Make Camping Outdoors More Comfortable
One of the top complaints about camping is that it is uncomfortable. There are too many bugs, sleeping is rough, and you have to poop behind a tree. We get it!
Luckily, there are so many solutions that make camping more comfortable. From picking the right spot to bringing the right clothes, there are so many things you can do to enjoy yourself more outdoors.
We are covering everything you need to know to be more comfortable on your next camping trip.
How to Make Camping More Comfortable
Here is our big list of tips to make you comfy at camp. You don’t have to go all-out glamping to have a relaxing time. Mixing a few of these tips into your next trip can make it significantly better for you and your fellow campers. This list is mostly for tent camping, but you can use these for camping in a camper or other shelter as well.
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The Basics of Comfort
1. Choose the right campsite.
This first step is probably the most important. Pick a spot to camp that you are going to be able to enjoy. To do this, you’ll need to find a site that has everything you need. Do you need running water and a toilet? Do you need to be far away from people?
Check reviews and details before going to a new campsite so you know what to expect and what you need to bring. This is also a great time to make sure where you are going allows pets and if there are any other restrictions.
2. Stay organized.
It can be really frustrating to spend a bunch of time looking for gear or tools at your campsite. Make sure that you stay organized from the time you pack up to the time you pack out.
We love using plastic totes to keep things together, organized, and clean while we’re camping. Double-check that you have everything you need before heading to camp and that you know where everything is packed away.
It’s important to get a good night of sleep while camping. Being uncomfortable prevents you from getting the rest you need which can affect your whole trip. Use these tips to make sleeping easier while you camp.
3. Invest in a quality tent.
The quality of your tent makes a big difference when you are camping. This is your shelter away from the elements and your temporary home away from home. We love using blackout tents when we camp to filter out the sun and be able to sleep in a little.
Make sure that the tent you use either has a footprint/groundsheet or that you use a footprint with it to avoid extra moisture getting in.
4. Sleep on a raised bed.
You aren’t stuck sleeping on the ground when you’re camping in a tent. Feeling a rock in your back in the middle of the night is very unpleasant and we recommend upgrading where you sleep. Camping cots and air mattresses are good options to get you off the ground.
5. Stay warm in a cozy sleeping bag.
Check the forecasted temperatures before your trip. Pay attention to what the lowest temperatures will be and make sure that your sleeping bag is rated appropriately. It’s a good idea to bring extra blankets to put on top of your sleeping bag that you can take off if you get too warm. If the weather is going to be significantly cold, make sure to get a sleeping bag that is rated for cold weather.
6. Don’t skimp on a camping pillow.
We had some thin, useless pillows that we used for camping for a long time. You don’t want to take the nice ones you use at home because they can get ruined. We’ve found that it’s worth it to get some decent designated camp pillows that actually offer support.
If you are replacing the pillows you use at home, it’s a good idea to save your old ones and turn them into your camping pillows. Don’t forget pillowcases too to protect them from your grimy camp hair.
7. Use a hot water bottle in your sleeping bag.
You can fill up a hot water bottle before you head to your tent for the night and put it inside of your sleeping bag. We like to do this and put them by our feet to keep us toasty.
Likewise, you can use a portable heater in your tent if it’s really cold. Just make sure to be very cautious and read all of the safety instructions. Tent material can be very flammable and heat sources can be dangerous.
Eating at Camp
8. Bring the right foods.
A lot of us default to packing up a bunch of junk food when going camping. It’s totally fine to bring your favorite snacks and goodies. However, you should bring healthy foods too.
In order to stay comfortable camping, you need to fuel your body correctly. Bring along healthy foods and snacks that won’t make you feel like garbage.
9. Bring a meal plan.
You don’t want to be stuck in camp trying to piece together the weird stuff you shoved in your cooler the morning you left home. Making a meal plan ahead of time and grabbing the right foods will make cooking and eating way more convenient.
