10 Essential Items for Camping with a Baby

Items needed for camping with kids, camping with kids | how to arrange items while camping with a baby.

You’ve found the perfect campsite and packed up your RV with the family. You pull up to your site, set up camp, and get everything ready before bedtime.

But wait…what do you do with the baby?

Babies aren’t exactly made to sleep in tents, but you don’t want to leave her behind at the campground all night, either.

Luckily, there are lots of essential items for camping with a baby that will help keep her safe and comfortable throughout your fun-filled trip!

The great outdoors can be an amazing experience for the whole family, but if you’re going camping with an infant or toddler, you’ll want to consider bringing a few extra items along just in case.

From bug spray to sunscreen to baby formula, these 10 essential items will help make your trip more comfortable and enjoyable for everyone.

Whether you’re camping at the campground next door or going on an epic road trip across the country, you’ll want to make sure that you have these essentials before leaving on your adventure.

Here’s a list of 10 essential items for camping with your baby that will ensure you have the best time ever and don’t leave anything behind.

A Baby Carrier

A baby carrier is a must-have for camping with a baby. It’s easy to get your little one into and out of the carrier, which means you can use it for hiking, too. You’ll also want a comfortable carrier that will be easy on both you and your baby.

A Tent (a big one!)

It is critical to find a tent that fits the number of people in your group.

For example, if you are camping with a baby and another young child, you need to keep in mind the length of time you will be spending outside.

If your family plans on setting up camp for an extended period of time (such as a week), then it would be best to purchase a larger tent so that everyone has enough space inside.

This is especially true if there are two adults and two children sleeping inside the tent together!

On the other hand, if this is just going to be one night out under the stars where everyone wants their own dedicated spot within their own personal home away from home—then perhaps something smaller would suffice.

In general though: The smaller footprint = easier setup/take down = less room for error when pitching up those stakes at nightfall!

Sleeping Bags and a Mini-Bed for Your Baby

  • Sleeping bags will be your baby’s home, away from home for the trip. You can use sleeping bags for infants and older children, as well as adults.
  • Sleeping bags are great because they can be used inside or outside of a tent. If you’ll be camping out in the wild, you’ll want to make sure that everyone in your party is comfortable with their sleeping arrangements, especially if it’s cold outside!
  • Pick a temperature rating appropriate for the climate where you’re going camping! If it’s really hot out where we go camping, then we would go with something more lightweight like a quilt instead of thick down filled ones that might make us too warm at night during those hot summer months

Sound Machine (to combat campground noise)

A sound machine can be a lifesaver for both you and your little one. If you’re in a hotel room, it’ll help drown out street noise and keep your baby sleeping through any other disruptions.

Having some ambient noise in the background is always a good thing when you’re trying to get some shut-eye, whether it’s coming from outside the window or from an app on your phone.

Sound machines also make camping easier because they can mask all those annoying sounds that come with being outdoors—like howling wind or insects buzzing around your tent (and getting into said tent).

They’re especially great for keeping baby asleep if there are lots of other people camping nearby who are making noise late at night; if she’s used to hearing white noise while she falls asleep at night, then she may not wake up as easily when others get loud later on in the evening.

You should definitely consider bringing one along with you when going camping!

Stroller Accessories

  • Stroller Fan

If you want to keep your baby cool and comfortable, a stroller fan is an absolute must.

  • Stroller Rain Cover

A rain cover will protect the baby from getting soaked by a sudden downpour or heavy dew. It will also help keep them warm in cold weather by protecting them from the wind.

  • Stroller Seat Protector

If you’re going to be taking your stroller on a lot of outdoor adventures, consider investing in a seat protector that can be slipped underneath their seat cushioning before every trip. This accessory prevents accidents like stains or spills from ruining their precious car seats!

Baby-Friendly Bug Spray

Make sure that you’re not using any products with oils, citronella, or any other fragrances. These will only attract more bugs to your child and make the situation worse.

In addition to this, it’s important that you avoid using products with preservatives or any other ingredients—these can be harmful if ingested by a baby.

Baby-Friendly Sunscreen

Baby-friendly sunscreen is important to keep your baby protected from the sun. Be sure you have a sunscreen that is approved for babies. You should also apply sunscreen to your baby’s face and ears, especially if you are in an area with intense sunlight.

Applying sunscreen at least 20 minutes before exposing your baby to the sun is best, but it can be applied immediately after swimming or sweating if necessary. Remember that even when it’s cloudy outside, UV rays can still reach you and your child so remember to reapply every two hours!

Cooler and/or Food Storage Bin

You’ll probably want to pack a cooler, or at least a food storage bin. For one thing, coolers are much more efficient than ice packs—they take up less room in your car and they last longer.

