Camping is a classic outdoor activity that many love; however, it’s hard to determine the must-have camping gear. Not only is camping a fun way to spend some quality time with your family or friends, but you also get to spend a relaxing time outdoors, feeling closer to nature.

However, it is no secret that planning a camping trip is not an easy task. It can take a lot of time and effort to properly plan one, especially depending on the destination and the number of people going on the trip. Carelessness may end up becoming trouble and could ruin your memorable trip.

must have camping gear

You do not need to worry!  We have taken care of this for you and created you a list of must-have camping gear that will make the planning part a lot less stressful and more fun! And the best part? You do not have to go out of your way or burn a hole in your pocket on extravagant equipment for camping to adhere to these ideas. You can get most of our recommended must-have camping gear here camping gear, and you will be good to go.

Let us help you make the most out of your summer with a list of our favorite must-have camping gear.

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure and privacy policy for more information.

1. Dry food or snacks in an air-sealed bag is must-have camping gear!

One important thing that most people fail to keep in mind is that you do not have to go out of your way to make complicated and mouth-watering dishes to make them worthy for your camping trip. A simple dry meal can taste just as good when you enjoy it in the lap of nature.


Keep in mind is that the food must not be oily or soggy or have a lot of gravy because it can leak out into your other belongings and ruin them. Hence, you need to pack some dry food or snacks, such as a taco or a sandwich, and chips in a zip-locked bag. Not only is it a fun and tasty way to keep the younger members happy, but even the adult members will love these snacks!

2.   A lantern is essential for all camping expeditions.

It goes without saying that a light source is not only needed to light up your camping site; it’s a must. Unexpected emergencies may come up on your camping expedition, which requires an extra light source. Keep in mind that different types of situations require different brightness levels from your lantern.


For example, if you search for something you lost in the middle of the night, you will require a bright lantern, but the same brightness will be too bright when resting in your camp.

You should buy a lantern with adjustable brightness so that you can adjust your own light!

Tip: You can create your own dimmer light using this trick. All you need is a container with a gallon of water. Place the lantern behind the container, point the light source to the water, and have your own dimmed light!

3.   A solar light is a favorite must-have camping gear item!

It is an obvious matter that at least one member of your camping team will require to use the bathroom at some point during the night. It is common to get lost in the dark. Even if you know the area like the back of your hand, you may trip on an object that you did not notice due to the darkness.

Solar Light

The best way to avoid a fall in the dark? Plant a few solar lights suitable for outdoor use along the stake lines and tie downs of your camping tent to keep the nearby areas well lit. And, the best part is that you do not have to worry about the batteries running out and having to change them or looking for a power outlet to recharge the lighting source. Solar lamps recharge themselves by the day and give off the light by night!

4.   A camping trip may get boring after some time for the younger members. Avoid this and arrange a scavenger hunt!

Although adults love to explore the camping area on hiking trips or bike rides, it is not easy to keep younger members entertained with hiking and bike rides.  The youth of today often finds this exhausting and boring.

What better way to occupy their attention for a long time without having to put in a lot of effort than a scavenger hunt with the theme of nature!

Scavanger Hunt

Not only do you get to explore while finding hiding places to hide the prizes, but you can also help the younger ones learn more about nature and the different aspects of it during the actual hunt.

To give your kids more motivation, make sure that you offer a little gift or a prize to the one who ends up finding the most number of items in the least amount of time.

If you don’t want to create your own scavenger hunt buy a kit! Here is out recomendation on Amazon:

5.   Emergencies! Make and pack your own survival kit!

Safety is always an issue, so it should be expected that we have survival kits on our list of must-have camping gear.

One of the most important things you cannot miss packing for a camping trip is survival. A survival kit should include a combination of emergency first aid items.

These kits are bulky and end up staying at your campsite or in your car because they are not convenient to take on the go. The best solution is to make a smaller emergency kit that you design and pack in a light bag, zip locker, or other storage items.

