camping essentials

Stop! Don’t go camping without these must-haves

Think you’re ready to get out there and really enjoy nature? Well, think again. It always pays to double-check everything you’re taking with you, especially for an extended trip. Even if it’s only a short drive to deal with any emergency, you don’t want your camping trip to get ruined because you forgot something essential. Here are a few things you need to absolutely make sure you’ve got with you before you set out for your wild vacation spot.

The camp

You already have an idea that you’re going to need a tent. However, that’s not all that makes a camp. The ground cloth and tarp are going to make it actually comfortable, for one. Extra stakes and ropes can help you ensure that you can affix it properly when the barebones supply isn’t enough for the site you choose. It’s a good idea to bring a hammer and a knife to help you set up the camp, too. You don’t want the camping trip to involve spend the entirety of the first day getting camp set up.


You are likely to also have plenty of ideas on what food to bring with you. But if you’re on an extended trip don’t forget that it’s water that’s more vital to you surviving and being in good health the whole way through. Besides proper camping water bottles, a kettle with some purifying tablets can ensure you stay in good supply.


Good camping trips go well into the night. You don’t want to be locked down to the tents as soon as the sun sets. If you forget your lights, that’s what will happen. Besides general lighting, task lighting like tactical flashlights are essential for staying safe at night. Even if you plan on going to bed early, what if you have to deal with an emergency in the night or someone has medication they need to take every evening?

First aid

Speaking of medication, a fully stocked first aid kit is crucial. This includes bandages, plasters, disinfectant, and scissors to deal with the heightened risk of a minor injury getting infected. But the wild brings plenty more risks than you usually find, so the first aid kit needs to be more extensive too. For the risk of injuring a bone when exploring the forest, you need a splint kit, for instance. And for the risk of poor fire practice or cooking accidents, you need a burn kit with you.


You’re going to be wearing clothes of course (except for any potential skinny dipping). But ensuring you have a wide range of clothes to deal with all weather conditions are essential. It’s not enough to anticipate one kind of weather that you heard from the forecast. They’re occasionally wrong, after all. You need to be equipped to handle rain, snow, harsh winds, and heavy sun all at once.

There are plenty of checklists that get more comprehensive than this one, but this is to cover the essentials that you can get yourself in serious danger if you forget. Always double-check for these.

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Founder of Turn It To Trvl. After being made redundant from my digital marketing job, in the UK, I decided I no longer wanted to work the traditional 9-5. I found a volunteer opportunity in Malawi in 2015 and am now freelancing from the warm heart of Africa. Curently building a portfolio of clients and trying to inspire more people to live a life of travel.
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