6 Tips for Camping With Kids | Day Out With The Kids

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Pitch Up: 6 game-changing tips for camping with kids

Kate Williams

10 August 2018

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4 minutes
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Somehow we have become a family that does a lot of camping and no one else has this been a bigger shock to than me. My camping experience prior to this was at festivals as a teenager, but we can all agree that camping with kids is a totally different thing...

Post kids, my camping set up has certainly changed: the tent has become much bigger and my plans for places to go have changed too - think relaxing rather than Reading Festival. Thankfully during this time I’ve picked up a load of tips for camping with kids to make it a fun and stress free experience and one we now do all the time. So whether you're planning a camping trip for the first time, or are just looking for ways to make it a little less stressful, this guide is definitely for you!

Two kids playing games whilst camping

  1. Pack a potty

    Ok, so depending on the age of your kids you might not need a potty (I kind of love alliteration, sorry), but if you or your kids ever get up in the night to use the toilet then a camping toilet is a great piece of kit - no one really wants to be wandering across a field in the dark at 3am with a four year old that needs to go right now. You can buy fancy camping toilets, but many of them are essentially overpriced buckets so if you opt for a bucket and pop a toilet training seat on top for your kids to use I certainly won’t judge you.

  2. Take a tablet

    Furthering the non-judgment thing I am a huge fan of taking tablets camping for my kids. When my daughter slept through until nearly 9am in our tent this weekend, I was overjoyed. She got up, ate her breakfast outdoors and had a great day outside. My son? Oh, he woke up before 6am. You know, that time that officially starts with the number five. There was no chance of getting him back to sleep and no one wants my kids running around in the great outdoors while they’re trying to get some rest, so a kindle or iPad is a great way of letting them get some quiet time.

    Two kids playing games on a camping holiday

  3. Plan your trip around a day out

    Whether you want to go to Peppa Pig World, Legoland or a trip to the zoo, the chances are that there’s a camping site nearby. I hate doing long journeys in the car and my kids do too, so planning to camp turns a day out into a weekend away and a bit more of an adventure. Add to that camping is a lot cheaper than a hotel and, instead of sat in a bathroom hoping your kids will eventually fall asleep, you get to sit outside watching the sunset.

  4. Think about the temperature

    Tents can get really hot during the day and pretty cold at night, if you’re out playing or visiting a local attraction during the day then the heat is less of an issue but for evenings you’ll want hoodies, sleeping bags and extra blankets. Sleeping mats always make me question if I need a hip replacement, so an airbed or self inflating mattress is a much better bet. For a couple of pounds investment, we put foil blankets under ours to help keep them warm.

    A little girl helping to hammer in tent pegs on a family camping trip

  5. Consider an air tent

    I love my air tent and while it wasn’t cheap, being able to put it up and down quickly without having to deal with tent poles has been a total game changer for me. Both my kids can help out hammering in the tent pegs (my four year old being extra supervised but still loving it) and pumping up or deflating the tent.

  6. Look for a play area

    A good park on a camping site can be brilliant and it’s amazing how much fun kids can make out of a slide and a couple of swings. Bigger sites are likely to have a bigger park but it might be further from your tent, while smaller sites often mean that you can pitch close enough to keep an eye on your kids from the comfort of your camping chair.

    A little girl playing in a play area on a camping site

We hope this guide full of tips for camping with kids has got you planning your next adventure. Need even more inspiration? Check out more ideas for family fun using the links below:

Best UK family festivals | Best places to pick your own fruit in the UK | How to do painted rocks | 25 things to do in the summer holidays | 10 maize mazes near you in the UK

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Kate Williams

10 August 2018

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Kate Williams is a mum of two young kids and a blogger at Crafts on Sea where she shares fun but achievable ideas for families. Kate is one of our much loved Trusted Explorers, which means all content has been written exclusively for dayoutwiththekids.co.uk in exchange for a contribution to their family piggy bank. All posts are first hand, honest and based on real experiences.

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