Essential Camping Gear for Beginners

Author: Maria Panuli

Published on: August 07th, 2023

Essential Camping Gear for Beginners

Do you want to know the secret to a good camping trip? It’s being prepared. And the only way to be truly prepared is to have all your camping essentials packed and ready to go.

Unfortunately, we’re all guilty of forgetting essential items, especially the miscellaneous, everyday items we take for granted. But that’s why we’re here to help.

Use this guide to create a checklist and collect all your essential camping gear. If you have all these items on your camping trip, we guarantee you’ll have everything you need to have a good time!

Campsite Essentials

First, you need to pack your shelter essentials. Without these items, you’ll be exposed to the elements and wild animals.

Campsite essentials include:

Campsite Essentials
  • Tent: A high-quality tent is essential to have a good time. It’ll keep you warm in the cold and cool when it’s hot with good ventilation. A good tent will also keep you safe from the sun and heavy rain.
  • Sleeping bag: Similar to the tent, a high-quality sleeping bag will keep you comfortable, no matter the weather.
  • Mattress: You can always sleep on your tent floor, but if you have the space and the budget, we’d suggest bringing a camping mattress or sleeping pad with you. It’ll be much more comfortable!
  • Pillow: A pillow is necessary for a good night's rest.
  • Tarp: A tarp will always be useful. If it’s raining, it’ll provide some much-needed cover. If it’s hot, the shade will be a blessing.

Clothing & Toiletries

Next, let’s take a look at the clothing and toiletries to take with you.

Clothing & Toiletries
  • Clothing: If you’re camping in a warm region, take light and airy clothes with you. However, even in warmer regions, the temperature can drop at night so take a few warmer items along in case it gets cold. If you’re camping somewhere cold or wet, focus on wearing layers and warm socks, and a high-quality insulated jacket.
  • Toilet Paper: Even if there are amenities at the campground, bring your own toilet paper with you.
  • Basic Hygiene Products: Bring shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, a toothbrush, a washcloth, and soap with you. Decant your products into small containers or buy the travel versions to save space.
  • Sun & Bug Protection: Bring a high SPF sunscreen and potent bug repellent. Remember to apply sunscreen even if you don’t think the sun will be a problem.
  • Towel: Bring a super absorbent towel along. Hang it up to dry as soon as you’re done with it to avoid dampness and mold.

Kitchen Supplies

When you’re camping, you’ll be responsible for your food, cooking, and fire. It’s not that different from what you do at home. It just requires a few extra starter steps.

Kitchen Supplies
  • Cooking Tools: Lightweight enamel or metal cooking utensils and equipment work the best. You'll need a pot, a pan, tongs, a knife, and a small cutting board. If your camping party is big, you’ll naturally need more cooking utensils. If you’ve planned your meals (which we recommend you do), bring the cooking equipment that you’ll need for those specific dishes.
  • Plates & Cups: You’ll need plates and bowls to eat your food. If you’re running low on space, you can opt for paper plates. Just make sure to safely dispose of all your waste. Bring along a few mugs to use for both hot and cool drinks.
  • Water or Water Filter: If your campground doesn’t have fresh water, you’ll have to bring bulk packs of water. You can also check whether or not you can use a water filter with the natural water supply.
  • Portable Stove & Lighter: Pack a small portable gas stove and bring along extra gas. Bring a lighter or matches to light your stove.
  • Folding Table: Bring a small, folding table. Making food and managing all your kitchen supplies without a table is tough work.

Other Necessities

Finally, let’s cover some other camping necessities. Some of these are items that you could technically go without, but we highly recommend taking them with you.

First Aid Kit
  • Camping Chairs: If you’re lucky, your campground will have a few stumps that you and your family can comfortably sit on, but we wouldn’t count on this. Bring a camping chair for everyone in your camping party so that you can all relax comfortably in front of the fire.
  • Lights: Campgrounds get very dark at night, which is why it’s a good idea to bring a torch or headlamp as well as a few camp lights to hang around your campsite. If you can, purchase lights with rechargeable batteries or solar-powered lights.
  • First Aid Kit: Anything can happen in the wild. A small, basic first aid kit will give you some protection from small cuts, scrapes, and stings. If anybody is allergic to insects or plants, add their medicine to the first aid kit.

Finally, let’s cover some other camping necessities. Some of these are items that you could technically go without, but we highly recommend taking them with you.

Follow Us:

Sign Up:

Become a Guest Writer:


Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published