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Family Camping Checklist – 7 of the Most Important Items

Must have camping tools that will get you through your trip!

There’s no better way to explore the outdoors than to head out into the wild on a camping trip. Are you new to planning a camping adventure but don’t know how to start? Don’t worry! We’ve put together a family camping checklist to help you get the most out of your camping trip.

Sleeping – Family Camping Checklist

Disc-O-Bed Large with Side Organizers & Rubber Foot Pads

Sam's Club deals cot
Sam’s Club

Camping is fun, but it can involve sleeping on some rough, rocky ground amid stacks of duffel bags. But that doesn’t have to be the case! This bed with stellar reviews comes with 2 cots arranged in a bunk bed format. Each has an organizer hanging over the side so you can store necessities, like toiletries. You also have enough space under the bottom cot for storing a bag or 2! The cots break down, too, so you’ll have an easy time transporting them.

Stoic Groundwork Single Sleeping Bag

Source: Backcountry

For sleeping bags, make sure the temperature rating is at least “good enough” for the season you are traveling in.

The Stoic Groundwork Single Sleeping Bag is easily portable, waterproof, and machine washable, rated for 20 degrees. It’s perfect for the shoulder seasons and its wrap-around zipper converts the bag into a quilt-style blanket.

You can find this Sleeping Bag at Backcountry, which offers everything you would ever need for your outdoor adventures.

Backcountry x NEMO Sleeping Pad

NEMO Equipment Inc. - Quasar 3D Sleeping Pad - Plasma

For optimal comfort add this sleeping pad and sleep in luxury while camping. It is compact, durable, and comes with a vortex pump sack that offers quick and low-effort inflation!

You can also get a sleeping bag for children if you need kids camping gear for your family camping checklist!

Storage and Food

A Meal Kit/Package

camping trip
Omaha Steaks

If you’re planning on doing some cooking for your family camping, you’ll need to grab some quality ingredients. Invest in quality ingredients from a reputable seller for camping dinners. This will ensure you get the most out of your meals, whether you’re grilling steaks or cooking salmon on a campfire.

And for all things meats, sides, and great dinner packages, we always recommend Omaha Steaks. Shopping with Omaha Steaks, you can find a wide selection of beef, fish, poultry, and accompanying sides and desserts. You can even buy specific packages to get great deals for all of your camping meals!

Camping Stoves and Grills

family camping checklist

When gearing up for an exciting camping expedition in the great outdoors, the choice of camping tools and accessories can significantly impact your experience. To find top-quality options that cater to outdoor enthusiasts, you’ll want to explore REI’s extensive selection of stoves and grills. Their range encompasses a diverse array of camping essentials, designed to elevate your outdoor cooking game.

REI’s commitment to providing reliable gear and equipment for every adventure ensures that you can rely on them to help you gear up for the new season, making your camping journey not only enjoyable but also memorable.



YETI Roadie Hard Cooler


This hard cooler is a new version of the YETI cooler. It is tall enough to hold bottles of wine, but slim enough to fit behind a car seat.

You can check all the new colors collection at YETI. There’s a wide variety of drinkware available in the market which makes choosing the right one difficult.


Family Camping Checklist Apparel

Rab - Arc Eco Jacket - Men's - Nightfall Blue

Nothing is more important on a family camping checklist than packing the proper essentials. You never want to pack too heavy or too light. What’s worse than a sudden cold evening and you don’t have a proper jacket to keep you warm?

Backcountry has a wide variety of outdoor apparel, like this Arc Eco Jacket. Easy to recycle, insulated, and wind-resistant, this jacket is the perfect choice for warmer weather and even in the cold. Make sure to add this to your family camping checklist.



Crispi 10” Guide Non-Insulated GTX - BROWN image number 0

As you embark on outdoor adventures, don’t underestimate the importance of proper camping apparel. Quality boots, such as those offered by Orvis, ensure comfort and durability, supporting your every step in the rugged terrains of nature.


