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Travel // Camping With A Baby

Who doesn’t love a good camping trip? My husband and I met at a campsite at Leeds Festival back in 2010 and that was the beginning of our adventures camping around the UK and Europe. There’s nothing we enjoy more than packing up the car with our tent, road bikes, camping stove and our lust for the great outdoors.





I’m back to work full time after my maternity leave and am counting down the days until my first stretch of annual leave in August. We are really looking forward to getting back on the road and taking Dexter with us for the first time. We’ve decided to do a staycation this year instead of our usual annual jaunt to France. We are seasoned travellers but it will be a little different taking a baby along with us. For me, planning and preparation will be key. Here are some of the things I’ll be doing to plan for the perfect trip camping with a baby.

  1. Planning our route carefully.

Before now, my husband and I would fill up the car with our necessities (often including a 24 pack of beer) and just drive, going wherever the wind carried us. With a baby you need to be a little more pragmatic. I will be planning the route carefully, making sure there are plenty of places to make pit stops and looking for a destination that has a local hospital incase anything goes awry.

  1. Packing for every eventuality.

You simply cannot rely on the British weather, even in the month of August so I will be packing for every weather scenario. Luckily we have a fantastic Antipodes Merino sleep sack which keeps baby cool in the heat and warm in the colder weather, but I’ll also be packing plenty of vests, t-shirts and long sleeved tops for Dex so we can layer him up. I’ll also be making sure I pack all of his favourite teddies so we don’t accidentally leave behind the one he’s suddenly decided he absolutely needs to be able to go to sleep.

  1. Investing in a decent tent.

My husband and I made do with a cheap tent we bought many years ago before our last jaunt to Leeds festival. It has served us well, but with Dexter now in our lives, it’s time for a bigger and comfier tent. Halfords have got a fantastic range  of tents, from the very small, to the very, very large 12 man tent.

  1. Planning for simple meals.

Luckily we have followed baby-led weaning with Dex so we don’t have to worry about packing lots of pouches and jars when we go camping- he will eat whatever we are having, but having a baby means you want to make things as simple as possible. We will plan to eat easy meals like the one pot camping meals listed here.

  1. Making sure the car seat is properly fitted.

Might sound like an obvious one, but if we are going to be doing long distances in the car, I’ll make sure I get the car seat checked over by a professional before setting off. Baby’s safety in the car is my number one priority.

  1. Having a test run of packing the car.

I find it very easy to get carried away with packing far too much stuff. I’ll be having a dry run of packing the car with all of our belongings to make sure it fits in our tiny Volkswagen Fox. If it doesn’t, then I can make adjustments accordingly instead of stressing about it the day we are planning to leave.

Halfords have come to our rescue and have released a camping guide to help us plan for those amazing family staycations. With my tips for camping with a baby and their fantastic guide you should be all set for a perfect staycation break in the UK!

Have you got any top tips for camping with a baby/toddler? Perhaps you went last summer or have plans to go this summer? Let me know your top tip in the comments below.

 




Disclaimer: This is a collaborative post.

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57 Comments

  • Reply kris

    I’d love to take the boys camping although I think I would wait till they are both a bit older. What a great experience it will be for Dex, how lucky is he that his mummy has throught of everything. I highly recommend toys for the car to keep him entertained and lots of snacks. You’ll all have a great time im sure.
    kris recently posted…*GIVEAWAY* Oyster eye brightening serum!My Profile

    8th June 2017 at 9:05 am
    • Reply mummytodex

      Toys in the car is a must! He has a little book that I clip to his car seat for the commute to work each morning. He loves that and looking out of the window.

      8th June 2017 at 12:05 pm
  • Reply Sarah Howe

    Love your pictures!! I have never dared camp but I think my eldest would love it. I think packing for every scenario is the best tip 🙂 xx

    8th June 2017 at 9:14 am
    • Reply mummytodex

      I bet she would love it too! The great thing about camping is that you have the car so can pack way more stuff than when you are travelling by plane.

      8th June 2017 at 12:04 pm
  • Reply Molly

    Some fantastic tips here. Camping is so much fun, if you’re properly prepared!

    8th June 2017 at 10:17 am
    • Reply mummytodex

      Preparation is definitely key!

      8th June 2017 at 12:03 pm
  • Reply Sian QuiteFranklySheSaid

    I’ve never been camping with my children – in fact I’ve only ever camped at festivals! These are really good tips, thank you x

    8th June 2017 at 10:22 am
    • Reply mummytodex

      It doesn’t get much worse than camping at festivals! At least when you are camping in real life the car isn’t too far away and you can always drive to find some luxury if needed.

      8th June 2017 at 12:03 pm
  • Reply A Mum Reviews

    Being near a hospital is a really good point and something I would always consider when planning where to go. Great tips!

    8th June 2017 at 10:30 am
    • Reply mummytodex

      It’s something I never would have thought of before kids but I’ll definitely be making sure I know where the nearest one is this time.

