Summer is here, and as experts predict a warmer summer than usual for most of New Zealand, it is expected that families all over the country will be planning lots of outdoor activities wherever they take their children. One of the best things to do in the country during this time of year is camping; as 80% of New Zealanders have gone camping at some point in their lives, the activity remains to be a part of Kiwi culture through the years. If you’re heading to Auckland, Northland, the Bay of Plenty, or other famous camping destinations with your kids, it’s important to be well prepared when you’re taking little ones to ensure that everyone has a good time. Here are some top tips.
Let the kids leave their gadgets at home, but bring a few toys
The whole point of camping is to get children immersed in the beauty of nature, and they won’t appreciate the view if their eyes are glued to their phone or tablet screens. Have your children leave their gadgets at home, but bring a pack of playing cards, one or two board games, a kite, balls, sand toys, or play cooking sets just in case your kids want something to play with.
Choose the right tent
When picking a camping tent, it’s important to keep the size and material in mind so that everyone in the family can be comfortable during your camping trip. If you’re taking your kids and pets with you, consider cabin-type tents which have room dividers and a lot of livable space. Choose a tent made of sturdy fabric and mesh panels for ventilation, which everyone will appreciate on warm summer nights.
Make it easier to build a fire
Building a fire is one of the first things that you have to do when you’re camping, but sometimes, little ones may not be able to wait to have a roaring fire going especially when there’s a lack of firewood on hand. Consider bringing an ethanol fireplace for camping, which only needs ethanol fuel to feed the flames. It’s a safer alternative to traditional bonfires as the flames are contained and easy to put out. However, it’s recommended to keep a close eye on your kids as they may attempt to throw random things into the fire.
Make camping food that your kids will love
You may not have a problem eating beans out of a can, but children need a little more variety when it comes to camping food. Apart from smores, there are a lot of kid-friendly camping treats that you can whip up in no time at all such as breakfast burritos, campfire flatbread pizza, and grilled barbecue chicken. Bring the necessary ingredients as well as versatile staples such as eggs, soft tortillas, potatoes, cheese, chicken breasts, tomatoes, and the like and you may find that there are plenty of ways to use these ingredients in different dishes.
Camping with your entire family connects your children to nature and enables you to have quality time to bond. Follow these tips to have an awesome time camping with your kids this summer.
Written by and thank you to Jenny Holt