Family Camping Checklist

Family Camping Checklist

Last Updated on October 2, 2020

One of the most beloved outdoor activities is Camping. And Camping with Family is the cherry on top of the cake. Think of it as ‘build-a-tent’ game, but instead of kids, adults are playing. But Family Camping demands many requites. And to meet that you need to have a Family Camping Checklist.

Everybody has a plan for camping in their bucket-list while on a vacation. You can easily find a place to camp in your natives and some countries; Club camping rallies are organized. People meet each other and make new friends, share their experiences, and make everlasting memories.

Let suppose you don’t want to go out and meet so many people; you can go on solo-encampment, all by yourself. Or you can choose to go out with your friends and family and enjoy your chores. But, in any case, you would need to plan properly before you go out camping.

Even one missing piece in the puzzle can ruin your trip and possibilities are that it will turn out to be a disaster rather than a fun activity. Especially when camping with your family and friends. Consequently, you need a checklist for every type of camping.

Family Camping Checklist

So, if you are planning to go on a camping tour with your family, the possibilities are that you will miss some of the other things. And for that reason, you should first prepare a checklist even before you start packing.

What is Camping?

I know that’s an irrelevant question, but for those who are starters and new to camping; this section is for you.

Simply put, camping is a recreational outdoor activity that involves staying out in nature for a night or a few days. It includes staying in a shelter of either a natural tent or a traditional tent. Adults leave the urban and developed areas to spend a night or two with nature. Camping is widely practiced in the western regions.

Camping is the best stress buster for those who are fed up with living their corporate and office lives every day. Campers can choose to go on camping in their cars, caravans, minivan, etc. There are Specialized RV’s just made for them. RV’s are customized buses converted into a house on wheels.

There are many different types of camping-styles which should be the title of your camping checklist. Your checklist plan will be according to the type of camping you want to opt for.

Take a look at different types of camping styles.

Types of Camping Styles

  • Tent Camping: This is the simplest form of camping that you can choose from. Only involves a tent and the right campsite with the right people. It can even be done in your backyard with the kids; the right way to teach them about nature. Few things should be taken care of like, the type of tent, the area of the encampment, the number of people, and of course the checklist.
  • Hiking: This form involves carrying a backpack with a portable tent and walking during the day while sleeping outside at night. Instead of portable tents, many people opt for sleeping bags or hammocks. Finding the right place to sleep during the night is the most challenging task. Certainly, a checklist of only the essentials is very important so that you don’t miss anything.
  • Survivalist Camping: Are you a fan of the famous show Man v/s Wild- Yeah me too. That type of outing is known as Survivalist camping; people only take the bare essentials with them like knives, lighters, matchboxes, and ropes. This is it. No other thing. They survive on the food garnered from the forests, like fruits, animals, and sometimes insects. The goal is to survive the harsh weather and the environment. Just like our ancestors.
  • RV or Van Camping: Do you love your car or do you have a Bus? And you love camping too? Well, it is the fusion of modern and primitive lifestyles. RVs are custom-made buses which are also known as houses on wheels. This tradition gained popularity in the 1960s in North America. Since then it is practiced by masses. Some people even live in their buses for months.

So, these are the basic types of camping-styles you can choose from. Let’s assume that you are going for a simple tent camping with your family. There are lots of considerations you should first plan and before leaving the urban world.

Preparation Before you leave for Camping

Deciding a day for camping is not tough, right? Yes, it isn’t tough; take a leave, plan the timings, and there you go outspanning. But before you go on to take a leave and get out there, I would suggest considering a few things. Take a look below:

  • The weather – The one thing common between all the campsites is; that they all are on during the best seasons, essentially, very pleasant weather. It is very important to look for the weather of the place where you want the campsite to be. You can also look at the weather updates which can predict the weather of the Campground for you. Believe me, it is the thing which will make your day (and night). Consider going for a lake view over the top of a mountain with pleasant scenery. A total bliss. It can turn out to be a memory for a lifetime.
  • The distance- Let suppose the camping site is around 60 miles from where you live. It would you at least 2 hours to reach there. You leave your home just before dusk and until you reach there, it is already night. You couldn’t set up your tent properly. Therefore, it is very important to leave for the campsite with at least two hours in hand for prep works. You will be able to set up the tent and other objects before the sun go down.
  • Food planning- There’s nothing to eat in the woods and if you don’t carry your food with yourself, be ready to spend the night starving. Food planning includes arranging a gas stove, woods for the campfire, half-prepared food, and many more. We will talk about this in detail in the latter part of the article.
  • Games- You are probably going out camping because you want to spend time with your family and have fun. Recreational games will enrich your experience significantly and help you get close to your family. I would suggest you carry at least one thing to play an outdoor game with your family.
  • Preparing the Gear- This is the most important part of camp planning. Depending on the type of camp you are going for, your gears will change. You will be going out with your family so it is necessary to carry all the essentials. Don’t miss out on little things; everything is important. Read the article further to see the checklist of all the campsite gear.

Preparing for camping is not tough but oftentimes people miss on little thing before leaving. The above-mentioned points should be taken care of as they will help you to be prepared for any situation.

For making it simple and easy to remember, be advised to make a checklist for everything that you will need during the camping. Take a look at our Campsite Checklist.

The Ultimate Family Camping Checklist

There are primarily four basic parts you should make a checklist for. First of all, comes the Campsite Gear followed by the food and kitchen accessories, clothes, and personal items.

Packing half the items can be annoying. Therefore, whether you are a newbie or advanced player in this game, you must make a packing list that will help you remember what is packed and what is left. Without a list, you can be lost in the maze because there is so much pack.

