Don't forget the marshmallows! The essential family camping checklist.

4 December 2022 - 4 min read

With school holidays upon us we know many families will embark on that old favourite holiday staple - camping. So weโ€™ve put together our essential family camping checklist to help make this busy time a little easier for you. The great outdoors. It's a place underappreciated by many families in today's day and age - whether it's school commitments, work deadlines or extra-curricular activities, it seems like there's always something pulling us away from spending time together in nature. That's what makes camping as a family all the more special - it provides a much-needed opportunity to unplug from the hustle and bustle of everyday life and just enjoy your family in a beautiful setting.

But before you can enjoy all that nature has to offer, there's one important thing you need to do: pack. Camping trips require a bit more preparation than your average weekend getaway, and forgetting even one essential item can ruin the whole experience. That's why we've put together this essential camping checklist to help you remember everything you need to pack for your next trip.

The Essentials

Regardless of the size of your family or camping trip, there are some basic necessities everyone ought to bring when camping.


Gear refers to the functional equipment needed for camping. In almost all cases, you'll want to pack the following.

  • Tents (including poles, stakes, and a ground cover)

  • Hammer and pegs

  • Air mattresses and pumps

  • Sleeping bags

  • Tarps

  • Torches

  • Hanging lanterns

  • Pillows and blankets

  • Fold-out chairs

  • Batteries


No camping trip is complete (or survivable) without some good old-fashioned campfire cooking.ย 

Make sure the following items are on your camping checklist:

  • Cooking pots and pans

  • A portable grill or stove

  • A propane tank

  • Cooking utensils (spatulas, tongs, knives, forks, etc.)

  • Dishes and cups

  • Can opener

  • Rubbish bags

  • Cooler

  • Car refrigerator

  • Firewood

  • Lighter fluid

  • Matches

  • Cooking oil

Clothing and Bedding

Of course, you'll need to pack clothing and bedding for every person in your family. Make sure to pack for both warm and cold weather, as well as rain.

  • Jeans or long pants

  • Shirts

  • Sweaters or jackets

  • Undergarments

  • Socks

  • Hats

  • Rain gear

  • Boots or comfortable shoes

  • Thongs

  • Sheets and blankets

Personal Items

Just because you're out in the woods doesn't mean personal hygiene and comfort should go out the window.

Be sure to pack the following:

  • Toiletries (toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, etc.)

  • Soap or body wash

  • Towels

  • Insect repellent

  • Sunscreen

  • First Aid kit

  • Medical prescriptions

Miscellaneous Essentials

These items are a bit too random to group into a sole category but are important nonetheless.

  • Storage bags

  • Compass/GPS

  • Camera

  • Duct tape

  • Umbrella

  • Notepad and pen

  • Bikes and toys

  • Campsite reservation and phone number

  • Map and area information

The Fun Stuff

Now that you have the essentials covered, it's time to focus on the fun stuff. These items will help make your camping trip more enjoyable for everyone.

Games and Activities

Camping is the perfect opportunity to unplug from technology and enjoy some quality time with family and friends.

Be sure to pack games and activities everyone will enjoy, such as:

  • Board games

  • Cards

  • Wrapped lollies or small toys (for prizes)

  • Outdoor games (frisbee, cricket, etc.)

  • Horseshoes

  • Badminton

  • Bubbles

  • Books

Food and Snacks

No camping trip is complete without toasted marshmallows, sausage sizzles and a whole lot of snacks!

In addition to the obvious food items, don't forget to pack:

  • Condiments (sauce!)

  • Spices

  • Marshmallows (and sticks or skewers)

  • Chocolates and lollies

  • Crackers and chips

  • Paper towels

Campfire Stories

One of the best parts of camping is sitting around the campfire telling stories. Make sure you think of some good, scary stories to tell around the fire. If you're feeling extra prepared, you can even bring a portable speaker to play spooky music in the background.

Circumstance-Specific Items

In addition to the essentials and the fun stuff, there are a few other items you may need to include on your list for camping, depending on your specific camping circumstances.

If You're Camping with Kids

If you're camping with young kids, be sure to pack the following and put your dangerous items in childproof containers as you pack:

  • Extra snacks and drinks

  • Toys and games

  • A First Aid kit

  • Nappies and wipes (if necessary)

  • Extra clothes

If You're Camping in a Caravan

If you're camping in a caravan, you may not need to pack as many essentials, since your caravan will already have many of the items you need.ย 

However, you'll still need to pack:

  • Clothes and bedding

  • Food and snacks

  • Kitchenware

  • Games and activities

  • Toiletries

  • A First Aid kit

If You're Camping With Pets

If you're camping with pets, don't forget to pack:

  • Pet food and water bowls

  • A leash and collar

  • Bedding

  • Toys

  • A First Aid kit

  • Poop bags

Phew! That's a lot of stuff to remember to pack for your next camping trip. We (naturally) recommend using the Eggy app to both keep track of and set reminders to pack and purchase all the items on this camping packing list. Doing so will help ensure you don't forget anything and that your next camping trip is a great success. Happy camping!

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