Having appropriate kids camping gear makes all the difference when camping as a family. Staying warm and dry, getting enough sleep, and being comfortable are crucial to making a camping trip enjoyable for everyone. 

Camping with kids can be challenging enough without having to worry about the gear in your children’s camping set and whether the kids will be comfortable on the trip.

Look for high quality items that are designed with children in mind, such as kids sleeping bags or chairs. 

Here are a few essentials to bring along when you are preparing for a camping trip with children. If you are camping with toddlers or babies, see our post on must-have baby camping gear.

children on a camping trip learning how to read and use a map

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What do you need to go camping with kids?

To go camping with kids, a good kids camping set is required. A sleeping pad, sleeping bag, and chair suitable for a child will make camping much more enjoyable for the whole family. Look for a tent that fits everyone comfortably. To entertain the kids and keep in touch while they explore around the campsite, get a set of walkie talkies that are easy to use.

Here is a simple checklist:

  • Clothing and footwear appropriate for the season/activities
  • For sleeping, kids will need sleeping pads and sleeping bags with a pillow.
  • For playing outside, kids will need bug spray, sunscreen, a hat, and perhaps rain gear and a few outside toys that encourage play in nature (perhaps a dump truck or binoculars).
  • For relaxing, bring a kid’s chair and a book or quiet activity.

Essential Kids Camping Gear

Coleman Dome Tent

This Coleman Sundome 4 person tent has a spacious interior, measuring 9’x7′. The inverted seams keep you dry, and the large window keeps you cool in the summer. A kids camping tent that will keep everyone warm and cozy is essential for a good camping trip.

This tent is ideal for families of three or four who are new to camping and want to be sure they won’t wake up soaking wet. Families with young children will appreciate the quick and easy set-up.

The Coleman dome tent has snag-free, continuous pole sleeves so you can easily set up the tent quickly. The floor is waterproof and the zipper cover protects the tent from the elements. Mesh pockets in the inside of the tent can be used for storage off the floor.

The height at the center of the tent is 4’11”, so if you are taller than this you won’t be able to stand up in the tent.

Sleepingo Camping Sleeping Pad

This Sleepingo sleeping pad is 2†thick and comes with a lifetime warranty. It’s tear resistant and made from waterproof ripstop nylon fabric. It expands to 75â€x23†when it’s blown up, but will compact down to the size of a water bottle.

This sleeping pad is ideal for small, lightweight campers who want to sleep comfortably anywhere but don’t want to pack a bunch of extra weight.

Even on rough or rocky terrain, this mat will stay inflated and help the whole family sleep soundly.

At only 14.5oz, the Sleepingo sleeping pad won’t add too much weight to your pack. It’s made out of camping grade waterproof fabric that is tear-resistant and designed to last a lifetime.

Heavier side-sleepers, however, may find it difficult to sleep on an inflatable mat.

REVALCAMP Sleeping Bag

The ultralight REVALCAMP sleeping bag can easily be stuffed into the carry sack. It comes in 23 different colors so everyone can choose their favorite. Anyone under 6’1″ can fit comfortably in these sleeping bags, and it’s possible to zip two together.

These sleeping bags are ideal for kids. They are machine washable, water resistant, and come with a double sided anti-snag zipper. The variety of colors means everyone will be able to tell which sleeping bag is theirs. They compress down small and don’t need to be rolled or folded in order to fit into the carry sack.

The rectangular models are only suitable for above 40 degrees, so camping in the off season is not recommended with these sleeping bags.

Coleman Kids Quad Chair

The Coleman kids quad chair is a great outdoor chair designed with kids in mind. It is low to the ground and the steel frame locks into place so parents can be sure that their children will be safe and secure in the seat.

This chair is ideal for small children while camping, hanging out at the beach, or just spending time outside.

Part of the design even glows in the dark and the chair has a mesh cup holder so kids can have their hands free.

Note: Taller children or those over 160lbs may not be able to use this chair due to the weight limit and the height of the chair.

Retevis RT628 Kids Walkie Talkies

These kids walkie talkies are lightweight and easy for children to operate making them an ideal choice for families with older children who may be exploring around the campsite and want to stay in contact, or younger children who want to play with the walkie talkies.

The talk button is easy to find and has a long range. They are designed for kids, small enough to fit in a child’s hands.

The keypad can be locked after a channel is set so that children can’t accidentally change the channel.

These walkie talkies take 3 AA batteries to work. You might want to bring extra batteries if the kids will be playing with the walkie talkies often.

How to prepare for camping with kids?

Before going camping with kids, make sure you have all of the kids camping gear together. Make packing easier by organizing what is needed by the activities you have planned.

Once the kids camping gear is organized, pack clothes and toiletries, being sure to bring an extra set of clothes just in case.

Camping with children is much more enjoyable for the whole family if you invest in great kids camping gear.

A warm sleeping bag, a comfortable sleeping pad, and a waterproof tent will help the kids have a great night’s sleep anywhere.

A comfortable kid’s chair and a set of long-range walkie-talkies will keep the kids happy whether they are exploring or just sitting by the fire.

For more posts to help you plan a camping trip with kids, check out: