Camping Trip Essential Checklist

I’ve been camping for my entire life!

When I was 18 I took my husband camping to find that he had no idea how to plan a successful camping trip. The only time he had actually been camping was with his grandparents at their trailer.

But I’ve camped a lot growing up, from roughing it in the middle of no where, to staying in a fancy trailer park. Not only do I know how to put up a tent all by myself, but I can actually fit in back in the bag no problem πŸ˜‰

Yes, camping is my jam! It’s the one thing I look forward to doing all summer! It’s necessary for my mental health!

But camping is a bit of work. You need to know what to bring, or you could find yourself driving into the nearest town every time you realize you don’t have anywhere to sleep, or you forgot a first-aid kit.

And truthfully, I’ve had my own camping mishaps over the years. One year we forgot to bring blankets, in September! Another year my daughter got a fishing hook in the back of neck and we spent the night in the closest ER. And just last year I booked a trailer online, only to learn that it was a scam the day we arrived – with no tent or air mattress. These things happen! But you’re likely to have an easier time if you plan ahead.

So, whenever I go camping I create a list of all the things I know we’ll need. And I follow that list, because if I don’t I risk forgetting the blankets again.

Camping Trip Essential Checklist

Wondering what to bring on your next camping trip? Here’s the list I use:

Camping Checklist

Personal Hygiene

  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Face wash and wash clothes
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • First aid kit with band-aids, tweezers, eye drops, hydrogen peroxide, Tylenol and allergy pills
  • Nail clippers
  • Razors
  • Towels (one for swimming, and one for bathing)
  • Deodorant
  • Hairbrush
  • Feminine products
  • Toilet paper and tissues
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Chapstick
  • Bug spray
  • Sunscreen and sunburn lotion
  • My prescription pills


  • Plates, bowls and mugs
  • Eating utensils: forks, spoons, butter knives and steak knife
  • Cooking utensils: spatula, tongs and marshmallow sticks
  • Propane grill and fire-top grill
  • Pot
  • Cooler
  • Matches and lighters
  • Tin foil
  • Tablecloth
  • Paper towel
  • Dish towels
  • Bucket (for washing dishes)
  • Dish soap
  • Scrub pad
  • Scissors
  • Dog dishes


  • Tent and pegs
  • Folding lawn chairs
  • Bedding: sleeping bags, pillows, blankets and sheets
  • Air mattress and pump
  • Radio
  • Extension chord
  • Flashlights
  • Garbage bags
  • Tarp
  • Rope
  • Hatchet
  • Dust pan and brush
  • Extra batteries
  • Umbrella
  • Dog bed,Β leash andΒ bags


  • Bathing suit
  • Pajamas
  • Underwear
  • Socks
  • Sweater
  • Shorts
  • Long pants
  • T-shirts
  • Running shoes
  • Sandals
  • Hat
  • Sunglasses

Fun stuff

  • Magazines
  • Books
  • Pencil crayons and paper
  • Notepad and pen (journal!)
  • Inflatable pool toys
  • Sand toys
  • Deck of cards
  • Camera
    • Underwater camera for extra fun!

Think it’s too late to go camping? Here are 10 reasons to plan a last minute camping trip before end of summer!

What camping essentials do you pack?Lips Logo for Blog



    • Reply

      That’s a good one! I probably wouldn’t use it, but I know my husband has in the past.

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