Home

   Log in or Register
   
Insurance Quotes
forums Campsite Search Comp Directory tips virtual brochure Profile
Tent Reviews Competitions Caravans and Motorhomes For Sale Shopping Diary Contact Us

Message Forums

Welcome Guest Register Login Search The Forum Posts Since Last Visit
 Reception - All Forums
  Camping under canvas
Share Google Plus  Tweet This!  Share on Facebook  Printer Friendly Version Print
Subject Topic: Advice on camping with small kids
Jump To Page:  1  2 Post Reply Post New Topic
Message posted by Futtocks on 21/4/2014 at 10:56pm
View Futtocks's Profile View Profile  Quote Futtocks Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
Futtocks
Avatar
Standard Member
Standard Member

Outfit: Outwell Colossas

Location: Northern
Joined: 21/4/2014
Posts:   3
Site Reviews:   0
Gallery Images:   0
Hi there!
As a family we are quite new to camping so would like to pick your more experienced brains about taking along small children. We have somehow acquired several under the age of six and are wondering what your best tips and things to avoid are when taking them camping?
Thanks :)

Message posted by PolarBearGirl on 21/4/2014 at 11:11pm
View PolarBearGirl's Profile View Profile  Quote PolarBearGirl Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
PolarBearGirl
Avatar
Standard Member
Standard Member

Outfit: Outwell Vancouver Base Seconds 4.2

Location: Scotland
Joined: 14/5/2013
Posts:   7
Site Reviews:   1
Gallery Images:   0
Hi

I have one just 3 and one just 6 and we started camping last year, they love it! I don't have much advice - we just do pretty much as we do at home but it's more chilled for us as the kids tend to amuse themselves pottering about.

They have pj's and fleecy suits for sleeping (in bags) we take extra blankets but they don't seem to get too cold, wellies and crocs are useful, especially crocs if you don't want shoes inside the tent. I have a trip to B&M before we go and stock up on cereal bars and snacks to keep them going. Other than that - microfibre towels are good as we have four to hand out to dry - in fact a campsite with a washer and drier is great if it's more than a couple of days, and each of us have our own wash bag so it doesn't matter if they go with Mum or Dad to get showered. My littleist wasn't keen on showers so I wished I got him used to it before hand last time.

Have a great time and don't forget the wine/beer and cards for you in the evening once they're all out for the count!

Message posted by pingvin on 21/4/2014 at 11:32pm
View pingvin's Profile View Profile  Quote pingvin Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
pingvin
Avatar
Platinum Member
Platinum Member

Outfit: Karsten350 EasyCamp Tipi Grand Canyon Ind

Location: Denmark
Joined: 27/4/2011
Posts:   939
Site Reviews:   3
Tent Reviews:   7
Gallery Images:   3
I think the only real challenge is to find something to keep the kids amused while the parents erect the tent!

-------------
Proud owner of Karsten, Tipi, Belle, Giraffen, Hyacinth, Poppy, Apfel, and two nameless small Lidl-tents... no... I'm no addict... ;-)

Message posted by JAMMI on 21/4/2014 at 11:34pm
View JAMMI's Profile View Profile  Quote JAMMI Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
JAMMI
Avatar
Gold Member
Gold Member

Outfit: Cabanon Aruba Kyham Freelander

Location: Manchester
Joined: 15/9/2008
Posts:   275
Site Reviews:   6
Gallery Images:   3
You're brave!! I take the children in my family for an annual camping trip but I won't take them till they're 5.

I try to go to a site where there is something for them, this year we are going to a farm site that has a petting area.

Also try to have some games planned for playing in the tent. Our lot love Headbandz but yours might be too young for that. Its nice if everyone can join in with games.

Hope you have fun. Good luck

-------------
Jacqui
I just love it!

Message posted by LightFantastic on 22/4/2014 at 12:28am
View LightFantastic's Profile View Profile  Quote LightFantastic Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
LightFantastic
Silver Member
Silver Member

Outfit: Conway Crusader 2001 folding camper

Location: East Sussex
Joined: 23/3/2014
Posts:   198
Site Reviews:   0
Gallery Images:   3
First took our two boys camping in a TT when they were 4 and 2. They loved it but as pigvin said the nightmare was keeping them occupied whilst putting up/taking down the TT as it needed both of us most of the time. We had to resort to having them in the back of the car with a movie on each of their headrest whilst we put up/put down the TT as we couldn't have them running out unsupervised, especially the two year old.

