Americans love to take camping trips. In 2013, more than 40 million people who were over six years old took at least one camping trip. That is nearly 14% of the population. In 2010, there were 515 million camping trips taken around the United States. Most people who go camping say they plan to do it again. Nearly 99% of campers say they are “very likely” or “likely” to do it again. One reason these tips are so popular is that they are very economical ways to plan fun, family vacations.
5 Tips to Make the Most of Your Camping, Family Vacations:
- Try a practice run. If you have small children who have never gone camping, pitch your tent in your back yard and try a trial run. If you live in a city and do not have a yard, try to put up your tent in your living room. However you plan it, spend a weekend with your kids doing a dry run of your real camping trip. This can be a good way to ease your kids into the camping experience. When you are having your trial, make your kids turn off their mobile devices.
- Decide what kind of accommodations you want. Tent camping is the most popular way to go but it is not the only option you have available to you and and your family. A lot of people like to rent an RV. Others prefer to take their family vacations by taking a cabin camping trip. Family cabin camping can offer a lot of the comforts of home. Cabin rentals can be really great for families traveling with smaller children. Make sure you know what the cooking, heating and cooling situation is when you rent a cabin. Having a full kitchen can be a real benefit to renting a cabin over staying in a tent.
- Decide what activities your family will want to do. Nearly 87% of all campers say they like to do a variety of things when they are taking their camping trips. Your family vacations should include the different things your family enjoys doing. Make sure the campgrounds offer those activities. All parks will have great options for hiking but you should ask about other activities. Talk to your family about what they are going to want to do on vacation. You should be able to find a park that has the activities your family enjoys.
- Plan for bad weather. No matter how much time you spend looking at weather patterns and planning your trip for the right time, it may rain during any of your family vacations. Be prepared. Bring things your family can do together. Head over to your local dollar store and find some games. Talk to the staff at the park. There may be fun indoor things to do and see in the area of the park. There might be a great museum or other attraction. Some families make up their own “family trivial pursuit”game where the family members quiz each other to see who knows everyone the best. This can be time to have fun together.
- Plan your meals in advance. Just because you are camping on your family vacations does not mean your meals have to be boring. Empty Tic Tac containers are fantastic for bringing spices with you. Prepare some of your food before you go. You can cut your veggies and precook potatoes. Cook the potatoes part way and then wrap them in foil and place in your camp fire.
Camping trips are great family vacations for a number of reasons. They are a lot cheaper than staying in a hotel or resort. You can find fun family friendly things to do that will bring you all closer to each other. Whether you spend the entire time on a lake swimming or fishing or if you just hike around a national park looking at birds and plants, you can have a great time with your family. Another thing you are doing is instilling positive habits in your kids. Hiking and swimming are great ways to get exercise and introduce these good habits in kids when they are young.