The Ultimate Camping Checklist: Must-Have Items

Whether you’re camping solo, with friends, or embarking on a whole family expedition, camping can be quite the experience. It means you can embrace nature, take challenging hikes, and sleep under the stars. 

However you decide to camp, there’s always something that gets forgotten when packing.

This is why having a well-thought-out and organized checklist is crucial. It will prevent you from arriving at your destination without an essential item, and it will help you keep track of everything you need to pack away with you when your trip ends. 

If you’re getting ready to go on the camping holiday of a lifetime, here are tried and tested items that you’ll need by your side.

1. Shelter Necessities 

For a safe, secure, and comfy campsite, the most important thing is shelter. Having a high-quality tent padded out with air beds, sleeping bags, pillows, and extra blankets all help you to stay warm throughout the night. 

You’ll also need areas to sit and stations to cook from, so items like fold-up chairs, tables, and portable gas ovens are essential. If you’re staying in a designated campsite, there’ll probably be hookups for electricity, water pumps, and fire pits, too. 

And, for when night comes and darkness sets in, you’ll need some headlamps and lanterns. You can purchase affordable rechargeable camping lanterns from most camping shops.

Make sure you have the following checklist items: 

  • High-quality tent (make sure tent pegs are included)
  • Waterproof tent cover
  • Airbeds or sleeping bags
  • Pillows
  • Extra blankets
  • Fold-up chairs and tables
  • Plastic plates, mugs, and cutlery
  • Portable gas oven
  • Camping kettle
  • Lanterns and headlamps
  • Mallet
  • Lighter

2. First-Aid

Because camping involves being out in the open the majority of the time, you’ll need to prepare for things like bug bites, cuts, and scrapes. Every camper should have a first-aid kit on the top of their essentials list, and a basic one should include:

  • Plasters
  • Bandages
  • Disposable sterile gloves
  • Scissors
  • Biodegradable cleansing wipes
  • Painkillers – including paracetamol and ibuprofen
  • Anti-histamines

3. Toiletries 

Maintaining basic hygiene is important when camping, as showering is often either limited or not an option. If you’re only camping for a couple of nights, you might skip a shower until you get home, but if you’re going for longer, don’t forget:

  • Deodorant
  • Baby wipes
  • Toilet paper
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Sunscreen

4. Clothing

It doesn’t matter whether you’re camping in the middle of summer or the middle of winter, you need to ensure you pack sensible camping attire. 

No matter the season, nights can get cold, so you should always bring extra layers to ensure you stay warm throughout the night. As well as keeping a healthy body temperature, you should also pack extra clothes in case items get wet or become damaged. 

When camping, always pack:

  • Waterproof coats
  • Plenty of pants and socks
  • Short and long-sleeved shirts
  • Thermal pajamas and undergarments
  • Walking shoes
  • Sandals – if it’s summer
  • Sunglasses
  • Hats – choose accordingly depending on the weather
  • Gloves
  • Swimwear

5. Food

While you may be planning on going rogue, and catching fish and meat to cook over the campfire, it doesn’t hurt to prepare some extra meals just in case. Before you head off, plan some meals you can make easily when you’re there and add them to your shopping list. Some camping-friendly ingredients and meals include:

  • Cured meats for sandwiches
  • Bread
  • Porridge sachets
  • Hot dogs
  • Tea
  • Coffee
  • Crackers
  • Butter
  • Beans

Enjoy the Camping Experience 

Hopefully, this camping guide will help you to fully prepare for your exciting trip into the wilderness. From ensuring you have everything you need for a cozy campsite, to making sure you’ve got all the essential safety equipment, you’ll be sure to have an exhilarating camping experience. 

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