gathering and dispersing of supplies to someone else. Dividing up the jobs that are required to get everything and everyone situated will help things run quicker and smoother. Make sure your entire family is a part of the planning process so that they are in the know and they are included.


Now that you know some of the essential steps and measures to planning your family camping trip, you are one step closer to a great family time! Do you research, plan ahead and, most importantly, keep everyone in your group informed and involved. Once you’ve got all of your ducks in a row, its just you, the family and the great outdoors!


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