Survial Kit

So how do you make your own kit?  We already mentioned zip lock bags. Here’s another idea. Use a small container such as an altoids tin, which is light but a small space capable of holding many things. Load your kit with an arrangement of bandaids, ibuprofen, steel and flint, a whistle, a small compass, and anything else that you may deem as important.

6.   Pack clothes that are appropriate for camping.

Were you planning on just throwing in a few outfits that you find comfortable for your exciting camping trip? You might want to reconsider your decision.

The kind of clothes you pack is important for your camping trip. The kind of clothes you pack will largely depend on weather conditions and your camping destination. However, there are some items that you throw in to take with you irrespective of the campsite.

Pack a long-sleeve shirt to protect yourself from bug bites and the sun if you plan on hiking or other outdoor activities. Moisture-wicking tees and a pair of quick-drying shorts or pants are also good additions. If the campsite is going to be windy or cold, take a fleece jacket. Moisture-wicking undergarments, synthetic socks, terrain appropriate shoes are also important.



7.   A toiletry bag is a must-have camping gear essential.

You should carry a small pouch with all your toiletries because you surely won’t find stuff like toothbrushes, toothpaste, or soap in the wild outdoors!

Take a toilet paper roll, hand sanitizer, toothpaste, toothbrush, sunscreen, menstrual hygiene products, a quick-dry towel, and prescription medicines. It won’t matter if this bag is slightly bulkier than the rest of your things because you can leave it at the campsite!

Travel Bag

8.   Mosquitoes are unavoidable, but mosquito bites can be prevented!

Warding off mosquitoes is not just a camping dilemma; it’s a dilemma outdoors, period. Above and beyond a must-have camping gear item, it should be considered a do not leave home without it.

Most campsites will have bugs and mosquitoes. If you’re planning on going for that scavenger hunt or going for a hike, you definitely need mosquito repellents.  It’s best to carry mosquito repellent creams, lotions, and sprays. You can even throw in a few insect repellent candles for the evening! You’ll be completely protected from nasty bug bites and infections with these protective measures!

Anti mosquito spray

9.   A sturdy cooler to keep all your cooking ingredients (0r beer) nice and fresh.

I think we all know a cooler is a must-have camping gear thing.  Coolers come with a variety of purposes. You can buy one just for beer. And some of the beer ones are in the backpack style.

The key to picking out the right cooler is establishing what you will use it for. And, let’s be honest – most of us have more than one cooler because we use them all for different purposes.

Here are our choices of coolers:

10.  Have yourself a great night’s sleep with a good sleeping bag.

This is one of the most basic items to carry on your camping trip. If you love going on camping trips, it’s best to get your hands on a comfy and durable sleeping bag so you can rest after an eventful day of outdoor activities! It’s best to get a sleeping bag that’s waterproof and appropriate for the season. Lightweight sleeping bags are easy to take with you for camping trips.

sleeping bag

We hope that you found our article useful during your next camping trip! Let us know what you consider must-have camping gear and why!

Looking for more Travel Hacks? Start here:

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites.

Click Here To Subscribe
Subscribe to our newsletter now and get the best travel tips and inspirational stories delivered to your inbox every month. No spam, no sales pitches –  JUST TRAVEL!
Click Here To Subscribe

Ready to book your next trip? Use these resources that work:

  • Book your Hotel: Find the best prices; use for the best deals.
  • Book your Flights: Find the best deals and prices on flights; for the best deals.
  • Find Apartment Rentals: You will find the lowest prices on apartment rentals with’s Apartment  Finder.
  • Travel Insurance: Don’t leave home without it. Review our Travel Insurance Guide on picking and deciding which travel insurance is right for you.

Want to earn tons of points and make your next trip accessible? Check out our recommendations for Travel Credit Cards.

Want To Take A Volunteer Vacation or a Working Holiday? Check out the complete guide to how here!

Need more help planning your trip? Check out our Resources Page, highlighting the great companies we trust when traveling.

Share with others!