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Camping Checklist

Preparing for your next camping trip? Our camping essentials checklist will help you make sure you’ve got everything you need, from the obvious essentials like a tent and a sleeping bag, through to the things you never know you need, like a frying pan and a corkscrew.

The things on your camping checklist will vary depending on where you’re going and how long for, but we’ll cover everything off just in case. You never know when you might need a spare tin opener.

Want to take this with you? Download our PDF camping essentials checklist to make sure you leave nothing behind.

PDF Camping Essentials Checklist

The main camping essentials

Some of these camping essentials might sound obvious, but it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

  • A tent - Make sure it’s big enough to sleep the whole family camping team, with extra space to store your possessions.
  • Tent pegs and a mallet - Always take spare tent pegs. You’ll be amazed at how easy they are to lose.
  • A sleeping bag - You’ll need one for everyone on your camping trip, while extra blankets and pillows will help keep you warm and cosy.
  • A sleeping mat or air bed - Sleeping on the ground is never comfortable. Putting something under your sleeping bag will help you get a good night’s sleep.
  • An air pump - If you’re after extra comfort, an air bed will do just the trick. Don’t forget the air pump you’ll need to set it up.
  • Torch and batteries - Finding the toilet at night is never fun. Take a torch and some extra batteries to make sure you’re never left in the dark.
  • Camping table and chairs - Eat outside with a folding table and chairs. Breakfast always tastes better al fresco.
  • Duct tape and a repair kit - Hopefully your tent won’t break, but if it does, having a repair kit on hand could be a life saver.
Family with young child

Essential clothing

When you’re camping in the UK, there are a few items of clothing you can be sure you’ll need.

  • Walking boots - Keep your feet dry with a sturdy pair of boots designed for the outdoors. Save flip flops for the beach.
  • A waterproof jacket - Just in case summer isn’t as summery as you’d hoped.
  • A laundry bag - Take a bag to put things like wet socks, old underwear and dirty clothes in. It’ll help keep your tent smelling fresh.
  • Warm pyjamas - Nights in a tent can get cold. A pair of cosy pyjamas will help you sleep nice and tight.
  • Extra socks - Good walking socks, with plenty of spares in case they get wet or muddy.

Cooking gear

Afterall, what’s camping without a good outdoor fry up?

  • Camping stove - The key ingredient behind all camping cooking. Don’t forget fuel and matches to light it with.
  • Tin opener - They’re easy to forget, but crucial to a good camping meal.
  • Bottle opener - Another thing that often slips people’s minds, but one you won’t want to be without.
  • Water bottle - Fill up your water before you head out for a day of exploring.
  • Plates and cutlery - It’s much harder to eat a full English with your hands than you’d think.
  • Pots and pans - Don’t forget other cooking items either, like a spoon or spatula.
  • Cooking oil- And anything else to help your cooking, like salt, pepper and ketchup.
  • Scissors - To help you get into your ingredients.
  • A cool box - You won’t have a fridge, so you need another cool form of food storage.
  • Washing up items - A sponge and some washing up liquid will mean you’re not left eating last night’s dinner off the plate.
  • Bin bags - To keep our parks tidy.
  • Food and drink - No use having all the cooking kit if you don’t have the things to cook.


Top Tip: You can save on cooking and washing up by treating yourself to a tasty meal in one of our restaurants. Half board dining options are available. View our food menu.

Family camping at Parkdean Resorts

Hygiene and medical essentials

They might not be the most exciting items on your checklist, but they’re vitally important.

  • Toilet roll - We provide toilet roll in all our shower blocks, but it never hurts to bring a spare.
  • Towels - Bring two. One to get wet, and another to use while the first one dries.
  • Wet wipes - So you don’t get sticky fingers on your tent.
  • Sun cream and after sun - Don’t get caught out by the British summer.
  • Insect repellent - You don’t want to wake up itchy.
  • A first aid kit - A well-stocked first aid kit is a must-have on holiday, especially if it’s the whole family camping.
  • Painkillers and prescription medication - Don’t forget to pack the medication you depend on.
  • Hand wash and shower gel - Camping has a habit of getting muddy.
Family with dog looking out at the sea

If you're camping with a dog

For a dog friendly stay, they need some camping essentials too.

  • A travel bowl - For all their food and water.
  • A dog bed - Make sure it fits in your tent or awning.
  • Dog toys - You’re surrounded by fields or beaches, perfect for playing in.
  • Some doggy ID - Ideally on their collar in case they run off.
Friends sat on camp chairs at Parkdean Resorts

Extra items

  • Entertainment - A pack of cards, a board game and a book can always help pass the time.
  • Dustpan and brush - Keep the dirt and sand out of your tent.
  • Booking details - To help you find your pitch on arrival.
  • Local guides - Don’t miss out on all the nearby attractions.
If you can tick the bulk of this checklist off, you’re ready to go! Don't worry if you forget something though, our on park convenience stores sell plenty of essentials to keep you going.