Best Camping Gear for Fun, Outdoor Families

Best Camping Gear for Fun, Outdoor Families

Brent Johnson
By Brent Johnson / September 4, 2016

Bringing the ones you love on an outdoor excursion can make for the best memories together. It’s a time and place for parents and children to get away from the distractions of their day-to-day lives and spend genuine moments with one another. Whether taking a light trek on the trail, cooking for four, or telling ghost stories by the campfire, be sure to check out these family-friendly camping items.

coleman sundome 4 person tent

Short Info

  • Price: $​
  • Weight: 10.62 lbs
  • 4-person tent
  • Great for small families

Review and Availability

Based on 1,115 Reviews

Make home sweet home in the backcountry with the Coleman Sundome 4-person tent. Two poles and the dome-shape makes for fast and easy camp set-up. The center height of the Sundome is 59 inches, or a few inches short of five feet. Moving around is very possible for the kids, but parents could find it easier to move around on four limbs instead of two.

Regardless, four people will sleep comfortably, and fitting a queen sized airbed will slide right in. The Sundome is also outfitted to deal with moisture and the elements.

Windows and vents strategically placed promote ventilation throughout the tent, the rain-fly overhead provides shade and rain protection. The WeatherTec patented design has tightly welded floors and seam-sealed stitching to keep the rain out.

A bonus electrical access port allows the family to stay plugged in.

teton sports mammoth queen size tent green

Short Info

  • Price: $$​
  • Weight: 15 lbs
  • Expandable, adjustable
  • Feel refreshed after a good night sleep

Review and Availability

Based on 781 Reviews

Like a giant cocoon, the Teton Sports Mammoth Queen Sleeping Bag is great for fitting two adults and a child for a snuggly sleep. Make sure to bring your car and not your backpack though because it weighs a whopping 15 lbs!

But once it’s in your tent and you lay down for the evening, you won’t regret bringing the Mammoth. There are two bags to choose from, rated at either 20 degrees Fahrenheit or 0 degrees Fahrenheit. What makes this bag stand out is that although it fits more than one person, it can still be customized to each individual.

With zippers on both sides of the bag, you can adjust to the temperature that feels good for you. Another zipper on the bottom means you can split the bag into two separate quilts or even attach more sleeping bags to accommodate even more people.

The SuperLoft 4-channel hollow fiber insulation is what keeps you and your family toasty with double layer stitching. Also, a mummy-style hood can be pulled over cold faces. Wake up feeling refreshed and stuff the Teton Mammoth back in it’s compression sack for easy pack-away.

Short Info

  • Price: $$​
  • Weight: 14 lbs
  • Air pump included
  • Inflates fast

Review and Availability

Based on 286 Reviews

Pull out your Mammoth sleeping bag over top the SoundAsleep Camping Air Mattress to complete the cozy camp experience. The mattress design I-Beam Air Coils are soothing, yet tough enough to be used in outdoors environments.

An external, rechargeable battery-operated pump is included for both inflation and deflation. This can be charged at home or in the car. In just 3 minutes out of its bag, the SoundAsleep mattress can be firmly inflated.

And, the material itself has a “Sure-Grip” bottom to hold onto the surface underneath without sliding and is waterproof. Sleep soundly on this queen-sized beauty.

backpack child carrier recommended

Short Info

  • Price: $$
  • Weight: 5.1 lbs
  • Great for toddlers
  • Carries up to 40 lbs

Review and Availability

Based on 47 Reviews

If you are a regular reader you might have noticed that we're big fans of great backpacks. We wrote a pretty cool article about expedition backpacks, but there are also different types included in our other article here, and here too... anyway. Here's a little about the one for carrying your kid: 

The Baby Backpack Carrier is an awesome invention that allows new parents to get back into trail life a little faster with baby onboard. The pack ideally carries toddlers between 6 months and 4 years old, and has a maximum weight of 40 pounds.

The aluminum frame pack has padding where it counts to keep you comfortable and cool, with the addition of keeping your kid protected from the elements with a removable rain and sun shade.

Multiple pockets can be found on the pack, while a large back pocket and two water bottle holders will hold the necessary items for you and your baby.

A kickstand also allows the bag to be put upright on the ground but can also fold away. Share unforgettable experiences with your young ones in the great outdoors.

coleman pack away deluxe camping kitchen

Short Info

  • Price: $$
  • Weight: 24.2 lbs
  • Convenient for cooking
  • Single case packing

Review and Availability

Based on 332 Reviews

Do you love food? Well, who doesn't. We already covered a lot of amazing stuff for outdoor cooking while assembling our list of best camping cooking equipment, but now it's time to Colemanize your kitchen too. 

If you’re the one in charge of cooking on this trip, you’ll want to have a look at this:

The Coleman Pack-Away Deluxe Camp Kitchen means you can have the conveniences of your kitchen at home, right here in the wilderness with you. The portable setup can be unpacked from a single case, yet opens up large enough to think of all the little things you love about your kitchen at home. The heavy-duty, rust-resistant steel frame is ready for the elements and whatever storm you want to cook up.

