What to bring to the campsite: the complete list of everything you need

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Joel Fulleda

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

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When you decide to go camping, whether it's just for one night or even for a week, it is important to organize yourself in the best possible way without forgetting the essential things, leaving the superfluous ones at home, which would negatively affect the spaces! One of the most important choices to make is definitely the backpack to buy, because it will keep all your things!

So let's find out together what to bring camping: the complete list of everything you need


  1. Camping Backpack
  2. Clothing
  3. Camping tend
  4. Sleeping bag and air mattress
  5. Other sleeping equipment
  6. Camping stove
  7. Pots and dishes
  8. Other equipment for eating
  9. Electrical equipment
  10. Personal hygiene kit
  11. Medicines and skin products
  12. Various tools
  13. PDF checklist of essential equipment
  14. User questions and comments

Camping Backpack

The camping backpack represents the first big choice to make and it is definitely a choice to be pondered with caution, especially based on the trip and the amount of things to bring! Backpacks they have in fact various capacities, which is measured in liters: starting from volumes of 25 liters for simple mountain excursions, to backpacks of 60 and 80 liters for multi-day camping! Also, another factor to take into account when choosing the backpack is your physical condition: if the campsite also involves a lot of walking, be careful not to pack too heavy a backpack, which could cause various problems, even physical ones!

Finally, in addition to the backpack we recommend that you also bring a small baby carrier to always keep with you. Here you can store all your documents, money and anything of value that is best to keep with you at all times!


The choice of clothing is strictly dependent on the period in which you decide to organize the camping! In winter, heavier clothes, thermal clothing, boots and socks will obviously be needed, without forgetting a scarf and gloves. In summer, however, you can opt for light and breathable clothing, sun hats and lighter shoes. In any season it is always recommended to have a kway with you for sudden rains!

Furthermore, clothing also organizes itself on the basis of another factor: the temperature range between day and night! If you are hiking for several days in the mountains in the summer, it is possible that the temperatures are pleasant during the day, while the night drops and it gets colder. Some heavier clothes are therefore essential to sleep!

Camping tend

Another choice to make is the tent in which you will have to sleep during the camping! It is essential that this fits perfectly into a variety of factors, like the environment, the season chosen and the capacity!

If you already know that you are excluding the winter season for a campsite, then you can orient yourself on a 3 season tent, ideal for spring, summer and autumn. Alternatively, if you plan a winter camping, it becomes essential the 4-season tent, made to withstand even the coldest temperatures!

As for the shape and size, there are different types of curtains, the most common are the igloo tent, with the classic dome shape, and the Canadian tent, with the A shape, therefore with the pointed top and not round.

Finally, what greatly influences the choice is the need for a holiday:

  • Family camping, the best solution is a multi-chamber tent, even if more difficult to transport and set up.
  • Camping during a multi-day trek, the best solution is the trekking tent, light and easy to assemble and disassemble and resistant to bad weather
  • Camping with friends, the best solution is the tunnel tent, with an elongated shape and which can accommodate more people
  • Beach camping, the best solution is a three season igloo tent

Here are some reference brands for targeted purchases.

Sleeping bag and air mattress

Once you have chosen the tent you have to move on to the choice of sleeping bag and inflatable mattress. Also in this case, the decision depends on several factors, especially according to the needs and location of the campsite!

If you are in the mountains, a compact sleeping bag will be essential and does not take up too much space, but at the same time keeps you warm. If you are camping in the summer by the sea, we recommend the air mattress and a light sleeping bag, because it will already be warm enough! If you are traveling with children, you can opt for small and perhaps softer sleeping bags, even in this case it becomes essential to find a good compromise between functionality and little space!

Other sleeping equipment

In addition to the tent, sleeping bag and mattress, there are also another series of essential items to be able to sleep. Starting from more classic blankets and travel pillows, without forgetting more technical items, such as pegs and spare rods.

Based on where you will find yourself camping, waterproof sheets can be useful to cover the tent in case of rain, or a waterproof bottom for do not allow moisture to transpire from the ground. The latter is essential if you are camping in places like the mountains, directly on the possibly wet ground.

Camping stove

To have a 100% camping experience, then you will also need to get a camping stove to prepare food! There are several types, which take up more or less space, to always choose according to your needs.

