Tips for Backyard Camping with Kids!

Camping in your own backyard can be so much fun for your family!  To make sure it’s a great time, here are some Tips for Backyard Camping with Kids!

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Our family loves to camp, in fact camping is the way we holiday over the summer months.  It’s such a great way to spend quality time as a family, and not only that, it is a really affordable holiday.  If time permitted we would camp every weekend of the summer, but that’s not always possible, so the next best thing is camping out in the backyard!  Kids love camping in the backyard…it’s endless hours of fun from set up to sun down!

Here are some tips so you can have a great time camping out with your kids!

Tips for Backyard Camping with Kids {A Pretty Life}

Get the kids involved in the set up!

When kids are involved in the planning and set up of any activity, the more likely it is that they will enjoy it!  If they’re old enough they can set up the tent (woohoo!), then fill it up with all of their blankets, pillows and comfort items.  Including the dog.

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Make it comfortable!

Set up air mattresses, have sleeping bags, pillows and plenty of extra blankets available in case it is cold at night!  The biggest thing that will ruin any camping trip is an uncomfortable tent and sleeping situation.  We have learned this the hard way over the years!  The biggest tip I can share about sleeping in a tent, is to make sure you roll out a thick blanket underneath the air mattresses (so between the ground and the mattress), that way no one will get cold from the air coming up from the ground.  I remember one night camping with friends, and my daughter and I were on an air mattress directly on the tent floor…oh my word.  We have never had a more uncomfortable and cold night camping EVER.  Ever.  I had to get up in the middle of the night and lay out every towel and piece of clothing I could find…good times.

Tips for Backyard Camping with Kids {A Pretty Life}

Make sure the kids have access to good night lighting!

I think the biggest fear with any kind of camping with kids, is the fear of the dark.  To combat this, our kids have the Energizer® Vision HD Headlights that I bought at Walmart.  These are great because the adjustable head bands fit comfortably, and they have 3 light settings.  Headlamps are perfect for late night reading and trips to the bathroom!  I also got them an Energizer Portable Lantern to have set up inside the tent for comfort…and I love that it won’t get hot.

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Tips for Backyard Camping with Kids {A Pretty Life}

Do the things you would do if you were in a campground, like having a campfire!

It almost seems impossible not to have a campfire if you’re going to be spending the night in a tent, even if it is in your backyard.  Break out those marshmallows and get roasting!  You can even make dinner over the fire…fire roasted hot dogs are the best!  When you think about it, backyard camping is a lot easier because you’ve got the kitchen right at your fingertips, plus you don’t have to worry about coolers and ice!

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Have fun!

Most importantly have fun!  Don’t stress about the details because really, if you forget something you can just go get it.  The whole point is to embrace summer holidays and have fun!

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Happy camping!


Disclosure:  Thank you to Energizer Canada for sponsoring this post.  As always all thoughts, text, and opinions are my own.  We enjoy a good campout!  🙂

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  1. I can’t wait to backyard camp with my littles, hopefully the weather finally cooperates. Those head lamps are genius and a thick mattress for the floor, awesome tip, thanks!

  2. Great post! So much fun! 😀
    I would buy a bigger tent and an air mattress, along with some fruit and s’mores, and a new flashlight that we can use to tell scary stories (My boys are 6 and 11) 😀
    Thanks for the chance!!

  3. On our recent camping trip I stopped mid-trip, went to Walmart and bought lanterns, batteries, battery-operated fans, a hammock and bug spray! All great investments that I would do over again in a second.

  4. I would buy family games and toys that we could play together and maximize quality time together plus s’more!

  5. We always camped when I was a kiddo and now my 4 year old grandson wants to backyard camp!
    Soooo….. air mattress, comfy outdoor chair for him and some great flashlights. I have always loved flashlights HA!!

  6. I’d buy a tent, lanterns, and great snack food like chips, chocolate, marshmallows, cookies, fresh fruit, and an assortment of drinks

  7. I would buy some high air mattresses, ingredients for Smores and Hobo Dinners and prizes for games we would play.

  8. If I were hosting a backyard campout; I’d pick up a six person tent, two air mattresses, a cooler, a Frisbee, and enough snacks to set eyes a bulging!!

  9. I think I would like to have a gas fire-pit, something portable to take between our house and our RV. Oh and some really awesome lighting!!

  10. I grew up backyard camping and have some great memories of it. My kids have never done it, mostly because we camp so much not in our backyard.
    If I was to win I would buy a tent and sleeping bags. Fingers crossed because they will love it.

