Camping Essentials Checklist – What To Take Camping

Get ready for a night under the stars with this comprehensive car camping checklist. It includes all the essentials plus some extras to enhance your camping experience. Adjust this list based on your group’s needs and plans.

Refer to our backpacking or canoe/kayak touring checklists if heading into the back country.

Sleep and Shelter

Ensure a good night’s sleep with these items. Start with a quality tent and accessories suited to your conditions, and choose the right sleeping bag for comfort.

– Tent

– Tent footprint (groundsheet)

– Tarp and cord

– Sleeping pads or air mattresses (and don’t forget the pump)

– Sleeping bags

– Pillows

– Camping cots

– Bug shelter

Campsite Set-Up

Your campsite is your home away from home. Bring items that provide comfort and convenience.

– Camping chairs

– Portable table and tablecloth

– Hammock

– Lanterns or string lights

– Cord for a clothesline

Kitchen and Cooking

You can eat well while camping with these kitchen supplies. Remember to keep wildlife away from your food.

– Coffee maker

– Camp stove and fuel

– Matches and fire starters

– Axe or hatchet

– Pots, pans, or Dutch oven

– Pot grabber

– Knife and cutting board

– Mugs and cups

– Plates and bowls

– Cooking utensils

– Cutlery

– Can opener

– Cooler with ice

– Food storage containers

– Aluminium foil

– Corkscrew and bottle opener

– Water jug and filter/treatment

– Garbage bags

– Bear-resistant food containers

– Biodegradable soap and scrubbers

– Portable sink

– Plan to bring firewood, but check the local regulations where you’re staying.

Outdoor Essentials

Stay safe and prepared with these must-have items, especially if you plan on hiking.

– Daypack

– Headlamp or flashlight

– Extra batteries

– First aid kit

– Water bottle

– Multi-tool

– Insect repellent

– Bear safety gear

– Sunscreen

– Sunglasses

– Map

– Campsite reservations and park pass

Clothes and Shoes

Pack according to the weather and planned activities. Be ready to layer, especially in cooler areas.

– Socks

– Underwear

– Sports bra

– Short-sleeved shirts

– Long-sleeved shirts and sweater

– Shorts

– Pants

– Cozy layers to sleep in

– Fleece jacket or puffy jacket

– Rain jacket

– Rain pants

– Wide-brimmed sun hat

– Bathing suit

– Toque

– Gloves

– Sturdy shoes or boots (waterproof ones are recommended)

– Sandals

Personal Stuff

Don’t forget the everyday essentials you use at home, from toiletries to medications.

– Toothbrush and toothpaste

– Toilet paper

– Quick-drying towel

– Earplugs

– Hand sanitiser

– Toiletry kit with your essentials

– Extra set of contacts or glasses

– Medications

– Power bank or spare batteries for electronic devices

– Phone

Fun Extras

Enjoy your downtime with these additional items for entertainment and relaxation.

– Bikes (great for kids at the campground)

– Binoculars

– Books or magazines

– Paper and art supplies

– Watersports gear and PFDs

– Hand-powered blender

– Games

– Roasting sticks

– Epic s’mores recipes

camping must haves

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