The size of the cooler is up to you and what you plan on putting in it. If you’re just storing water bottles, snacks and sandwiches for yourself (or some adults-only snacks), then a small box will do just fine.

But if you need space for more perishable items like meat or dairy products (don’t worry if your baby doesn’t eat those yet), then go with the biggest option available that still fits into your car’s trunk without being too heavy when loaded down with ice packs or other cold items such as frozen juice boxes or popsicles.

You might also want two coolers:

one small one that can hold drinks and food meant only for adults who may not be around little ones all day long;

another large one where all foods are stored together, so there’s no risk of cross contamination between different types of protein products versus vegetables/fruit items within reach of children old enough not only to eat by themselves, but also clean up after themselves after finishing their mealtime duties at mealtime time!

Food and Water for Everyone!

  • Food. If you have a baby, make sure to bring enough food for everyone in your family. Babies often need more food than adults and can easily become dehydrated if they don’t consume enough water. Bring plenty of snacks that your baby can eat while on the go (think: fruit, crackers or other finger foods) so that you don’t have to stop every couple hours at a grocery store to restock on supplies.
  • Water bottle for everyone – You’ll want to make sure that everyone has their own water bottle so they can stay hydrated when out exploring around camp or hiking through the woods!
  • Snacks for everyone – It’s always good practice before heading out into nature with little ones in tow (or any time really) to pack plenty of snacks! An empty tummy leads straight back inside after just one hour outside with no food or drink available nearby so plan ahead accordingly by making sure each person has their own backpack filled with goodies they’ll enjoy having while exploring outdoors together!

Laundry Pail or Hanging Hamper Bag for Dirty Diapers and Other Items

If you’re going to be spending time in the wilderness, you’ll want to have a place for dirty diapers.

We’ve found that one of the most popular options for this purpose is a laundry pail or hanging hamper bag.

There are several different types of these products available on Amazon and other online retailers, including portable laundry pails that are collapsible when not in use, diaper trash cans with locking lids (so the smell doesn’t escape), and even plastic bags that can be used as makeshift diaper pails.

If you don’t want to invest in any sort of specialized product but still need someplace to put baby’s dirty diapers while camping (or while cleaning up after them at home), consider using a large bucket or tub—something that’s easy to carry around when full but won’t take up too much space otherwise.

If all else fails, try laying down an old blanket next to where you’re sitting on your campsite bench…you never know who might come strolling by!

Being prepared ahead of time can lead to a more successful camping experience!

Packing a bag for your baby before you go will be helpful and save time when you arrive at the campsite.

Bring plenty of diapers and wipes, as well as a portable crib or bassinet. A sound machine can drown out background noise and help your baby sleep through the night in the wilderness setting.

Pack some baby food in case she gets hungry during dinner, as well as bottles if needed. Pack snacks like Cheerios or crackers to eat while cooking dinner over the campfire or after dark when it is too dark to cook anything else!

Top 10 essential items for camping with a baby.

1) Stroller

Essential Items for Camping with babies

Bring a stroller or rent one at your campsite—the best thing about camping is being able to put your baby down and enjoy her giggles.

But if you’re planning on hiking or staying out late, bring along something to transport her around in so you don’t have to carry her.

Just make sure it folds up small enough to take on hikes! And though any umbrella stroller will do (we recommend ones from Maclaren), get an easy-to-carry model for long walks.

2) Portable Playpen

Essential Items for Camping with kids

A portable playpen allows you to give your baby some space, while still allowing him or her to be close by.

Having your little one nearby will help keep you calm in those moments when panic strikes—like when you discover that your headlamp died and you can’t find your phone to call someone.

A small, portable playpen is also useful if there are too many people in a tent, which can make it difficult to feed or diaper baby during middle-of-the-night feedings.

It might feel like bringing baby along is getting in the way of your camping trip; after all, babies don’t sleep much!

However, spending time outdoors as a family has been shown to have positive effects on development; even if baby isn’t sleeping much right now, he or she will enjoy being outside just as much as you do.

3) Portable bassinet/crib

Essential Item for Camping with babies

While some people opt to use their own bed at campgrounds, it can be difficult (if not impossible) to transport an entire bed frame. Instead, pick up a portable bassinet/crib that can easily fit in your vehicle and comes with a mesh screen so you don’t have to worry about bugs.

Some of these models even have wheels so they’re easy to transport from your car to your campsite. The key is being flexible and understanding what is important to YOU.

If having your baby sleep beside you isn’t essential then perhaps it doesn’t need to make its way onto your essential list!

We had many families participate in our challenge across all different stages of life and each had something unique they wanted their baby gear products to offer them.

By staying true to YOUR needs as opposed to relying on others advice or opinions on what YOU need you will ensure that YOU are happy with the product YOU buy!