  11. I’d get the nicest air mattress I could find. I agree – nothing ruins camping more than a bad sleep.

  12. Love camping , tent and the great fresh air , have gone before with just tent even , was a little lumpy but we survived ,lol

  13. We have a very old camper (70’s) and we only get to go usually once a year (this year we can’t due to my two surgeries and my husbands new job!!) We need a mat for outside the door (those really big ones). We need a folding table to hold all the electrical stuff in the need tent!!! (like the toaster and coffee maker LOL). We need some sturdy folding chairs (ones that have the little table on the arms, not those cheap ones that fold up and you can carry over your arm, we’ve broken every one of those every year we bought them) We also need a better plug in hamper to keep food cold for the week we go.

  14. We tent every summer at least once, so we have the essentials. However I will need a proper fire bowl for the marshmallow roast.

  15. Love spending quality time camping with the family… No electronics just memory making time ?. This would buy us some gear for sure ?…

  16. I would buy a propane Fri pit because I am allergic to wood fire smoke but still want the open fire experience.

  17. a new tent, air mattresses and sleeping bags along with some outdoor games like ring toss, slip n slide, bowling

  18. I need a new tent but also need some sleeping bags and a couple good flashlights, then I think I’m ready, thanks for the giveaway

  19. I would get a large tent for my large family! Also some new sleeping bags and an air mattress. Thank you for the giveaway!

  20. We are woefully under prepared for camping. We have a small tent and one sleeping bag. I would have to get everything! I always say camping is staying at a hotel that doesn’t have room service. ?

  21. Two mandatory items – an air mattress for Mom and a new sleeping bag for my 12 year old son….Of course he recommended that we purchase an ample supple of Deep Woods Bug Spray. ZAP

  22. A telescope! nothing like early exposure to the stars and constellations for my little niece and nephew

  23. Cooking gear! Stove or portable BBQ for sure and lots and lots of s’mores supplies! Thanks for the terrific contest!

  24. I would love a new tent , some sleeping bags and a really good flash light ! Then some snacks and fun treats like glow sticks !

  25. I’d definitely buy a backyard fire pit for roasting marshmallows and hot dogs! Also, I’d buy raccoon repellant – is that a thing? We have some serious raccoons in our backyard that I’d be terrified to camp with!

  26. I think the first thing I would buy is a tent to campout in the backyard, and some marshmallows, you cannot camp out without marshmallows.

  27. After spending this past weekend camping, I really want to get a fire pit for our backyard so that we can have more time around a campfire… The conversations with kids and friends cannot be beat!

  28. Oh we love to camp in our own backyard during summer break!
    Walmart would be our stop for a new lantern and snacks! 😉

  29. I would probably use to to buy all the food for a backyard camp out! These things never come cheap and kids eat LOTS! They can sleep under the stars like we did and get eaten by mosquitoes!

  30. I would buy a tent, and air mattress, some weiner forks, hotdogs and marshmallows, chocolate, and graham crackers. I would also buy a flashlight and some Energizer batteries.

  31. A new air mattress makes the top of the list!! Our popped this summer and we need to replace it sooner than later.

  32. A nice foam roll up mattress and some good sleeping bags! It gets super chilly here at night so a blanket just wouldn’t cut it and we definitely dont want cold kids

  33. I’d buy my youngest a sleeping bag as his older two brothers have one each (my MIL for Christmas would always buy them something camping related, sadly she is no longer with us) and I would purchase a camp stove so I could cook my cuties an awesome breakfast in the morning.
    Some much needed camping mats would be great as well! ?

  34. I’d buy a bigger tent , a bigger air mattress, and maybe a couple of those headlamps your kids are wearing in the photo (my boys would love those:)

  35. I a good pump to blow up our air mattress would be the first thing I would buy and a couple of outdoor games for the kids to play. Camping has always been our family favorite getaway. So much fun!

  36. I would have to purchase a new tent since my son has mine. LOL Then I would have to purchase the makings for smores and hotdogs.

  37. I’ve always dreamed of backyard camping! Our current backyard doesn’t permit us to do this, but I’m hoping this is something we can do after we move to NC.

  38. Backyard camping is the best. especially when you have kids and you want to see how they react to the outdoors. Heck if you want to go out and camp but you can’t for whatever reason. The backyard is the best place.
    If only for the best reason, you have your own toilet to use.

    Backyard camping is also good for those time that you have a new tent and you want to test everything out. Going on a test run in the back yard is perfect.