4 Top Tips For Camping With Small Children
With the glorious weather continuing, many of us are looking to the outdoors this summer. If the heat has put camping on your agenda for the first time, or for the first time since having children, tips for getting the most out of your time under canvas are for you.
Plan your spot
It might sound obvious, but if you’re new to camping with kids choose your site carefully. A sensible choice is somewhere not too far away from home, with car parking close to the pitches (you don’t want to be lugging all your kit between car and pitch for ages with young children in tow). Somewhere with fridge and microwave facilities can be useful, especially if you’re using baby food or formula.
Double check the site is child-friendly! Some places now have adults-only bookings, or adults-only zones within their site. On the other hand, many child-friendly sites have play areas to help keep the kids entertained.
If you have a choice over your position at the site, bear in mind factors such as:
• How close you want to be to the toilet and shower block (probably not next door, but you don’t want to have to walk too far)?
• Shade – you might want to camp under trees in hot weather to benefit from the shade. On the other hand, it can get cool and boggy in wet weather.
• Safety: try to avoid spots near patches of nettles, open water (some sites have streams running through them) and near access roads if members of your group are prone to wandering off.
Once you’re there, walk around the site with your children, showing them where’s out of bounds and where they are able to play. With slightly older children point out the reception and camping staff so they know where to go if they get lost.
Layers are our favourite thing at Kozi Kidz! And for good reason. They are the number one way to stay warm, but are also the best way to stay cool in hot weather too. Rather than exposing skin to the sun all day, choose long, thin, breathable layers of lighter clothing to feel cool.
With camping there’s no way to warm up indoors, unless you head to the pub! So keep an eye on clothing – with kids running around in the evening it can be easy to not notice the chill as evening sets in. It’s easier to maintain a warm temperature outside than it is to get warm again once you’ve been chilled, so pop an extra layer or two on as the sun goes down.
Sleeping in layers helps you stay warm too, and it’s easy enough to take a layer off at night if you get overheated.
Running around the field will keep children amused for so long, but it’s best to take back-up! Take bats and balls, bubbles and other active toys for the daytime, and pens and paper, card games and books for quieter times or winding down before bedtime.
With camping and children, often the fun is in the experience itself, rather than using your camping trip as an opportunity to race around doing lots of sightseeing. Don’t worry if the mornings unravel into an endless flow of breakfasts.
And, while you don’t want over-tired children, it might be wise (or necessary) to relax the bedtime routines too. An unfamiliar place, light evenings and some ambient noise mean it’s often harder for children to get to sleep quickly. Though hopefully they’ve been having so much fun running around all day that they’ll be out like a light, leaving you to enjoy the rest of the evening!
We hope that’s got your camping juices flowing! If you’re planning a trip soon, check out a blog from last year sharing our ultimate camping checklist to help with your packing!
PS Kozi Kidz base layers double up as pyjamas if it gets chilly at night.