Trails, Toys, and Tents: The Do’s and Don’ts of Camping with Kids

The majority of kids get very excited at the prospect of going on a camping adventure but if they are going to have a safe and happy outdoor experience there are a few safety tips and ground rules to run through with them.

Here is a look at some of those do’s and don’ts, including why the only entertainment option should be nature, why it pays to know how to set up camp before you go, and some useful tips for a more comfortable stay.


Time for a tech-free weekend

Part of the major attraction of a camping adventure is the opportunity to connect with nature and enjoy things like the night sky and cooking food by the campfire, rather than play a video game on their portable device.

You are likely to meet some resistance to the idea of turning the tech off or leaving it behind and you don’t want to set a negative tone for the trip, so try to make it a ground rule that you all follow, which means turning your phone off and just enjoying some old-fashioned family time without the distractions.

Everyone can soon get back to their usual tech habits when the trip is over but if you can go back to basics and just enjoy the nature around you, it will help you get more out of the weekend.


Prepare before you go

If you are new to camping and are trying it out for the first time, part of the fun will be learning the ropes and figuring out how to put the tent up so that everyone is comfortable and safe when it’s time to go to sleep.

A good way to prepare yourself for what lies ahead is to have a dry run beforehand and work out how to erect the tent correctly and what to pack in your vehicle for the trip.

If you have a vehicle like the Jeep Renegade it should prove up to the task of coping with all the camping gear you are packing along with the kids and you have more options for hitting the hills when you have a model that is designed coping with rugged terrain.

Have a practice run putting the tent up in the back garden so that you know how it all goes together rather than trying to find out while on the camping site, which can be amusing, but also a bit stressful if you are struggling to work it all out.


Plan for extra shelter

Your tent is going to be your main source of shelter but regular campers are savvy enough to know that you need more than that if you are going to have a comfortable camping experience.

It doesn’t have to be anything fancy, you can erect a simple shelter using a tarp to give you some outside cover, but you will definitely be pleased you took the step to plan for extra shelter rather than all of you being cramped inside the tent all night if the weather changes.

If you have younger children with you, it is a good idea to pack a few toys or crafts that can keep them amused while you are preparing dinner or setting up camp.

Also, try to plan your chosen route before you go so that you have a mission to follow when you have set up camp and are ready to explore.

Author: Millie Barker is a stay-at-home Mommy who enjoys getting her words out into the world through her article writing. She writes about family and lifestyle topics – Anything that sparks an interest in her that she thinks others will find useful.



  • Emily Foran

    May 19 at 10:22 pm

    I love camping, it’s so nice to get a break which forces you to slow down and spend time together. Hope we get the to go again later this year. xx

    1. IamMummyMatters

      May 19 at 10:29 pm

      Camping is such a fun experience with children, it’s definitely when I feel the most relaxed and am definitely looking forward to more trips away with the family this Summer x

  • Claire Jones-Hughes

    May 26 at 6:21 am

    Loads of great tips here! Totally bookmarking the post. The kids love camping, I don’t mind it. On the one hand it feels very free and earthy but on the other hand, I do like a nice comfy bed (and we have camping beds and mattress toppers). I’d say to people, try it once. It could surprise you.

    1. IamMummyMatters

      May 26 at 6:53 am

      Yes beds are definitely the part of camping which we find the hardest too. We sleep on airbeds but they inevitably go down. I am on a mission to find comfy beds for camping!!

  • Baguio ahmed

    February 15 at 1:19 pm

    don’t forget to gaze out the rain fly for a clear view of the moon and stars filled sky

    1. IamMummyMatters

      February 17 at 4:06 pm

      Oh yes for sure, I take my DSLR with me and keep trying to perfect my skills at star trails 😉

  • Jerry Pilcher

    June 22 at 10:21 am

    Very helpful article. And thanks for your time, Skill, and Knowledge. It surely gives one a lot to think about. great job.

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