      8th June 2017 at 12:02 pm
  • Reply OddHogg

    We are keen to go camping this year and are hoping we might manage a weekend. I am a serial over packer though, and I fear I might go overboard when I starting trying to cover all eventualities with piglet. So a test run of packing the car is a great tip!
    OddHogg recently posted…5 Personalised Fathers Day Gift Ideas with GiftsOnline4UMy Profile

    8th June 2017 at 12:30 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Ooh can’t wait to hear about your trip!

      8th June 2017 at 9:12 pm
  • Reply nicola

    HALFORDS DO ORLA KIELY TENTS! I would never have considered camping as I have some kind of psychological issue where I need a wee everytime I am not near a toilet! But if I can have an Orla Kiely tent I will contemplate buying a she wee and getting over my camping phobia! We only live an hour from the lakes, so it is silly of me really!
    nicola recently posted…Staying Safe While Travelling The WorldMy Profile

    8th June 2017 at 12:39 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Tell me more about this She Wee please?! I had no idea they did Orla Kiely tents!! Get down to Halfords now! You need one in your garden.

      8th June 2017 at 9:12 pm
  • Reply Karen Mansfield

    Fantastic blog I’m going to go along to Halfords and look at their range of tents and camping equipment will be wonderful to get everything in the one place.

    8th June 2017 at 1:20 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      I love how Halfords do so much under one roof. They fit car seats too which is great for me because I haven’t got a blummin’ clue!

      8th June 2017 at 9:11 pm
  • Reply Kazzyt

    You seem to have covered everything , I think showerproof clothing is essential too just in case the British summer decides to be typically British. It’s good that your little boy eats the same food as you so you will have extra space for other things

    8th June 2017 at 4:45 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Definitely! DryKids do some fab waterproofs for littles.

      8th June 2017 at 9:10 pm
  • Reply Sophie Mei Lan

    We love glamping, not tried camping yet with the kids but it’s on the list x

    8th June 2017 at 8:17 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Ooh I’ve never been glamping!

      8th June 2017 at 9:10 pm
  • Reply Lucy | Real Mum Reviews

    We’ve never been camping with the kids although I’m sure Erin would love it. Some great tips here!
    Lucy | Real Mum Reviews recently posted…Keep them in, Let them win??My Profile

    8th June 2017 at 8:18 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Thanks Lucy. Yeah I think camping is really exciting to kids when they’re about Erin’s age!

      8th June 2017 at 9:09 pm
  • Reply Jo - Not A Frumpy Mum

    I really fancy taking our little boys camping, but my husband is taking some persuading. I think they’d love it! xx

    8th June 2017 at 8:32 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Haha is your husband not the camping sort? Think you either love it or hate it!

      8th June 2017 at 9:09 pm
  • Reply The Pramshed

    There are so many useful tips here, and I love doing a practise run of the car. That will take away so much of the stress of can you fit it all in. Claire x

    8th June 2017 at 9:10 pm
  • Reply Hayley - Devon Mama

    Checking the packing before you head off is definitely a good plan. We’ve had many a trip start stressfully because were trying to jam half of our house into the car! Enjoy your summer adventures, we’re big camping fans and I can’t wait to do it as a family!
    Hayley – Devon Mama recently posted…GIVEAWAY & Review: MyHummy White Noise ToysMy Profile

    8th June 2017 at 9:30 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Just hopefully will have the time to do it. When I was on maternity I had all the time in the world to pack and repack for Majorca!

      10th June 2017 at 7:36 am
  • Reply Clare aka Emmy's Mummy

    I was never brave enough to try when the kids were babies however we now love a good camping trip.

    We’ve another planned for Auguset and the kids just can’t wait.
    Clare aka Emmy’s Mummy recently posted…A family stay at Novotel Blackfriars – ReviewMy Profile

    9th June 2017 at 9:42 am
    • Reply mummytodex

      Ooh I hope you have a lovely time! We are going in August too.

      10th June 2017 at 7:35 am
  • Reply Donna

    This is such great advice – I wouldn’t know where to start with camping with a baby so this is amazing x
    Donna recently posted…Gin, One Love Manchester and Movies on Netflix #LittleLovesMy Profile

    9th June 2017 at 12:06 pm
  • Reply Jade Ring - Raising the Rings

    I so want to take our two camping but I know they’ll just be nightmares. I think we’re going to wait until they’re just that little bit older so that they can really get into the spirit of it! xx

    9th June 2017 at 9:18 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      I can imagine it would be so difficult with two! Plus you have the house move to worry about at the moment. Hope it goes smoothly for you.

      10th June 2017 at 7:34 am
  • Reply Helpful Mum

    This is a great post. We really enjoy camping and are all off to a family festival in July. I need to make sure we don’t pack too much!

    10th June 2017 at 11:17 am
    • Reply mummytodex

      That sounds amazing, hope you have a lovely time.

      13th June 2017 at 10:03 am
  • Reply David - Potty Adventures

    Great post and advice. It’s always great to meet other campers and outdoor loving people (particularly parents). We spend the vast majority of our free time in the great outdoors and our kids absolutely love it.

    10th June 2017 at 2:12 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Isn’t it just? I think it’s important to raise children to love the great outdoors.