A year later we changed to a FC which made life soooo much easier, as I could do pretty much all of it on my own while OH took boys off for a walk etc. As long as one of you is able to erect the tent mostly on their own whilst one looks after the kids that will make a big difference.

Camp sites with any sort of play area/playground are great! I was away recently for two nights with just me and the boys (now 6 and 4) and so they were able to go over to playground they had (which was within sight) whilst I set up the FC.

Crocs are fab! Great for taking them for showers in and keeping outdoor shoes out of the tent.

They sleep in their own, adult, 3 season sleeping bags which keep them warm enough, along with fleecy PJs. Even on the most recent trip where it was cold at nights they were warm enough and stayed in their bags, although when they were a bit smaller they sometimes wriggled out!

As others said, some games etc. are always a good idea. We take a few board/table top type games, outdoor things like footballs, swingball etc., and their bikes/scooters usually. Laptop/tablet etc. with a few movies loaded up on it for really wet days!

You'll quickly find what works, or doesn't work, for you and you'll fine-tune things each time you go.

Message posted by dmsplat on 22/4/2014 at 7:22am
View dmsplat's Profile View Profile  Quote dmsplat Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
dmsplat
Avatar
Platinum Member
Platinum Member

Outfit: Morning suit top hat and a monocle.

Location: North West
Joined: 19/1/2008
Posts:   1405
Site Reviews:   12
Tent Reviews:   3
Gallery Images:   0
I've been camping with my kids (now 5,7 & 8) since they were babies. My main tip is to mentally prepare yourself to throw a fixed bed time out of the window, especially when they're not used to camping.

You will wind yourself up and stress yourself out for literally hours trying to get them to settle. Once you accept that they will sleep when they're tired, your life will get far easier.

The fact that it won't be dark too early doesn't help, either - we had one midsummer trip to the top of Scotland where it didn't go dark at all, just a bit dusky and the kids literally collapsed into their beds at around midnight (closely followed by Mum & Dad!)

This took me ages to realise, but our holidays are better for it!

-------------


My name's Dave and I'm a tentaholic...

Message posted by dmsplat on 22/4/2014 at 7:35am
View dmsplat's Profile View Profile  Quote dmsplat Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
dmsplat
Avatar
Platinum Member
Platinum Member

Outfit: Morning suit top hat and a monocle.

Location: North West
Joined: 19/1/2008
Posts:   1405
Site Reviews:   12
Tent Reviews:   3
Gallery Images:   0
Other things aside from the sleep thing off the top of my head:

- battery powered fairy lights (eBay) are good
- we keep shoes in a trug
- self inflating mats are hard to puncture, and most can stand being jumped on
- bucket with a lid for nighttime toiletting
- everyone has their own clean clothes and dirty clothes bag (cheap holdall from IKEA)
- one person does the majority of the tent putting up. The other entertains.
- warm kids generally sleep well. Blanket on the floor, self inflating mat, warm sleeping bag, blanket over the top, warm PJs (vest, socks, PJs and onesie with a hood are what two of mine wear. The other one sleeps fine in her knickers...)
- always have a set of warm & dry clothes available

That's it for now - hope that helps!



-------------


My name's Dave and I'm a tentaholic...

Message posted by greenback on 22/4/2014 at 7:45am
View greenback's Profile View Profile  Quote greenback Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
greenback
Standard Member
Standard Member

Outfit: Outwell Magic

Location: Warwickshire
Joined: 18/4/2014
Posts:   15
Site Reviews:   3
Gallery Images:   0
We started camping last year with our two (1 and 4 at the time). Keeping the kids occupied whilst we put up and took down the tent was the main thing and our tent needs two adults to do some of it. Not sure we've cracked that one! Apart from the common sense things (e.g. plenty of blankets, clothes to suit all situations etc.) I have to say we didn't really do anything that specific apart from being very relaxed about bedtimes and bathing. Other than that, the children got into the swing of things and really enjoyed themselves.

