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Beginners’ Car Camping Essentials for Newbies

Updated: Mar 8, 2022

The need to balance work and life is essential for our growth and mental health, we all deserve a break from the 9 to 5 everyday schedule and to find peace and meaning from within. Importantly this kind of vacation fills us up with new energy and strength to forge ahead in life.


Watching the sunrise, or waking the birds from sleep are rewarding moments of bliss and happiness. The opportunity to just breathe deeply and notice things for yourself is an adventure that adds meaning to your life, especially in these robotic times we are living in. Car camping truly gives you a feel of all of these beauties.


For a beginner, the experience may be a bit of trouble, trying to find your way around and making sure you pack just the right things for the journey.

Here is a round down list of car camping necessities you will need, divided into 3 areas of Sleeping essentials, food and beverage, and safety/first aid tools.



1. Sleep essentials:

Sleep is an essential part of your car camping essentials and this will define to a large extent of your holiday. If you end up having an unpleasant night rest this can have you feeling cranky for a long time and even question the need for the holiday. You can choose to rent an SUV with perfect sleep fittings for a car camping adventure. This is personally the most comfortable option, but let’s face it, we can’t all afford to rent a luxurious SUV. You can also choose to set-up a camping tent, which can be pretty comfortable too depending on the way it is set-up. Another sleeping option can also be setting up a hammock.


A. Tent camping: While tent camping is one of the most popular sleep options seen in car campsites. If you are not car camping alone it is preferred that you get a tent with extra space to give you that extra level of comfort. For instance, if you are car camping with your partner, get a tent that fits 3 instead of 2 to make sure you won’t be crammed up in a tiny sleeping space. Also, if you go with a tent then you will need a sleeping pad, to give you a much-needed added comfort.

B. Hammock: Those who don’t fancy tents, often go with the hammock. This is because hammocks are pretty comfortable, but it is more expensive than a tent, also could be tricky to install and often hard to find.


2. Food and water

You will need a list of tools, ingredients, and kitchen essentials to prepare your meals when camping out.


a. Cast Iron skillet: The typical frying pan can hardly stand an open fire and this is where a cast iron skillet is required.

b. Dutch Oven: Car camping comes with the need to have something that can stand high heat for an extended period and this is where a Dutch Oven is needed to help you with your cooking needs.

c. Cutting boards: for all your kitchen needs, you will require a cutting board for your meats and other food preparations, getting one is important.

d. Tongs and Spatula: There’s virtually nothing you can do in the kitchen without a Tong or spatula and just in case you forget the tongs always carry a spatula.

e. Lighters: you will have to put up the fire yourself most of the times, don’t forget that lighter! (I’d throw in a couple of extra ones in just in case).

f. Trash bags: Do not litter! Make sure the camping spot looks the same way you found it on your way out (if not cleaner).

g. Container for leftovers: Don’t throw out fresh food. If you’re not going to eat it then donate it on your way out (if it still is in good condition).


3. First aid/safety:

Sometimes we are caught up in emergency situations that we never saw coming and being prepared for it is vital if you are planning to camp out in a slightly deserted area.

Make sure to pack the following safety and first aid tools:


1. Bear spray

2. First aid kits/box

3. Compass

4. Whistle


Happy Camping!

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