Last year I took a road trip up the North East of England and up to the Scottish Highlands. Along the way I stopped in Kinlochleven and stayed in a glamping pod! It was a great experience and strengthened my love of camping and the outdoors.
Camping can be a great way to spend your staycation and this post covers the essentials I take for any camping trip.
Shelter / Sleeping
Tent and tent pegs
Unless you’re glamping, you’ll need to pack a tent. My favourite is a lightweight two man tent, with a separate living area. They’re relatively simple to put up and light enough to travel with on a motorbike too.
Ever tried to put your tent pegs in the ground without one of these? A can of food also works well if you forget to bring one.
I prefer the mummy sleeping bags due to the hood. It gives extra cushioning for your head on the ground. I usually choose one that’s good for multiple seasons.
My favourite is a self inflating one which, like the mummy sleeping bag, gives you about moee cushioning from the hard ground.
You can get solar powered lights to put in the ground outside your tent, which are great for finding it at night on a trip to the loo.
I also like battery powered fairy lights or hanging lanterns.
I don’t recommend you bring the one off your bed, unless you have a large tent and are traveling by car. Instead I much prefer a travel pillow, mine is fleece on one side and folds up into it’s own bag for storage.
Torch / Head torch
For finding your way to the loo and back!
For collecting your rubbish but also great for storing wet or muddy shoes.
For lounging around the campsite and eating dinner.
Stove and gas
For cooking or making yourself a nice cup of tea (or coffee) in the morning. There are many different kinds available in all shapes and sizes.
When I toured Paris on a motorbike I used a twist stove (similar) which fits on to a gas canister. It’s small and lightweight so perfect if you don’t have a lot of space. Don’t forget to pack a fire starter (like matches) to get it going.
For car journeys where space isn’t an issue, I use my larger cooking stove (actual).
Think pots /pans, utensils, tin opener, and tableware (plates, bowls and cups).
Cool bag / box
For food storage
Washing up liquid and a tea towel
For washing up after dinner! Yep, even camping comes with washing up… Unless you eat out, of course. 😉
I tend to pack light on toiletries when I’m camping, I’ll typically pack:-
- First Aid Kit
- Tooth brush and tooth paste
- Shower gel
- Shampoo / Conditioner
- Sun cream
- Toilet paper
- Wet wipes
- Hand sanitizer
I think these are pretty self explanatory but if you’d like specific recommendations, let me know. 😊
A base layer or long John’s are great for keeping you warm when the temperature drops at night. I own two sets of base layers and find they’re also great for a run in cooler weather.
A fleece or hooded jumper will keep you warm on trip across the campsite to the toilets, mine was kindly gifted to me by Simply Hike*. They offer a wide range or camping and hiking gear and have an extensive skiing range as well.
My fleece is perfect. It keeps me warm and looks good too – I’ve found a lot of fleeces can look frumpy but that’s not the case with this one. I went for black so it can easily match with other items in my wardrobe. The only issues are the sleeve length – too long – and that there are no pockets.
I usually pack a rain mac and a lighter jacket (leather or demin depending on the season), as you can never predict the lovely British weather.
What I pack varies depending on the length of stay and facilities on the campsite. We had a microwave our glamping pod and a corner shop nearby, so picked up some ready meals but you could also eat out at the outside restaurant or cafe if there is one.
For more ‘wild’ camping, you can try specialist camping food which can easily be cooked on a camping stove. Simply Hike gifted me a couple to try, they taste great and are very simple to use. A lot of them just need hot water added!
Other types of food I like to pack are dry snacks such as trail mix, crisps and cereal bars. Along with cup-a-soup or Mug Shots ( which is typically pasta soup in a cup).
For drinks, I use my reusable water bottle and bring UHT soya milk. My local supermarket do a great range of small cartons which are perfect for camping trips.
Think about any activities you might do during your camping trip such as hiking or swimming.
If you’re planning on hiking a whistle and compass come in handy. I pack my seven in one survival whistle for any camping trip, just in case I go on any walks or hikes from my campsite. Along with a waterproof pouch for my mobile phone – it even floats! Which was great when I went kayaking.
Do you enjoy camping? What are your camping essentials? Let me know in the comments. 😊