Tools for Navigation

Arguably, the best part about camping trips is having fun exploring the wilderness. Always bring along a compass flashlight while you are exploring to help you get back or get help if you ever get lost. Invest in a GPS tracking device if you find yourself exploring hidden paths a lot. Also, a whistle on a family camping checklist is great to keep in your backpack to summon help if needed.

Garmin InReach Mini2 – Navigation

Garmin - inReach Mini 2 - Black

It’s always great to have a backup if you find yourself off the trail. This Garmin InReach Mini2 is small and easy to grab on your hike.

The MapShare system tracks and shares your location in cases of emergency. This app forecasts weather. It also has the ability to load download maps. These maps can help you assess your location and get back on track.

Must have camping tools - knife

Survival and First Aid

Johnson & Johnson First Aid To Go! Portable Mini Travel Kit - 12pc, image 1 of 14 slides

A first aid kit is a must-have on a family camping checklist. Carry a kit that contains items big enough for the size of your party. Also include personal comfort items like bug spray and sunscreen so you always have them when you are out and about.

Camping Gear for Kids – Kits and Tools


Camping trips with family can be a great experience. To make it even better, it is a good idea to have camping gear specifically for kids. It is important to have your own tools on your family camping checklist.

Children can become more interested in the experience by having their own mini camping kit. This kit should include binoculars and bug-catching tools.

You can also help them put together their little first aid pouch with their own-sized goodies. Walkie-talkies can be useful for keeping an eye on the kids. At the same time, they add to the excitement of the adventure.

If the kid is too young to explore the great outdoors and National Parks without getting exhausted, get a child carrier.

Marmot Catalyst Tent

This tent is a great addition to your family camping checklist. It is easy to set up and compact, even though it can fit two people. In addition, it features a steam-taped floor and rain fly for colder weather.


A Comfortable Hammock

Camping is mostly about relaxing, resting, and finding your inner peace. Nothing screams all of these like a hammock to us. Hammocks are incredibly useful. In fact, you can even use one instead of a tent for sleeping during a trip. Perfect for a family camping checklist!

Creature Comfort

For creature comfort, the most important will undoubtedly be your tent and sleeping bag. Make sure the tent you add to your family camping checklist is spacious enough for the number of people sleeping together. 

You’ll also need the right tent for the season. A 4-season tent, sometimes called an all-season tent, is designed for year-round use.

It’s also sturdier than a 3-seasons, or sometimes called summer tent, but it won’t be as warm. It may not be snow or wind-proof, either.  A 3-season tent will have more vestibules for ventilation excellent for the summer months. There are hybrid 3/4-season tents, which are convertible to accommodate different seasons.

Family Camping Checklist – Power and Lighting

Yes, camping is about getting off the grid, not checking your phone, and not connecting to the internet. In this day and age, it is hard to be completely off the grid. You still need electricity to run some lighting or call for help in case of an emergency. A rechargeable generator will make your camping trip more safe and enjoyable.

Goal Zero Crush Light

This collapsible lantern is solar-powered and can light up your campsite with little to no effort. This item has a 3.5-hour lifespan. Additionally, it has a built-in USB cable for charging. It would be a great addition to your campsite, plus it’s small and easy to pack!

Must have camping tools - bug repellent

Skin Protection

It’s better to be safe than sorry. To safeguard yourself, it’s best to add lotions and sprays to your family camping checklist.

Your skin is vulnerable when you explore the outdoors. To protect it, you should take extra precautions. This includes getting sunscreen and bug repellent.

Kindling and Extra Wood

Relying on the woods to provide enough dry, burnable wood for your entire stay doesn’t always work out. Make sure you bring enough wood to cover your meals and a bit of nighttime storytelling.

Besides, having enough to keep the fire sizable is best. Kindling that’s dipped or treated will help get the fire going fast. And lighting the fire will be easiest with utility lighters. Just be sure to put water on the coals before going to sleep.

With this family camping checklist, you’ll be well-prepared to tackle the wilderness with your family. Enjoy your summertime camping vacation!

Just can’t get enough of our family camping checklist and guides? Here are a few more survival gadgets you can get for your trip! 

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