Camping can be fun and exciting but also a bit overwhelming if you are new to it. Camping has become a popular way to holiday, whether for groups of friends, families, couples or solo travellers. Spending time outdoors benefits us all.
Research shows that camping, or heading out to a place surrounded by nature, can elevate your mood, reduce stress and help in curing depression. It’s a good idea to unplug and enjoy the simplicity of nature, however, in case of an emergency, it’s a good idea keep a fully charged phone turned off.
Also, being outdoors is a great way to boost your vitamin D, which will help with your physical health.
Here are some tips to ensure you have the best camping trip.
1. Location, location
It depends on the type of camping trip you are after and how long you have for travelling. There are plenty of on-line coming site locators, which allow you to choose and book in according to place, facilities, budget etc.
Are you keen for a sea view or mountain landscape? Do you want to be close to a village or town, or do you prefer to be miles from anywhere?
It’s also worth discovering whether your chosen country allows you to wild camp, so long as you behave responsibly. For example, Scotland allows wild camping.
2. What’s your budget?
There are camping trips and equipment to suit almost all budgets. It is a good idea to spend a bit more on good quality items if you plan to enjoy many camping trips. Higher quality equipment for camping is usually pricier.
Also, your comfort levels will dictate your budget. If you want comfortable camping mattresses, warm sleeping bags, a camping chair, stove etc, you’ll need to spend a bit to start with.
Back to basics camping will be cheaper but perhaps not as comfortable. We are all different and there are lists of camping kit to suit all aspirations.
It’s the same for campsites. A campsite with all mod-cons will be more expensive than a more remote site with less facilities. If you are camping with kids it is worth thinking about entertainments for them and for this reason you might choose to spend more on a campsite that offers thing for children to do.
3. Ready, set, gear!
After deciding the location and the budget, now it’s time to decide what to take with you on your camping trip. First, let’s start with what will you use for your camping, it could be tent, car camping, RV, cabins, Airbnb… the list goes on.
According to your preference, budget, weather conditions, you’ll then need a list of camping gear.
Tent: The tent is the most used gear for camping, whether it’s for two days or 10 days. The size and weight will depend on who you are camping with and how far you need to carry the tent.
If it’s a car to campsite trip, the size and weight of the tent is less important because you won’t need to carry it so far yourself.
If it’s a wild camping trip as park of a walk, you will want to ensure you have a lightweight tent because it will take up less room in your pack and be easier to carry.
Pro tip 1: Always set your tent on the flat ground so that it can stay still and in its shape.
Pro tip 2: Practise tent-making before going on the camping trip so that you can easily erect the tent at your chosen destination.
4 Camping chair
Many people see a camping chair as an essential part of camping. Sitting up and off the ground is much more pleasant than sitting on the ground. You should invest in a good quality camp chair for better longevity, although a camping chair doesn’t need to be expensive.
A lightweight, folding chair can be easily packed and carried when required, while a camping chair with a high-back will add more comfort.
From your camping chair, you’ll enjoy the view while sipping your coffee or favourite evening drink, or you can make use it while fishing or while sitting around a bonfire with your friends and family.
5. Clothing and other kit
Comfort levels will be dictated by the weather and what you personally need to make your camping trip enjoyable.
If ti is going to be wet, you’ll need full waterproof cover, including jacket and trousers. Wear footwear that will keep feet dry for the full time that you are away camping.
It can get cold at night even in the summer, so always pack a warm jacket, as well as a woolly hat and gloves.
Other items to pack include a mattress, sleeping bag, camping pillow, torch/head torch, stove for cooking, pots and pans, plates and cup, cutlery, food and water. The number and type of items will depend on the sort of camping trip you are planning and what comfort levels you fancy.
Many people are keen to give camping a go and there is no reason why not. Set a date, gather friends or family – or go solo – and get away for a great holiday amid nature.