If you’ve never camped before, it might sound like a nightmare scenario at first – camping with kids is ten times harder than camping without them - but after reading our five reasons why it’s a great family activity, you’ll be rushing off to check out the details of your nearest campsite.
Camping builds confidence
Camping efficiently and comfortably does take skill, and the more you do it, the easier it gets. By teaching your kids how to camp, you’ll equip them with a skill that could come in handy later in life. Camping is a chance to step out of your comfort zone – both for parents and kids - and try new things. Camping is also great way to get outdoors and get active. There are many family-friendly campsites that offer a host of outdoor activities. Taking part in these, as a family or with friends they make at the campsite, will give your kids the confidence they need to face new environments in other areas of their life.
Unplug and reconnect
Research estimates that children between 8 and 18 spend close to 8 hours a day in front of a TV, computer or phone screen! Camping is the perfect way to “unplug” your kids and connect them to a world beyond electronics. Interacting face to face allows you to build stronger relationships with your children and reconnect as a family, so insist on some tech-free time every day. For those kids, especially teenagers, for whom this idea may seem worse than death, many modern campsites will have access to Wi-Fi, so they can still use their electronic devices every now and then.
Appreciate the small things
It’s easy to take things like running water, flushing loos and light at the flick of a switch for granted at home, but after a long day spent outdoors, there’s nothing quite so wonderful as a campfire, a hot meal, even if it is made in a single pot, and a dry place to sleep. Camping is also a great way to get closer to nature. Kids will love the chance to discover new surroundings and can spend hours investigating rock pools or building a shelter out of branches. It will also give you a chance to teach them basic survival skills and a respect for nature.
Find new friends
It never fails – you’re still struggling to get the last tent-pegs put in the ground, but the kids will have found new friends within minutes of setting up camp. Chances are there are other families camping nearby and the kids have the chance to explore together. There is something about camping that fosters a rare sense of camaraderie among travellers, and many families return year after year to the same campsite and continue friendships that they have made the summer before.
Make lifelong memories
It’s easy to get stuck in a rut, but there’s nothing quite like a family camping trip to shake things up, trigger new conversations, and create wonderful lifelong memories. It adds an element of adventure to life, and kids thrive on that, as do adults (even though we often forget it). Kids won’t ever remember their best day of watching a video or TV, but they will remember setting up a tent, getting lost in the woods with Dad, or helping to kindle the campfire.
As well as all these great reasons to take your kids camping, camping also has another benefit – it doesn’t have to break the bank. When you first decide to go camping, you will have to invest in some basic items like a family tent and equipment, but these items can last for many years and will work out considerably cheaper than airfares and stays in hotels or resorts. You can find family tents and camping equipment at great prices at Anaconda. So, get set for a great adventure this summer with a family camping trip and start building those fantastic memories.