10. Put together an organized campfire cooking kit.
We made a whole post on what you should bring for campfire cooking. Making sure that you have organized cooking supplies will make cooking less complicated. When you are putting your meal plan together, make a list of cooking supplies you will need and pack them neatly. Make sure you don’t forget cleaning supplies, cutlery, and dishware.
11. Pack enough water.
If the site you are camping at has drinking water, you don’t have to stress about bringing your own. However, if the water sources isn’t right in your camp, you will want to have containers around so you have easy access. We love using collapsible jugs like these on our trips.
Make sure that you plan enough water and containers for things besides drinking. We always make sure to have enough for the dog’s water, for cooking, for hand washing, and for drinking water. Be sure to factor in any equipment that will require extra water like portable showers, toilets, etc.
Hygiene While Camping
12. Invest in a camping shower.
Did you know that they make portable showers you can take camping? This is one of our favorite camping inventions to date. They make a wide variety of camp showers from practical shower bags to propane powered water heaters with shower attachments. You don’t have to get through your trip feeling dirty.
13. Bring enough clean clothes.
While packing light is a good skill, make sure you bring enough clean clothes to wear. A fresh pair of underwear and a clean shirt can go a long way when you’re roughing it. If you don’t want to pack a bunch of clothes, you can check out these portable clothes washers that allow you to do your laundry while you camp. We haven’t tried this out yet but have friends that swear by them.
14. Use a portable toilet.
There are few times where you feel more vulnerable than when you have to go #2 outside. Bring along a portable toilet to go to the bathroom comfortably when you don’t have access to restrooms.
15. Pack hygienic supplies.
Some basic hygiene supplies that we always bring are unscented soap, toothbrush and toothpaste, unscented deodorant, wet wipes, and hand sanitizer. Washcloths, towels, and paper towels are useful for cleaning too. Make sure you pack enough things to help you feel clean and comfy.
Camping First Aid and Safety
16. Have a first aid kit on hand.
You’ll want a way to take care of any injuries you might get while camping. Even the smallest cut can make you uncomfortable. Pack your own first aid supplies or purchase a comprehensive kit with everything you might need.
17. Keep bugs and insects at bay.
Bugs and mosquitos are probably the biggest camping annoyances. Bring some deterrents to keep the peace at your campsite. Bug spray, essential oils, candles, lanterns and other insect repellents can help tremendously. Using unscented products and keeping your campsite clean can help too.
18. Bring a light source.
You don’t want to be stumbling around in the dark to use the bathroom or grab something you need outside of your tent. Not only can that be dangerous, it’s really inconvenient. We bring an assortment of flashlights, headlamps, and lanterns to make sure we can see when it’s dark out.
19. Wear layers.
When you are at the mercy of Mother Nature, you want to be able to adapt. Wearing lighter layers of clothing will keep you comfortable in the cold and the heat. Add layers for warmth and remove them to cool down. It’s recommended to wear three layers: the base, the insulator, and a shell. This video provides a good explanation on what you should bring.
20. Pack according to the forecast.
Just because it has been warm around town doesn’t mean that it will be warm when you go camping. If you are heading to the mountains or by the water, it could be significantly colder. Check the forecast for the location you are camping at and pack clothes accordingly. We always bring a few lighter and warmer items than we think we will need just to be prepared.
Relaxing While You Camp
21. Get warm by the campfire.
Getting cozy by the campfire is pretty much half of the camping experience. Get a fire going early in the morning to avoid freezing while you wait for your coffee to brew. It’s the first thing we do each morning for comfort.
22. Bring a hammock.
We love lounging in our hammock while camping. You can even sleep in one if you want to. We like the hammocks that come with stands so that you don’t even have to set it up.
23. Use comfortable camping chairs
Don’t skimp on tiny camp chairs that might rip or cut off the circulation in your legs. You can find camp chairs that are padded, oversized, and even ones that recline. Get one that you’ll be comfortable while you sit by the fire and chat with your fellow campers.
Tips for Comfortable Camping
We hope you can take some of these tips and make your next trip more comfortable. With all of the great camping gear available nowadays, it doesn’t make sense to be uncomfortable in the outdoors. Let us know what your favorite camping comfort is!