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8 Must-Bring Camping Necessities For First-Time Campers

Camping is a fun outdoor activity that everybody should experience. It is an excellent idea if you want a quick out of town trip with your friends and family that does not cost too much.  

If you want to try camping, you need to prepare the items that you have to bring. You might want to choose a camping site that provides some utilities and facilities, so you do not have to bring a lot with you, and consider it as a dry run if you plan to take your activities to the next level. 

Aside from that, you need to know the camping essentials. Here is the list of items that you need to bring for your first camping trip: 

1. Navigational tools

Navigational tools such as compass and maps will prevent first time campers not to be lost in the wilderness. These are more helpful than bringing your cellular phones with you since some campsites do not have a  cell signal. 

Before going on your camping trip, make sure that you are well knowledgeable in reading maps as well as navigational techniques, like easily identifying east and west through the movement of the sun just in case your navigational devices got lost during the trail. 

2. Sleeping bag and sleeping mats

Some would dread camping because you will not be able to sleep comfortably. To make sure that you still find comfort outside your home, bring sleeping mats that you can fit inside your tent.  

You can also bring inflatable mattress if you are feeling extra or if you are camping with your kids. Make sure to set up your tent in a flat and soft surface like grass and sand since you do not want to puncture the mattress if placed in rocky surfaces. 

Do not forget sleeping bags since it can serve as a pillow or blanket when temperature drops and becomes chilly at night. 

3. Cooking sets

Camping cook sets consist of plates, utensils, bowls, high-quality cooking pans, spatula, knife, can opener and water pot. Having a designated set of cookware for camping will make it easier for you not to bring a lot during your trip.  

Think of what you usually bring for a picnic, that is most likely the ones you should also be bringing in camp. 

4. Flashlights, lamps, and matches

If you are camping in the wilderness, you typically do not have any electrical source unless you are camping on an RV.  

Camping necessities include light source like flashlights and lamps. You need it on your area to keep your camping site well-lit, and it will make it easy for you to go around at night. Make sure to pack extra batteries as well. If there are no matches, you cannot light up a campfire, and you won’t be able to cook as well.  

5. Canned goods and bottled water

Unless you are an experienced camper, you will not go hunting for food source on your camping trip. So, you have to bring food items that will not spoil quickly and easy to cook. Canned goods, granola bars, crackers, and biscuits are typical food items to bring. 

There might be no or limited source of potable water in the camping site, so it is best to bring bottled water or a handy gallon of water if you are traveling with a group. 

6. First aid kit

Band-aids, gauze, alcohol, anti-inflammatory ointment, antibacterial creams, and NSAIDs should be in your first aid kit. Since camping is an outdoor activity, you cannot avoid getting bruises or wounds.  

Since you will be spending most of your time outdoors, always stay protected by frequently applying mosquito and bug repellent. This is very important, most especially if you are camping with kids. You might also want to bring cream that will protect you from poison ivy rash. 

7. Safety shoes and waterproof clothes

Since you are spending your entire trip outdoors, you might encounter weather changes in the entire duration of camping. Especially if you are a first time camper, you will have no idea on what type of trails you will get into.  

Wearing safety hiking shoes will protect your feet from getting injured in rocky areas  and getting wet when the trail is muddy or crossing rivers. Waterproof clothes will keep you dry during the rain. You can also bring clothes with heat technology if you are camping in high altitudes to keep you warm at all times. 

Don’t forget to use waterproof backpack to keep your necessities dry as well.

8. Games or a handy instrument

Make your camping trip more exciting by bringing handy board games or a new deck of cards and spice up your night by arranging a poker night outdoors. If you and your friends love music, kill the silence by bringing a guitar so you can sing all night long and keep the campfire burning. 


If you are a first time camper, these list will help you to prepare what you need. Aside from the basic necessities like food and water, you also need to consider the things that will ensure your safety and protection during the entire camping trip.  

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