And if you think that there are not so many things to pack then maybe you are wrong. I will be describing everything from the very basic so that you know what to take and what not to. Let’s take a look at everything you need:

Campsite Gear

1. Tent: A tent a cloth stretched with the help of ropes and poles. It is your home for the campers. So choose a tent according to the number of family members. Tents are portable and can be stored easily in a small place. Choose a good quality tent and it may last for years.

2. Sleeping Bags: It is a lightweight quilt that can easily cover one person. Sleeping bags are only taken to places that usually have cold weather. The alternative to sleeping bags is a blanket which when combined with the tent works perfectly.

3. Chair: A camping chair is a lightweight foldable chair that can be stored in a small place. These can be made up of wood or polyester and metal rod or even plastic. They are relatively cheap so buying one wouldn’t cost you a lot.

4. Torches: They are one of the most crucial parts of the plan. There is no light at night in the woods except the moon. Hence, it is advised to carry at least two or three torches to the campground. Animals are afraid of lights and fire, so they can help you keep safe.

5. Headlamps: These are the type of torches which are mounted on the head of the person. These are primarily used by hikers or someone who is into adventure camping like mountaineering and mountain biking. A headlamp should be able to emit a light of good intensity (lumens). Don’t go for the cheap ones.

6. Batteries: There should be a secondary portable battery for every battery-driven equipment you are carrying with yourself to the camping site.

Kitchen Accessories

1. Stove: Portable stoves are available in the market specially made for camping and picnics. These stoves have a small burner with a flammable gas-filled cylinder. They are also used in many places like hospitals, RVs, caterer, etc. These stoves are easy to handle and quick to set up.

2. Firewood: It is the wooden material used in campfires and cooking purposes. You can find firewood in the forests, but some places have a wet environment so carrying firewood with yourself beforehand wouldn’t do any harm. Wild animals are afraid of fire; it is an essential part, don’t miss on it.

3. Utensils: Food is a vital thing and for cooking the food, you need some big utensils. Ideally, you should carry as few utensils as you can. You can even look for good disposable plates and glasses for keeping weightless of the items.

4. Coffee Maker: Nothing better than a stress-relieving morning coffee. If you have that extra space left, coffee cravers can carry a coffee maker. Caffeine is also helpful in keeping the body active and mindful. Go for the smallest size possible.

5. Trash Bags: You don’t want to be littering around on the campgrounds; it’s already enough in the urban lands. Responsible campers carry a trash bag with themselves so they don’t harm the natural habitat of the animals. Plus, trash bags can help you in containing any kind of bacteria which can be harmful to your family.

6. Knife: Carry at least three different sized of knife for different purposes. You never know when they can come handy. Buy some of the knives from the local store if you don’t have enough or a variety of knives at home. Advanced campers always have a Swiss-Knife with themselves (for versatility).

Personal Items

1. First-Aid Kit: It is defined as a collection of equipment and medical supplies used to give medical attention/treatment in case of an emergency. Ideally, you should have a first aid kit in your closest proximity but if you don’t or if it is consumed, you should buy a new one immediately. You never know what can happen in the forests.

2. Medicines: Apart from first-aid kits, medicines should also be kept for normal fever, cough, or vomiting. There should be a medicine for mild problems. Kids are more vulnerable to infections, so special care must be taken.

3. Insect Repellents: Insect repellent creams are for keeping the insects away from your campsite. These creams can be applied directly over the skin and clothing. If possible you can also carry some lights which attract insects and kill them; this won’t work on mosquitos.

4. Sunscreens: Sun’s rays are very harsh and can at times cause severe burns to the skin. To prevent this, it advised applying sunscreen for protection against UVA and UVB rays from the sun. Good sunscreens can prevent darkening and spotting of skin.


1. Shoes: Specially designed boots should be worn in the forest with high ankle length. There are different types of shoe designs; to protect heals and toe, walking long distances, prevent injury, good grip, etc.

2. Rainwear: This includes carrying rain suits, rain boots, and hats. It is not necessary for camping in dry places but very important in tropical regions. A good fabric rain jacket will not allow the water to get past through. Accessories include rain shoes, rain jackets, raincoats, rain suits, etc.

3. Swimsuit: Swimsuits are necessary while camping besides beaches or lakes. Having separate clothes for swimming will greatly help. It will also help from getting your normal clothes dirty too soon. There are plenty of types of swimsuits available in the market for women, men, and children.

4. Normal Wear: If planning camping for several days, you should keep at least 2 to 3 sets of clothes for every family member. Also, keep some soap for bathing or cleaning purposes.

5. Gloves: There are gloves made specifically for camping. Some varieties include; firewood gloves, leather gloves, gloves for winter wear, mittens, toddler mittens, etc.

Other Supplies

The aforementioned points shown are the essentials required for you to carry while going on a camping trip. There are few more things which you can skip on but if you have enough space than you can take them with you. Read below to know more:

1. Camera: Although there are many smartphones today with excellent camera quality nothing can beat a DSLR. If you have some space left, consider carrying a DSLR with extra batteries.

2. Pet Supplies: Pet supplies include a dog water bottle, dog bowl, dog food, and clothes for the pet. Alas, the pet supplies will differ according to your pet and its size.

3. GPS: GPS is a handy tool for navigation in the forest. You should rely on your phones as are very good chances of no signal in the forest and you can get lost. GPS stands for Global Positioning system; it uses satellite navigation for positioning while giving excellent battery life.


Camping is one of the best recreational activities one can experience. And planning for one is quite confusing. You have to take just what is needed. A precise family camping checklist should be made before packing.

This guide provided all the information and essential equipment you should be carrying. You can always add more to the list as you find necessary. Lastly, keep in mind to tick-off the things as you pack them.

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