5 Tips for Camping with Toddlers

traveltips for traveling with children

Imagine the smell of the campfire, the quiet sounds of being in the forest, the view of the trees... and then imagine the chaos that comes along with having small children in tow!

Taking children camping can be an overwhelming idea but it can also be a rewarding experience. My boys (Dallas, 3, and Griffin, 2) love to explore, play, and get dirty so going camping was right up their alley and we all had a great time.

camping with toddlers

Ideas for Camping with Toddlers

Bring New Toys That are Camping Proof

These toys don't have to be expensive, just something different than what they play with at home. At the dollar store I found bug nets and magnifying glasses. At Walgreens I found these adorable camping-themed utility toy keychains for a couple bucks each. I also made sure to bring my kids each a bucket for collecting rocks and pine cones. We've decided to store their camping toys with our camping gear so they're like brand new toys again the next time we go camping.

Have Flashlights/Glow Sticks/Lanterns for the Kids

My kids had so much fun carrying around and turning on our full size lantern that next time we will take a couple that are just for them. Glow sticks are inexpensive and provide all kinds of fun for small children. Check out this glow in the dark game we created.

Pack the Bug Spray and Sunscreen

I live in Phoenix, Arizona, and although it was 20+ degrees cooler in the Payson, Arizona area where we went camping, the sun is still out to get you. I made sure to put sunscreen on my boys for the short hike we took and forgot to put it on myself. Needless to say, my arms got a little burnt. Bug spray is a no-brainer, especially since those lanterns that the kiddos will love to play with could attract some little pests!
camping with toddlers

Get a Two-room Tent

We brought a small four-person tent and I loved having close sleeping quarters with my family. However, I was not fond of the dirt. Unlucky for us, it started to rain in the evening which meant climbing into our tent with wet jackets and muddy shoes. Next time we go we plan on getting a two-room tent where one side is for changing clothes, taking off shoes, and playing, and the other room is for sleeping ONLY!

Remember the S'mores!

I like variety and wanted to try out some new taste combinations, but I know others loved the classic taste, so I opted to bring a mix and match selection. Beware, these will be sticky, but nothing that a couple of baby wipes can't handle (be sure those are on the list). Check out my printable camping list.
camping with toddlers
Do you have any tips for camping with toddlers??
selfie Jen is a full-time working momma of two little boys only 14 months apart. When she hangs her briefcase up for the night she enjoys spending time with her family, Instagram, reading, and crafting. You can keep up with her on her blog Life According to the StreetsPinterest, and Twitter.
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