Message posted by JoMarch on 22/4/2014 at 9:48am
View JoMarch's Profile View Profile  Quote JoMarch Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
JoMarch
Avatar
Gold Member
Gold Member

Outfit: Vango amazon

Location: Lancashire
Joined: 01/6/2012
Posts:   281
Site Reviews:   4
Tent Reviews:   1
Gallery Images:   0
Ditto keeping them occupied whilst putting the tent up. We give them food and they also have nintendo ds's. All the fresh air makes ours sleep really soundly. The other thing we've found is that fresh air gives them a huge appetite so we take/buy when there lots of things like bananas, malt loaf etc..

Oh and take LOTS of pictures, there's nothing like a photo of happy kids in a tent to bring a smile to your face on a miserable work day.

Message posted by jelboy53 on 22/4/2014 at 10:14am
View jelboy53's Profile View Profile  Quote jelboy53 Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
jelboy53
Avatar
Diamond Member
Diamond Member

Outfit: Monty 6Icarus 500 Halo 300

Location: Cumbernauld Scotland
Joined: 04/5/2003
Posts:   8139
Site Reviews:   5
Tent Reviews:   3
Gallery Images:   3
Other than what has been said I think a selection of games/toys for night time or wet days...and also wet weather gear....

Try not to worry too much about your neighbours on site....By that I mean if one or two of the kids start acting up/crying because of tiredness round about bed time....I personally have no problem with that having been a parent myself....As long as mum or dad is trying to shush said offender!!!

Relax and chill out and enjoy the holiday for what it is...basically you and the family in a field somewhere...With a day or two off out somewhere....

Jelboy.

-------------
Campers of the storm,Into this world are born

Some days are Diamonds...Some days are stone...

Message posted by ribble on 22/4/2014 at 10:27am
View ribble's Profile View Profile  Quote ribble Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
ribble
Avatar
Gold Member
Gold Member

Outfit: minnesota 4

Location: N. Manchester
Joined: 31/7/2007
Posts:   205
Site Reviews:   4
Tent Reviews:   2
Gallery Images:   0
we have been camping since they have been babies - it gets much easier the more you go as everyone gets used to the new patterns. I would also try and be more flexible on when bedtime is, as often they don't want to go to bed at the normal time. When they are very tired we bribe them with a film night in the tent, where everyone gets in their pi's and sleeping bags to watch a film.

The hardest thing we found was the early morning waking. I would suggest attempting to make the bedroom pods darker (although we never did). And try and pitch the tent somewhere where the bedroom pods don't get the very first rays of morning sun! We had a rule that before 7am they had to stay inside the tent, this was before the days of electronics being so common so this is easier to manage with the ds/ipad/laptop for entertainment (just make sure the volume is down!). Then we would have breakfast, shower before letting them loose on the rest of the campsite. It's amazing how noise carries. But now they are older and more used to camping we don't have the same problems - but if we go with other families who are not so used to camping their children are up with the dawn (and sooooo tired by lunchtime!).

Night time toilet trips was also a bit of a challenge until we started setting up the porta potty in the corner of the tent at night. The record was 8 trips to the loo in about 1 and a half hours - all because it was fun and exciting not because they actually needed the loo. So having the potty in the corner eliminates the leaving the tent excitement, and also eliminated the need for the toilet (strange that!).

As others have said tent putting up is traumatic. We now have a tent mallet for everyone and they all "help" putting the tent up, pumping up the air beds, collecting water from the tap etc. Basically anything to keep them occupied. We found that although a play area is great, it's not so great when you can't see it from your tent and have to spend hours lurking by a play park! So for us, space to run is more of a priority than a play park area.

Go and have fun that's the main thing
Ribble

Message posted by Surf boy on 22/4/2014 at 1:59pm
View Surf boy's Profile View Profile  Quote Surf boy Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
Surf boy
Standard Member
Standard Member

Outfit: Cabanon Biscaya 500

Location: 
Joined: 23/1/2014
Posts:   21
Site Reviews:   0
Gallery Images:   0
Totally agree with all that's been said above. Our two daughters are now 1 & 4 and both have been camping with us from 3 weeks old! It is a complete joy! Yes, putting the tent up can be a bit stressful but our 4 year old is now chief malleter and is so familiar that she's actually really helpful. Boredom sets in more whilst packing away, as none of the excitement is left and no-one is looking forward to the journey home.