      13th June 2017 at 10:02 am
  • Reply Michelle Twin Mum

    I think you are very very brave. I’ve never camped since I was a kid, let alone with a babe! Mich x
    Michelle Twin Mum recently posted…Seeing my Feisty Girl through your Eyes #R2BCMy Profile

    10th June 2017 at 2:14 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Ooh don’t say that! I’m sure it will be fun for us. If not, I know not to ever go again!!

      13th June 2017 at 10:01 am
  • Reply Claire @ The ladybirds adventures

    We love camping too. We’re undecided if we’ll go this year though as our youngest is 12 months and a terrible sleeper. I keep seeing tent photos on instagram and getting tempted though!
    Claire @ The ladybirds adventures recently posted…jelly, surprise gifts and nursery #littlelovesMy Profile

    10th June 2017 at 7:10 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Ah, camping would be no fun if baby isn’t going to sleep. Hopefully next year!

      13th June 2017 at 10:00 am
  • Reply Laura - Dear Bear and Beany

    Great tips! We’re going on our first family camping trip in a few weeks, eek! Fingers crossed for dry weather and I don’t forget anything. Thank you for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

    10th June 2017 at 7:43 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Hope you have an awesome time!

      13th June 2017 at 10:00 am
  • Reply Sinead (shinnersandthebrood.com)

    Fantastic tips here. Really looking forward to camping with the little ones when they are a bit older. Kids get such a kick out of it.

    10th June 2017 at 11:12 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      They love it don’t they?! I think it’s something different than their usual routine which we do everyday from birth. I always wanted to camp in the garden when I was younger.

      13th June 2017 at 9:59 am
  • Reply Emma T

    Wow, you get all camping and baby stuff in a small car like that?! There’s only 2 of us go camping, and we’ve got a huge Volvo and it’s rammed. We do go all out though and don’t travel light.

    11th June 2017 at 8:17 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Haha! To be fair, the Volkswagen Fox is a lot more spacious than its replacement the up! or its predecessor the Lupo. That’s basically why I bought it. Don’t get me wrong, it is always super rammed with our stuff, although it’s easier now Dex is a bit older.

      13th June 2017 at 9:58 am
  • Reply five little doves

    Great advice! I used to love camping, we used to take my eldest when he was small, but with four children now, three of whom are still so young, I’m not sure I could handle it! My husband likes his luxuries a little too much, I blame him! Thank you for joining us at #sharingthebloglove
    five little doves recently posted…It’s okay to be afraid….My Profile

    12th June 2017 at 9:53 am
    • Reply mummytodex

      I’m not sure I could cope with taking four kids ANYWHERE! You are superwoman, seriously!

      13th June 2017 at 9:54 am
  • Reply Emma

    Oh I love the sound of your trips and your staycations. Sounds like lots of fun. I am thinking that we might plan a bit of a camping trip and use it as an opportunity to visit family and friends back home. This post has really made me want to pack my slab of beer and get camping now! Great tips too. 🙂

    12th June 2017 at 10:55 am
    • Reply mummytodex

      Camping is always so much more fun with a pack of beer, although I don’t drink now *sob*

      13th June 2017 at 9:54 am
  • Reply Cheryl @ Tea or Wine

    This sounds great. I’ve never taken my kids camping, but it’s something I’d love to do as I think they’d find it so much fun. Not sure my husband would though!! Some great tips here. Thanks for linking up with #KCACOLS, hope to see you again next time.
    Cheryl @ Tea or Wine recently posted…5 Ways My Kids Have it Better Than MeMy Profile

    12th June 2017 at 7:37 pm
    • Reply mummytodex

      Kids seem to love the camping experience!

      13th June 2017 at 9:53 am
  • Reply Mudpie Fridays

    We have never been camping with the boys and our eldest turns five next week!! That’s partly because my husband refuses to do it. So for the first weekend if Summer holidays I am taking the eldest to a festival with a friend and her eldest!! So these tips will be really useful. Although thankfully she knows what she’s doing!! Xx
    Mudpie Fridays recently posted…Our Family Tree Papercut from Twenty FingersMy Profile

    15th June 2017 at 8:41 am
  • Reply Ali Duke

    Camping is not my thing lol. When the kids were little we did breaks to Haven and things like that. It is still surprising how much you have pack for a few days away though.
    #KCACOLS

    21st June 2017 at 2:03 pm
  • Reply Madeline (This Glorious Life)

    You sound like you’ve thought of everything! Some fab tips here for planning a camping trip with a little one. Hope you have a great time when you go! x #KCACOLS
    Madeline (This Glorious Life) recently posted…A weekend away without the children – where to go and what to doMy Profile

    28th June 2017 at 6:34 pm
  • Reply Maria

    We’ve never been camping – alone or with the boys but I think they would love it. Some fab tips here, you sound very organised so I’m sure your trip will go well! #KCACOLS
    Maria recently posted…We’re Going On A Bear Hunt With Ready Brek + giveaway!My Profile

    29th June 2017 at 10:51 pm
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