The summer holidays have just begun and with Staycations being so en vogue you may be thinking of taking the kids on a camping trip. Many a great holiday has been spent out under the stars around a campfire, but for some of us this can be a little daunting… but fear not as our handy guide will give you some great tips on enjoying a summer camping staycation with the kids!
Young kids (and sometimes older kids!) love the novelty of camping out for the night, my children often ask to camp in the garden and it’s a great way of getting them out of their bedrooms and off for an adventure for the evening, even if it is just to the back garden. So when presented with the idea of a family holiday all together under canvas, cooking and eating outside all cosy around the campfire, more often than not they are beyond excited!
It’s such a fantastic way for families to spend some time together without the daily distractions of work, school, and electronics, just you and them spending quality time together out in the countryside with plenty of fresh air and memories to be had.
So I know the transformation from house to a tent can be a little baffling, but with a little planning and some great Tetris skills, you can be on your way to a great Family Staycation!
1 - Choosing the right Campsite
We all like different things and choosing the right campsite in the right location is a must. Are you looking for somewhere close to the beach (hoping so hard that the sun comes out for your stay!) or maybe you are looking for a more rural campsite with lots of walking trails? We have 3 campsites for you to choose from, all with different experiences on offer, our Hunstanton Campsite is right by the beach and is great for families looking for a seaside holiday. Our Holme Campsite is more rural, still close to the beach but more on the quieter side, great for peace and quiet. Our Burnham Campsite is very rural and is a ‘wilder camping’ site that is close to lots of walking paths and is great for getting back to nature with the family. All of our campsites are child and dog-friendly and allow for campfires and BBQs.
2 - Ditch the electronics
I know this can sometimes be a daunting prospect, but trust me they cause more havoc than they are worth when you’re camping, from batteries going dead, to them being left out on the grass and arguments about how much time they get on them. Think about leaving them at home altogether, this will save on the arguments and leave you so much more time to enjoy your holiday as a family. Sing songs in the car, play eye spy, or the number plate game. Camping is about getting back to nature and spending time with loved ones, a few days without their screens will do them the world of good!
3 - Rainy Days
So instead of iPads, how about bringing some games instead? From old school board games like Scrabble and Guess Who, to the more travel-friendly games such as Dobble and Uno, kids will love to get involved and play around the campfire, telling ghost stories is a classic too. Outside games such as Bat & Ball and maybe even their bikes are great things to bring too, but please check with your campsite to see if they have a policy on ball games. Whatever you decide on it’s so worthwhile to pack a few options just in case of a rainy day or to keep kids a little occupied while you get on with the BBQing!
Check out local indoor venues prior to your holiday, such as soft plays, leisure centers & arcades, these can be lifesavers if the weather isn’t as great as you would like. If you have your wellies and raincoats why not have a wet day at the beach? This can be just as fun as a sunny day and you don’t have to worry about applying endless sunscreen.
4 - Clothes, clothes & more clothes!
It's a must when camping with the kids to bring spare clothes. Being outside almost all day is all part of the fun of camping, but can mean that some kids will need a few changes of clothes a day, especially if the weather takes a turn for the worst. Even if the weather is looking to be good, evenings can be chilly and even in the summer, you may want to bring some cosy socks and coats. After all, it’s better to have the options and not need them, than to not have them at all! My top tip is Crocs and Wellies, they are great for slipping on and off to go to the toilets and for playing at the beach whatever the weather and it doesn’t matter if they get left outside, trainers can get wet easily and take a while to dry and can be messy inside your tent, best to leave them in the car if you’re bringing them to be safe.
5 - Get the Kids Involved
While driving to your holiday, you could allocate what everyone is going to be doing so that when you arrive it’ll be no time at all until you’re set up. From banging in the tent pegs to rolling out the sleeping bags to setting up the kitchen, with so much to unpack, many hands make light work! Although this can seem idyllic when you think of your own kids, you’d be surprised how eager they are to help when camping, even the smallest ones (I find it’s the teenagers that I need to shout at most to help!!)
Most of all have FUN, keep positive, stay up late, sleep in, don’t get dressed, go out and explore, whatever you decide to do this is your family camping trip and it’s all about having a good time and making memories :)