However, pleasures far out way any of these negatives. Fresh air and running around all day leaves them shattered, our two have always slept better when camping and whilst they rise earlier, so do we so it's never really been an issue. Rainy days with the one year old will prove a challenge this year, so we'll be looking for sites with stuff to do nearby or letting the weather dictate our weekends away.

We have a pop up wendy house for inside the tent which has always been useful, lots of colouring-in and activity books are a must. But most of all, the key is to remember that a massive part of the pleasure of camping is the realisation of how little you need to survive, even when you do it in relative luxury. This freedom gives you so much more 'time' and time is what you can give the kids which, as we know, is thing that modern life takes from us. I'm always so sad to leave the site as I never feel quite as close as a family as I do when we're all camping.

Message posted by Futtocks on 22/4/2014 at 3:44pm
View Futtocks's Profile View Profile  Quote Futtocks Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
Futtocks
Avatar
Standard Member
Standard Member

Outfit: Outwell Colossas

Location: Northern
Joined: 21/4/2014
Posts:   3
Site Reviews:   0
Gallery Images:   0
Wow what a lot of great advice! Thanks very much for all the replies :)
I hadn't considered a lot of this so cheers!

Message posted by RachlN76 on 22/4/2014 at 4:48pm
View RachlN76's Profile View Profile  Quote RachlN76 Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
RachlN76
Avatar
Gold Member
Gold Member

Outfit: Vango Maritsa 700; Isis 600 + canopy

Location: Manchester
Joined: 05/9/2012
Posts:   466
Site Reviews:   3
Gallery Images:   0
Ours have jobs while putting the tent up. Mainly peg duty.

They're now 6 and 4, so before we are ready for pegs, they have to count them, sort them, and guard them. ;). When we are ready, they follow us round the tent, handing out pegs and making sure we put them in properly.

Once up, they sort out their own bedroom - that can take ages. Organising toys, making sure the sleeping bags are neat etc etc.

So far we've got away with this because they think it's fun. Not sure how long it will last though! :lol:

Message posted by LightFantastic on 22/4/2014 at 5:00pm
View LightFantastic's Profile View Profile  Quote LightFantastic Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
LightFantastic
Silver Member
Silver Member

Outfit: Conway Crusader 2001 folding camper

Location: East Sussex
Joined: 23/3/2014
Posts:   198
Site Reviews:   0
Gallery Images:   3
Quote: Originally posted by RachlN76 on 22/4/2014
So far we've got away with this because they think it's fun. Not sure how long it will last though! :lol:


Until they see other kids playing on the camp site whilst their parents pitch up and realise they've been 'conned'

Message posted by susiejp on 22/4/2014 at 5:19pm
View susiejp's Profile View Profile  Quote susiejp Quote    E-mail Topic to a Friend Tell a friend
susiejp
Standard Member
Standard Member

Outfit: Outwell Nevada M

Location: Scotland
Joined: 30/4/2012
Posts:   16
Site Reviews:   1
Gallery Images:   0
Agree with all the above. We take family games with us like snap/snakes and ladders etc. Camping gives you time in the evening to play these as bed time for us, as with many others, is later than usual. Not a fan of taking electronic stuff camping (not sure how long we will get away with that one though!). Hot water bottles for beds/wellies/crocks/choose a pitch not too far from toilet facilities if you do not have one in tent. My son loves washing/drying dishes on campsite but not at home!
Also do a bit of research on the area for potential rainy day activities.

Relax and enjoy if you can with "several under the age of 6!"

-------------


Sorry, you can NOT post a reply.
You need to log in or register

Jump To Page:  1  2
Quick Links - All Forums - Camping under canvas - Top of Page

Printer Friendly Version Printable version Share Google Plus  Tweet This!  Share on Facebook


2285 Visitors online !

Free UKCampsite.co.uk Window Sticker  -  Recommend to Friend  -  Pensions Auto-enrolment

[Message Forums]  [Caravan Sites & Camping]  [Company Listings]  [Features / Advice]  [Virtual Brochure]  [Shop!]
[Reception]  [Competitions]  [Caravans & Motorhomes For Sale]  [Event Diary]  [Contact Us]  [Tent Reviews

Please note we are not responsible for the content of external sites & any reviews represent the author's personal view only. Please report any error here. You may view our privacy and cookie policy here. All copyrights & other intellectual property rights in the design and content of this web site are reserved to the UKCampsite.co.uk © 1999 - 2014