4) Wipes Warmer

Essential Items for Camping with Babies

If you are going camping during warm weather, you don’t want to run into issues of diaper rash.

A wipes warmer allows you to keep your baby’s bottom warm and dry. This helps prevent them from getting diaper rash when using regular wipes that can be too cold. It also makes clean up easier if your baby does have an accident because it will be much more comfortable than trying to wipe their bottom in cooler conditions.

While some parents swear by these, many others say they aren’t necessary. They add another step to diapering time which could lead to aggravation and potential accidents.

However, if you are concerned about your child having a skin reaction from traditional wipes or want everything kept nice and toasty while they sleep or while traveling around campgrounds then a wipes warmer may be a good idea for you.

5) Large diaper bag

Essential Items for Camping with babies

If you are camping in an area without access to laundry facilities, having a large diaper bag on hand is essential. Diapers will likely be going through more frequent changes at first, so you’ll want to have extra on hand.

Having your diapers and other baby essentials (food, toys) stored away from your other items will also help make sure that nothing gets mixed up or accidentally packed away.

For an added bonus, look for one that has compartments specifically designed to store bottles and breast-milk storage bags upright. That way, when you find yourself in need of changing a poopy diaper while out on excursion or in nature, there’s no need to dig around looking for clean diapers; they’re right where you left them!

6) Swaddling Blankets

Essential items for camping with babies

Swaddling blankets are convenient because they are small and lightweight. They can also help your baby stay calm, making it easier to get them to sleep.

To properly swaddle your child, wrap him/her up as tight as you can without feeling like their arms or legs are constricted (obviously).

Babies will almost always break out of their swaddles during sleep, so ensure that when you secure them you double- or triple-check that there is not an arm or leg sticking out of its wrapping.

If your kid breaks free from his/her swaddle in his sleep, know that he/she probably isn’t going to wake up—there’s no point in waking them up just because their little hands have broken free from their sleeves.

When you return home from camping, don’t throw away any of these old swaddles; keep one handy in case of emergency!

7) Pacifier clip

Essential item for camping with babies

While babies don’t have much choice over where they sleep, they should be able to enjoy their time on a camping trip.

To keep your baby sleeping soundly while you try to get some rest yourself, place his pacifier in an attached clip.

This way he won’t lose it when he tosses and turns in his sleep. (Tip: give him two or three so you can keep one nearby).

9) Bug Repellent

Essential Items for camping with babies

It may seem counterintuitive to bring bug repellent if you’re spending time in nature, but mosquitoes and other bugs can be more than an annoyance.

Bring along an EPA-approved mosquito repellent. If you use sunscreen and bug spray on your baby’s skin at home, apply it once more before heading out—sunscreen doesn’t repel bugs.

In addition, make sure to dress your baby in long sleeves and pants—even when it’s warm outside—so ticks don’t bite through his clothes.

What Else? What kinds of food will I need? Snacks are essential when camping with a baby so that he isn’t tempted by unhealthy offerings at nearby fast food joints.

10) Tent Fan

essential items for camping with kids

Even though camping is fun, it’s hard to enjoy nature if you’re sweating out all your fluids in your sleeping bag.

By bringing along a fan and placing it in front of your tent, you’ll have a cool place to relax while letting others enjoy their sleep.

A hanging fan works well because you don’t have to worry about cords getting tangled or stepped on. Plus, there are plenty of battery-operated fans for those who want to go green. Be sure not to forget batteries!


So, there you have it! Our top 10 tips on how to stay safe while camping with a baby. We hope that you’ve found these tips helpful and that they’ll help you to create an unforgettable family camping experience.

No matter how many times you’ve gone before, there are new lessons to be learned each time, and if something feels off—whether in your gut or because of advice from your doctor—do what you need to do to keep everyone healthy and happy.

The most important thing about camping with a baby is to be prepared. If you’re not sure where to start, try browsing our list of the best camping gear for babies or reading some camping tips for new parents.

You can also check out our article on how to pack for your next trip so that it goes smoothly without any hiccups!

What are the items required for camping?

Of course, there are a ton of things parents pack when they go on trips with their little ones—

Sun Screen
Make sure to cover up and apply lots of sunscreen while camping. You’ll be in full sun throughout most of your day and will want to protect your skin from burns. Sunscreen not only helps you avoid burning, but it also protects against cancer later in life.

Canopy/bug net: Most campsites will provide bug spray; however, if you take little kids into wooded areas or play outside at dawn before spraying is recommended, consider packing something larger like those used for dogs. Consider investing in both so that each parent has one.

Is it OK to take a baby camping?

The answer is big “YES”. Babies can breath fresh air, also the babies can experience/ hearnatures, birds sounds which will make them happy.


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