A paper towel holder, condiment racks, removable sink bucket, pantry shelf, and lantern hook are some of the tiny details that make such a difference in the woods. The counter space, grilling area, and produce bin are all within arms reach too.

This tiny kitchen is mighty convenient.

ivation hand held shower - battery powered good for pets too

Short Info

  • Price: $
  • Weight: 1.6 lbs
  • Filters the water
  • Great for people and pets

Review and Availability

Based on 716 Reviews

You unconditionally love your family no matter what, unless they haven’t had a shower in days. When sharing a smaller space than usual with people you’re close with, the Ivation Battery Powered Handheld Portable Shower will wash your worries away.

The 6.5 foot long hose pumps out 2.5 liters a minute from the source of your choice. Luckily, you don’t have to worry about questionable water sources because the shower filters the water when in use.

Once charged from your home, laptop, or car charger (not included), you’ll get 60 minutes under the steady stream. A suction cup and hanging hook makes the shower hands-free as well. And needless to say, the battery-operated shower is waterproof. Stay clean out there.

streamlight lantern

Short Info

  • Price: $
  • Weight: 1.9 lbs
  • Great durability
  • Small and compact

Review and Availability

Based on 1,361 Reviews

For light that everyone can depend on at night, it’s best to investigate the Streamlight Siege Lantern. Lightweight and portable, one customer compared it to the size of a 12 oz. Coke can that will fit in Dad’s pocket.

Just because it’s small though doesn’t mean it illuminates your camp any less. It has four white LED lights with a high-to-low range and one red LED light that can also flash to encourage night vision. The handle is easy to hold, but D-Rings on the top and bottom of the lantern will hang onto a tree, no problem.

The Streamlight lantern uses three D-cell alkaline batteries (not included) and campers can expect 295 hours of low-white light mode. The Siege lantern is also waterproof up to one meter of submersion and has a two meter impact resistance.

mallome marshmallow roasting sticks

Main Features

  • Price: $19.97
  • Weight: 0.73 lbs
  • Safe to Eat From
  • Expandable from 12"-32"

Review and Verdict

Based on 734 Reviews

Roasting marshmallows or hot dogs over a campfire is fun no matter what, but the MalloMe Roasting Sticks have tapped into what makes for the best roasting experience.

The FDA approved non-toxic stainless steel sticks means no rust and safe to eat from. Marshmallows won’t spin and hot dogs won’t fall off, due to the two pronged design.

The sticks are also telescoping and can extend anywhere from 12 inches to 32 inches, making them easier to pack away and safer for campers to stay on the outskirts of the fire. Kids will love the color-coded sticks to prevent confusion about whose stick is whose, and parents will love that the prongs are not sharp.

Freebies include an Ebook on s’more recipes, a heat-resistant travel pouch, and 10 bamboo skewers for extra guests.

mystical camp fire colorant

Short Info

  • Price: $
  • Weight: 1oz
  • Great for Ghost Stories
  • Your Kids Will Love It

Review and Availability

Based on 936 Reviews

Campfires are enchanting on their own, but sprinkle some Mystical Campfire Colorant into your fire tonight for a psychedelic experience that everyone in your family won’t be able to take their eyes off of.

Sprinkle a few packets onto your campfire for an hour’s worth of memorable entertainment. You can expect a dazzling show of blues, purples, reds, greens, and yellows to shine.

IMPORTANT

If you do bring along your MalloMe Roasting sticks as well, make sure you do your roasting BEFORE the Mystical Campfire takes place (read the label for more details).

Never watch the same old campfire again with this unique colorant.

camping first aid kit premium preparedness

Main Features

  • Price: $$
  • Weight: 18.75lbs.
  • Much more than you really need
  • But better safe than sorry

Review and Verdict

Based on 26 Reviews

You can’t put a price on your family’s life! The 4-Person Premium Disaster Preparedness Kit shouldn’t be too far from camp headquarters.

Although the most likely to be used item in the kit is a band-aid, which there are plenty of, you’ll want your family to be ready for any surprises.

The package comes with an 85-piece first-aid hard shell kit, LED Flashlight that lasts 400 hours, half-day glow-sticks, ponchos, body warmers, a whistle, compass, flint, pocket knife, food rations, Coast Guard certified emergency water, and two backpacks to store everything inside.

This heavily-weighted kit is bottomless and will see your family safe.

Thank you for taking the time to read through our article. How to you entertain, accommodate and keep your family safe on camping trips? Tell us in the comments below!

About the author

    Brent Johnson

    Brent is busy bouncing around the globe, scribbling pen onto paper along his way. He finds inspiration in nature, extraordinary people, and the experience of adventure from challenging hikes and boardsports. He also likes to play guitar and is traveling with his fiancee, Kirsty.

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