Depending on the space available you will have, you can choose a gas cooker, for which you will need a gas cylinder! They are available with one, two or three burners. Then there are the wood stove: they take up little space, they are often foldable and you just need to light a fire to use them. Finally there are the electric cookers, and for these a power outlet will be mandatory, so if you are in a remote place it is not one of the best solutions. However, they are very comfortable and quick to use.

Pots and dishes

Once you have chosen the stove, you have to start thinking about pans and complete sets. For the saucepans, the choice must be made on the basis of a whole series of factors, such as the size of the stove, the number of people on the campsite and the materials used.

As for the dishes, however, we recommend avoid buying disposable plastic tableware. Prefer bamboo forks and knives and paper plates and cups rather. Or, better solution, there are now many reusable tableware on the market, to be washed and stored until next use. Very comfortable and above all eco-friendly! Because when you go camping it becomes essential to respect the environment that is hosting you, thus avoiding leaving waste and producing as little as possible!

However, for convenience, we recommend to buy a complete set, which includes pots and all the necessary dishes!

Other equipment for eating

Given the essential things to eat, then we need to identify what is the rest of the equipment that can be useful, always taking into account the type of camping that will be tackled: it is therefore the case to think of knives and wooden spoons, cutting boards, cloths or tea towels.

If you reach the camping area by cargrills, brushes and tongs for the barbecue, a camping fridge or a cooler bag could also be useful!

Whatever the type of campsite, there are some essential accessories: garbage bags, to clean up the place where you spent the night, a thermal bottle to keep the water fresh, and a mocha, ideal for a good coffee in the morning!

What to eat: among the simplest foods to consume while camping we point out powdered milk or UHT milk, canned food (fish, legumes, etc.), ready soups, ready risottos, pasta and rice in general, vacuum packed cold cuts and long conservation

Electrical equipment

Let's now move on to the electrical equipment, which is essential if you do not want to remain in the dark or with the phone dead. Also for these objects, the choice of whether to bring them or not and, above all, which ones to bring, it will depend on the type of camping you are organizing!

If you are in an equipped camping area an electrical cable of at least 30 m will certainly be useful to connect your pitch to the central one, as well as an electric power strip or several sockets / adapters (industrial and shuko). If instead you are in the middle of nature, without the possibility of power connections or convenience, essential spare batteries, flashlights to move around in the dark, portable battery chargers and power banks for phones and other accessories. Finally, we must not forget the must for every campsite: the camera!

Personal hygiene kit

After all that is needed to better organize the technical side of the campsite, you have to see what to bring for the person. When preparing your personal hygiene kit, you will obviously have to bring all the things you consider indispensable, starting with toothbrush and toothpaste, soap and shampoo. To take up little space, you could opt for travel-size products, smaller than normal ones.

Another tip is that of courses a microfiber towel instead of a regular one, as it takes up much less space and dries faster. If you have long hair, a travel phone is also essential, in order to take up little space. Finally, depending on the duration of your camping you could opt for ecological detergents to wash clothes, so as to cause less damage to the environment as well.

Medicines and skin products

When you go camping, especially in the midst of nature, it is not uncommon to get some wounds, an insect bite or even a simple burn or sunstroke. Therefore it is important to be prepared and ready for any situation!

Among the things to bring, the first aid kit is indispensable, inside which there must be patches, gauze and disinfectant, but also drugs of various kinds, such as for fever or painkillers.

If you are camping in sunny areas, pack a sunscreen as well. Finally, don't forget the insect repellent! Obviously, everyone then knows their problems and possible allergies, in this case all the drugs you need will have to be brought.

Various tools

Finally, according to the type of campsite and the program, there are a whole series of tools that can be more or less useful. Starting with lighters and matches, or a Swiss army knife, great for any situation.

In case of rain, the classic waterproof sheets can be very useful to cover equipment or wood for the fire (disposable ones are also available).

Equally useful can be extra ropes for tying up equipment or drying clothes in the open air. And if you don't have to move but are in an equipped area that you can reach by car, folding chairs and modular tables are also very comfortable!

Any other business: depending on the season in which you are camping and the location, additional items may be required, such as specific equipment for trekking, mountain emergency kits or simple beach accessories.

PDF checklist of essential equipment

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