Camping with Kids

Camping with kids is a great way to get outdoors with the whole family and enjoy nature and unplug from the day-to-day routine. There are plenty of amazing spots to camp in California and we love that you are ready to take on your next family adventure. 

Whether you have camped before or it is your first-time camping with kids, I am sharing things that have helped us before when camping with the whole family. 

Camping With Kids Safety + Necessities

Let’s start with safety and things you will need during your time out in nature.

Make sure you pack things like sunscreen, bug spray, hats, sunglasses, the right footwear and layers in case of colder weather. We always pack a first aid kit and add on a couple extra items like thermometer, mole skin, allergy medication.  These are important since sometimes when camping you are away from a main road and easy access to get help. You can also add items like a whistle and of course headlamps and flashlights.

It is important to set ground rules once you arrive at your campsite; for example, let the kids know how far they can wander off on their own.  If they are older, go over what they should do in case of wild life getting too close. 

Include the Kids

Allow the kids to feel part of the experience, have them help you think of meals they would love for the trip and choose snacks they actually like. They can also help you pack and bring their own items such as camping chairs, sleeping bags and head lamps. This way they feel like it’s their trip as well.  

Don’t forget to pack a travel potty for the kids. This is huge and will be used on the road and at the campsite. You can also bring along a pop-up bathroom/shower tent for the whole family. This works great for kids who are a bit older since they like privacy. 

CLICK HERE for a great tent you can use!

Bring the Outdoor Toys!

Even though you are in nature to enjoy what it has to offer, kids will be kids and will at times be bored. Leave the tech at home and pack toys that the whole family will enjoy.  We bring Uno cards, glowsticks, sand toys (if camping at the beach), balls, frisbee, bubbles, and binoculars.  It is also fun to bring bug catching kits and items like nature journals and disposable cameras for the older kids to document their adventure.  These fire-side story dice are a great way to get creative with story-telling while roasting marshmallows!

Bring the Extras

Pack extra clothes and plenty of wipes. Kids will get messy and dirty…that is the fun thing about camping. There are many campsites that will not have running water and showers so plan ahead. You can always get a small camping shower if needed but wipes will always come handy and extra clothes will always be needed. We always make sure to pack rain boots and rain jackets… you just never know when you will get rained on. 

Families with younger kids can also pack items such as travel bassinets, booster seats or travel high chairs and portable pack-n-play. These will make your camping trip a lot easier when it comes to being hands-free and being able to allow baby to be safe. Don’t forget a baby carrier or hiking baby carrier in case you want to hike while camping. 

Portal Play Yards come in different price ranges but it is a good investment if you are planning to camp often, go to the beach or enjoy days outdoors. 

Making Camping Memories

These are some of the things that have worked for us.  We have hiked with our tiny humans since our oldest was 2 and the kids love our time outdoors exploring and enjoying the camping experience. Like anything else with kids, it can get a bit stressful, however it is important to give ourselves grace as we tackle this time as a family. It is all about being present and having a great time with our children as they make new and wonderful memories. 

Do you have a favorite place to camp or get camping tips!  We would love to hear about it and we hope you share your next adventure with us! 

Written by Daniella Horne


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here