Camping setup for beginners - what to take camping

Experienced campers do it pretty easily. They've built up their camping setup over a period of years, mostly via the "trial and error" method, and they know what they’re doing having done it plenty of times before. Beginner campers may not even know if camping is for them, and hence may be reluctant to invest in the very equipment that might actually make camping a more enjoyable experience for them.

This article is about steering you towards the type of camping setup we wish we had started with, which would have avoided a lot of trial and error as well as money spent on buying products that we no longer use for camping. 

As you will see below, we recommend a more basic initial camping setup to avoid investing a lot of money into high-end camping gear that could ultimately stay in the garage.  Our beginners camping setup is still functional and comfortable, and will be compatible with most of the advice and tools we have available on this website. Many of the items listed will also be equally useful around the home as well if, in the end, they don't get a lot of camping use.

To go to our buying guide to find a particular product listing, click on the links under each heading below. You will also find further information and our suggested products as well as links to online suppliers. The items marked in the buying guide with an * (astericks) are those suggested for beginner campers.

And if you are wondering how this beginners camping setup can be packed for camping for a family or group of 4-5 people, check out the following articles complete with step by step images:

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