Camping List Essentials

camping list essentials

Are you looking for the ultimate list of essentials to bring with you during your next camping trip, no worry we got you covered? Going camping or on any sizable trip where you cannot bring your entire house with you might be concerning. Especially when you start pulling out of your house and you get that odd feeling you left something behind. We are going to try and list everything that you could possibly need and want to bring with you on your next camping adventure.

The following list contains things that I would bring typically on my camping trip. I have compared the list myself with other lists and it basically goes over the finest of details. These camping list essentials might even give recommended products you had not thought of before.

If you are going away with the family we have also included essential items to bring for your kids.

Camping Tent

Your camping tent! If you are camping then this is probably one of the things you should not want to leave behind. TIP: don’t forget your tent stakes or buy some new tent stakes if you need more. This is something I always personally forget about.

Camping Tent Stakes

Camping tent stakes are so important but they are very much overlooked with the hustle and bustle of actually getting set up to go away on your camping vacation. They are super important because if you end up getting into a wind storm they are nice to ensure your tent does not go flying away. The other benefit to the camping stakes is that if it rains it ensures your tent is pulled out and away from the middle, this ensures the rain won’t pile up under you or outside your entrance.

Sleeping Bags

Another thing you certainly do not want to miss throwing into the vehicle before your trip is your sleeping bags. Ensure that they were fully cleaned out after your last camping trip or else you might have a nice creepy crawly in it from overwinter making a home out of it.

Air Mattress

If you like to raise your level of comfort when you camping then be sure to remember that air mattress (and the pump to go with it)

Camping Pillows

Did you know there are actually such things as camping pillows? I didn’t but there are. We typically just brought our pillows from the regular beds we sleep in. Regardless this is a must needed item (unless you’re doing an overnight hike of course, then an inflatable pillow would be best)


If your going to be going to a sunny camping destination then sunscreen is a must. Always bring more than you think you will need. There is nothing worse than running out.

Camping Chairs

These are vital if you’re going to actually want to sit around your fire instead of on the ground. Maybe you’re roughing it for the next week and chairs are not needed. If that’s the case I’ll give you lots of respect. For the rest of us, this is sure to be something you will want to bring. Make sure all your chairs are functioning before packing them into the car. So many times I remember a chair broke last year and I go to set it up and remember it was broken or worse I needed an extra one.

Axe or Hatchet

Depending on how much you’re going to be roughing it, you probably going to be building a fire. All too often I forget to bring my hatchet or axe with me and left to try to make tinder out of sticks I find in the forest. Do yourself a favour and remember to bring that axe! Ensure it’s sharp enough as well.


I’m not sure where you are going but are you going to need a flashlight? Nothing worse than waking up at 2 am needing to go to the bathroom in the forest or take a trip to the bathroom without any sort of light. Sure you could use your phone too but in the event that your phone dead (you are camping after all)

Camping Stove

Waking up to make breakfast is always an adventure, just be sure to bring your camping stove to be able to make those eggs and bacon. This is unless your going old school and cooking them over the fire on a cast iron.

Camping Cookware

You brought your stove but don’t forget your cookware. This includes; pots, pans, plates, bowls, utensils such as forks and spoons and knives, cooking knives, cutting boards, and anything else you might need to prepare the food. Plan your meals out and think about the tool you would typically need to cook those meals.


You will certainly be needing to bring a cooler or two. Keep in mind you will want to keep your drinks cold for yourself or your kids. You will also need a way to keep food cool during the duration of your camping if you bring perishable foods.

Ice packs for cooler

You got to keep things cooling and this is something many people forget about until the last minute. Keeping your food cool is needed and a must-have. Resusable’s are much better for the trips to your destination over water because they won’t create a watery mess of your food. If you have a separate cooler for drinks then regular ice should work ok.

First Aid Kit

Something often overlooked when going camping but a necessity is a first aid kit. This is especially true if you have kids or clumsy adults.

Camping Lantern

Usually much preferred in the evening over a flashlight as it offers a dimmable setting. Especially those evenings which maybe you cannot build a fire for whatever reason. Great for at the table and playing games or simply set it up in your tent to read a book. There are some lanterns now that are battery chargers (charging your devices)

Swimming Floats, Inflatables, Water Toys

This could probably be a big section in itself but if you have kids like me then remember to bring the floaties or other water toys (floaties, inflatables)


Unless you know how to start a fire with rocks or sticks it’s best to bring a lighter. You will need it to start your fire, ignite your stove or BBQ, light your candles or insect repellent. You can see there are a lot of uses for fire.


Tarps always come in handy especially if you run into some bad weather. If you are tenting them having a tarp over you might be the difference between a dry sleep or a soggy one. I always like to bring a few with me and if we happen to hit a few bad days in a row of rain you can use it to create a nice dry area for not only over your tent but a sitting area.

Insect Repellent

Don’t forget to protect yourself from insects. Depending on where you are you might be fighting anything from wasps to mosquitoes. Come prepared.

Camping/Sleeping Hammock

If you’re wanting to bring your hammock then don’t forget. Some people bring a hammock for camping leisure and simply read a book on a nice summer’s day. Others actually sleep in the darn thing!

Camping Water Carrier

I know you probably will have lots of pop and beers but don’t skimp on your water! There are so many uses of water and when your camping water is not as easy as simply turning on a tap, this means storage is important. You need water to drink, wash your dishes off, fill your dishbath, etc. There are some great containers for water.


If there is something I always regret not bringing it’s camping tools. This is most important if you’re taking an RV or camping trailer out with you. There is always going to be that situation you need to build something, fix something, or cut something. This is a reminder, bring your knife!

Toilet Paper

I think this one does not need a description


I’m not sure if this is essential but it’s a nice luxury to have. When I and my family go camping we like to serve breakfast from a table (especially if we do not have a picnic table). Having a convenient fold-up table is extremely convenient for most of the trip.

Camping Garbage Bags / Holder

When you are camping, nothing is worse than realizing you forgot garbage bags. There are also some great compactable garbage bag holders too which I’ve started using.

Duct Tape

When they don’t find you handsome at least they will find you handy… Don’t go anywhere without duct tape.
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