Turn your camping trip into a vacation rather than work.

When planning a camping trip, there are some things you can pack or do before you go for your trip that will help you relax your vacation and spend fun instead of cleaning your location, traveling to the local store to buy accessories or deal with something you forgot because there is no store.

The first thing you should do is create a checklist of what you want to take with you on the trip. Aside from clothing and basics, there are a few other things that can help make your trip a success. Be sure to add waterproof matches, as you never know when rain or any other kind of liquid could wet your supplies. Wet matches are not synonymous with fire and no fire can be a real problem. You can buy waterproof matches or make your own waterproof by dipping them in paraffin wax.

Pack a survival kit with enough accessories for everyone on the trip and a few extras. These include plasters, wet wipes and power rails. Sunscreen and insect repellent are essential for outdoor activities, as are citronella candles to keep beetles away at night. Take plastic bags with you to put in wet things or things you need to dispose of. It’s also good to pack anything you don’t want to get wet in plastic bags.

Pack a sweatshirt and trousers, even if it is in the middle of summer. At night you’ll probably be happy to have them and it’ll keep you from being unhappy and shaking through the fire. Put out your own clothes and clothing for everyone in the family to make sure you have something for every day and pack it in your suitcase by outfit so you can easily grab your outfit and get dressed without having to dig through your suitcase. Take a pop-up mesh container for your dirty clothes with you to keep them separate from the clean stuff.

Come to your campsite early so you can pitch your tent or motorhome and still have plenty of time to explore the area and get to know your surroundings before night falls. Keep food in a cool box or locked up in the car to prevent animals and beetles from entering. Take off dirty shoes and clothing before entering your tent or camper so you don’t have to sweep the floor all the time. You will find this especially helpful when camping on the beach. Take a small broom with you just in case your tent or RV floor gets dirty.

Bring maps, other games and reading material if you encounter rainy weather. There is nothing worse than sitting on your campsite in the rain and doing nothing. Some of your best camping memories could be just playing these games or relaxing with a book.

A batteryless radio is a good way to find out about news or upcoming bad weather. You should also have some kind of handheld radio that you can use in an emergency. Bring flashlights with extra batteries. Put maps and travel brochures in your car and suitcase or camper van. If you lose or misplace one, a backup is waiting for you.

Set up your campsite and tent or motorhome so that you can do things easily, but still have room to move around. Keep other things away from your sleeping bags and a clear path to the door to avoid encountering things in the middle of the night on your way to the bathroom.

Experience is the best source of ideas on what can make your camping trip a pleasure. Talk to others who camp to see if they have any ideas. If you’re going on a trip and think about something you could really use, write it down, buy it as soon as you get home and pack it with your camping gear, so you’re ready to go on your next camping trip.

It doesn’t take much to make your camping holiday pleasant and carefree. With a little planning and some organization once you arrive at your site, you can avoid many mishaps or emergencies that could spoil your holiday.

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