Camping in the forest can be a massive and horrific adventure for toddlers, since there’s a lot to explore. Kids of all ages will discover so many things that will fascinate them on a camping trip, from the smallest of bugs to star-dotted skies, and even the call of an owl.
Thereupon, parents camping with their kids should undertake plenty of practicalities. To plan for your upcoming adventure with a kid, you need to internalize these 18 top tips that reveal must-know camping hacks, and develop your camping trip effortlessly and fantastically.
We suggest starting with a small camping trip and do a test run in your backyard. Review the weather update prior to deciding on any trip, and inspect the dangerous plants that could poison your kid near your campsite. Choose a site with plenty of activities, and constantly supervise your kids, especially when you do campfires.
And, don’t forget to bring all essentials, like a first aid kit, a headlamp, bug spray and sunscreen, ample clothes for toddlers, comfy beds, light snacks, a heat source for when it starts raining, a mat for crawlers, and your kid’s favorite toy.
In this article, we’ll be discussing 18 tips and tricks for camping with toddlers to spend most of your time fun tracing the outdoors and make camping with kids less of a hassle.
Camping is a good activity that will allow your toddler to enjoy nature. But, unlike regular camping with adults, there are certain things that you need to prepare so that your little one will be able to fully enjoy this activity. Read our essential guide for camping with toddlers to know more.
18 tips for camping with toddlers
You may have no problems achieving a campground getaway if you get the basics right. Here are the 18 top ideas for undertaking a memorable and relaxing camping trip.
- Begin with small camping trips
Start with a small camping trip, like in your local area, for a short period, especially on weekends. Thus, you can presume what works best for your kid prior to making a promise for a longer camping trip.
- Check the weather beforehand
If you’re going camping with your kids, you must be aware of the weather. Toddlers are vulnerable to weather conditions.
Hence, if it turns out to be rainy or too windy, they could spend their whole camping trip huddled inside the tent.
Some basic research on the internet will swiftly help you understand the conditions you can expect at the camping area.
- Do a trial run
After you think you have prepared for everything, you must do a test run in the backyard. It will help you distinguish any snags with the gear that you have. Like, after you select a spacious camping tent, you want to ensure that the entire family will fit in. Even though the tent you picked may look spacious to you, the whole family might end up not fitting inside it.
The test run can also allow toddlers to get used to spending an evening in the tent. That way, you don’t have to waste the first day of your upcoming adventure trying to calm them down. Rather, you can start to have fun right away. This is one of our most suggested tips for camping with toddlers.
- Take your time
Be patient with your toddler when camping. They love to explore and downturn to look at a ladybug or pat a horse. Consider this into your preparations and reckon for toddler’s tantrums. Show that you’re calm, and your kid will be too.
- Pack some familiar toys with you
The outdoors might be unbearable for toddlers. Therefore, you need to look for something that they can find comfort in. One way of doing so is to carry their favorite toy with you. It will aid relax them and offer them something which they can play with.
However, don’t pack too many of their toys. Pack one or two of your kids’ favorite toys, yet encourage them to play. The toy will keep them busy and it won’t disturb them from rejoicing in the outdoors.
- Inspect the plants in your camping area
Toddlers are naturally curious. If they see any wild berries, they might head toward them and eat a few. As soon as you arrive at the campsite, inspect if there are any dangerous wild berries around. If you find any, make sure that you warn your toddlers about them.
Moreover, you must ensure that you inspect what they are eating at the camp. If they explore any adjacent bushes, make sure to watch them, and keep them from consuming any poisonous berries.
- Select a place with plenty of activities
There are a lot of activities for toddlers on camping sites. Thanks to these, they will have a marvelous experience, and will want to come again the next year. Make sure that you plan for all these several activities in advance. Attempting to come up with something while actually camping could create arguments among family members and squandered time.
- Bring a headlamp for your toddler
Keep a headlamp on, so that your toddlers won’t get afraid at night while you go around the camp. It might also be a pleasure for them, and reduce their possible fear of the darkness.
However, don’t pick a blinding headlamp. Or else, the fun headlamp may turn out to be a fret for everyone.
- Bring a first-aid kit
Be prepared with bandages, plasters, cleansing wipes, gauze, ice packs, and more to aid the toddler-related injuries likely to happen when they are wandering around. Not sure where to start on a first aid kit? Check out our Best First Aid Kit article to see the best set on the market today.
Bring these essential things:
- Nappy sacks
- Comfort toys/blankets
- Sleeping bags
- Extra toilet paper
- Sippy cups
- Pack ample bug spray and sunscreen
It’s necessary to carry ample sunscreen for the kids. Since toddlers are vulnerable to the sun’s rays, they may get sunburnt. Even though you’ll pack enough sunscreen for them, you must also make sure that they are protected from the heat of the sun. When feasible, try to take them in the shade under the trees or just outside the tent.
It’s also necessary that you select the proper kind of bug spray and sunscreen for your kids. Have a bug spray made of natural oils that don’t have any DEET. It’s important that you talk to your doctor regarding using bug spray or sunscreen on your toddlers, especially if they are one year old or below.
- Pack layers for your toddlers
You should pack layers in case things turn out for the worst. That signifies you’ll have to bring sufficient t-shirts, jogging pants, long-sleeved pajama sets, or whatever your little one might need.
- Carry comfy beds
Seek toddler cots that are best for outdoor camping. This way, your toddler will not avoid camping because of how painful they felt afterward. Another nice choice is to utilize airbeds. However, in the outdoors, these kinds of beds deflate easily, which can bring trouble in the middle of the night.
- Be attentive to kids near the campfire
If no one is attentive to what the toddlers are doing when the adults are gathering around the campfire, don’t be shocked to find your little one walking towards it. One way of coping with this is to have a special campfire chair for the kids. Tell them that they can sit close to the campfire only if they concur to sit in a designated area.
- Leave behind all electronics in the bags
When you go to a campfire, don’t offer toddlers electronics to play with. Doing so will defeat the entire point of going on a camping trip. Rather, leave your gadgets locked away, and savor nature. You must only carry a camera along with you, which you’ll use to take photos of your moments in the outdoors.
- Unpack your bags at the campsite while there’s still light
Even though you’ll bring some flashlights with you, it’s great that you open your bags and remove the things while the sun is still up to provide light. Packing and unpacking in the dark can be exhausting, and you may lose some of your items.
- Pack some easy snacks
It’s important that you pack some light food that is easy to prepare, especially if you’re unable to catch anything for your kids.
Unless you do camping alone, your food may depend on what you fish in the river. However, it’s not fine if you bring your toddler with you.
- Pack a backup heat source
If it’s raining outside or the weather is unmanageable, you can’t create a campfire to cook your meals. In such cases, it’s necessary to have a backup source of heat, like a propane tank.
- Bring a mat for crawlers
If your toddlers are in the crawling stage, make sure that you pack a big enough mat for them. That way, they don’t have to creep in the dirt and likely flat their palms. A big plastic mat will do, just make sure that you’re near them, so that they won’t explore off the mat.
These tips could turn your trips into successful adventures, and will have a positive impact on them. Just follow the cues we listed, thoroughly plan and prepare activities, and set limitations early on. Your toddlers will surely be happier, which will lead them to grow more confident, independent, and resilient in dealing with outdoor experiences.