As an enjoyable and cost effective option for a family holiday, camping is back in fashion and is being seen as a great way for families to spend time together, explore new places and get to grips with the great outdoors.
Camping holidays have had a bit of a makeover in recent years and the opportunities are endless for creating a personal camping break that suits every requirement and fits to individual needs. You can choose upmarket, glamorous camping or `glamping` or alternatively go back to good old fashioned basics and leave the rest to nature.
Whatever option you go for there are some basic things to keep in mind to ensure a comfortable break. Firstly make sure the tent you choose is fit for purpose and big enough to accommodate your party. It would be a pretty bad start if you find out the tent is a bit of a squeeze, especially if you underestimate the space needed not only for people, but also for supplies and equipment. It makes sense to have a practice run of erecting the tent to reduce a stressful situation in case you end up fiddling with numerous pieces and trying to put up an unfamiliar tent in the rain or the dark!
On this note it pays to be well prepared and make sure you have all necessary pegs, mallets and torches, plus of course that all important instruction manual.
If you are banking on a comfortable night`s sleep make sure you have sleeping bags, pillows and spare blankets as it can either get very hot or very cold in a tent! A portable, handheld fan is a great idea if the heat gets a bit too much.
Another essential to remember is a camping stove or portable barbeque, to enjoy that camping atmosphere at its best. Always remember matches, pots, plates and utensils and it also pays to check the campsite rules regarding outdoor fires as they can vary somewhat.
Children adore the whole camping experience but if travelling with them it`s important to enquire about campsite facilities in advance. Find out if there is a play area and how far away from the facilities you are, as well as whether the sit is family friendly in general. Areas to look at include laundry facilities and how often the communal parts are cleaned. Hot water is a must! In addition, pack enough balls, Frisbees and skipping ropes to keep everyone amused.
In terms of things to bring, a basic checklist will not only allow give you piece of mind, but ultimately save money too. A good first aid box should include antiseptic wipes, sun cream, insect repellent, painkillers and plasters.
Wellies and flip flops are easy to pack and allow for weather changes and fold-up chairs and picnic rugs are great for evenings spent out under the stars.
It sounds like a lot to remember but having a few necessities, plus a few home comforts close at hand, will help the holiday run smoothly and allows everyone to relax and have the time of their life. Whether you are going camping, staying in a hotel or availing of cheap cruise holidays
being prepared is the key to a successful trip for everyone involved.