Camping is one of those activities you either love as a passion or could not care less about. When I told my friends we were taking the boys for a family camping trip the reactions were priceless. I guess most people think traveling with children under a certain age automatically make you a bit “off your rocker”?! Personally, I find it rather easy to camp with kids and felt I should give some of the tricks we use. Maybe some of these will encourage you to take your kids camping! My Tips for taking Kids Camping:
1. Location, Location, location. It matters where you take your kids camping. Try to find family friendly establishment with all of YOUR needs. We have a few gems we found along the way but I will only share one of them today (Adventure Bound in Portageville, NY).
Hamilton Beach gifted a grill to help facilitate my review. All opinions expressed are my own.
2. Bring all the essentials! I promise to do a full post on everything we pack but for now lets name the basics. Think Shelter, food and WATER! Have plenty of seating. Nothing can drive you nuts if you are constantly fighting for a place to sit and eat!
3. Make sure you have a Cellular service that gets signal! If you have a serious emergency and no way of contacting anyone things can get ugly fast. We like to go hiking. We leave notice of where we are headed and use my #Verizon phone if we get lost. We make sure someone knows where we are going in case they have not heard from us. Having service to pull up Google maps or call local medical help is so VITAL! My Unlimited plan allows me to have unlimited use of data (internet) and texts/calls. I never have to worry about service in these remote areas we hike in! Do your research and invest in a great Cellular Service.
4. Pack extra shoes. I’m not sure what it is about the outdoors but the weather likes to change on you. Be prepared for anything.
5. Bring food. This saves so much money AND it rather fun to cook on a grill or campfire. Most times we buy produce at side of the road farms on the way to our campground! I would also suggest bringing a Hamilton Beach Electric Indoor Searing Grill with you just in case it rains. I can tell you it happens even when the weather man says it will not. Always have a back up way of cooking meals.
7. Bring snacks. Sometimes the grill won’t light. Sometimes it is raining and you need something to tie you over until a meal can be made. Better to prevent possible meltdowns by just tossing some snacks in along with your food.
8. Stop and snap pictures. If you have been driving for a while kids get antzy. Stop and let them stretch out, run around or snap photos in random large wooden chairs like the one we found pictured above. Seems so silly to stop and do this but the kids LOVE it!
9. Have fun in nature. Anytime we travel it never goes exactly how I planned it but being flexible is the difference between the best and worst trip we have ever been on!
10. Don’t NOT do something because you think the kids won’t be good or they are not “big enough”. My son surprises me every day with what he CAN do that I thought he was too “small” for.
11. Have lots of campfires. We joke about this but campfires are a great conversational starter. Even little kids can be “good” around campfires just give them some fire safety tips!
12. Bring those little magic color changing flame dust crystals you see at gas stations. Kids LOVE flames that change colors! Ok, confession time, so do many adults!
13. Have an emergency kit just in case! Any time on any trip you can get yourself in a bind. Be prepared!
14. Bring some games along. We always carry camp favorites like Can Jam, Ladder ball (pictured above) and a Frisbee. Also try card games since they are so easy to pack.
15. Let your kids be “bored”. I found so many parents burning themselves because they were a kids only form of entertainment. The whole idea behind camping is to be “one with nature”. Let them explore, collect rocks and play on their own. You need to give them the time to be creative and use their imagination! Just my 2 cents!
16. Play with them. Often times I do what is needed I forget to join in the fun. Yes, we need meals made but I also need to stop and play with the kids too!
We have had always had success with our camping trips. I love reconnecting with my family while I disconnect from technology. It may seem weird to “unplug” but I think it is vital.
Have any tips or tricks you use when camping with your family??
What is your favorite part of Camping? Was this “Tips for taking Kids Camping” post helpful?