Camping with kids can be an immensely rewarding experience for all involved. For the children the physical, emotional, and psychological benefits of being surrounded by nature are well-documented.
For the parents, it can be a very special bonding experience, as well as an opportunity to teach your children about responsibility and engaging with the natural world. That being said, taking kids camping also comes with a certain set of challenges.
Obviously, there are certain measures that should be taken to ensure safety and guarantee that everyone enjoys themselves as much as possible. Here are the top tips for camping with kids.
Before You Go Camping with Kids
Before you embark on your trip, the first thing you should do is test the water. Especially if you’re camping with toddlers, you’ll want to know that they are ready to spend an extended period of time in the great outdoors.
Start by organizing a trial run in either your back yard or a nearby park. Set up a tent together and see how they cope with a couple of hours outside. This is how you’ll be able to tell what you need to do to prepare for the real thing.
Pack the Right Gear
It is essential that you pack all of the right gear for camping with your children. If you’re camping with a baby, you’ll need to remember to bring along the usual essentials (diapers, food, etc.) as well as some more specialized gear.
Put together a detailed checklist before you go. Also, make sure to check out camping supply retailers to see what gear you might find useful. You can get more info on this here.
Keep Them Involved
You should make sure your children feel involved and invested in the entire process, including planning. Let them help you pick a spot for camping and take them shopping for camping gear.
Once you’re at the campsite, make sure to enlist their help in setting up a tent. Also, teach them about responsible camping and if you can arrange for a talk with a ranger beforehand – encourage them to be an active learner.
Plan Lots of Activities
It’s no secret that kids tend to get bored pretty quickly. When boredom occurs, children start being difficult. That’s why you’ll need to ensure you have a packed itinerary of camping activities for kids.
This can include all the standard activities such as roasting marshmallows and frog hunting but also try and prearrange so other activities. If your campsite offers activities like archery or orienteering, for instance, make sure to sign your kids up to all of them.
Up the Fun Factor
It’s important that the camping experience doesn’t feel like a chore for your children. Keep a positive vibe and encourage them to see every challenge as an opportunity for adventure.
You’ll also want to bring along some suitable camping toys, such as a paddleball set, board games, kites, frisbees, footballs, and all the rest.
You’ve doubtless already been worrying about the safety of your children beyond the confines of your home. Try not to stress and have an easygoing attitude, but also take appropriate precautions.
First of all, you should brush up on your first aid skills so you know what to do in the unlikely event that something goes wrong. Bring more supplies than you think you’ll need, including extra amounts of any medication your children might be on.
Simply taking the right precautionary steps will give you the peace of mind to enjoy your trip.
As a parent, you naturally want to give your children the very best experiences throughout their formative years. For informative advice on all areas of child raising, including camping with kids, make sure to check out our Kid’s Things section for all the info you’ll ever need.